Rose Ayling-Ellis performs emotional Strictly dance dedicated to deaf community

·3-min read

Rose Ayling-Ellis has performed an emotional number dedicated to the deaf community for her couple’s choice dance on Strictly Come Dancing.

The actress, who is the first deaf contestant in the show’s history, performed a contemporary dance to Symphony by Clean Bandit featuring Zara Larsson alongside her partner Giovanni Pernice, which scored them 39 out of a possible 40.

During the middle of the performance, the music was paused as the couple continued to dance in silence as a tribute to the deaf community.

Head judge Shirley Ballas said: “Well, I feel first of all, that I should stand up out of respect for you sharing, particularly the silent moment which I was not expecting and it takes you into a much deeper place.

“I’m sure the deaf community will be absolutely so proud of you.

“And for sharing your heart, and for being honest, and for being true and for people seeing that a beautiful young lady like you can be so successful.

“This is a number that will be etched in my heart for a long time. It was absolutely beautiful.”

Judge Motsi Mabuse explained she had written notes about the dance but instead wanted to thank Ayling-Ellis for providing the audience with an insight into her world.

She said: “In this case, I honestly feel like saying thank you, because I think this was just such a beautiful moment to include us in your world.

“And for us to actually understand – how important.

“And this was so special. Sometimes it’s more than scores and marks and dancing, sometimes it’s just a moment, and we just had that, and thank you so much.”

Strictly Come Dancing 2021
The couple had a silent moment in the dance in honour of the deaf community (Guy Levy/BBC)

An emotional Anton Du Beke, who has been on the dance competition since its beginning in 2004, added: “That’s the greatest thing I’ve ever seen on the show.”

Craig Revel Horwood provided a technical note on how to add more energy into the contemporary dance, but noted that the performance was “fabulous”.

Ayling-Ellis also thanked her dance partner Pernice after the performance for his dedication in creating the choreography of the routine.

She said: “I feel very thankful for your determination to make this dance the most positive, happy dance, it can be, because you know that being deaf, there’s nothing wrong, it’s such a joy to be deaf, and I think that says a lot about you as a person.”

The couple were also sent a video message from Hamilton Lodge School and College, a school for the deaf, who thanked them for representing the deaf community and for inspiring others.

The pupils and staff conveyed the message in sign language, saying: “You are great role models for us because you show that deaf and hearing people can work together to achieve anything.

“And like you, we want more people to learn how to sign.”

They then scored the pair a perfect 40, but corrected themselves and upped their mark to 44 by holding up four paddleboards all showing a score of 11.

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