In Saturday’s episode (4 December), the EastEnders star performed an American smooth alongside her professional partner Pernice.
Towards the end of the dance, she dived into the air and was caught by Pernice. Host Tess Daly said: “My heart was in my mouth. We have never seen anything like that on the show before.”
Judge Craig Revel Horwood added: “Yeah, really amazing, that lift – you really have to know each other well.”
“I think if we slow that lift down at the end, you will see there is a point in mid air where you are not touching each other,” Shirley Ballas stated. “That truly is a leap of faith.”
Afterwards, when co-host Claudia Winkleman asked Ayling-Ellis if she trusted Pernice, she quipped: “I don’t really have much choice.”
She added: “No, I do trust him. We have a really good friendship.”
Viewers praised the pair for their dive lift, with one branding it “heart stopping” and another calling it “amazing”.
Two other contestants didn’t have such luck with their lifts. Both John Whaite and AJ Odudu’s professional partners, Johannes Redebe and Kai Widdrington, made errors that saw the contestants’ scores marked down.
Strictly continues Saturdays until 18 December on BBC One.