Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice are firm favourites on this year’s Strictly Come Dancing with their moving performances.
After capturing the hearts of the nation pro dancer Giovanni has told why the EastEnders actress is the best dance partner.
Giovanni, 31, who has been on the show since 2015 and a professional dancer for 23 years, said Rose is ‘working harder than anyone else’ and even more than him sometimes.
Appearing on This Morning, following their monumental silent dance in support of the deaf community on last Saturday night’s dancing show, Giovanni heaped praise on his friend.
Host Alison Hammond asked Giovanni if he had the ‘best dance partner’ and Giovanni said: “100 per cent. I’m a professional dancer, I’ve been doing it for 23 years.
“Even 10 seconds of silence was so hard because in that 10 seconds, you have to think about your steps and you have to think about keeping the beat and I was like ‘now I understand what she goes through..’
“The 10 seconds was powerful, it was very, very, very good.”
Talking about the powerful 10 seconds of silence within their performance, Rose said: “I think it was a special moment for me because a lot of the time, you always see a deaf person getting on well and doing what is normal, but you don’t see how much hard work goes behind it.
“I think the silent moment was to show ‘this is what I do when I dance – this is the amount of work I do, but I still do it with a smile on my face.’
“That’s my message and it’s a lot of what deaf people go through.”
Rose, 27, is the first deaf contestant in the show’s 17-year history.
Asked by Alison how she does it she revealed, “I count a lot in my head, it’s counting.
“And also it’s Giovanni with me. Really, I get my counting from him.
“So I keep in tune with Giovanni and if you keep doing it again, you let your muscle memory do it and then timing sort of does it in my body.”
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Giovanni, whose previous Strictly partners include Corrie’s Georgia May Foote, Steps singer Faye Tozer, Michelle Visage, and Debbie McGee, added: “Doing the dance, you can see she lip reads me too, so I give her the timing.”
He continued, “When we do ballroom, we are connected, so it’s a bit easier.
“The Quick-Step is fast, but for the other dances, we lip read a lot and she’s working a lot on muscle memory – counting.
“She’s working harder than anyone else – even more than me sometimes.”
This Morning co-host Dermot O’Leary mentioned the internet search for British sign language has increased significantly thanks to them making history on Strictly and Rose said: “I feel good because for so long deaf people were always isolated and not really a part of British society.
“The more people that understand, the more people will communicate with each other.”