Rose Ayling-Ellis is Strictly Come Dancing’s first ever deaf contestant (Picture: BBC)
A deaf and hearing loss charity has praised Rose Ayling-Ellis as she becomes Strictly Come Dancing’s first ever deaf contestant.
Rose, best known for playing Frankie Lewis in EastEnders, said she hopes to ‘do the deaf community proud and break down more barriers’.
Charity RNID, (The Royal National Institute for Deaf People), works to make life fully inclusive for deaf people and those with hearing loss or tinnitus.
Advocacy Officer Annie Roberts hopes Rose’s appearance on Strictly will ‘challenge’ preconceived notions of how deaf people experience music.
She told Metro.co.uk: ‘We are delighted that Rose Ayling-Ellis will be appearing on this year’s Strictly.
‘Representation like this is so very important to raise awareness and make deaf people’s lives more visible and understood.
Rose plays Frankie on EastEnders (Picture: BBC)
‘It is especially important where it directly changes outdated stereotypes. We hope that Rose’s appearance will challenge the notion that deaf people can’t engage with the rhythm of different dances or adapt themselves to the musicality of the performances.
‘We wish Rose the very best of luck!’
Rose lauded the BBC One soap for exploring her character’s deaf identity further since she joined in 2020, telling Inside Soap in January: ‘For too long, TV hasn’t portrayed the deaf experience of deaf culture.
‘I think for people who don’t know anyone who is deaf, it’s important to show what life is like for a deaf person. Even things such as using my voice and having the audience hear my “deaf accent” is a big step forward.’
She added: ‘I truly hope that hearing voices such as mine on TV will become the norm. Plus, it’s exciting to have two deaf characters on a major prime-time show.’
The actress, who uses British Sign Language (BSL) is first ever deaf actor play a deaf character on EastEnders.
Her other TV credits include Summer of Rockets and Casualty, and she has had various role in stage productions.
Credit: Original article published here.