The EastEnders star opened the show in Week 4 of the celebrity dance competition dancing the Cha Cha Cha to Prince’s Raspberry Beret with professional partner Giovanni Pernice.
Afterwards host Claudia Winkleman revealed Ayling-Ellis – who is profoundly deaf contestant and uses hearing aids and sign language to communicate had been struggling to learn the Latin dance without her hearing aid.
The 26-year-old actor said: “Really it is normal life for deaf people – I break my hearing aid all the time. But it was really the wrong time in Cha Cha Cha week!”
And her Italian dance partner Pernice, 31, admitted she shouted very loudly when talking to him without her hearing aid.
He said: “It’s like talking to a loud speaker!”
Ayling-Ellis explained: “Usually I can hear myself when I speak but I talk until I can feel the vibrations in my chest.”
The couple earned a respectable 27 out of 40 for their performance and judge Craig Revel Horwood praised the chemistry between the two on the dancefloor.
He told them: “I am particularly loving the partnership itself. The partnership between you is very strong.”
Ayling-Ellis has previously said she hopes to be a role model for young deaf people and show what they can do by competing on the show.
She told Yahoo UK: “I feel like I’ve got a purpose – because I am deaf and to be the first deaf person on Strictly, I feel like it will be a good chance to break the stereotypes of what deaf people can and can’t do.
“A lot of people think that [deaf] people can’t hear the music, and enjoy the music and enjoy dancing. And I thought it would be a good platform for me to break that stereotype.”
Strictly was missing two couples this weekend as Ugo Monye and Oti Mabuse have to take the week off to allow Monye to recover from a back injury, and Robert Webb and Dianne Buswell have quit the show due to health issues.
Webb underwent open heart surgery two years ago and his doctor has advised him not to continue with the competition as he began experiencing some worrying symptoms.