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Strictly star Giovanni Pernice's sweet tribute to Rose Ayling-Ellis amid fan reunion hopes

The Strictly Come Dancing champions are viewer favourites

Giovanni Pernice standing with Rose Ayling-Ellis
Diane Shipley
Senior Online Writer
10 March 2024
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Giovanni Pernice and Rose Ayling-Ellis are one of Strictly's most loved pairings and viewers are keen to see them together again, as they expressed earlier this week. 

The dancer shared some exciting news with fans that could possibly see the duo reunite – and then at the weekend, he went on to pay a heart-melting tribute to the EastEnders star during his stage show, as you can see in the video below…

WATCH: Strictly star Giovanni Pernice's sweet tribute to Rose Ayling-Ellis amid fan reunion hopes

Like many of the Strictly dancers, Giovanni now uses British Sign Language to signal "Thank you" to viewers following his most recent performance in Dublin, a tradition started by Rose during her time on the show in 2021, when she and the Italian danced to victory

Giovanni's career has gone from strength to strength ever since, with the release of his unisex fragrance Vita and his TV show with co-star and close friend Anton Du Beke, on which Rose made a delightful surprise appearance. 

Giovanni Pernice and Rose Ayling-Ellis lift Strictly glitterball© BBC
The pair lifting the glitterball trophy in 2021

Earlier in the week, Giovanni and Anton revealed that they would be making another series of their travel programme – but with a twist! 

While Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Sicily featured the pair travelling throughout Giovanni's homeland, the 2024 series of the docuseries will see them soak up the sun in Anton and Giovanni’s Adventures in Spain, where they will investigate Anton's family background. 

Giovanni and Anton's new show will be on the BBC later this year
View post on Instagram

Fans rushed to share their excitement for the show, with many hoping it would provide another chance for Giovanni and Rose to share screen time. "The best thing about the first series is when Rose joined them, she was so much fun," commented one. 

Others felt the same, with one adding: "For me, Rose made the last series very special, her humour was wonderful to watch with Anton and Gio," and another chiming in: "Will be very disappointing if Rose is not asked to join them." 

Rose Ayling-Ellis has featured in Anton and Giovanni: Adventures in Sicily© BBC
Rose was featured in last year's Anton and Giovanni: Adventures in Sicily

A fourth wrote: "Definitely a very funny and watchable trio," although some commenters wondered if the star might be too busy to join her friends abroad.

Every Strictly Come Dancing winner so far

Rose and Giovanni with the Glitterball in 2021
Rose and Giovanni lifted the Glitterball in 2021
  • 2004: Natisha Kaplinsky (partner Brendan Cole)
  • 2004: Jill Halfpenny (partner Darren Bennett) 
  • 2005: Darren Gough (partner Lilia Kopylova) 
  • 2006: Mark Ramprakash (partner Karen Hardy) 
  • 2007: Alesha Dixon (partner Matthew Cutler) 
  • 2008: Tom Chambers (partner Camilla Dallerup) 
  • 2009: Chris Hollins (partner Ola Jordan) 
  • 2010: Kara Tointon (partner Artem Chigvintsev) 
  • 2011: Harry Judd (partner Aliona Vilani)
  • 2012: Louis Smith (partner Flavia Cacace)
  • 2013: Abbey Clancy (partner Aljaž Škorjanec) 
  • 2014: Caroline Flack (partner Pasha Kovalev) 
  • 2015: Jay McGuiness (partner Aliona Vilani) 
  • 2016: Ore Oduba (partner Joanne Clifton) 
  • 2017: Joe McFadden (partner Katya Jones)
  • 2018: Stacey Dooley (partner Kevin Clifton)
  • 2019: Kelvin Fletcher (partner Oti Mabuse)
  • 2020: Bill Bailey (partner Oti Mabuse) 
  • 2021: Rose Ayling-Ellis (partner Giovanni Pernice) 
  • 2022: Hamza Yassin (partner Jowita Przystał)

The actress is set to star in Code of Silence, an upcoming ITV drama that will see her play a deaf reporter who returns to her quiet home town at the same time a serial killer becomes active. 

Giovanni Pernice Rose Ayling-Ellis Couple's Choice© BBC
The pair's Couple's Choice was so moving

Rose and Giovanni always appeared to have a warm partnership during her time on the show, with the actress saying: "I started off finding dancing very confusing. It was a strange new skill. 

"But Giovanni was so good. He listened and learnt a lot from me. We learnt very quickly that, if we were together, I could follow him." 

Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice© Jonathan Hordle/Shutterstock
Rose and Giovanni are still fan favourites

However, the Italian was the subject of reports about his strict training approach after the most recent series, when his celebrity partner Amanda Abbington dropped out of the show citing "personal reasons," amid rumours that the couple did not get along. 

Last month, another of his former partners, Michelle Visage, gave her opinion on the furore during an appearance on This Morning

Amanda Abbington and Giovanni Pernice© BBC
Amanda dropped out of Strictly last year

She said: "I don't like gossip but what I can say from my experience was yes, he's tough… some people can handle that, some people don't want to handle that. I wanted that."

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