Strictly tour to make huge change after Rose Ayling-Ellis wins BBC dance show
Strictly Come Dancing has confirmed this year's live tour will have a new feature after Rose Ayling-Ellis's historic win of the 2021 series.
The EastEnders starlet became the first deaf celebrity to compete on the show, and lifted the glitterball trophy with her pro partner Giovanni Pernice after the country fell head over heels for her.
And now, pro Janette Manrara, who sat out of the 2021 series to host It Takes Two, has confirmed the live tour has been altered after a campaign by Rose.
Janette, who is hosting the tour, said the addition of a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter will make sure "everyone feels included" and is able to enjoy the show-stopping performances.
Rose, 27, has called for BSL to be given legal status, saying the current situation is "a big problem" for the deaf community.
And Janette, who is married to Strictly hunk Aljaž Škorjanec, said Rose raising awareness for the deaf community is a "wonderful thing".
Speaking on BBC's The One Show, Miami-born Janette, 38, said: "Rose really created such an awareness for the deaf community.
"Not just on the main show on Strictly but also on the live tour."
She went on: "Myself, I'm trying to make sure I put captions on as much as possible with anything that I post.
"That's the beauty of the show.
"You take someone like Rose who comes in, does such a fantastic job and now on the live tour we're going to have an interpreter at every single show to make sure everyone feels included, so they can really enjoy the show as well."
BSL was recognised as a language in its own right by the Government in 2003, but it has no legal protection.
Rose said she had spoken to Labour MP Rosie Cooper about her Bill in Parliament, which aims to make BSL an official language of the UK.
Now, the actress is set to tour the country alongside runner-up John Whaite, AJ Odudu, Rhys Stephenson, TIlly Ramsay and Sara Davies, while Max George from the 2020 series will also take part.
Rose and Giovanni beat Bake Off champ John and his pro partner Johannes Radebe in the Strictly final just before Christmas last year.
And after forging such a strong bond with Rose, Italian Gio has said he will also have an interpreter at his upcoming solo tour.
The Strictly tour will kick off later this month on January 20 in Birmingham.
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