*Photo supplied
*Photo supplied

You couldn’t help but notice the energy and excitement at the Earl Cameron Theatre for Ballet Black - a show that has been described as a dance company comprised only of black and Asian dancers.

Erect on the edge of their chairs and now eagerly awaiting the moment when the ballet begins are little black girls donning their signature buns, as if to say, "I dance too!"

The show began with the company's senior artists Joseph Alves and Sayaka Ichikawa performing a fast and playful piece appropriately named Dopamine (you make my levels go silly).

It is a dance between two lovers overcome by their own shared joy, giddy with love. Joseph and Sayaka make a beautiful duo in sync in every subtle eek of happiness; as light as the love they portray they fly in and out of each other’s arms like two small birds with a happy secret.

The rest of the production carries us into other stories and emotions with beauty, precision and magic. With stand-out performances in EGAL (Equal), The One Who Played Twice, and War Letters - Cira Robinson, Damien Johnson, Isabela Coracy, Jacob Wye and Kanika Carr rounded out the entire company of dancers.

War Letters was particularly moving as the dancers evoked the suffering of wives and soldiers broken by war. If I could watch one piece over and over again it would be choreographer Robert Binet’s EGAL (Equal).

Donned in identical blue shirts and shorts Jacob Wye and Kanika Carr painted a world of true trust between two people equal in both strength and frailty. It was only at the end of the piece when they knelt, backs to the audience and fists to the floor that I realised I had been holding my breath.

In an area of the arts known for its lack of racial and ethnic diversity, Ballet Black matters because of what it reveals about access, inclusivity and what is and could be possible. In creating the company, Anglo-Trinidadian Cassa Pancho is not just making a statement about balance, diversity and perception - she inspires a new generation to make their ballerina and ballerino dreams a reality. The organizers of the Bermuda Festival should be thanked for bringing such a beautiful message to our shores.