Britain's Got Talent viewers have heaped praise on a powerful and moving performance by dance group Diversity during the show's first semi-final of 2020.
Diversity, who won the ITV talent show back in 2009, returned to the BGT stage to perform a Black Lives Matter piece billed by the show as "a performance that will be talked out for years to come".
The dance – which you can watch in full above – begins with a poem being read about the events that have taken place this year, particularly the death of George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter marches and the coronavirus pandemic.
Some of these were acted out, with one particularly powerful moment featuring Ashley Banjo lying down and a dancer dressed as a police officer pretending to kneel on his neck while the lines "As the world watched on, another Black life gone, leaving what we thought we knew in tatters" are read out.
They go on to showcase their signature flips and jumps, as they jump off and kick over riot shields.
The four-minute performance ends with a child asking "Why did it take a virus to bring the people back together?" which is answered with "Because sometimes you have to get sick, my boy, before you start feeling better".
Viewers praised the powerful routine on Twitter, calling it "unreal", and pointed out its importance:
Just when you think Diversity couldn’t set the bar any higher they go & pull something like that out the bag. 11 years on & they still feel so fresh & remain the best #BGT
— ✨Michaela✨ (@Xmichaela_eveX) September 5, 2020
Full marks to @Diversity_Tweet for their sensational Black Lives Matter dance routine on @BGT tonight. Powerful, heartfelt, perfectly choreographed. More stuff like this please, creative people! #bgt pic.twitter.com/yCviLdpfba
— Barnaby Edwards (@BarnabyEdwards) September 5, 2020
— PJ (@parris_fraser) September 5, 2020
that diversity performance was absolutely phenomenal, so informative, so emotional, so powerful, and needs to be seen everywhere, wow wow W O W #BGT
— Shannon Coe (@shannonjcoe) September 5, 2020
— Toby Earle (@TobyonTV) September 5, 2020
— Chizzy (@chizzyakudolu) September 5, 2020
— Hannah (@Spampoodle) September 5, 2020
— M I K E . L Ⓜ️ (@MLines05) September 5, 2020
Oh my god that was beyond incredible - Diversity are in a class of their own, what a powerful piece of dance❤️ #BGT
— Erin ミ☆ (@_erinz_) September 5, 2020
After a months-long hiatus caused by the coronavirus pandemic, BGT commenced its semi-finals last night (September 4) in an audience-free studio, with judges David Walliams, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and Ashley Banjo (who is temporarily replacing Simon Cowell following Simon's back injury) sitting at their own socially-distanced tables.
After a talent-packed show, the first finalist of 2020 was chosen, with comedian Steve Royle making it through to the grand final after being chosen by all four judges.
The public vote is now open until 10am on Monday, September 7, meaning that you have the chance to choose another semi-finalist to compete in the final.
The Britain's Got Talent semi-finals air on Saturday evenings on ITV.
For more information on how you can support Black Lives Matter, please visit its official website or donate here. Readers can also donate to the UK anti-discrimination group Stand Up To Racism, and the Unite Families & Friends Campaign, which supports those affected by deaths in police, prison and psychiatric custody.
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