Britain’s Got Talent viewers across the country have praised Diversity’s special dance routine dedicated to the Black Lives Matter movement.
On last night’s semi-final (Saturday 5th September), the dance troupe took to the stage with an act that touched on the major events of 2020 so far. As well as addressing the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the 2009 Britain’s Got Talent winners performed to a series of tracks inspired by BLM.
Notably, at one point a figure dressed as a police officer was shown kneeling on the neck of troupe leader (and new BGT judge) Ashley Banjo. This echoed the death of George Floyd during his arrest by US police in May, an incident which sparked worldwide protests.
Narrating the performance with an original poem, Banjo said: “While we all were hidden, under orders of the Prime Minister, people dusted off their instincts and noticed something more sinister. Another disease, deep-rooted in our system. Fear, hate and ignorance. But racism was the symptom.”
The group then took a knee on stage in protest before all speaking the same phrase: “Black Lives Matter.”
Viewers at home were quick to praise Diversity for using their platform to deliver an “emotional and important” performance.
— M . L I N E S Ⓜ️ (@MLines05) September 5, 2020
Prime time Saturday night TV and dance group Diversity just performed a routine inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement which featured a police officer kneeling on member Ashley Banjo’s neck. Powerful. #BLM #BGT pic.twitter.com/gQK5QiwVtP
— Sophie Morris (@itssophiemorris) September 5, 2020
— Jay Stimps (@jamiestimpsonuk) 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
— Jade (@Jadestarrx) September 5, 2020
Speaking after the routine, Banjo said: “This performance is extremely special to me and the rest of Diversity. 2020 has been an incredible moment in history for both positive and negative reasons.
“We wanted to use the platform we’ve been given to make our voices heard, express how the events of this year have made us feel and think about how we might look back on them in the future… We call it hindsight 2020.”
The pre-recorded show, which was filmed without a studio audience, saw eight acts fighting for a place in the grand final. These included comedian Steve Royle, dance troupe Urban Turtles, magician James Stott, father and son duo James and Dylan Piper and Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer act, Fayth Ifil.
In a unanimous verdict, judges David Walliams, Alesha Dixon, Amanda Holden and Ashely Banjo (filling in as Cowell recovers from back surgery) decided Steve Royle would proceed to the competition’s final.
Britain’s Got Talent airs Saturdays on ITV at 8pm. If you’re looking for more to watch check out our TV guide.