Che Clarke’s daughter, Nache, laughs when she describes his introduction to ballet.
“The first time he tried to do a leap, he was like an elephant,” she said of the former goalkeeper for Devonshire Cougars and Hamilton Parish Hot Peppers.
Eventually, however, his football skills came in handy.
“As a goalkeeper you have to have balance and spring,” said Mr Clarke, one of eight men who will perform with their daughters at In Motion School of Dance’s annual showcase over the coming weeks. “I found myself using a lot of the things I learnt as a goalkeeper in this class as far as jumps, spins, turns and things of that nature. If it had not been for that I would have found it difficult, most definitely.”
The group will dance a three-minute routine set to a song from Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: Sunflower by Post Malone and Swae Lee.
Mr Clarke joined the class to spend more time with his eight-year-old: “We’re tight and we do a lot together. This was the icing on the cake, really.”
Ruben Tulling joined for much the same reason.
“I didn’t really know what it would involve,” he said, adding that his daughters Jocelyn, 8, and Samantha, 6, were thrilled he signed up for the class. “I didn’t know if it would be ballet-like or just clapping of hands.”
It turned out to be heavily weighted on the ballet side with some hip-hop and jazz moves thrown in.
Mr Tulling, a technical director at Gateway Systems Ltd, wasn’t bothered; he’d done some ballroom dancing in the past.
The class started as a one-off for “dads and dudes”, two years ago. “The kids could bring their dads or a male role model into class with them,” said Lizz Pimentel, the director of In Motion. “It was a bit of a joke, to prove to the men how difficult dance is. It is a sport.”
When she offered the class again last year, it received such an enthusiastic response that she decided to made it specifically for fathers and daughters.
Nache, who had been dancing since she was a toddler, thought it would be fun to do it with her dad. “For my first dance recital I was so nervous,” she said. “I was really scared I would do something wrong.”
She turned to her daddy for comfort. “He said, ‘Oh don’t worry, it will be fine,’” she remembered. “Then, I got out on the stage and did my best.”
Now she giggles at the idea that she might have to comfort him before his first recital. Her father insists he’s more excited than nervous.
“It has been a really great experience so far,” the sales representative at BF&M said.
“Normally, it is me having to teach her how to do things. She is the master in this case.”
The most difficult bit has been getting all the dancers in sync, he added.
“Everyone has the same movements, but has their own cadence. The hardest part was getting the cadence together and counting in your head.”
This year’s showcase is called Dance Vibes Only in hopes of emphasising the positivity associated with dance for the audience and for the dancers, Ms Pimentel said.
“This will be our 22nd annual dance showcase. We have been preparing for at least a year. We take a lot of pride offering the most professional experience we can for students as well as the audience so they feel they are transported out of Bermuda, to a professional high-class show.”
• Dance Vibes Only runs Friday through Sunday and from June 6 to 8 at Earl Cameron Theatre. Showtime is at 7pm. A 2pm matinee also takes place on June 1, 2 and 8. Tickets, $30 for students, $45 for general admission and $80 for patrons, are available on ptix.bm