This company consists of graduating students of the Central School of Ballet — 30 dancers from 11 different countries. The idea is to give them valuable stage experience before they embark on their professional careers, and by the look of this year’s dancers, some of them should do well. They presented fewer pieces than in previous years — seven short works this time — but only the last demanded any dramatic ability in which the dancers could show off acting skills and individual personalities.

The opening work, Celebration, showed its eight dancers off well. It’s by Christopher Gable, Ballet Central’s founder, and of course a great dancer in his day. A classical work, the girls in beautiful white shifts by Richard Gellar, it shows the influence of Frederick Ashton’s early work, and told us immediately that we were in for a good evening as the cast went through a series of linked pieces, with Carmen Vasquez Marfil and Andrew McNicol particularly impressive. McNicol is an engaging and versatile dancer who made his presence felt throughout the programme.

And Then Their Hopes Soared, another classical piece, less formal than the opener, went well, and brought us to Circle of 5 by Rambert’s Mikaela Polley. More contemporary in style, Polley here has tried to highlight the physicality of the approaching Olympic Games. Dancers were in black body-stockings, there was a martial arts feel to it, and a sparkling solo from tiny Yuumi Ueno.

There was a pas de trois from Swan Lake, some atmospheric Spanish dancing in Encuentros, more pleasant-enough abstract dance in Six Chamber Dances, and then, finally, some humour in Matthew Hart’s Whodunnit?

This is an Agatha Christie-style mystery in period costume, which allows all its cast the chance to play the amusing characters from the board game Cluedo. Tatiana Tsvetkova as Miss Scarlett and Ben Owen as Professor Plum were a hoot. Throughout the evening there was a confident spirit among these young dancers, who clearly knew that they were on top form.

Ballet Central is at Newbury on May 15, the Linbury studio in London on June 20, and London’s Bloomsbury Theatre on July 6 and 7.