During the two-hour Midnight Tango show at Birmingham's New Alexandra Theatre, gone were the smiles and cute play-acting (at least until the final applause, when Vincent couldn't help but flirt with the crowd). Instead, the pair become a pair of serene, passionate and fantastically-gifted dancers in historic Buenos Aires.
Transported to a small bar with a live band and excellent singer, there was hardcore Argentinian Tango throughout, with the pair supported by a strong cast of fellow dancers and tango champions.
But the forte of this production, co-produced by Strictly judge Arlene Phillips and choreographed by the pair, was the strong emphasis on characters.
The audience become just as emotionally attached to the elderly disenchanted couple running the bar, who see their passion rekindled thanks to tango, as they do to the main stars of the show.
The story sees the usual romances and attractions form around the dancefloor as Vincent's character, Pablo, tries to impress the beautiful aloof Sofia (Flavia) through a series of passionate dances. Unexpectedly, the first half ends with a seductive Flavia tempted away by the local lothario.
Flavia Cacace in Midnight Tango. Photo Manuel Harlan
After the interval, Vincent's heartbreak worsens as he gets into a fight with his rival in a scene that cleverly uses the Argentinian Tango, showing both the aggression of the dance as well as its romantic nature seen earlier in the show.
But as he licks his wounds with a bottle of rum and makes every woman in the audience want to jump up and cradle poor Vincent in their arms, up pops Flavia, who has come to her senses and realises he is the only man for her.
Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone in Midnight Tango. Photo Manuel Harlan
This leads to the most technical and awe-inspiring dances of the production with just the pair on stage showing that they have much more talent than what viewers see them do on Strictly Come Dancing. It is tango in its purest form and utterly breathtaking.
There may not be as much glitter, glitz, jokes or family entertainment as Strictly, but this show exemplifies what good dancing is all about. It is powerful, passionate and emotive.