Dancer Carlos Acosta on an intimate dinner

Guilty pleasure? Ice cream – I could eat a whole tub when I was 20. Häagen-Dazs rum raisin is a favourite.

Where is home? I divide my time between Havana, Cuba, where my roots are and where my dance company is based, and a house near Frome in Somerset.

Career plan B? Property development.

Who would play you in a movie? Someone unknown, but with the emotional depth to capture my story.

‘Secret to a happy relationship? Trust in each other and share as much laughter and affection as you can’

Biggest bugbear? Parties where people just talk – I want music, dancing, liveliness!

As a child you wanted to be… Like Michael Jackson.

Earliest memory? My father shouting at me when I was a toddler. My earliest memories are not the happiest.

Secret to a happy relationship? Trust in each other and share as much laughter and affection as you can.

Your best quality? I’m very positive: I believe everything I do is going to work.

And your worst? I can’t cook.

Most romantic thing you’ve done? I reserved a friend’s entire restaurant in Havana for a surprise dinner for me and my wife Charlotte.

Last meal on earth? A Cuban meal including black beans, rice, fried plantains and lots of salads.

Dream dinner-party guests? Juan Rulfo, a Mexican writer whose work I love, trumpeter Miles Davis, Abraham Lincoln and Michael Jackson.

Advice to teenage self? Everything will be OK.

Cat or dog? Dog, although it would be difficult between two countries.

What do you see when you look in the mirror? A happy man.

On a day off we’d find you… Playing with my kids [Carlos and Charlotte have three daughters, Aila, five, and twins Maya and Luna, one].

Starstruck moment? I wouldn’t call it starstruck, but meeting Fidel Castro was very intimidating.

Big break? Winning gold at the Prix de Lausanne international dance competition when I was 16.

Career highlight? Dancing Spartacus with the Bolshoi Ballet at the Paris Opéra in 2008. I was the first non-Russian invited for the role, and the fact I am black made it even more special.

Favourite tipple? A mojito.

Hangover cure? Another mojito.

Top of your bucket list? To travel more with my wife as a tourist, rather than travelling as a dancer.

Secret skill? I’m good at foot massage.

One thing that makes your life better? Following a plant-based diet – I have so much more energy.

Philosophy? The most important thing in life is love, and not just in relationships. Your heart must be fully committed to whatever you do.

Last film to make you cry? The Olive Tree by Spanish director Icíar Bollaín.

Most extravagant purchase? A 1955 Jaguar XK120 that I found in Havana and restored to its former glory.

Biggest regret? That my children never got to meet their Cuban grandparents.

Biggest fear? Slowing down.

Celebrity crush? Sandra Bullock.

Happiness is… Dancing still makes me happy.

Carlos begins a UK regional tour with his new dance company Acosta Danza on 12-14 October in Salford, followed by Birmingham, Southampton, Brighton and Edinburgh. Details at