Ella Mesma Company

Maya & Toussaint was established in 2022 by Akeim Toussaint Buck & Ella Mesma to create their new show Okan as a collaboration and evolve and create more events and dance performances in theatre and rural contexts in the UK and Europe.

Maya & Toussaint’s objective is to involve communities in their practice through, workshops, feedback sessions and conversations with experts in the themes they’re exploring whilst also creating work that celebrates identity, ancestry and movement!

Akeim Toussaint Buck is an interdisciplinary performer and maker, born in Jamaica and raised in England. After graduating from The Northern School of Contemporary Dance in 2014, Akeim began creating his own work in 2016. His intention is to create moving, thought-provoking, accessible and free-spirited projects. Exploring a variety of themes to challenge, enlighten and entertain audiences in a visceral way, calling on multiple art forms to weave a spectacle. Audiences are invited to not just observe, they are implicit in the experience. The work aims to reflect on reality, looking at ongoing socio-political issues, with a humanitarian intention. Akeim’s work has been supported by Yorkshire Dance, Leeds Playhouse, Leeds Inspired, Geraldine Connor Foundation, IRIE! Dance Theatre, Spin Arts, RJC, Deda, Fabric, Streatham Space Project, Serendipity, NSCD, Sadlers Wells and Arts Council England etc. 


Ella Mesma is a Choreographer, Coach, Artist & Creator. She also goes by Maya Gandaia and is the CEO of Maya Gandaia Ltd. Ella is a Published Author of Journal To JOY, the director of Ella Mesma Company and co-created PowerUp!  a podcast to help us all unlearn, rebuild and empower ourselves back to our true nature. Ella is trained in Afro-Latin, breaking & contemporary dance and has performed for Breakin’ Convention, Russell Maliphant, The Olympics Opening Ceremony, The Chomondeleys, and choreographed commissions for Dada Fest, Black Gold Arts, Manchester International Festival, Little Amal, Rural Arts, Bristol Old Vic and more. Ella makes work and supports with coaching to undo limiting beliefs, celebrate cultural & social identity & empower & inspire performers & audiences to come back HOME to themselves.