Thursday, May 25, 2006

Kensington Tour

Hot foot from teaching Ben Taylor of LBC to dance we were on tour in Kensington.
The power of the morris drove the inclement weather away, and even though it was chucking down when we arrived, it wasnt bad by the time we danced.

We were a rather diminished side this evening, and danced dances such as a Rosebud instead of Rose, and a Valenteeny Valentine.
And some jigs. It all went down well still.

We had audience who'd come up specially to see us before going off to Spain, where she'd seen similar stuff in her native Basque region (hi Rosario!) and Tom the photographer taking photos of us looking up at the laden clouds and phoning round to see if any more men were likely to turn up.

At the Uxbridge Arms it turns out that rumours of Linda, the welcoming landlady's departure were unfounded, though unfortunately she had another engagement that night.
Sorry to miss you Linda.

At the Uxbridge Arms

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Teaching an LBC reporter to dance

LBC reporter Ben Taylor, whose past work has included interviews with Jimmy Osmond and Sir Ian McKellen, took the obvious next step of learning some Morris.

This being radio, we made sure we were in kit, and fitted him with a baldrick. As you can see, he made a good fist of the opening steps of the Nutting Girl.

The item is pretty brisk - we were keeping Ronan Keating waiting - but it should be broadcast sometime this summer.

We are moving to practice rooms just round the corner from LBC's Chrysalis building in September, so Ben is welcome to join us there...

Thursday, May 11, 2006

At the Compton Arms in Highbury

A lovely evening despite us having to compete with football (apparantly they hadn't checked our programme before arranging the UEFA cup)

A bit of Jigging also went on:

And Ezra did one:

- a challenge for Noah now!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

here's some photos of the Bloomsbury tour

This is Tom who came to photograph us:

The light was fading a bit for the second stand.

We're in line, Antony!

Noah and Ezra were brushing up on their sticking:

Thanks to Lynnete, and to New Esperance for finding replacement pubs... We'll be back to these!

Friday, May 05, 2006

Morris - no longer an icon?

The media reported last week that Morris dancing ("along with the mini skirt and the double decker bus") is a cultural icon of England. But is it?

On the Icons site, the morris page, "has been withdrawn from the site".

That's typical really. Once we've done our thing, and had our bit of exposure, we get shuffled off. Time for a campaign?

2 May, dancing in Bloomsbury

No pictures for this one as yet, though we had a photographer in tow, doing a project on Morris dancing because we are a cultural icon.

Both pubs had to change, because the Norfolk Arms suddenly closed, and the Rugby Tavern has become a "No Morris" pub.

We went to two friendly back-street pubs: The Dolphin, and McGlynn's.

With eight men dancing, we performed two Brimfield sets side-by-side (and in step, at least at the start - though the ending was a bit ropey), and Vandals Lichfield. As well as that, we did other favourites including Shepherds Hey Wheatley, and the Upton stick dance.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

May Day with the Deptford Jack

It was May Day. Something had to happen. In Deptford, the Jack in the Green was abroad, with milkmaids dancing in garlands of silver, and Morris men from Blackheath. The Fowlers Troop have revived the Deptford Jack, recreating it from photos taken in 1906, by local historian and press photographer, Thankfull Sturdee.

This year, the centenary of those photographs, May Day fell on a Bank Holiday, and a horde of people converged, threw a wreath in the Thames, played jazz and Morris music, and danced.

London Pride were represented by the Peters, Noah and Ezra.

Roy's hat was there. It's on the head of the drummer, Gary Norris, in the modern picture, but my camera got stuck on low-resolution, so here's a picture of it in better days. Would Roy approve of this sort of gathering? You bet!

If you want better photos, there some here from Blackheath's avant garde musician, Richard Sanderson, along with a very nice video of the procession.

Here's a couple of (not quite so good) videos, of us dancing with Blackheath. Click here for milkmaids dancing the Nutting Girl.