Last night we took part in the International Dance Weekend at Plymouth University, where lots of dance acts were performing in the Roland Lewinsky building in one of its theatres.
We assembled on the first floor mezzanine and quickly commandeered an area for the use of people in black and gold tatters. Some impromptu rehearsing was the order of the day as our spot was increased to three dances instead of the expected two.
Not, of course, that we only know two dances and quickly needed to rehearse another - more that we needed to try and find a way to seamlessly segue from each dance into the next. And that takes rehearsal. More rehearsal than we had, as it happens - but there were no major disasters.
After raiding the backstage buffet table for some sarnies and juice (do these people know how much a hungry morris man can devour?), it was time to traipse down several flights of stairs to wait backstage in the dark.
Soon it was our turn under the lights. The tatters jackets swirling in a two-tone kaleidoscope.
After our all too brief moment in the spotlight, the dancers left the stage through the auditorium leaving just the three minstrels to finish up with a double-tempo run through the tune of Evesham Wheel.
Thanks to all the Wreckers for a great performance (we'll quietly ignore the moments of minor chaos between dances) and to Wrichard Wrecker for bringing a broad grin to my face by starting with the wrong tune....nothing lost, we just worked our way back to the right one. And thanks to Mrs The Millbrooker for sneaking into the theatre and taking the photos against the express orders of the MC. Oops.
We got a letter of thanks from the chief organiser.
Your costumes were quite startling (fearsome?) and I noticed the sudden quiet period when you first went upstairs and came within sight of the teenagers in the Beat Breakers group! Must have been frightening to them for a short while!
On behalf of the organising committee, I would like to thank you and all the performers in 'Wreckers Morris Dancing' group, for their fantastic performance at the above show on Sunday 3rd April. It was unique, full of energy and performed with commitment and enthusiasm. As you all must have guessed from the audience reaction while you all were on stage, followed by the huge applause at the end of the performance, it was a great pleasure to watch & to clap with the beat. Going off stage through the audience with bells clanging was also enjoyable.
We look forward to seeing the group perform again in the future.
Anil K Koshti MBE
Organising Committee - Integration Through Culture, Dance Dance Dance