An appeal has gone out for locals to sign up for a version of Strictly Come Dancing that has some same-sex couples and can sometimes make a deafening noise, and is promising to put on a grand show that’s all bells and whistles on May Day.
The Wild Hunt Bedlam Morris team from Croydon is looking to expand its team after a couple of disappointing lockdowns years, and is recruiting dancers and musicians to be ready to perform at the start of the festival season.
No partners are required, but if you have one, they’re welcome too! The Wild Hunt’s recruitment evening is being held next Tuesday, January 11.
Formed in 1991, the men and women of the team perform in the “Border” style – referred to as the “Dark Morris” by fantasy novelist Terry Pratchett – wearing black tattered jackets and masks decorated with Celtic symbols.
They practice weekly in West Croydon throughout the winter and help new members, some with no previous dancing experience, to become part of an ancient yet vibrant tradition.
Anyone regularly attending practice will soon learn the skills to become a Morris dancer and develop the confidence to take part in dance-outs at local pubs and perform at festivals – with lots of demand expected through the spring and summer, from street parties, community festivals and pubs, from St George’s Day, to the Queen’s Jubilee, through to the Croydon Night of Dance.
The Sweeps Festival in Rochester, Kent, one of the largest gathering of Morris dancers in the world, has been a regular date in the Wild Hunt’s diary for many years. This year’s Festival takes place over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend April 30-May 2.
The first step in joining the folk community and having fun whilst becoming fitter is to check out The Wild Hunt website www.wildhunt.org.uk.
From our archive: Hundreds of folk dancers brighten up a sunny evening
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