There has been a lot of interest in the media recently regarding the
demise of the morris. There have been some good articles for example, see
this (Daily Mail Online). These newspaper articles conclude that younger
people are too self-conscious and shy to dance in public! Surely not! Have
you seen 'Morris
- a Life with Bells On'? How cool is that - see the film if you can.
Yes, morris has been around a long time (but so have beer and books and sex)
and it evolves with the people who dance it.
What we need are more people to carry on this evolution - that means
young people too; the Wessex morris side has been going more than 50 years
(not many original dancers still in the side!) the dance could look quite
different in another 50 years time, here's your chance to be part of that
evolution. We are in the fortunate position of gaining more dancers than we
lose, year on year, so we're doing something right.
We had a discussion the other week - why did we all take it up? Lots of
answers, really; most people had seen the dance and decided that it was for
them. If that's you, have a word with one of the men, they will point you
towards one of the side officers who will tell you about it.
Or come along to one of our practice sessions in Pulham village hall
There are good reasons to do it...
Come along to our practice, or find us on tour to meet and talk to us.
During the autumn and winter we practice in the village hall at Pulham
(see in the Contact Us section for a map and a
link to MultiMap.com). This is a time when the side learns (and defines!)
the dances to be 'danced out' during the next summer season. We usually also
learn one or two new dances which, if the side takes to them, get into our
repertoire. While this is going on, one or two of the men teach you the
basics of one or two dances, usually the stepping, sticking and handkerchief
movements. Once you have the rough idea (not long) the side will include you
in one of our simpler dances so you can get a feel for the shape and rhythm
of the dance.
Morris dances are grouped together into a number of 'traditions', which
are named after the villages in the Cotswolds where they were originally
danced. The dances in each tradition generally have the same 'feel' to them
and share many movements and steps and this helps you learn more quickly.
Don't expect to learn instantly!; but that will not be expected of you.
At the end of a practice season you would expect to have a few dances
under your belt that you would be able to dance with us during the following
Where to Find Us and Who to Contact
Information on how to find us is on the Contact Us
page; The bagman, the Foreman or the Squire are all good people to talk to.
During the summer, see our programme page,
either at an event or on one of our Monday evening tours.
During the autumn and winter, we practice between 8pm and 10pm at the
Pulham village hall (opposite the Halsey Arms) DT2 7DZ. At about 10pm we
cross the road for a beer or two and some music and song.