Winter Warmer, 4 February, 2023

AVMM enjoyed a delightful evening at the Adderbury village institute as guests of Sharp and Blunt. With Adderbury Morris also performing, the early part of the evening was a real celebration of the three unique traditions flourishing in our village. The three sides danced in turn, exhibiting a fascinating contrast in dancing styles, costume and repertoire. Perhaps the dance most associated with AVMM is Postman’s Knock and we gave an excellent performance of this dance which was enjoyed by all.

An evening of Morris, companionship and lovely food! Thanks to Kim for the photo

Aficionados of the Folk tradition would have appreciated seeing certain dances being performed in totally different ways: Roast Beef of Old England, Washing Day and Sweet Jenny Jones come to mind. Ryan selected and called our dances with his customary efficiency and diplomacy. On one occasion we did follow S&B’s eight woman Jockey to the Fair with our quite distinct two man double jig using the same tune. However, far from this causing offence, all sides present were keen to enjoy and show their appreciation for the various different interpretations of Cotswold Morris styles on view. AVMM concluded their dancing for the evening with the traditional Brighton Camp, featuring three generations of the Jordan family, emphasising both the family links that have run through the side for so many years as well as the success of our youth policy: with three schoolboys dancing for AVMM last night the future of the side should be more secure.

The final dance of the evening was inevitably Shepherd’s Hey played by an impressive band of musicians including our own Donald, together with about 60 dancers and guests concluding this part of the proceedings. Richard, Ryan and I slipped across the Green to The Coach and Horses for some much needed refreshment to discuss Morris matters, before returning to the Institute for a tasty feast provided by our hosts. Adderbury might be the only village in the country with three such varied and active Morris sides. We are very lucky to be able enjoy them on the Day of Dance and throughout each year as well as the other musical and cultural delights of this fine place. We are very grateful to Beth, Sheena and the rest of Sharp and Blunt for allowing us to share in this delightful celebration.

John Ekers

PS: Wednesday practices will commence again in the Tithe Barn on 22 February. We will start at 7pm to accommodate the school-age members, so should finish around 9pm. Do please bring with you any friends who might like a taster session.