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2024 Abram Morris Dance demise :-(

Dave the Gnome 20 May 24 - 08:08 AM
Dave the Gnome 20 May 24 - 08:18 AM
GUEST,Malcolm Storey 20 May 24 - 09:22 PM
Dave the Gnome 21 May 24 - 03:44 AM
Dave the Gnome 21 May 24 - 03:48 AM
Long Firm Freddie 21 May 24 - 07:15 AM
Dave the Gnome 21 May 24 - 11:36 AM
GUEST,Forgotten Hero 23 May 24 - 02:44 PM
Dave the Gnome 23 May 24 - 03:05 PM
GUEST,Forgotten Hero 23 May 24 - 04:02 PM
Dave the Gnome 23 May 24 - 05:02 PM
Dave the Gnome 24 May 24 - 03:02 AM
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Subject: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 20 May 24 - 08:08 AM

Looks like the Abram Morris Dance (or Circle Dance as some refer to it) has reached the end of the current revival. Just been informed that it will not take place this year due to lack of dancers. The team had a good try at recruiting some youngsters but to no avail. Glad it made the 40th anniversary last year and I am pleased that, over the years, I managed to be a dancer, musician and King! The current squire was due to retire after this one so next year would have seen some changes anyway. Traditionaly, the dance should take place at least every 20 years to ensure that the Morris Dancers Ground remains in the hands of the people of Abram so they have until 2043 to get another side together :-)

Abram Morris Website


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 20 May 24 - 08:18 AM

...looking at some of the photos I also seem to have been fool for at least 1 year! Don't say it... :-)

I didn't remember that but after 20+ dances, walking miles and drinking at all the available stops it all blurs into one :-D


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: GUEST,Malcolm Storey
Date: 20 May 24 - 09:22 PM

It seems anno domini is afflicting quite a number of the things we have found interesting over the years.
The folk club scene has been in severe decline for with notable exceptions for a long time.
The more serious dance genres seem to be suffering from the same malais - a general lack of young devotees or even those with a passing interest.
It also seems that now even the Morris has problems but perhaps they may be more resilient?
Good to know there is a get out of jail card for Abram.


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 May 24 - 03:44 AM

Aye. I must admit that it does not surprise me though. For a long time Morris dance has been ridiculed by many. There are some aspects that deserved it, such as the insistence, by some, of keeping it exactly the same as it was when first recorded and making it an all male preserve. Like anything else it needs to move with the times. I know there are those amongst us who would insist that traditions must be preserved but, to survive, tradition should be a living thing. I don't have all the answers but maybe Boss Morris are part way there?


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 May 24 - 03:48 AM

"Morris - A life with bells on" is a good watch if you can get it BTW. Very funny in parts and quite perceptive


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Long Firm Freddie
Date: 21 May 24 - 07:15 AM

The Morris is in pretty good shape, though it's true that some of the older sides have not recruited and are likely to fold. There are new sides coming through. For the first time the Morris Census records that there are more female Morris dancers than male:

Census

LFF


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 May 24 - 11:36 AM

Imteresting stuff, LFF. Thank you


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: GUEST,Forgotten Hero
Date: 23 May 24 - 02:44 PM

Sorry Dave, but I must correct your opening statement. The Abram Morris Dance is, of course, well known, and regularly mangled by lots of teams. What isn't happening this year, is that the annual tour of Abram and district by The Abram Morris Dancers will not take place. Last year was a good year, with eighteen dancers taking part. Unfortunately, since then, there has been one death, one long-serving member recently suffering a stroke, and several cases of wear and tear taking their toll. We just don't have a team.
This is a great shame. when Geoff Hughes started the team in 1984, His aim was to revive the tradition of the tour, which was last done 'traditionally' in 1901. We know that the dance has been around since at least the 18th Century. and was originally an annual event; but during the 19th Century, it had lapsed into being once every 21 years or thereabouts. The Morris Dancers' Ground, where the tour starts, was given to the people of Abram by a local landowner, on the understanding that it was danced on every 21 years or thereabouts. The plot is now protected by Village Green Status. This is due to our dogged persistence over the last 40 years, slowly getting established as an annual part of local life. It could still happen next year; this would require sufficient interest and commitment from some new dancers. The question has arisen, of course, over whether we should bring women in. As Geoff has pointed out, His aim was to re-establish the old tradition of the annual (or at leas occasional) tour by 'The Young Men of Abram'. There are plenty of women performing the dance, and apparently there was a local women's team in the 1920's. But not doing the tour. if we decided to go down that route, it would need equal numbers of men and women to make sense, and it's more likely that there would be more women than men, which would put men off, and it would become a women's dance. Nothing wrong with women's dances, but we would have lost something which would never be replaced. Which is not exactly preserving tradition, is it? Having poked a stick into an Asian Hornets' nest, I shall retire to a safe distance, but please discuss NICELY. And let's see what happens next year.


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 23 May 24 - 03:05 PM

Why would there have to be equal numbers of men and women? Why does it matter? What about non binary members? Sorry, but if anything doesn't make sense it is that statement!

But, yes, the dance itself will continue as you say. Whether it continues as the Abram tour is the question. Unless something changes, such as accepting lady dancers, my opinion is that it isn't likely :-(

Is that "Forgotten" a substitute for "Harmonium" BTW? :-)


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Subject: RE: Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: GUEST,Forgotten Hero
Date: 23 May 24 - 04:02 PM

There are two ways you could do it; alternating same-sex couples, or male/female couples. The former would need an even number of couples, or it wouldn't look right. They'd be wearing different kit. It's a question of aesthetics. As far as dragging it into line with controversial current political thinking goes, well... if you go down that route, you've thrown the whole notion of preserving tradition in the bin.
I promised myself I wasn't going to get involved in another Mudcat bloodbath, so that's me out.


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Subject: RE: 2024 Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 23 May 24 - 05:02 PM

Why should they wear different kit?

No bloodbath required and no 'political thinking' going on. Times change. People change. Traditions evolve.


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Subject: RE: 2024 Abram Morris Dance demise :-(
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 24 May 24 - 03:02 AM

BTW, you mention "the old tradition of the annual (or at leas occasional) tour by 'The Young Men of Abram'"

How many of the 18 dancers last year were young and from Abram? It wasn't exactly traditional then was it! :-)


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