Le Vendredi danse
We are extremely proud to have our local eurofolk group Le Vendredi Danse be part of the festival again. Friday night at the Civic Hall (upstairs) from 7.30pm (for musicians) and 8pm for dancing (but doors open 30 minutes before). As ever, there will be expert tuition to indoctrinate or refresh dancers into the wonderful world of bourees, mazurkas, schottisches, breton dancing. Check out their facebook page https://www.facebook.com/levendredidanse to get a full playlist of tunes and dances scheduled for the evening. Musicians welcomed to join in. There will also be a bar ! Admission £6 on door or via weekend festival ticket.
If you like Ceilidhs, there are two on offer ! Saturday evening at the large Civic Hall we present the fabulous Bellamira with our favourite caller John Brown. Holmfirth Civic ! tickets £10 and £6 u/16
On sunday at 2pm until 3pm we offer our free family ceilidh at the Methodist Church. Music by the Ribble Beck Band.
There is some doubt regarding the road closure on Hollowgate both Saturday and Sunday, due to the impending works, We won't know this, nor the precise route of the parade, until much nearer the day. Meanwhile dancing will also be in various spots in and around the small town centre all weekend. On the Saturday, there will be a grand procession, culminating in a spectacular show dance performance in Victoria Park overlooking the town centre. We also hope to have dance workshops for people to join in with.
If you want to have a dance yourself, there will be a French music and dance session on Friday evening, a ceilidh on Saturday evening and a family ceilidh on Sunday afternoon. (see above)
Dance sides for the 2024 Festival are yet to be announced;
400 Roses. Formed in 2005, are a unique group of tribal fusion dancers from Yorkshire and Lancashire. A fusion of Arabic, Gypsy, Indian and other styles merged with UK folk dance, they sway and swish as you may not have seen before. Accompanied by their band of musicians, The Thorns, they dance to old Morris tunes. Expect the unexpected.
Fiddle ‘n’ Feet appalachian dance team was formed approximately 20 years ago. They are based in Shipley, West Yorkshire. Their style of dancing originates from the American Appalachian Mountains and they use tap shoes and dance on boards. They are accompanied by our musicians who play old time and bluegrass tunes.
Fidlers Fancy Morris are a North West side from Stockport. The original Fidlers team was founded in the late 1880’s by a Stockport fish merchant, Charles Burgess Fidler, to provide recreation and entertainment for Stopfordians and collect money for local charities. The present team, formed in 1977, perform traditional dances from around the North West of England, accompanied by accordion and percussion.
Hathor Belly Dance Troupe was formed in 2001, mainly performing Raqs sharqi style, the classical style of belly dance, and is based on the traditional Ghawazi and other folk styles. Over the years they have danced at Civil Ceremonies, birthdays, wedding anniversaries, care homes, corporate and local community events, patrons evenings, open days and numerous charity events.Troupe Leader, Ann Wear, runs classes from beginner to intermediate/advanced levels in Huddersfield. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for info.
Hebden Bridge Hill Millies are a women’s Cotswold Morris side based in the quirky Pennine mill town of Hebden Bridge. The team try to reflect their home town in their outfits channelling their inner mill worker but with a sprinkle of Norah Batty. So they are delighted to be back dancing again in Holmfirth. Formed in 2004, they perform a range of different village traditions using both sticks and hankies – although to be more exact they are yellow dusters.
Milltown Cloggies are based in Dukinfield, Greater Manchester and have been dancing both locally and across the country since 1989. They dance in the north west style, wearing clogs and many dances originate in the mill towns of Lancashire and North Cheshire, hence our name. Our eclectic band provides the lively music. They dance “because we enjoy dancing (we still have five of our founder members in our side) and we hope that people enjoy watching us”.
Mortimer’s Morris is a lively women’s side based in Nottingham, who perform Morris dances from the North West tradition with enthusiasm and style. Mortimer’s Band contributes an unusual sound with tunes from across Europe. With a distinctive kit and band, they promote excellence in practice and carry North West Morris forward for future generations to enjoy.
Rivington Morris hail from near Bolton in Lancashire. They have danced all over the country and also mainland europe. Reknowned for their precision of dance and appearance, it's a pleasure to have them back at Holmfirth once more
Slubbing Billy’s are a mixed North West Morris side with a distinctive purple kit. Most of the members live in and around the Colne and Holme Valleys near Huddersfield. They share a love of tradition, good company and the occasional pint of decent beer! They are always on the lookout for new dancers and musicians, experience is not necessary, so do please feel free to make contact during the festival!
Bollin Morris are based at the Spread Eagle pub in Lymm, Cheshire. They are a mixed ‘Tatter Jackets and wooden staves Border Morris’ side. Some of their dances are traditional border morris dances from the counties that border Wales, some are created by others and some they have written themselves.
Saddleworth Morris Men perform their own North West Morris dances, written and developed by the side over the years. Each dance is named after a Saddleworth village. A member of Saddleworth receives two bells for each clog at the start of each season. Longer standing members have vast clusters of bells on each clog. They organise the Saddleworth Rushcart every August.
Southport Swords were born from visits to folk festivals in 1968. From the late 90’s they expanded from a repertoire of the North Skelton and Papa Stour dances, from Shetland, to developing their own Longsword dances. There are now four dances in the Southport oeuvre, two of which have been prize winners at the Sword Dance Union tournament.
Foxs Morris started in 1999. They practice at Cookley School in Worcestershire with members coming from all around the area. They wear mainly red and green as these were the colours of the school uniform at the time. Foxs Morris dance in the ‘Border’ Morris style. This is apt given the proximity to the border with Wales. Each year they hold their own festival called Foxtrot.
Sheffield City Morris formed in 1975 to bring an entertaining spectacle to the urban environment, and they have maintained the tradition ever since. They have a strong vocal and instrumental expertise and have travelled the world to display their dancing. Their unique style and green trousers make them easy to spot, so do go and have a chat. They have recently started a women’s side to compliment (spelling adjusted by the Editor!) the men.