New Years Eve Barn Dance 31 January 2017 – Review

Ryburn 3 Step danced away the final few hours of 2017 with a thoroughly enjoyable barn dance at the Waring Green Community Centre in Brighouse.

As usual, the band was the Black Box Big Band which featured Black Box regulars Chris Partington (fiddle), Alice Jones (piano) and Steve Harrison (melodeon) ably supported by Johnny Adams (fiddle), Chris Coe (hammer dulcimer) and Michael Beeke (tuba and bagpipes).

A sell-out crowd was treated to a host of familiar tunes played with verve and imagination including terrific versions of the Curlew and the Kirkgate Hornpipe (for the dance Clopton Bridge), Tommy Beadles and Earl Grey (for the Westfield Four Star) and Trip to Knaresborough and The Ball (for the Zetland Circle Dance).

Pete Coe called the dances, pairing dances with the same formation (e.g. four couple longwise sets, four couple square sets) thereby encouraging dancers to stay on the dance floor. Dancers required little encouragment and the floor was full, even for the clapping dances.

Starting with the Boston Two Step and ending with Soldier’s Joy, Pete ran through a series of well-known and popular dances including the Morpeth Rant, Cumberland Long Eight, Holmfirth Square and Flying Scotsman. He also included a couple of dances created in schools under his tutelage, the Zetland Circle dance and Athelstan’s Crown.

The New Year was heralded by the singing of the Wassail Song and greeted with everyone on the dance floor, joining hands and singing Auld Lang Syne led by Michael Beeke on bagpipes.

At the end of the night there was universal approval of the venue and rousing cheers for the band and loud applause for the caller. It will be another twelve months before the next New Year’s Eve dance but for those who cannot wait that long, there are Ryburn 3 Step Barn Dances every third Saturday most months of the year.

Steve Jones

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