Sunday, 13 September 2009
What a wonderful start to the Saltaire Festival 2009 - a warm, sunny late-summer's day. I was out and about in the village and caught a performance by the Saltaire-based Rainbow Dancers. They dance Morris and Clog dances traditional to the North of England, using garlands, hankies and 'sticks'. The music is supplied by a small band of musicians playing melodeons (a kind of accordion), tin whistles, a drum and tambourines. Step-clog dancing involves fast and intricate steps, performed wearing clogs with wooden soles and leather uppers. Wooden soled clogs were once common in industrial areas, particularly in northern England and step-clog dancing has been performed in these areas since the middle of the 19th century. It’s harder than it looks (I know, I tried it myself many years ago!) but it's a fun way to keep fit!