We are pleased to host a plethora of local Morris and dance sides over the weekend. Please below for the latest dance schedule.
Ragged Robin are a “Scratch” morris side – they are members of different sides and only get to dance together at events such as Otley Folk Festival. Several members are also part of Yorkshire Coast Morris, based around Scarborough. They are identifiable by their black and red tattered
jackets. They dance in the Border style, with loud, boisterous dances.
Otley’s Appalachian dance side The Kitchen Taps perform traditional Appalachian Dance to authentic Bluegrass and Old Time music. They are well known for their lively and intricate routines, and have performed at festivals up and down the country for over 20 years.
The dancers are backed by their musician, Phil, who plays a range of bluegrass and old time music on fiddle. They are rightly proud of their complex, foot tapping tunes and enthusiastic dances.
Also from Otley, Flash Company were formed in the year 2000 from musicians and dancers from all walks of life. Many had danced traditional Morris for many years and wanted to update the tradition to bring it to a new audience in a manner that people could relate to. In order to do this,
they have taken some ‘traditional’ Border, Molly and Appalachian dances and also written several of their own but perform them to more modern music, such as blues, jazz and rock and roll. In no way is this meant to detract from the traditional teams that exist all over the world, but they feel
that people can find some familiarity in the music, and will stop to watch and find out more. Spot them in their black and yellow tattered jackets and listen out for their amazing band!
Also from Otley (there must be something in the water!) Wharfedale Wayzgoose Border Morris perform lively dances in the Border style in their unique, vibrant style. Backed by their band, you will certainly hear their drum around the town during the festival! Dressed in black and white
tatters with a goose emblazoned on their tabard, you won’t miss them!
Black Diamond Morris
We are delighted to welcome Black Diamond Mixed Cotswold Morris to Otley for the first time. Based around Darlington, they dance the Cotswold style of Morris. Dressed in black trousers , white shirts and black waistcoats, they’ll be the smart dancers this weekend!
Formed in 2005, the 400 Roses are a unique group who combine UK-style folk dancing with more exotic tribal belly dance moves to music played live by their band t’Thorns.
When designing their costumes , they decided to use an abundance of red and white silk roses to represent their Yorkshire and Lancashire origins. Expect the unexpected – if you have never seen them before!
Leeds Morris Men
A very welcome return to Otley for Leeds Morris Men. Leeds Morris Men are a Morris side from Leeds in West Yorkshire. They generally perform dances from the Cotswold tradition though have been known to perform dances from sword and Welsh border traditions. The club has been in existence for over 70 years. Their kit consists of black shoes, white socks, white shirt and trousers with a baldric in Leeds University colours of white, burgundy and green. Most members wear a burgundy waistcoat and many wear a straw hat decorated with ribbons, and fresh or artificial flowers. The waistcoat carries an embroidered badge showing the Leeds owl from the city’s coat of arms. The baldric is burgundy with a white Yorkshire rose on the front and white and green ribbons on the back. The bell-pads are covered with white, maroon and green ribbon. Armlets in club colours are worn at the elbows. They generally dance either with white handkerchiefs or sticks of varying lengths depending on the dance.
Rainbow Morris was founded in 1990 and are based in Saltaire/Shipley. We dance North West Morris. They have enjoyed dancing in Otley several times in the past year.