18 March 2012

Newport Lakes Bush Dance March 19 2012

(See below for photos) What a lovely day it was for what is now an institution in Newport! After all the rain Newport Lakes Reserve looks the goods - lush and green and with lots of wildlife. Sunday was just beautiful - no wind, no clouds in the sky and once the marquee was set up the people started coming. The program began with the Angelicats - 4 local ladies who are developing into a really tight band in a very short time - well done. Then Kathie and the children (lots of them) from Newport Lakes PS came out to sing (very much at 'Home Among the Gum Trees') and to invite everyone to get up and dance (Let's Dance). They had everything - youth color movement happy faces and lots of talent.

The Newport Bush Orchestra then got up on stage and under the guidance of Dave Isom and our own Dance Caller Neil Jolley the dancing began in earnest. The green dance floor was filled to capacity as people jigged and spun and watlzed and laughed their way through the dances - the Blaydon Races and Stockyards.

More music provided by Simon Leverton and his mate Danny O'Connell ( where do you buy the Uncle Joe's Mint Balls that they were singing about) and then Rick Plant of the Mudcakes who played some children's songs that everyone was able to sing along with (and many got up dancing). Rick was joined by NBO fiddler Michael De Valle to add to the occasion.

More Dancing with the NBO and Mr Jolley - Emus and Kangaroos and the good old Heel and Toe had everyone thinking on their feet, doing a bit of acting, and having a great time. While the dancers had a breather, the caller (Neil) and his partner Maryanne sang a couple of old favourites that had the oldies singing along very merrily. They were followed by young Isabel Stewart who accompanied herself on guitar while singing songs of the Dolly, The Dixie Chicks and Fleetwood Mac - she sang them beautifully.

To finish off the afternoon there were 2 more dances - the very famous DRONGO (I think Nancy won the title a few times) and then a raucous rendition of that Russian favourite THE TROIKA. The dancers had such a good time that they called for and got an encore which was a fitting way to end such a beautiful day where we were all able to enjoy our local community at play.

Many thanks:
- to our organiser Christine McDonald who made it all seem so effortless to have the day run smoothly,
- to Eammon Spillane who got the sound just right
- to Dave Isom and the Bush ORchestra who are now an expert Bush Dance Band
- to Neil Jolley who got everyone up and dancing with such enthusiasm
- to our performers who enabled us to sit back and chillax in such a beautiful place with lovely music
- to our partners Friends of Newport Lakes (thanks Mary for the sandwiches and bikkies), Transition Hobsons Bay (thanks Jason and Kate for the herbal teas) and to the Newport Lakes P S who have now supported this event for a number of years
- AND to the City of Hobsons Bay Council who support and sponsorship of the event enable the Newport Fiddle and Folk Club to stage this event (as they do for our Newport Folk Festival in July - keep a look out for that program) .

See you all again next year (March 17 - St Pats Day so it will be most appropriately a very green affair)
Keep Dancing

1 comment :

Neil Jolly said...

I would like to fully concur with Michael's comments describing the annual Newport Lakes Bushdance on Sunday March 18. A great variety of different support acts again this year, the depth of talent associated with the NFFC is astounding. The talented Bush Orchestra age like a quality wine and I was privileged to be backed by such a wonderful and passionate group of musicians. My job was made easier by all who supported me in such a professional manner. Greg O'Leary would have been proud of our conduct, his guidance over the last 7-8 years has paid off, what a giant he has helped mould over the journey. A pity he wasn't there physically, but I know he was there in spirit between 4-7pm. Congrats to ALL involved. Just wait to next year!!

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