Morris Federation Rapper Workshop
17 January 2004 - Basford, Nottingham

Fifty plus dancers gathered at the Indian Community Centre on a chilly January morning unsure of what to expect. We only knew that we were committing ourselves to the ministrations of the fearlessly athletic Black Swan Rapper for a whole day. Individuals could be seen in corners of the hall nervously practising their forward tumbles...

No, I'm kidding!! Whatever anxieties we may have had, were quickly dispelled by the excellent hospitality and the warm, friendly and supportive attitude of Black Swan. After a demonstration of their DERT-winning dance, the lads wasted no time in teaching us the whole thing.

A demanding but very satisfying experience. For reasons of safety and common sense, the forward tumbles were omitted (but we know where they go, and how to get there)! We came away with the shape of the dance and the notation and as you might suspect, it is not revolutionary from start to finish. It is a well crafted and assembled selection of clever variations on figures we know, but they have to be danced with confidence, skill and a generous portion of attitude. That's what makes Black Swan the team to watch – for the present.

The day was a resounding success, topped off with an excellent buffet at the pub across the road and a short evening tour for the teams who apparently had no homes to go to. Morris Federation Events Officer, Jean Smith, and hosts, Whip the Cat, are to be congratulated for organising an excellent workshop. Thanks too to Black Swan for sharing their dance with us, and being patient teachers. They were both committed and professional throughout. A full workshop report will appear in the next Federation Newsletter.