Dancing in the streets

Beggars Fair favourites Ken Wood and the Mixers

Beggars Fair favourites Ken Wood and the Mixers

First published in Arts

ORGANISERS are promising entertainment for everyone at Romsey’s Beggars Fair this Saturday (July 12) Chairperson of tomorrow’s free summer music festival Delsia Bartlett said this year’s show had a wide-range of acts that would appeal to young and old alike.

Mrs Bartlett said: “We are ready for it and all we need now is the sunshine. We’ve got 80 acts taking part across 20 venues in the town and the Beggars Fair kicks off with the Showcase Drumming Academy playing in the Cornmarket at 10.45am. We’ve got a mixture of entertainment throughout the day including, soul, folk and jazz, Morris dancing, Appalachian dancing and Punch and Judy for children. We’ve been doing well with Beggars Fair programme sales but we do need people to buy them because all the money raised goes back into next year’s event.” Thousands of people are expected to converge on the town for the Beggars Fair. Acts in the line up include Beggars Fair regulars, Romsey-based folk band Innominata which has been performing in the area for more than 30 years, Hand to Mouth Theatre’s Martin Bridle and Sue Eaton with their rag-bag puppet show, Contraband with a mix of contemporary and traditional song and tunes from the Appalachian Mountains and the band Uncle Tom’s Cobbleys who cater for a wide range of music tastes.

Further crowd-pullers include the Chequered Flag Appalachian Dancers, the eight piece Latin dance orchestra Atlantico, singer Ben Goddard, pop singer Danielle May, guitarist and singer-songwriter Jonny Moody who has played at music events across Europe and performed live on BBC Radio London and rhythm and blues band Ken Wood and the Mixers.

Other acts include storyteller Pete Gritton from the New Forest. He tells stories about smugglers, dragons and snake catchers, Chandler’s Ford Methodist Church puppeteers, the Other Hand, the Red Stags Morris dancers from Southampton and the Soulcatchers – an eight piece band from the city and they will be performing a selection of soul, Motown and funk numbers. Romsey Youth Council has lined up numerous acts to perform at the War Memorial Park under the banner ‘Beggars Fair Youth Festival 2014’ and they include singer Tom Martin, who made his debut at the festival last year, the band Typhoon Alley, Identity Crisis, Wickham Morris, the Fringe and Megan Linford.

l Beggars Fair programmes cost £2 and are available from the Romsey Advertiser office and Romsey Tourist information centre in Church Street.

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