Tuesday, 26 September 2017

For Facebook Followers

New Moon has a new Facebook Page. This will contain all our news, information, photos and videos, and our old Facebook Group will eventually be closed to new posts.

If you want to follow what New Moon is doing, and what events we will be performing at, then 'Like' the Page, which is HERE.

You will also find things like videos, that can best be seen on Facebook.

A round up of the summer

In June, things begin to slow down a little for New Moon Morris - some of our members are teachers, and many are boaters, so want to go off on the canals for the summer. However, we had a great evening with Rockhopper Morris dancing in Haddenham.

Rockhopper Morris at Haddenham

Later in the month we were guests of Phoenix Morris for the Rickmansworth Day of Dance, where we mostly got very wet. When rain stopped play, some of New Moon stayed to dance in the hall with Phoenix and other sides.

New Moon and Whitethorn dancers join in with Phoenix.

The following weekend the band played at the Linslade Canal Festival, as the surfaces were not suitable for dancing. This was great fun, and we hope to do it again in future years.

Playing Waterside
Playing in the dog show arena
Apparently quarantined - in the dog show arena

In August we didn't perform publically, but due to the sterling efforts of Louise, we continued with the Slow and Steady Session - for beginner/intermediate musicians, or for musicians learning a new instrument, and the increasingly popular New Moon Folk Nights, that moves every month to a different pub. These have been going for around 6 months now, and attract an interesting mix of music and styles.

Bob sings

Melodeon Face?

A blur of hands

Russ sings

In September some of us went to dance in Swanage - always an excellent event.

Photobombed by Wicket Brood

Musicians dancing

Then on the 23rd of September we danced in Tring with many other sides to celebrate Whitethorn Morris's 40th Anniversary. 

Morris Girls

Martin and Darryl sweep up - the broom dance

Tring Church Square

On into October, when we will celebrate Tring's Apple Day at Jeacock's Orchard playing music on Sunday 8th, and will dance again in Tring for the Apple Fayre, with other morris sides, from 10 am on Saturday 14th and have another of our roving music sessions from 7 pm in the Robin Hood.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Goodness we've been busy!

Time has flown by, we've been really busy.

April - Pitstone

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Young Hector gets his first Banjo lesson


St George's Day - Holmer Green

Dancing at the cricket club.

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the Percussion Section

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the Dodgy Corner

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Squire Martin gives it LARGE


April - Rochester Sweeps Festival

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Starting them young

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"Monkey Off"

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David and Margaret - "Vampire Moon"

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Swept off her feet

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May - The Rising Sun with Wicket Brood

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the Band at the Rising Sun in Berkhamsted



We also danced a the Half Moon Hitchin, with Baldock Midnight Morris and at 
St Albans Folk Festival

June - Wingrave with Whitchurch Morris Men

It was pouring with rain, so we pushed the tables back against the walls, and danced inside the pub.

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Limited room inside the pub

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the Band - photo Julian Mount

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the Band - photo Julian Mount

Darryl and the Landlord involved in gymnastics to sort the lights out before they are broken by our morris sticks

 Kimpton Folk Festival

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Dancing for the crowd

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"Vampire Moon"

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Folk Nights

One of our members has started to organise Folk Nights once a month. The one at the Angler's Retreat at Marsworth was on the Summer Solstice.

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Solstice dancing

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photo: Angler's Retreat

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Dancing out in April


Monday 17th April - Pitstone Museum during the day
Sunday 23nd April - Holmer Green from 3:30
Saturday and Sunday 29th and 30th April - Rochester Sweeps Festival, Rochester, Kent

Saturday, 14 January 2017

On into 2017

New Moon Morris started 2017 by wassailing an ancient apple tree in Piccotts End on Saturday afternoon.  The building is famous for the unique medieval wall paintings, and we were given a guided tour before we went outside to wassail the tree, which is of an unknown type, despite investigation by experts.

Apple tree wassail
We played a few tunes to wake the tree up, Martin, one of our drummers, read a wassail prayer to the tree, and we sang apple wassail songs.   It is a quiet spot, and only a few, slightly bemused, people drove past, although someone came from the church a short way up the road to take some photos and to wish us well.

Wassailing the tree

Wassailing the cows
Then a brief stop at home before setting off for Tring, where we wassailed Tring Brewery, and then the cows at Dunsley Farm behind the brewery.  According to drummer Martin this was a 19th C Hertfordshire tradition - the cows didn't seem phased by it.

We were due to wassail at Jeacock's Orchard in Tring at 7:30, so we set off for the Robin Hood, where we got to play, sing, and wassail the pub.  There is a short VIDEO on Facebook courtesy of the Robin Hood - although the band is sideways for some of the recording.  

After that it was straight off to Jeacock's Orchard and wassailing the trees - with the wassail cup, wassail songs and a shotgun and 'air cannon' to keep any 'evil spirits' from the trees.  Afterwards, hot soup, fresh bread, drink, good company, and - yes - yet more music!

We were lucky enough to have the excellent Tring photographer Stephen Kitchener taking photos of our exploits in Tring. You can find these HERE.

On Plough Tuesday we were invited to a meal by Whitchurch Morris Men.  They provided an excellent hot meal - and dancing until late.

Here they are teaching us a new dance...

That was all in the first ten days of 2017 - more wassailing next weekend!


Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Look what we've done this year!

The basic idea of New Moon Morris was dreamed up by four people in 2014.  They quickly recruited one other, and the details were decided in pubs over the summer.  We couldn't dance, as there were so few of us, and one had a broken ankle.  However, by the end of the year we were up and running with a practice hall in Redbourn and six members.  We did our first 'dance out' at a private party.

Our hall was very small, so that we had to dance out of the door and onto the landing in several of the dances.  When we got a number of new people interested it was clear that it needed to be much larger - so we moved to Ivinghoe.  We've got around 20 members now, with a couple who come along to practices and events when they can.  Many are musicians, some of whom also dance, and the band is sounding fabulous - although we could do with more dancers to share the dancing.

We were very pleased with how 2015 went, but we are even more pleased with just how busy we've been in 2016.

  • we Wassailed the apple trees in the dark at Jeacock's Orchard in Tring
  • We danced at Hemlock Morris's Ale in Bedford
  • dancing at Pitstone museum
  • Oxford Folk Festival
  • dancing for St George's Day in and around Aylesbury, then...
  • the New Moon band played for the ceilidh in the evening
  • Rochester Folk Festival
  • dancing as guests of Wicket Brood at the Rising Sun in Berkhamsted  
(I've got to add THIS video again - I just love it!)
  • dancing at St Albans folk festival, and the same day...
  • the band played at the Stoke Bruerne Family Festival.  The next day...
  • dancing at Stoke Bruerne Family Festival
  • dancing as guests of Whitchurch Morris at the Half Moon pub in Wilstone
  • Swanage Folk Festival
  • a small group of us played at the Tring Apple Day at Jeacock's Orchard
  • dancing at Tring Day of Dance, (which we also organised)
  • dancing and playing at a private party in Wilstone
  • dancing and playing at a ceilidh in Pitstone.
  • dancing and playing at the Half Moon pub in Hitchin as part of 'Rhythms of the World'
  • our own special tradition of 'Dancing the Sun Down' on Pitstone Hill - to mark the end of summer
  • dancing at the 'Tring Together' switch on of Christmas lights, and the next day...
  • dancing at Stony Stratford switch on of Christmas lights
  • the New Moon band played at the Tring Christmas Farmers' Market, and the next day...
  • playing at Ashridge Monument for visitors to the Ashridge Forest and the visitors to the Craft Fair. 
 We've also arranged group music practices, and been out to see the Demon Barbers Christmas Carol 'Lock In', as well as a number of meals.  It's been a busy year, here's to 2017!

There are already photos for earlier events on this blog, so here is a selection of some of the things that we got up to later in the year.  Click on any of these to see all of them as an album at the bottom of the screen.

Squire Martin at Swanage

Amelia with Jackie and Chris at Tring

Cath and David at Hitchin "Monkey Off"

Charles and Amelia at Hitchin
At the end of October we 'Danced the Sun Down' on top of Pitstone Hill, six months after the more usual morris 'Dancing the Sun Up', which has the advantage that you don't have to get up at silly-o'clock in the morning.

It was extremely misty, and a bit windy.  We couldn't even see where the sun was, let alone when it was setting, so we had to keep checking on the Internet to see if we had said goodbye to the summer sun yet.

We were observed by three bemused dog walkers, unlike the crowds of some of our other performances during the year.

Our band

It was not possible to see anything at the bottom of the hill

We also danced at the switching on of Tring's Christmas lights.  It was dark, and very crowded.  Steve Kitchener took some great photos of the event HERE, including some excellent ones of New Moon.

Steve also came to see us in Tring at the Christmas Farmers' Market, a few weeks later, and took some fabulous photos of New Moon playing - find them on FACEBOOK (opens in new page)

Russ sings "Jingle Bells" at Tring
Jackie at Tring Farmer's Market

The following day we turned up at Ashridge in fairly heavy fog - but at least it wasn't raining.  Ashridge was very busy, despite the weather.

Playing in the mist

The dodgy corner...
The fog lifted after a while, and we had an excellent time.  

It's been a very good year, we've done so much, and we have had new people join us - both musicians and dancers.  

Here's to 2017, which is in the planning already...