BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards-winner Damien Barber, of the Demon Barbers, triumphs with The Lock In
The Lock In, The Roses, Tewkesbury
With four stars from the Telegraph and Independent, and a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award to his name, maestro Damien Barber has triumphed with his new show.
Billed as Riverdance meets Diversity, The Lock In is a frenetic whirlwind of a night. Its infectious, driving rhythms are Morris mixed with hip hop mixed with street dance. It's fast, it's furious and it's utterly compelling.
Maz O'Connor, herself a Folk Awards nominee, kicked off with her take on The Complaint Song, persuading the audience to join with sea shanties like South Australia. There were acoustic issues to start with, but ever the professional, she carried on.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
Joined by guitarist Matthew Jones and bodhrán-playing Toby Kearney, she turned to her shruti – a wooden box with a system of bellows – for a rousing performance.
The Lock In, as its name suggests, is set in Ye Olde Fighting Cocks pub.
Just as you're adjusting to a deserted bar scene, a police siren wails and a young hip hop crew pile in to take refuge form the long arm of the law. They're not alone. Enter a band of Lancashire cloggers and a troupe of Cotswold Morris men.
One man in the audience couldn't contain himself: "There's going to be a Morris-off, and it's going to be ace," he squealed. And it was.
As impressive acrobatics took over, the set became less pub, more circus, helped in part by Barber's infectious enthusiasm, encouraging the audience to join in, or breakdancing to the beat.
Seemingly impossible high kicks from the Morris men drew gasps. Who knew you could wave a hanky and look positively masculine?
In the second half, the plot gained momentum, when the fusion of the disparate dance styles really took off.
Special mention must go to bearded landlady Jasmine, whose comic timing was impeccable and demon beatboxer Grace Savage. Barber's award-winning band, The Demon Barbers, with Bryony Griffith, absolutely raised the roof.
The Lock In is more than just a show. It's an experience. With Morris men in the foyer beforehand – a collaboration between The Roses and local folk dance groups – and horned folk artists weaving their way through the audience, and ending in the street with an impromptu encore, it was awesome.
There will be those who say it's not mainstream enough to take on the likes of Riverdance, that it's too folky. I don't believe them. It's a must-see phenomenon.