Stroud Wassail features a great gathering of morris dancers, nummers, musicians and other street performers for the day. You will find them performing in the streets throughout the day – outside the Sub Rooms, by the Farmers’ Market, by the Shambles Market, in the newly-refurbished Five Valleys arcade, at St Laurence Church… they’ll be popping up all over the place! And keep an eye out for the odd group of mummers as well.
Here’s who’s joining us for the 2020 Wassail.
Appleyard name themselves after a kind of duck. And why not? They’re a women’s side from Worcestershire, and they visited the Wassail for the first time in 2017. Since then, they’ve been back for the Stroud Folk Weekend, so we think they like Stroud. That’s good, cos we like them.
The Bailey Sisters aren’t sisters and aren’t called Bailey. But they bang out some pretty good tunes and songs, and you can catch them at St Laurence church during the day and at at Revels in the evening.
Bakanalia are back, coming down to Stroud all the way from Leicestershire. Colourful and classy – not to be missed.
Bedcote Morris are coming down from Stourbridge to join us. They’re a mixed Cotswold side and always put on a good show.
Black Adder Clog Morris – just look at those tatters! What more do you need to cheer up a dull January day?
Boss Morris from Stroud – it’s Cotswold, Jim, but not as we know it.
The Brafront Guizers always tell a good tale. There may well be a scary dragon or a nasty villain, but fear not! Good will prevail.
Alan Brinley Shaw is a classical guitarist from Cirencester. He’s going to be doing the end of the afternoon chill-out spot at St Laurence. You’ve watched morris and mummers, you’ve shopped till you dropped… now relax with a cuppa and listen to some superb guitar sounds.
Bristol Morris Men. Hmmm. They’re pretty good. We like.
Bygonz will be providing a Mediaeval musical backdrop to the day. Something a bit more gentle and soothing among the morris mayhem.
Caroline the Musical Saw Lady astounded us all a couple of years ago with the sounds that she can conjure out of a saw. She’s back with us for 2020 in St Laurence church.
Those lovely people from Dartmoor Border Morris are back, with their beautiful tattercoats based on the colours of nature and their faces painted with, er, sheep.
Aparna Dighe from Gloucester will be performing some classic Indian dance at St Laurence church first thing, and then giving a bangra/Bollywood workshop at the Sub Rooms. And then…. workshop participants may even have a chance to show off their moves to an audience. TBC.
Discovery, aka Elaine and Jeff Gillett, are well known in Stroud and the surrounding areas for their beautiful folk performances.
England’s Glory is one of the longest established women’s morris sides. They are named after a brand of matches – hot stuff maybe?
The Forest of Dean Mummers performed a play about a Bear and Brexit at the last Wassail. For 2020…. who knows.
Mumming with a message – Transition Stroud‘s Free Range Mummers will be performing their own take on the traditional mummers play.
Happenstance Border Morris are old friends of the Wassail. Listen out for the sound of the shawm.
Kaboozle is a sparkly, shiny, brand new Afro-Brazilian percussion combo from Stroud and Bristol.
Malmesbury Morris are a Cotswold/Border hybrid. And they’re Stroud Wassail stalwarts.
Mason’s Apron came to our Wassail for the first time in 2017 – and now they’re hooked! They’re a North-West Clog side, based in Long Hanborough in Oxfordshire. They get their name from a pub, which is always a good sign!Merrie Morgana/Aziza Belly Dancers hail from Cheltenham. During the summer they are belly dancers, but in the winter they very sensibly don medieval garb and become Merrie Morgana. They bring a bit of calm and elegance amidst the mayhem and madness of the morris folk.
Miserden Morris is a Stroud Cotswold side. They danced at Stroud Wassail for the first time in 2017 as Gloucestershire Mixed Morris, but now they’ve well and truly established themselves as Miserden.
Nancy Butterfly (lovely name!) is a North-West Clog side from Worcestershire. Look out for some beautiful butterfly jewellery.
Possibly the most spectacular Cotswold morris exhibition side in the known universe, we’re thrilled to bits to have the mighty Outside Capering Crew with us for the first time.
Ragged and Old Morris – another fine local Cotswold side!
Stroud’s own mighty Red Band will be in the procession and also trying to stage a revolution at the museum in the afternoon. (Spoiler alert: I think the Master of the House might buy them off with cake!)
The wonderful Stroud Morris will be back with us again. The Stroud Wassail Mummers will be back again with their tale of a local hero and villain fighting for the love of a fair lady. Styx of Stroud Border Morris is the host side for Stroud Wassail. They are loud and enthusiastic performers, and hard-core party animals when off-duty. They’re looking forward to hosting friends old and new on January 12. The Tattered Court Border Morris from Cheltenham have a quirky style all of their own. Expect some exciting and original dances.
Tatters and Tails are from Bath. They joined us for the for the first time last Wassail, and we’re glad to have them back.
White Horse Morris from Wiltshire have never been to our Wassail before. Crazy fools!
Winterbourn Down are Wassail regulars – colourful, energetic and great fun. Not to be missed.
There’s also a superb line-up at the George Room in the afternoon. Click here for details.