Northgate Rapper are a fine bunch of chaps, ably played for by Natasha, Rhianne, Lucy and Henry. We wear white collarless shirts, green hoggers, and bright yellow sashes. We finish off this fine attire with white knee length socks and shiny black shoes; simply a sartorial and visual delight. You can see more of us on our Facebook page. Why not ‘Like’ it whilst you’re there?
We’re always on the look out for new
blood dancers. It’s dead easy, a tiny bit macho and hardly dangerous at all. Edwin has never had his elbow/nose/forehead damaged. Ever. And even if he did, he’d man up about it and never, ever complain.
Below you can meet the current dancing team members and find out a little bit about them.
Martin the Squire – now scarily in charge of the chequebook and accounts too. He stood down as Chief Falconer last year, leaving the ancient post mainly because he couldn’t find the damned bird. He’s also a member of North British, a rapper and longsword team dressing in the most excellent tweed. He’s organised two DERT competitions so far, and promises never, ever to do it again, but then he has said that before.
Jack the Bagman – Jack is the man to talk to if you want to book Northgate Rapper. He says, “Any gig considered, we’ll turn up to the opening of an envelope,” especially if it contains cold, hard cash. He’s a skinny boy, usually found dancing with his tongue firmly stuck out and brow furrowed in concentration as he tries to remember Eric Morecambe’s advice; “all the right steps, but not necessarily in the right order”. He’s known as “Gorgeous Jack” or “Bieber” to his friends and has a penchant for wearing his girlfriend’s underwear.
Jerome the Choreographer – Having picked up the thankless task of keeping our dancing up to scratch, Jerome has taken to it like a duck to orange sauce. He’s also the team’s practitioner of the forward flip. Ever graceful, he defies gravity with aplomb. His carefully sculpted facial hair, man bun and buff torso have long been a favourite of Bath’s ladies of ill-repute.
Edwin the Webslinger – recently re-elected as co-Webslinger (social media and comms) and issued from the loins of another trad dance family, he prefers rapper to Cotswold and Northwest (aren’t we lucky?). Now returned to Northgate from a treacherous decamp over the water to foreign climes (south Wales), where he set up Taff Rapper; named after the Cardiff river and not the dodgy term for a Welshman. But now he’s back!
Joe – Coming from a long line of sword dancers (well, his father and sister), Joe has become a mainstay of our ceilidh spots and festival appearances with his lovely single jigs. Oh, he dances with swords too, of course.
Doctor Ioan – now having stood down as Squire to concentrate on becoming more of a doctor. He clearly misses being in charge of discipline, timekeeping and telling the Chief Falconer to find the damned bird. Plucked from relative musical obscurity with some sort of prize-winning female team, Ioan has more than proved his worth in the usual series of Northgate’s manly challenges; namely bickering during practice and how to keep your socks up during a dance.
Dave – Dave is an ex member of those rapper icons, the Newcastle Kingsmen. He gets a bit grumpy if he has low blood sugar and hasn’t eaten for a while. At university his nickname was Brownfridge. Student japes eh? What larks. Dave has rotated in, out and around all the official team and dance positions, and also dances with Haymarket Rapper; a team for those that know the Kingsmen dance. And are mostly old.
Brian – another ex-Kingsmen member. He occasionally performs as our Betty, but much prefers putting the younger team members to shame with his fancy fleet-of-foot rapper moves. He is the proud possessor of one of Northgate’s two full beards. Recently married to the lovely Nicola, he’s not under the thumb at all. Oh no.
Natasha the Box – sadly as she’s the alternative binary gender, Natasha does not dance with us. More happily for us males however, she is a fine practitioner of the melodeon and even more happily appears to be able to count to 8 repeatedly. Always a useful skill for a rapper musician. Also writes composes tunes for us to dance to.
Lucy the Fiddle – cleansed and birthed in the warming embrace of women’s teams Star and Shadow, and Silver Flame, Lucy now seeks the company of males. And who can blame her?
Rhianne the Other Fiddle – our newest addition, Rhianne comes from playing with a morris side, put seems to be picking up the faster tempo very easily.
Henry the Piper – our original musician and a long time Bath legend. Henry is often to be found in the gent’s toilets at the Star on a Friday evening, warming his pipes and entertaining the crowds with traditional tunes. His tweed plus-fours are to die for and his feet are very very wide. He’s currently learning the Punjabi language, very handy to converse with the locals in Bath we think.
Northgate’s ‘resting members’ (i.e. on call when we’re short)
Jonathon – Northgate’s only habituee of the ginger beard, Jonathon is an utter Morris tart. Member of five different sides, we do wish he would put down the hankies and take up our highly polished blades of death on a permanent basis. That said, he did rock Sidmouth 2015 with a Morris jig, and is Northgate’s only authentic Welshman.
Nicol – Recently returned back up North using the frankly disappointing excuse that that’s where his job is, Nicol comes from a trad dance family (rapper, longsword and Northwest morris although thankfully he only dances rapper) and can talk an awful load of rapper bollocks. Competition for Martin then! Also dances with Four Corner Sword. And now is on video having a proper girlie strop about part of the dance.
Richard – sometimes known as ‘Young Dick’, Richard is an ex member of NYFTE, i.e. he’s young, skinny and can jump really high. We try to force feed him cider and pies in order to bring him down to our level.
Will – has finished reading bedtime stories at Oxford Brookes University and is now full time posting Marxist comments on Facebook. We miss his morris-type tunes on his fancy squeezebox. And his big bass shoes. And the way he holds his head on one side. And the halfmast trousers.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, we give you Northgate Rapper.