Towersey: No1 for Ceilidh and Dance

With 48 hours of ceilidh and dance planned, Towersey’s Festival Dance House (FDH) is the place to really show off your moves.

Among the 2018 highlights (24-27 August 2018) are appearances from several acts who are celebrating anniversaries: Blowzabella mark their 40th anniversary and Polkaworks are 10, while Tickled Pink reckon they’ve been together 30 years, and Whapweasel celebrate their 20th birthday.

There’s also an amazing Towersey Exclusive too as part of our Marathon Ceilidh – a monster headline team-up worthy of a Marvel blockbuster that you won’t see at any other festival or folk club!

Read on for more details …

The Best of FDH

Simon Care reckons it’s an incredible line-up this year – and he should know, he’s the FDH programmer. Every act’s a cracker (that’s why he booked ’em), but here are just a few of his many highlights:

“I first saw Bristol Ceilidh Quartet at Broadstairs last year and were so different I decided to book them immediately. You’re going to love them!

“I have been a massive fan of The Dartmoor Pixies for many years and have been trying to get them back to Towersey. If traditional ceilidh bands needed a brand leader then they are it. I have wanted The Valiant Dance Band for many years and have finally got them too – I think they might be my highlight! Or perhaps Polkaworks, who share the wonderful squeezing of Katie Howson. Funny that my favourite two bands are the least rocky ones – just goes to prove you don’t need to be heavy and loud to groove.

“I always try to book at least one up-and-coming band and this year is no exception – Frog On A Bike from East Anglia are really making a name for themselves. Also Urban Folk Theory have been climbing in popularity in the last couple of years and I know they’ll blow the FDH roof off. Get your glitter ready.

Peeping Tom, The Committee Band, Tickled Pink and Whapweasel, might be regarded as the heavyweights of the scene. All four bands have been regarded as some of the finest ceilidh bands in recent years. And all pack a mighty punch with a big big sound.

“Last but by no means least we have King Kontra taking the Contra crowd through their paces – you must go and check them out. If you haven’t tried Contra yet, it is the new COOL.

“Finally, I probably don’t even need to mention Blowzabella; 40 years at the top, FDH will be packed to the rafters for them and they will just blow the place apart.

“The other thing is I try to choose the best callers in the UK, because ceilidhs are pretty rubbish without them. This year is no different and we’re delighted to have Sheena Masson, Mary Panton, Nick Walden, Geoff Cubitt, Ian Nichols, Fee Lock, Barry Goodman, Nancy Potts, Gordon Potts, Sarah Bazeley and Michelle Holding.”

Dancers in the FDH at Towersey Festival

The Marathon Ceilidh

On Saturday night (25 Aug 2018) The FDH will be exploding with a five hour Marathon Ceilidh featuring Tickled Pink, Whapweasel and concluding in a one-off, never-to-be-repeated, exclusive appearance of The Pink Weasel Big Band as both bands combine their talents for a truly unique performance featuring 15 musicians!

And the theme for the evening is Frocks and Smocks – so get your posh frocks and country smocks ironed and ready for a night to remember.

This is not to be missed!

  • Towersey Festival runs from Friday 24 to Monday 27 August 2018, in Thame, Oxfordshire. Headliners include The Richard Thompson Electric Trio and Sharon Shannon Band (Fri); The Proclaimers, Big Country and Daphne’s Flight (Sat); Beth Orton, Fisherman’s Friends and Martyn Joseph (Sun) and The Shires, Peter Knight and John Spiers and Blair Dunlop (Mon). Tickets are from £40 (Adult Day Ticket). For more information, see:

Read previous Towersey press releases …

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