Why do we do it?
|If you came to this
site via our home page, you may have noticed the flag of St.
George gaily fluttering in the top left hand
corner. This is to emphasise that rapper sword dance is
not only a British tradition, but also
an English one.
The people of other countries are proud of their traditions, and actively encourage and support them. Not so in England, though. For example, most people have heard of yodelling, flamenco and line dancing (Austria, Spain, USA). Scottish bagpipes, Irish music/dancing and the Welsh Eistedfodd are all well-known worldwide. If asked about rapper though, most people will only know about the Afro-Caribbean usage of the word.
When we are out performing in pubs though, things are a little better. Our performances often generate a lot of interest, and are followed by enthusiastic applause. The letdown comes though, when someone asks: "What country do we come from?".
By performing and promoting this particular tradition we, (along with other rapper sides), are helping to preserve it for the future, and also doing are bit to change the attitude of England and the English to its own customs.
There are of course other benefits: the fairly strenuous nature of rapper improves physical fitness, and the complex nature of the figures enhances mental agility and promotes teamwork. But above all, we enjoy it!
And of course, it's not unknown for us to enjoy a beer or two in between the dances ...