Music centre maestros get shoppers dancing

14 March 2017

These boots weren’t just made for walking – but dancing too.

That was the case in Leighton Buzzard High Street on Saturday afternoon when members of the Leighton-Linslade Music Centre took part in the annual Oxjam festival.

Around 20 performers of all ages had the crowd dancing and cheering as they enjoyed a feast of live music in the sunshine.

A folk group and a ukulele group performed three pieces each, including an inspired version of Nancy Sinatra’s These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ by the latter.

The music centre is one of four run by Inspiring Music (link opens in new window), the music service of Central Bedfordshire. They take place from 9:15am to 12:30pm every Saturday in Ampthill, Biggleswade, Dunstable and Leighton-Linslade, and they see people of all ages and levels enjoying music of all kinds together.

That’s definitely the case for the Leighton-Linslade centre with both ukulele and folk groups a real family affair as a dad and two sons play together in the former with a father and son in the folk group.

Debbie Nicholls, who heads the Leighton-Linslade Music Centre, said: “It was a really lovely afternoon. We are always well supported by family and friends but there was a captive audience; people were dancing and there was a really heartfelt round of applause at the end.

“It was a great advert for the music centre. When you can tell someone who is watching that someone on stage had not even played the ukulele this time last year then that is very inspiring for them.

“We have beginners of all ages – not just children – and sometimes it’s retired people who want to try something different and then go on to join other groups.

“Garry Layden, who is one of our volunteers and who runs the ukulele group, does a great job and he introduces them to a repertoire they wouldn’t necessarily expect. So, he’s had them playing some Pink Floyd and even punk rock.”

Members of the music centre will be back in action on Saturday, 25 March, when they perform in a concert at Vandyke Upper School.

There will be Easter-themed refreshments from 10.30am onwards and the concert starts at 11am with a slot by the junior band. They will be followed by everything from jazz and swing to African drummers and vocal performances.

Admission is free but there will be a retiring collection in aid of Oxjam.

The winner of the centre’s wear a hat for Oxjam competition will also be announced. That raised £22 for the charity appeal.

Find out more about the music centres (link opens in new window)

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