Vault Fest is now in full flow, and this week I caught up with local MP Colin, who has been heavily campaigning against the government’s attempts to ban dance in the UK, the latest of which is to take a dance show direct to Vault Fest to protest the bill.
Interview by Amie Taylor (@AmieAmieTay)
AT: Colin, tell us a bit about what’s been happening in parliament recently…
C: Well, there’s a lot going on, but the real issue is that people aren’t aware of what the government is doing to British dance and quite frankly, it’s scary. You know, I haven’t used that word before but it is scary, because they’re making dance illegal. Everyone’s very distracted by Brexit, by the NHS that this has slipped under the table as it were.
AT: So what’s your approach at the moment?
C: What are we doing about it? Well, we’re leading the fight back. So there’s myself and a group of cross-party members of parliament are trying to raise awareness about the end of dance bill, which will effectively make dance illegal, and we’re out on the campaign trail. We’ve decided to do a dance show, to raise awareness and hopefully that will get us a little bit of press so people know about it.
AT: Great, and what’s your standpoint on the issue?
C: I’m excited. Obviously there’s a long tradition of MPs dancing. I’ve got a great dance solo planned for tonight and each night.
AT: So Colin, have you trained in dance?
C: That’s a very good question. No, is the answer. I’ve never done dance. It’s not something I particularly enjoy normally, but I feel like I’m coming round. And if I might say so, I think I’m getting quite good at it.
AT: And do you feel that dancing is something anyone could just pick up?
C: Ah. Well… look. There are some people, such as those in government that are looking at making dance completely illegal. So no one would be allowed to dance. There are others that think we should continue as we are dancing. But there is quite a serious issue here, which I hope to be debating and discussing. What I would say though, is that there are too many people dancing.
AT: Right. Very interesting. Is there anything you’d like to add before we finish?
C: Just that I think it’s going to be an absolutely fascinating performance, but timely one that also raises awareness. And we want to take people through this fight back, so they can join the campaign and really help us to keep dance legal.
You can see Colin in the End of Dance at Vault Festival from 22nd-26th Feb 2017 at 18:10.
(The character of Colin is created and performed by Yann Allsopp)