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Grand Concert at the Methel Stage

posted May 31, 2011, 2:14 AM by Peppy Bristlebrush
By Tibba Stoutfoot 

The inhabitants of Bywater and the surrounding farms were treated to an unusual sight last friday: The Methel Stage, which normally does not see many activities and is nowadays mostly used by youngsters to try out fireworks, was for an evening the centre of the anniversary celebrations of Green Dragon Friday. Hobbits came from all over the Shire, and some even from beyond the bounds, to attend a concert of special magnificence. Miss Lina had once again outdone herself planning and organising the whole event, and it was rumoured that four Shire bands would be playing. So this perhaps explains the long stream of hobbits walking up the path from the road to the stage, chatting merrily in spite of the drizzle and the dark clouds promising even more rain.

At around seven pm, just like any Green Dragon friday, Miss Lina stepped up on the stage to welcome all the guests in word and song. She told about the history of the Green Dragon, and gave special thanks to Miss Lothilia for coming up with the idea all those years ago. And even with the rain falling, and a bit of wind chilling the air, Lina's song and story instantly put one's mind back to the Dragon, and one could just imagine her standing in front of the cozy fireplace, her lute in her hands, singing the first song of the evening. The audience warmed up even more when she announced that nobody had to go all the way back to the Dragon to buy a drink: A large quantity of food and ale had been brought up to the stage, safely covered so as not to get wet, and breaks between the bands would allow everyone to stock up on food and drink. Thus fortified --of course everyone had to sample the foods immediately, and to take a drink or two to get warm-- the audience settled back to hear the first band of the evening, the Brambleburians (who still have not decided on a name) in their burgundy clothes. Miss Maryelle introduced the band, and told about its history. As one band member had been travelling and was late, Maryelle called for aid from the Brambleburian side of the audience, in specific for our dear couple Amorey and Peppy, who had moved into the neighbourhood only recently. With their help, the Brambleburians then started with their lively program, and soon had everyone hopping around despite the rain. Things got even more lively when Miss Akelay, the missing member, jumped up on the stage from behind just in time for the last song, to the cheers of all (not least her fellow band members), and the last song was played by the full band.

It was during  this song that a murmur arose at the back rows as a hobbit quietly made her way to one of the front seats. It was none other than our Miss Lotti, or should I say Miss Lothilia, founder of the Green Dragon Friday, who had returned to the Shire just for this evening! So the break after the first band came at the right time, as people crowded around Miss Lotti to welcome her, and to ask her how she was doing. News were exchanged, some of the younger hobbits were introduced, and all agreed that this had been a most wonderful surprise.

After the break the next band came on the stage, and it was the enchanting band Hobbit Heart, made up of Miss Amorey and Master Peppy, in their blue garments. Although the band is still fairly new, it is already well-known to those who regularily come to the Green Dragon, and they received enthusiastic cheers from the audience. As later became known, it was their first concert, but nobody would have guessed that when Amorey, without any trace of nervousness, raised her clear voice for the first song. The charming tunes of Hobbit Heart had the audience swaying in no time, and they listened contentedly as Amorey sang of love and of the Shire. Their final song about the Journey into the West, the fears, and the hope to see each other again on the other side, brought a tear to many an eye. The couple took their bows to many cheers and shouts of 'Hurray!', and I am sure I speak for all when I say that we are already looking forward to their next concert.

Now half the concert had passed, and as an interlude before the second half, the newly formed Shire Dancing Troupe, led by our famous dance master, Master Simbo, took the stage. Quickly, they formed two rows, one of lads and one of lasses, and led by Master Simbo they performed a dance of Men that is often seen, although normally with a lot less choreography. There was only time for one dance, but that one received a lot of applause, and we hope to see more of them in the future.

As the first band in the second part of the evening, the Pied Pipers stepped up on the stage, and many an eyebrow was raised in surprise and appreciation at the band's clothing: The female band members were all wearing beautiful dresses of the finest fabrics, and the lad --a most impressive horn-player, by the way-- was dressed in an elegant dark robe. They played several of their favoured songs and soon had everyone forget about the wind that still blew chilly from the east, and busy hopping under the moon, which had taken on a lovely shade of violet shining from behind the wisps of clouds still covering the sky. The cheering of the crowd after the band had finished was long and loud, and were it not for the fact that the evening was beginning to grow late, the audience would surely have insisted on an encore.

As the last band of the evening, the Songburrow Strollers took the stage, and they too had a surprise for the audience: To fill the spot left by Miss Lotti, they had taken in a new member, and it is none other than Miss Bootsy! The announcement met with loud cheers and approval from all hobbits present, many of whom had already heard Miss Bootsy play some of the many songs she has collected during her travels, and all agreed that she had been a wise choice. The Strollers then proceeded to keep the audience warm with their lively songs, and Master Simbo had everyone nibbling contentedly on the last of the pies while listening to his Piem. As a final surprise, Miss Lina asked for two members from each of the bands that had performed during the evening, and together they played the Green Dragon Anniversary Song, a merry song that Miss Lina had written for the occasion.
With the Home, Sweet Home song, the Strollers concluded the evening. And what an evening it had been! Full of songs, and pies, and surprises, and poems, and fireworks, and pies! A truely wonderful night, a worthy anniversary night of the Green Dragon Friday. Once again, thank you, Miss Lina, for organising such a grand event, and thank you all who participated!




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