Transcript of live radio interview Sunday 25th August at 12 noon. Studio of Hot Radio 102.8 FM ( hot1028.com ) The Chris Mower show.
If you have been down on the beach you have probably seen my next guest, you may even be one of the hundreds who have joined him in his hobby.
He’s been called a blot on the landscape, and also a bringer of joy. He’s also been called stupid (so have I), and way cool. He just calls himself the beachdancer. Beachdancer, a warm welcome to Hot Radio.
Well thank you I am very pleased to be here, but you told me to sit still while I am talking to you and this is such a pain – you keep playing music – I just want to get up and dance.
You’re gonna be… you’re going to be big trouble beachdancer this morning aren’t you? Now for those who haven’t actually seen you in action, just explain what’s going on.
Well, I’m dancing. It’s nothing particularly special. It’s just that I am dancing on a beach. Apparently that makes it special.
You know there are thousands who run along the beach and you don‘t think, “Why is he running?”
They just say… well they don’t say anything; you just ignore it.
There are people who go out into the water; actually physically put their bodies in the water putting themselves at danger of drowning and nobody… there’s no commotion; people aren’t ringing up saying, “Why is he doing that?” and you’re not interviewing them. It’s called swimming and what I do.. it‘s called DANCE-ING.
And it is one of the great physical pleasures of life: everybody should do it.
It certainly is unusual isn’t it? I mean because it’s er.. as it happens I am down on that stretch of the beach quite a lot and the reaction is quite extraordinary. In fact my wife, my kids we are all big fans of yours and its most unusual your dance moves; how did that develop? Your actual moves.
I have no idea, but it does remind me that this is the first time that you have seen me with my clothes on.
(An awkward silence)
Ah, now how they developed, let’s see, um… I have practiced in front of the mirror, like everybody else does, in the privacy of their own home. I’ve been to dance classes. I used to go to discos, and my favourite moment in disco is when everybody is too frightened to actually go out on the dance floor and dance because I have got it to myself so I just go out; I start the dancing. Sometimes I dance for 15 minutes before anybody else starts.
Oh, I have a story about dancing at the international congress which I attended which was really interesting with dance teachers from all around the world showing us different.. dances that I never heard of, religious things, slave dances and as always I took over the dance floor .. Am I talking too much?
Yes, but carry on.
I took over the dance floor because the music had started; the uh, the lesson hadn’t started; it was just empty BEGGING me to come and dance. So I took it over and I am dancing and I see a couple in er, at the side, sort of dancing; they were doing salsa, and I thought, you know it is really nice; that ballroom dancing is really nice because people who basically can’t dance – if they learn the steps they can dance and they can enjoy and everyone dances And they have a good time and everybody dances. And I was looking at them thinking, – I want to use a rude word, I have been told I can’t – um I was looking at them thinking that they don’t look very good doing what they are doing, but they are enjoying it because they are doing the steps.
Then the music stopped, they stopped, they announced the lesson was about to start – they were the teachers.
Well, you know, anyway, So I dance and I love dancing, it is a passion. I’m…
Fantastic, you’re listening to Hot Radio. I’m chatting with Beachdancer. More from the great man after this…
(PLAYS SONG – Dire Straits)
You are listening to Hot radio and I am chatting with my studio guest, Beachdancer who is the completely balmy man who dances in extraordinary ways on the beaches of Poole. So Beachdancer, come on, tell us a bit about yourself
(THEY TALK ACROSS EACH OTHER)
When you say balmy I presume you mean in the sense of a balmy tropical island. Rather than nutter.
A lot of people assume that I am nuts, it is a reasonable assumption because there’s a wild man, on his own, dancing to music they can’t hear along the seashore from Branksome Chine to Sandbanks and back, although, I have to admit I only get to Sandbanks if I have the energy. Sometimes I turn back at Canford Cliffs. It’s about an hour and then I do what I think of as an encore at Branksome Chine, occasionally give an impromptu dance class some of which are really really amusing, but the strangest thing that has happened while I was dancing, this was in another country, I was dancing on the beach as usual, and dogs get a bit excited; they can see my face, now they can’t, I’m over here then over there, they start running around and this one which had a huge jaw, it is some kind of pitbull decided that the best thing to do was dance with me by clamping its jaw around my thigh and THAT HURT, I can tell you. I had no idea just how much he was bighting me, but what was reassuring is that the owner came over to me and said, “Don’t worry he doesn’t bite.”
I-eee-grrrh-wuuu. Somewhat counterfactual and ironic that he would say that, but then people do say strange things to me. For example it is Sunday today I believe and this week I was approached by.. there was a woman walking along the beach who is making arm gestures which were in time with mine and I figured she probably was keen on dance and I asked her, “Do you dance?” and she said, “Oh, yes, lots,” and I said, “What kind?” and she told me a couple of styles I had never heard of. “What’s that?” I said. “It’s expressive dancing where you interpret the music.”
I thought, and I said, “That’s what I do,” and she said, “Yes, and you are an inspiration.” (MUMBLES)
Are you a politician by the way? Because you continue to answer a different question to the one I ask. Come on tell us about yourself. How old are you?
Oh, I’m an old man, today, this week it is my 60th birthday.
(Chuckles) Is it?
..and I’ve been dancing probably since I was a teenager, but I danced like a block of wood when I was a teenager. It took me a long time even to get the hang of there is a beat to music and you are supposed to move it time with the beat. It has never been… people have said to me ‘are you a professional?’ then they look at me – oh well he’s a bit old – ‘Were you a professional?’ One person was talking to me saying, ‘obviously you are professional and I think from your agility you have a ballet background’.
It is very very sweet.
So what did you do as a career?
Ah, oh I can’t remember. It is lost on the mists of time. I was some kind of business thing. I remember that vaguely, but I have retired and I don’t live in the past.
What my background really is, is the sea because that is usually behind me. I’m.. another thi.. oh, the Sunday thing… The one thing I must say, she said that what you are doing would bring you closer to God.
Ah. – She didn’t say her DOG did she?
No, no she definitely said God and I have a suspicion that it was a death threat, but I don’t know.
Hahh, You are listening to Hot Radio. I am chatting to the one and only Beachdancer. More from him after this..
(CHANNEL ID, ADS, PLAY SONG)
Now, I am chatting with my studio guest Beachdancer who is the crazy man who dances from Branksome Chine to Sandbanks and er come on you miserable man tell us a bit about your background what did you do as a job. Oh, come on.
I was thinking I may have to change my location I may have to dance from Branksome Chine to Bournemouth to keep away from all this stuff.
I was telling you about slack jawed fascination. Sometimes, little children, they just go into a trance. They are staring at me, they don’t know what they are seeing; their jaw drops and they just stand there while I dance past, but I get the same reaction from some adults.
I was dancing past 3 women who obviously were watching me dance because their heads are turning as I go by, and when the music stops I took my headphones off and I said, (it was a pathetic joke) ‘I think I need an oxygen tent’ because bear in mind I’m an old guy.
Their faces were utterly motionless. It was like… it was like if you were out somewhere in the wilderness and a grizzly bear turns to look at you and you freeze; you can’t react.
There goes the crazy dancer maybe he won’t notice us and he’ll just go away.
It’s what I do, I just love dancing. It is a passion. It has so many benefits; it is good for your health. It’s fun. You’re out in the.. Why I ask myself, do people go, people say they are going to go OUT, but what they actually mean is let’s go IN. They go IN somewhere else, and they go into a hot room filled with the smell of other people’s sweat.
I have never understood why people want to do that when they could go down on the beach. It’s beautiful, and we have this fan.. I’m sorry you want to say someth…?
No, no I was just thinking that you go to the same sort of pubs that I go to. Smell of other people’s swe… Come on what’s the funniest thing that’s happened?
Ah, there are so many things that, that, er a couple of days ago, two very attractive young women came running after me. As I am dancing along every so often I spin around and see if there is anyone behind me. They came along, they’re panting, Huhuh Huhuh, and she said to me, “Do you remember us?”
“Yes, I do,” I can remember their faces, but I can’t place them because I meet so many people.
It is amazing how social it is dancing on your own.
I meet so many people; I chat with so many people.
They say to me, “You’ve got to come back. You’ve got to come back.”
“Back there, back there,” which is about half a mile.
“You HAVE TO, our mum wants to watch you dance.”
Ah, bless them.
Our Mum, I uhh… (mumbles) I was tempted to ask if their mum often sends them off to bring men back for her. But I didn’t say it, I am too polite.
Okay, Right. You’re listening to Hot Radio. I have been chatting with Beachdancer. Now, I ‘m told that the weather is going to be better this afternoon and Beachdancer has PROMISED ME. You have promised haven’t you?
(NOISES AND GRUMBLES)
I’m going to cut you off. He has promised if the weather is fine he is going to go down to Branksome Chine at around 4 o’ clock and he is going to dance all the way to Sandbanks. So get down there on the prom. Give him a wave; join him on the beach; dance along with him. I will be down there as well. We’ll have a blast.
So, Beachdancer, thank you for giving up your Sunday morning for Hot Radio.
You’re an amazing man. Ah. You’re listening to Hot Radio. That was unusual wasn’t it? What a man he is.