Friday 4 December 2020

Walking in an Orange Wonderland

Buxton - 4th December 2020


It's snowing outside and that can only mean one thing: Buxton Fringe is open for entries.

Usually to celebrate the launch there is a Christmas party with all the community invited to enjoy an evening of Derbyshire Carols, drinks, chat with local performers and the committee and lots of laughs.

Of course Covid-19 put paid to that as it has with so much in 2020. Undeterred and encouraged by the success of this year’s online Fringe, the committee decided to hold a Zoom party.

My experiences of Zoom have been mixed so I wasn't sure how this would work. But at the appointed hour I logged in wearing my homemade Christmas hat, a bit anxious in case no one else had dressed up.

I needn't have worried; I was greeted by Chair Stephen Walker in a full Santa suit complete with beard. Compere Ian Bowns was in reindeer horns and nose and Secretary Gaye was showing off her Zoom skills with a background of the Oxford Street lights. Other Christmas outfits were also on show and luckily with Zoom no one could see that I had my pyjama bottoms and fluffy slippers on!

Joining members of the committee were a number of Fringe friends, performers and supporters; it was great to meet them and see their commitment to the Fringe.

And so the fun commenced. We had two quiz rounds and a poem-writing challenge. Ian mixed us up and put us into breakout rooms so we could chat with different people as well as answer questions.

The teams were different for each round, and you would think this would've removed the competitive edge but oh no, there were lots of loud complaints about points being awarded.

Somehow Ian maintained control of the "fringey crowd" and moved us on to the finale of the evening; a sing-along to that all time favourite "Walking in an orange, sorry, winter wonderland". Luckily Ian muted everyone apart from himself and singing partner Carol. With the words on screen I could happily join in safe in the knowledge that no one could hear my terrible, out of tune voice.

Maybe Zoom’s not so bad after all!

Merry Christmas and a Healthy and Happy New Year one and all!

Carole Garner
Buxton Fringe

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