Variety is the spice of life in Bramley as residents tune in to an online showcase of local talent

The best of Bramley will be on display this weekend as the suburb stages an online variety show.

Friday, 14th May 2021, 4:45 am

Bramley Variety Show is returning by popular demand on Sunday after hosting a similar event last Christmas in the absence of being able to hold its annual festive show or panto in person due to the coronavirus lockdown.

It is a showcase of local talent in Bramley, professional artists and also how they and others have adapted throughout the pandemic so they can still connect with audiences that need interaction, entertainment and stimulation more than ever.

Taking place from 5pm on Sunday, the show will feature music by the local Tutti! Concert Band (a community band who rehearse in Bramley), synchronised swimming by Bramley Mermaids who would usually perform in the pool but owing to restrictions will perform without water; vegetable sculpting by Madame Zuchini of Britain's Got Talent, jokes and card tricks by members of Bramley Elderly Action, morris dancing by Leeds Morrismen, a one-woman performance written and produced by Bramley resident Belinda May where she will be channelling real life events that took place in Bramley in the 1890s as told by her alter ego Polly Prattle over the fence and the winner of the recycled hat competition will be announced which was a competition to encourage people to turn their trash into treasure.

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One of the star acts, Polly Prattle.

Packs are also being sent to people who have registered to watch the show, which is being screened for free, so that they can join in from home during the intervals with activities such as bingo.

The spotlight on Bramley's variety show and the community centre, which is a hub for a number of organisations, comes as part of a collaboration between the Yorkshire Evening Post and Leeds 2023 which the idea that from dance to design, art to architecture, poetry to pop, sculpture to sport, grassroots community theatre to performances on our world class stages, Leeds 2023 will unlock talent and creative opportunities for people from every district in the city.

Jessica Bowie is the show's producer and told the Yorkshire Evening Post: "We are really looking forward to it, everybody is very excited. We did it at Christmas in lieu of a show or pantomime and the idea was to lift everybody's spirits. It was in quite a short space of time, which is why it was a variety, but it was very well received and everybody had a great time.

"Some of the acts are familiar faces that people would have seen but the groups have done really well online."

Tuning in - the online audience at last year's Bramley Variety Show.

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Ms Bowie added: "The older people have been fantastic at learning to use Zoom. Bramley Elderly Action have had help to give them tablets and training on how to use them, get online and use Zoom. They have been fantastic at interacting. If all goes well, the next one will be in person but like everybody else, we will be doing a blended or hybrid way of working and there will still be opportunities to join on Zoom if that suits people better."

However, with further lockdown restrictions being lifted from next week, Bramley Community Centre is looking to become the hub for local people that it was before the pandemic broke out more than a year ago.

Later this month a Family Action Food Club will start where, via a membership scheme, a £15 food shop can cost £3.50; Bramley Baths will hold zumba classes at the centre and a pay as you feel yoga class is also starting; a youth group from BARCA will start meeting and DAZL will resume in person street dance sessions.

Synchronised swimming from Bramley Mermaids - without the water.

A newly established uniform bank for West Leeds also operates from the centre and Sow and Row will swap seeds and tips with gardeners and green-fingered groups.

Show producer, Jessica Bowie.