100 YEARS ago audiences packed the Exchange to see the first Gutterbludes show.
Sadly the centenary shows were a poor reflection on present day Gutterbludes, or natives, with the Two Rivers Theatre Company performing to less than a half-filled Town Hall on each of their four performances.
The people who missed this treat will be kicking themselves, because they missed a gem of a show!
It was a show liberally sprinkled with some of the best Common Riding tunes, performed by some of the best Common Riding singers.
The acting was superb and Jean Wintrope once again demonstrated her special ability to produce a show with extraordinary attention to detail.
Along with the Common Riding talent, Hawick also has an abundance of acting talent. From young children not into their teens, to veterans of the stage who all worked tirelessly to produce a show of the highest order.
The cast were given a special treat on the Wednesday evening when they had some very special guests enjoying the performance.
While many Hawick people couldn't rouse themselves to make their way to the Town Hall, five descendants of one of the play's authors, Adam Grant, had travelled all the way from Canada to take in the Two Rivers Theatre Company production.
Great grandson Grant Ward was joined by great granddaughters Sharon McFarlane, Sheila Bolger, Louise Winterstein and Jan Delvecchio.
You can believe on their return flight they would have been whistling some of the catchy Common Riding tunes and like the Gutterbludes who feature in the first Act, it won't be long before they return, once more, to their roots in Hawick.
The early part of the show is based in 'Teri Lodge' deep in the Canadian Forests on New Year's Eve 1834 while the second act sees the Town Hall stage transformed into Common Riding Friday, 1835.
It is a wonderful trip back in time. The costumes, the language and the scenery all reflecting the excitement of the Common Riding, which has never lost its magic.
The sound of the Drums and Fifes on Common Riding Friday — a sound that lifts the spirits of Teries — launched the second part of the show.
From here on the Common Riding songs come thick and fast, delivered with passion by Bert Armstrong, Michael Aitken, Fran Barker, Iain Scott and the rest of the exhuberant cast.
It is not often that someone with a non-speaking part can make such an impact on a show but Ian Landles in the role of 'Gibbie the gowk' did that in incredible fashion.
His facial expressions were simply priceless as I said, the people who weren't there missed out. This was entertainment. Hawick style!
By the end when Cornet George Young left the stage, accompanied by the rest of the Common Riding principals, the Hawick crowd, along with the Canadian guests showed their appreciation of a fine show. A show which J. E. D. Murray and Adam Grant would have been proud of.
Meda, The Scout
Wat Hardie Iain Scott
Spunk Bill McCraw
Gibbie the gowk
Turnbull George Young
Right Hand Man Robert Beck Richard Walker
Right Hand Lass
Left Hand Man James Millar Stuart Irvine
Left Hand Lass
The Bairns: Emma Elliot-Walker, Isla Elliot-Walker, Rachel Inglis, Lysney McFarlane, Natalie Paterson, Alison Rafferty, Emily Rafferty, Mandy Rayner, Abigail Tofts, Liam Caswell, Fergus Hislop, Stuart Mitchell, Jamie Scott, Aimee Fraser, Rhinna Graham, Sarah Whillans.
Crowd: Pamela Casson, Shelagh Duncan, Linda Mason, Gillian Patterson, Alison Seeley, Leanne Stormont, Michael Aitken, Bert Armstrong, Derek Inglis, Ian Landles.
Musicians- Ian Seeley (Piano), Pamela Walker (Violin)
Drums and Fifes- Ronnie Nichol, Dougie Rae, Roddy McIntyre, John Riddell.
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Weather for Hawick
Tuesday 18 June 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 8 C to 20 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: West