Bruce Forsyth at Hop Farm 2012

June 30, 2012

The biggest crowd of the day, by a long way, has assembled to see Bruce Forsyth’s first ever festival appearance. There are even a couple of people that have bought giant cards, to play right.

Bruce played a mix of musical songs (as in songs from musicals) and show tunes, engaging the crowd throughout. He played the doddery old man act perfectly and even tap-danced sitting down due to his inability to do it while standing. He probably still can do a fair bit of it standing up, but by doing it on a twisty chair it was far more entertaining.

He brings his granddaughter out on stage to sing Smile with him. She was clearly nervous at first, but grew into the performance. There was one point where they were singing into each others eyes and Bruce wiped a stray hair from her face. I don’t care how uncool this makes me sound, it was the single most touching moment of the entire festival and I was very close to tears.

I’m not following that with an easy joke, because I’m being serious.

Forsyth is an act from a bygone era of ‘entertainers’ who had to sing, play an instrument, dance, tell jokes, improvise and generally do anything to keep people looking at them while they were on stage. There aren’t many of them left, which is fine because a lot of them are naff. But what originally looked like a novelty act turned out to be an inspired piece of booking.

Also, when I said a big crowd had assembled, it was as if he was a headliner. This is about a quarter of it, I was halfway back!


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