You can tell how much Bramley Mermaids means to its members just by listening to their infectious enthusiasm when they talk about the club.
“It’s a communal exercise that isn’t competitive, it’s collaborative, creative and fun, with some perfomance thrown in. It’s perfect!” says Emma Sykes, one of the longest serving members of the Mermaids from when they formed just over four years ago.
For those not in the know, the club brings women together for a creative swimming and water dance class once a week at Bramley Baths.
The synchro dance club meets to learn new routines inspired by synchronised swimming techniques and vintage hollywood film – in particular the famous water sequences choreographed by Busby Berkeley and Esther Williams.
Emma, 37, travels to the Baths every Sunday evening from Burley and can’t get enough of it. She’s currently busy preparing for the Mermaid’s new splash-tastic synchro dance performance, ‘Strictly Come Synchro’ on Saturday, 16th June at 8pm. She said:
“The Mermaids are a lot of fun, we’re a friendly group and we do enjoy it. It’s very welcoming set up, you don’t need any experience. We come along because we have a laugh and we’re in these beautiful surroundings where we can put together these fun routines.
“I love that there’s never any pressure to try something you aren’t comfortable with, we work routines around people’s abilities and even performing in front of an audience is optional.
“There’s a great community feel to it. The lifeguards are really friendly and are happy to film our routines so we can watch them back to see how we’ve done, although it doesn’t always come out as planned!”
Emma says although people move away from Leeds, one Mermaid bobs back from Kent and gets into the pool whenever she can.
“Once you’re a Mermaid, you’re always a Mermaid!”
The Sunday evening classes are run by Yorkshire Life Aquatic’s Lucy (synchronised swimmer) and Zoe (choreographer).
Everyone is welcome to the event on Saturday, June 16, and you’re also invited to join the Mermaids in the pool after the performance for a quick swim or to have a go at their synchro dance ‘Splash Mob’. All ages and abilities are welcome, so don’t forget your swimming kit!
This event is free to attend although donations are welcome as this event is a fundraiser for Bramley Mermaids. There will also a fabulous mermaid-themed raffle. All money raised will go to supporting club activities!
Check out more on the Mermaids here.