30 May 2024

Rhythm and Rhyme set to shine at community event

by Tim Nuttall

Withernsea Methodist Church is set to host a “thought-provoking, humorous and entertaining” look at the world through poetry and song next week when seasoned performer Mike Smith takes to the stage at the venue’s next Food, Friendship and Fun event.

Following their launch last April, these monthly free-to-attend gatherings offer attendees an opportunity to socialise in a relaxed atmosphere, complete with a complimentary lunch and live entertainment.

For Howden-based performer Mike, who will be combining rhythm and rhyme with stories and the occasional song, his appearance in Withernsea will provide a welcome return to his performing roots.

Mike said: “I worked at Withernsea High School in the late 1970s, where our singing group Quarto was formed. We performed to a wide range of unsuspecting audiences until last year when we finally had to disband for health reasons after approximately 45 years.

“As Mike Smith, I have performed solo for a little over 20 years with my Rhythm & Rhyme – With a Laugh and the Sing of a Song show. This is an original form of entertainment, defying description, really. But the key word is ‘entertainment’.”

During this time Mike also enjoyed a successful career delivering interactive performance workshops at more than 200 primary schools, mainly across Yorkshire and Lincolnshire – but as far afield as County Durham, Cumbria and Hertfordshire.

Although still performing family poetry shows from time to time, Mike’s focus is now on his adult audiences.

Looking forward to his visit to Withernsea, and explaining what next week’s audience can expect, Mike said: “There will be rhythmic- rhyming ‘tussles’ with a hand-drying machine and plastic sachet of sauce, reflections on
the shock of realising I’m getting on in years and ‘visits’ from Elvis, George Formby – and possibly Dolly Parton. There will be plenty of chance for the audience to join in with singing too, if they wish to do so.

“While visiting the town, I’m looking forward to a wander round Carrs Meadow, where we lived when I worked in Withernsea and, of course, I’m also looking forward to much ‘Food, Friendship and Fun’.”

Next week’s event takes place on Thursday, September 28, between noon and 2.30pm in the Community Room at Withernsea Methodist Church, in Hull Road.

Alongside the entertainment will be a simple lunch of soup and a bread roll, followed by a selection of homemade buns.

While the food is free, an opportunity to leave donations will be offered to help support future events.

The Community Room is wheelchair-friendly, with the venue also featuring an accessible toilet to ensure inclusivity for all. Access to the Community Room is via the footpath at the left side of the church, which will be signposted on the day.