An Unexpected Gift

27 Mar

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis


Recently we went to Anderson, South Carolina to spend some time with friends and attend the Anderson Senior Follies.  It was held at Anderson University and the proceeds provide a scholarship. We were especially excited to attend since one of our friends was performing.

As the name implies, all of the performers were “seniors” with an age range of fifty-five to ninety-two. This year’s theme was Hometown Heroes. According to the newspaper style playbill, a hero is someone you know. The opening scene included the entire eighty-person cast all costumed to portray the most obvious heroes down to the least obvious such as secretaries, maids and miners.


Once the opening number was completed the performers stepped out quickly and I do mean quickly with old favorites such as Baby Face, Bugle Boy of Company B and Run Around Sue to name a few. There were corny jokes, patriotic pieces and some songs just for the joy of laughing.

My husband and I laughed the whole show, one time I even snorted. We were in awe at the way those old folks could move. There was rhythm galore and plenty of flirty looks from the ladies but my favorite was a tap dance performed by some of the more elder ladies of the cast. Not only did they move, near the end of the number the men they had been dancing around suddenly ripped off the ladies skirts! While the music continued I watched anxiously as the ninety-year-old dancer bent down to pick up her skirt then struggled to put it back on.  I didn’t think she would be able to manage it but she sure did, right on cue.

After the show I was marveling at the rhythm and free spirit some of the women demonstrated. I wondered if they had always been that way or had they experienced an unexpected gift of age, the freedom to just go for it.

Merl Follies

2 Responses to “An Unexpected Gift”

  1. Onisha Ellis March 27, 2013 at 8:25 am #

    There was a square dance set and I was imagining you and Bill “swinging your partners” I wish you had been there too.


  2. DiVoran Lites March 27, 2013 at 7:22 am #

    loved it! loved it! LOVED IT. Wish I’d been there with all my heart. Wonderful writing, too.


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