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THE LAST WALTZ ...

4512065 SSFF bill cousins 
Bill Cousins (with dancing partner Jill McDonagh) who is hanging up his DJ & dancing shoes at age 85 after organising ballroom dances in Kirkcaldy - at the Adam Smith Theatre Function Suite, Kirkcaldy

4512065 SSFF bill cousins Bill Cousins (with dancing partner Jill McDonagh) who is hanging up his DJ & dancing shoes at age 85 after organising ballroom dances in Kirkcaldy - at the Adam Smith Theatre Function Suite, Kirkcaldy

the man behind the popular Adam Smith Theatre tea dances for the last 22 years is preparing to host his last dance.

Bill Cousins has organised the weekly Thursday afternoon events and recorded and played the music since December 1990 when the then theatre manager Sheila Thomson suggested they become part of its programme.

Bill was happy to step in, while still doing the job of stage manager, and continued after he retired from his theatre job two years later.

In their heyday the popular tea dances attracted around 50 people, with many who did not make it along early enough having to be turned away.

Even today there are a regular few dozen who dress up and come along to trip the light fantastic and enjoy a cup of tea and a biscuit into the bargain. Many come from as far as Cupar, St Andrews, Dunfermline and Rosyth to enjoy the dancing and socialising.

And Bill, who has worked with many theatre legends including Vivien Leigh and Sean Connery to Stanley Baxter and Judy Dench, at theatres the length and breadth of the country, has moved on from spinning 12 inch vinyl records to recording all his music on to mini discs.

Bill, who will be 85 on November 28, came to Kirkcaldy in 1979 when Chris Potter the manager back then, enticed him to the Lang Toun from his theatre job in Luton.

“I came here to give it a go and I loved it so much that I stayed,” explained Bill, who lives in Cardenden with his partner Rosemary McDonagh.

“I love ballroom dancing and I used to go along with my mother who was a great dancer when I was very young. She taught me all the steps, and I used to do a bit of dancing, so when it was suggested we start sessions at the Adam Smith, I jumped at the chance to get involved.

Bill explained, as he approaches his 85th birthday, he thinks it is the right time to retire, although he does plan to run the odd tea dance by special request now and again.

“I am not as young as I used to be and I think it is time to hand the reins over to someone younger,” he said.

“I will miss it and all the friends I have made over the years, but now is the right time to go.”

Bill’s last dance will be on December 13 and he is inviting any or his “regulars” from over the years to join him for one last waltz.

Anyone interested in taking over Bill’s post can contact him on 722113.

 

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