What?: SoundsCreative Projects were not messing around when they named this monthly event, which does basically exactly what it says on the tin by re-caffeinating knackered parents whilst filling their earholes with sounds much more welcome and melodic than the shrieks, moans and bodily reverberations of their offspring.
Of course said offspring are welcome here too (because who really wants to spend a morning surrounded by two-dozen under-threes unless they happen to be lugging their own around with them?) but the focus, as with fellow parental-sanity-repair events Mini Jam, Bach to Baby and Wake Up Gigs, remains on the adult.
Our gig was performed by Duo Folclore, AKA Alice Barron and Fuensanta Zambrana Ruiz, a pair of violists celebrated for their pioneering blend of contemporary and cross-cultural music. Their performance, combining their signature mix of classical Indian influences and folk-inspired duets and improvisations, was the perfect balance of energising and soothing, providing enough uptempo bow-work to tire out maniacal toddlers and sufficient dulcet tones to alleviate parental headaches.
I have to say I was initially a bit freaked out by the presence of so many chairs and the way everyone else was actually sitting on one with their child in their lap. Someone even offered us a chair, as if sitting down is something we do. Thankfully the seating situation steadily deteriorated throughout the course of the performance and by the end many of the babies had found their way onto the floor and most of the toddlers were congregated around the toilet, so no one really noticed how much time Bab spent scaling the altar.
Where and When?: Gigs take place at 11am on the first Tuesday of every month. Venues include Paper Dress Vintage, opposite Hackney Central (Overground); and The Old Church, which is a 14-minute walk from Stoke Newington Station (Overground).
Best Bits: I love string music and tea, so this was a winner for me.
Worst Bits: At the beginning when it looked like everyone else’s child was going to sit nicely and listen, and then at the end when I forgot to leave with my bag.
Facilities: Free tea, snacks available for £1 each, baby changing, step-free access, buggy parking.
Cost: £8 advance/ £10 on the door.
Would We Come Back?: Yes.
Bab rocks out to classical folk at Tea + a Gig at The Old Church Stoke Newington.