Just in after a night of dance at Sadler’s Wells, I switched on The Stones at Glastonbury and thought about who has it, and what ‘it’ is specifically. Look at Keith Richards, still playing, still got it. Skinny Mick, zero charisma with the grumpiness of Lester Piggott, but he’s got it. And, Charlie Watts, somber as night falling – he’s got ‘it’ too.
I reflected on the dance acts I’d seen that evening; super talented all of them, but some drew you in more than others, some just had ‘it’. First up: The National Youth Dance Company certainly captivated, young with fresh desire and expression that was palpable, fearless, single minded in their ambition enabling a work of pure energy to be embraced.
The same was true of the last act. Although older, a genuine oneness of person and action came across from their hip hop influenced dance, so clear in origin.
The middle acts failed to reap the same response. Formal ballet, some uber contemporary dance with lasers, a sole ‘street’ performer and a tango act: They all had their merits and I struggled to work out whether it was by virtue of their placement in the program, or what they communicated that made me react less enthusiastically.
Back on the pyramid stage, Mick was peeling off the layers and now his skinny form could be seen to maximum effect, all in black. The set list was safe – in the original sense of the word – crowd pleasers of the biggest hits. However, I found myself remote from the tunes we all know so well. I texted Foxy: ‘Can’t keep my eyes open, going to bed. Night night’. I put the phone down but found myself still glued to the sofa. Would they do an encore? Would I wait for it? I did. ‘You can’t always get what you want’ followed by (I can’t get no) satisfaction’ sung by a gold lame clad Jagger to the fullest audience the Pyramid stage has ever seen.
I turned up the volume and sang along with the rest of Glastonbury; none of us could help it. With the lyrics of the first song going through my head I reflected: What if what you want is more of what you need, and just maybe that’s what ‘it’ is?