“An event foreseen by Time Lords of Gallifrey, on October 9th the worm will be present at all points in history.”
This mysterious message was my first indication of what Danceworm in the TARDIS would be like when I clicked the ‘going’ button on Facebook. Not knowing what to expect from a Sunday night in the Aikmans Cellar, I was met by the quote above describing the event put on by the Danceworm collective. The rest of the description can be found on the event’s Facebook page, but it won’t give you any more of an idea of what you’ll be walking into. The event ran from 8 PM to midnight, which seemed a bit earlier than a usual St Andrews dance-based night, but it felt appropriate for the Sunday evening it fell on, assuming most people were probably studying in their rooms or getting ready to fall asleep before classes on Monday.
We can usually expect the same scene when walking into the basement of Aikmans: a humid and uncomfortably stuffy room where you will most likely bump into a few sweaty golfers as you push your way up to the bar. Happily, on Sunday I made my way to the bar with no problems and ordered my drink without any line. The absence of queues was a result of me being one of the first guests at the event, but the spaciousness was all thanks to Danceworm. They moved the numerous tables usually populating the small space to the side, making room for a dance floor. The decorations consisted of draped beads in the doorway, cardboard worms hanging down from the ceiling, a sign that said Danceworm above the bar, and a sequined welcome sign in the corner – underscored with a worm. What they lacked in physical decorations, however, Danceworm made up for with other props. The DJ booth was set up next to the wall with a white tapestry hanging behind as a backdrop. The lights were off, but a projector was creating designs against the tapestry in numerous colours, while another machine was flashing strobe lights around the room. There was only one small table next to the bench that lined the other side of the wall and on top of it were gummy worms (appreciated the dedication to the theme) and bubbles that a few guests were seen blowing during the night. The room did not feel too hot, but that might be a testament to fewer people being in the basement compared to a typical Saturday night in the downstairs bar.
I was expecting exclusively throwback music as the retro-inspired Doctor Who theme seemed to suggest, but there was a mix, if not more current songs. The DJ was great – the genre was mostly centred around R&B, afrobeats, and hip hop, with songs from artists such as Luv Money and Midas the Jagaban. The music was upbeat and perfect to dance to, but it was a smaller space and it wasn’t completely filled either. A few people hit the dance floor, but more were socialising or lingering near the bar. I have no doubt that if Danceworm in the TARDIS was happening on a Friday, Saturday, or even Thursday night that it would have been more crowded. It was a smaller event, so fewer people were inclined to dance at the beginning. Only about four people were dancing when I arrived – even so, the group looked like they were having fun as they commended the DJ for her great music taste. Nevertheless, as with most events, more people started to trickle in, and it got a little bit more lively as the night went on.
If you’re looking for something a bit more relaxed than the Vic or the Union, go to the next Danceworm event. The music was great, but it was a laidback, smaller scene. Although every person running the event was welcoming, energetic, and friendly, everyone came with people they knew, so definitely bring a few friends with you to enjoy the scene. The entry was £3, and don’t be put off by the ominous description on the Facebook event’s What to Expect section. Instead, show up, buy a drink (or a coke if you have a morning lecture the next day), and “dance at the edge of time knowing that silence will not fall.”