Polly, Put The Kettle On

Tea Club

Photo Credit:Paul Wilson

Meet two very vintage tea ladies Tilly (Ruth Jones) & Trixie (Clare Fildes) and their Tea Club. They combine outdoor performance art and tea. 

Photo Credit:Paul Wilson

How did you come up with the idea for the Tea Club?

Axial Dance makes entertaining outdoor shows. We wanted to create a new work around the themes of tea and vintage, both popular and accessible.

We developed the characters of Trixie and Tilly the two tea ladies, developed the design; tea cup hats, vintage dresses and a special vintage trolley - then developed the choreography from vintage dance styles e.g. Charleston - and finally named the show Tea Club!


I love your tea hats, who designed and made them?

A designer Nerissa Cargill-Thompson designed the tea cup hats.


Do you come from a theatre background?

We are both trained dancers – Tilly aka Ruth Jones trained at Laban and Trixie aka Clare Fildes trained at Doreen Bird.


If you could perform a tea event during any decade what would it be?

We would go back to the roaring 1920s to enjoy the decadence and those fab dresses!

Photo Credit:Paul Wilson

Name three entertainers past or present who you would like to perform with?

We would like to have breakfast tea with Audrey Hepburn in Tiffany’s, go to see The Wizard of Oz with Judy Garland and calm them both down with a soothing cup of peppermint and finally go to Berlin and have an ‘tippled’ tea in Cabaret with Liza Minnelli.



What do you most enjoy about your job?

We love performing and hosting tea parties around the country and abroad, meeting new people over a cuppa and performing a tea dance for and with them.


In all of the events you've done, what's been your favourite?

We loved performing at Wayne Hemingway’s, Festival of Thrift in Darlington last year and at his Vintage New Year Party, at the Southbank Centre.


Your business has been given a blank cheque, how would you spend it?

We would go out and buy lots more vintage from around the world and make lots of new exciting outdoor dance shows – watch out for our next show on a vintage tandem bike- the ladies in vintage cycling attire, shift to 2 wheels next!