The memories of Sylvia Hampson caused old friend Brian Walker to smile.
Sylvia recalled that during a long musical career, she and husband Don were, many years ago, in a band called The Cleft with Glenys and Dave Bintley.
Brian said: “Glenys was an accomplished pianist and gave lessons to Richard and Jill, two of my offspring, when they were youngsters.”
But wait, there’s more.
Brian retired as Head of Maths from Honley High School and had previously been in charge of sports, under which role he knew Glenys and Dave’s son, David. This young student was, he says, extremely athletic and very good at football and cricket.
“Unfortunately, from my point of view, he was also very interested in ballet and would go for ballet lessons instead of turning up for sporting events. One Saturday, he failed to turn up for a football match and I had him in my office when he came back to school and gave him a real dressing down.”
Brian shook his head and uttered the immortal line: “Whatever’s going to become of you, David?”
As it happened, quite a lot.
David Bintley trained at the Royal Ballet School in London, danced with Sadler’s Wells Theatre Ballet and became resident choreographer of the Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. He has created many works for the Royal Ballet and is currently Director of the Birmingham Royal Ballet and Artistic Director of the National Ballet of Japan.
“I bumped into him, years later, in The Traveller’s Rest at Brockholes,” says Brian. “He didn’t hold a grudge and bought me a pint.”