Dancing at dawn with Morning Gloryville

Friday, September 29, 2017

When my alarm went off at 4:45am, I wasn't sure if going to a rave before work was a good idea.  However, it was the autumnal equinox and there was sunshine in the forecast.  I got myself out of bed, ate some breakfast and ordered an Uber to get me to the Shard in a hurry.  Morning Gloryville (MG) had already started and I needed to be there before dawn.

Driving up to the Shard in the dark of night
It has been years since I went to a MG event.  That was back in the day when they were just starting out by renting empty warehouses in Shoreditch.  With the lights on and being 100% sober, those events were a bit more surreal because you felt like you were in a club but could just see what it really looked like during the day.  I didn't know exactly what to expect at the Shard event aside from an amazing view of the sunrise.  My only time there was to take part in a yoga class a few years ago.

Good morning London!

My friends Corey and Eileen got there at the start.  From the 5:30am to about 6:45am, there were several morning rituals involving chanting, drums, and energy releases to welcome in the Equinox at sunrise.  I was glad that I chose to sleep a bit later and arrive just before sunrise.  It was the best of both worlds- to have more energy and see London slowly awaken.  I wasn't really with it yet when I arrived so I think too much time with the chanting might have put me back to sleep. I didn't realize this was part of the schedule for the day.  Next time there is a special edition MG, I will look more closely at the timetable. 

Tarot reading area

The 69th floor is a square with stairs in the middle so only two of the sides really faced the sun.  Even though MG started super early, there was still a big crowd ready to take part in the ancient traditions.  Another side of the square had the entrance from the lift and a bar with plenty of food and drink to buy with hardly any queues.  All the things available were very healthy selections of smoothie bowls, vegan cakes, and botanicals (virgin) cocktails.  The fourth side had beautiful face painting, tarot readings, a charity, and complimentary massages.  There wasn't a booking system for any of these meaning you had to stand in a line but you made some new friends in the queue while waiting.  I tried to book in for a massage because there was a paper signup at first, but it was too confusing after the rituals ran overtime.  I just wanted to dance.  A guy I saw get up from a massage looked to be in absolute bliss.  I will have to  make it a priority next time.

Vegan sugar-free cakes

The dance floor facing east was packed every time I did a lap of the floor.  The weather that day was perfect for our bird's eye view over the city.  You could see very far, and even observe fog rolling steaming up on the river.  At the top of the Shard, the bright sunshine was a natural way to light the dance floor and build up your positive energy for the day.  We could not have been any luckier!

Here comes the sun, little darling

There were a few kids there, which at first struck me as odd, but if there is a sober rave when kids would normally be up at home, why not bring them along?

Adorable dragon baby princess

If you needed fresh air or space to chill, the open air on the 73rd floor gave you the opportunity to relax or take part in one of three yoga classes.  Most of the MG events will have free yoga, so plan ahead better than I did and try to find out the schedule when you arrive.  I missed out because I didn't realize the class times until it was too late to join.

Free yoga

Sadly I had to leave for work at about 8am.  This is when a live band took over from the DJ.  The party lasted until 9:30am for those who had a more flexible day.  If you had been able to stay the whole time, you would have definitely got your money's worth.

I am a dancing fool so I will attend another MG and bring my husband along.  We never seem to make it to the clubs because we are old but this is a good compromise if you don't have to be at work until 9am.  A cocktail would have been nice but I can still have a good time without it.  MG holds events all over London and across the globe so you don't have too much of an excuse not to come along..  They are always looking to expand too if you want to suggest a venue near you.

Morning ritual facing west, giving you an idea of the costumes people wore

The next MG is Thursday 5th October at Ministry of Sound
 with Summer of Love theme.  Fancy dress was in abundance at the Shard but there were people in their work clothes too.  The Equinox  theme was nature/ying & yang so you saw nymphs, muses, zebras, earthy hippies, a family of dragons (see the princess above) and more.  It was very much come as you are which meant there was no pressure to look a certain way.  Glitter seemed to be a must!  And there will be a glitter station at the Summer of Love too.  I am still finding glitter everywhere which is a wonderful reminder of the fun I had.

Thanks to Morning Gloryville for the complimentary ticket.  All opinions are honest and my own.

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