English Country Dance in Sydney, Australia. Offered to the community by The Church By The Bridge, Broughton Street, Kirribilli, NSW, just below the Milson’s Point Train Station. http://cbtb.org.au
A Taste of ECD: A Girls’s Best Friend by Fried DeMetz Hermann
Upcoming Dances: Saturday September 2, 3:00-5:30 Both at The Church By The Bridge, Kirribilli
Scroll down for complete schedule, videos, etc. See the Gallery page for more photos, including the Winter Dream Ball 2017
Coming Events: Our own David & Kathy Potter’s August 27, New Sydney Ball
Our Winter Dream Ball: Notes and Photos
Our Winter Dream Ball, Saturday, August 5, at St. Thomas’s, Anglican Church in North Sydney was delightful: Live Music, yummy refreshments, a sprung dance floor and lively, lovely, graceful, and charming dancers in a winter wonderland. Our guest band, Short Dented Pots, performed beautifully. You can see a video of them performing the music to one of our dances, Juniata, on their website: ShortDentedPotts. Our photographer, Nick Williamson, has already posted some photos on facebook and there are more to come. You can preview them here: Nick Williamson Photography
Our five callers: David Potter and Margaret Swait called several dances each. (David kindly and skillfully took over when my voice became a weak croak) Niamh Kyriacou, Jason Riley and Marina Robins also called a dance each. It’s wonderful that we now have a variety of callers available!
Warm thanks to the many who made the ball such a delight, including the leadership, staff, and congregation of The Church By The Bridge and St. Thomas’s, and behind the scenes – on the home front, Joffre. From planning, preparation, providing food, giving rides, sharing talents, encouragement, suggestions, setting up, cleaning up, registration, inviting others and welcoming our guests, smiling, and supporting; our dance community and those from other dance communities made it all a joy. How I love the mingling of the overlapping communities we bring together for dancing!
Dances done at the Winter Dream Ball: (Enthusiastic appreciation to all the choreographers and composers who have provided us with dances and music over the centuries and who continue to offer us more today!)
My Lord Byron’s Maggot
Princess of Wales, Her Waltz
Queen of Sheba
Upon A Summer’s Day
Video Links for some of the dances we planned to do at the Winter Dream Ball:
Dances held twice monthly, usually the first Saturday Afternoon and the first and third Thursday evenings of the month. Location- Church Hall. Enter the courtyard by lifting the gate latch, door is on the right.
Our Inaugural September Dream Ball was delightful! What a joy it was to dance with so many of our dancing friends from various parts of New South Wales and other parts of the world! We had wonderful support from many sources and regions. Three callers, a six piece band, and many dancers some of whom traveled hours each way to join us. Photos are available on Dropbox, send Margaret an email for the link.
Special Events, Private/Small Group Instruction – Available on Request
No need to bring a partner, we provide partners, and we mingle, just bring comfy shoes that pivot easily. We teach and call the dances. Our hall is air-conditioned and heated.
Some of our dances are lively and exuberant, others are dreamy and elegant. The dances are conducted in a pleasant and friendly atmosphere. You are welcome to participate or to just sit and enjoy the music. We don’t have a set fee, we just ask that you drop a donation of whatever you can afford into the jar.
Note: Dates and Locations, on rare occasions, may be subject to change, so please check the website frequently. If you click “follow”, the site can notify you when updates are posted.
Questions or communications? MargaretSwait “at” gmail. Just enter the @ symbol for “at” and “.com” after gmail.
Getting here: The Church By The Bridge is at the corner of Broughton and Bligh Streets in Kirribilli, 100 metres from the Milsons Point Train Station. As you exit the ticket gate, turn left, as you exit the station turn right, walk down towards the harbour. The church will be on your left, across from the Pedestrian Stairs to the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The hall is on the right as you enter the courtyard. If you are driving, plan to arrive early so you have more options for parking spaces. Busses 229 and 230 run to Milson’s Point from Military road in Mosman. Other busses run to and from North Sydney, which is nearby. The 229 and 230 busses stop in North Sydney, near the train station.
Why Do We Dance? Here’s an article that discusses this question: http://www.efdss.org/floor-spot/blog/167-july-2015/2789-why-do-we-dance?utm_source=efdss&utm_medium=facebook&utm_content=link&utm_campaign=blog-0715
Videos of a few dances: The videos never quite convey all the joy of actually dancing. It’s a lot more fun to move to music than to watch others moving to music.
See Hundreds of Dances animated, hear the music, and see the call sheet/instructions: http://www.dancekaleidoscope.org.au/dance.html
We’ve posted some videos on our facebook page that can only be accessed there: https://www.facebook.com/SydneyEnglishCountryDance
Do attend the Sydney Playford’s Dance on the first Tuesday of most months, https://www.facebook.com/sydneyplayford, at the Bush Music Hut #44 in the Marrickville Community Centre, 142 Addison Road, Marrickville, in Sydney, NSW, from 7:30-9:30. This dance is run by the charming and talented Julie and Alex Bishop and features live music. On site parking for cars. Public transportation: 428 bus from Circular Quay, or Castlereagh St & Railway Square, stops at the Addison Road Centre gate. Return buses to city run at: 8.39, 9.15, 9.37, 10.08, 10.37, 11.07, 11.32 (last bus). Map of the centre, etc.; http://addisonrdcentre.org.au/contact-us/
What to Wear and What To Bring to our dances? Although some groups wear special clothing for dances, we usually just wear whatever’s comfortable. A swirly dance skirt can make it more fun. Some of us bring an extra pair of shoes. Wearing something cool makes sense for most people but some find they want a cardigan as the hall is air-conditioned. Water is provided.
So, you think you can’t dance? We’d love to change that! I used to feel that way too. Every time I tried any form of dancing, I felt overwhelmed and intimidated, and turned into a piece of wood! This form of dancing changed that because it doesn’t require fancy steps but lets you to get used to moving to music at your own pace. If you like fancy steps, you can add them when you’re ready. Our dancers are among the most pleasant and welcoming people I’ve met. They’re wonderful at welcoming new dancers and encouraging everyone to have a good time. Could this be considered exercise? Well, it’s not like going to the gym but it involves sustained movement. I have never enjoyed going to the gym as much as this feeling of flying to delightful music. There’s a variety of pace and “feel” to the music. You get to pace yourself and decide how much you can and will participate. Speaking of pacing yourself, do take care not to do more than is good for you. We aren’t doctors or physios so we have to rely on your judgement about what figures and dances are safe for you to do. We respect your decisions and will gladly accommodate them. We want you to have fun and to be safe. Let us know if there’s anything you find uncomfortable and we’ll do our best to help. Sometimes a move can be adjusted without changing much at all.
We dance The Carolina Promenade to this song- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JddRkt_FYDY&list=PL95E0F5CA8769AE7E
Check the updates to our Resources, News and Events Page and visit us at: https://www.facebook.com/SydneyEnglishCountryDance
We’ve enjoyed learning some new dances and some new formations. Let me know if you want a copy of the list that is organized by formation. I’m taking suggestions for additions to our page of ECD resources.
An article on Country Dance in the New York Times shows how contemporary dancers are continuing to delight in this form of dance: : http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/03/nyregion/03cotillion.html?_r=0