Numbers at class are starting their summer decline as we say goodbye to more and more swallows; this it the time of year when we have our most magical evenings so it seems such a shame that many people don't get a chance to experience them for long. I confess to getting occasionally tired after 8 months of classes but it's so lovely to be dancing with all the windows open and a fresh breeze blowing through. It's strange to think that there are only 3 more classes before the summer break (two more before the 'Picnic in the Park' then the final class is 20th June) but I remember feeling exactly the same last year and although we are still managing 3 sets up for most of the dances and the temperature is so comfortable it's difficult to imagine anything else I know that very soon it'll be different and we'll be sweating and staggering in the heat. Not quite yet though, and I know that this week's programme met with everyone's approval so I hope next week's will be just as much fun. See you there Jx (PS In case you need to know, the Autumn season starts on the 12th September)
The most surprising things can form links - Scottish dancing and photography aren't natural companions - it's hard to dance holding a camera, and to be honest it's extremely hard to get good pictures in most of the places we dance, but that doesn't mean one can't contribute to the other. Last February P & I went to Winter School and a lovely couple we'd met there before told us that they were coming to Cyprus for a wedding. The conversation then led to photography - which it often does when weddings are mentioned. It turned out that a close relation of theirs was an award winning photographer and he would also be at the wedding. Fast forward 3 months. Last week the award winning photographer very kindly gave a fantastic lecture to the camera club we belong to at the UKCA - not only did he come to see us, but so did our friends from Winter School - it was so lovely to meet up with them and it really demonstrated how dancing can create contacts that would never be formed otherwise - if you allow them to happen. Unfortunately they will have left by the time the Picnic in the Park is on - since so many people have already left we may have to change the area at the Elea in which we hold it - but since this is even prettier than our original location it's not actually a problem - in fact I almost hope we don't sell too many tickets, but on the other hand it should be such a lovely night I don't want anyone to miss it!
Well, I seem to have survived so far and the most challenging of this week's activities are now over with, including giving a talk on Scottish Country Dancing - it's amazing how much information you can gather over the years- hopefully my audience found at least some of the subject interesting; I actually enjoyed both putting it together and presenting it which just shows what a glutton for punishment I am... or maybe I just like to have an excuse to avoid the ironing, which is now threatening to resemble the mountain in 'Close Encounters'.
Last week's class was quieter than usual as other activities, as well as the dreadful cold virus that is going around took at least 10 regulars away from the class, however with the assistance of 2 very welcome visitors we still managed 3 sets for most of the dances and it was amazingly quiet making it much easier to teach!! After a intense 'teach-in' for Pelorus Jack during the 'beginner's bit' there were some intrepid, and on the whole, very successful attempts at the dance itself, we've got it on the programme again for next week so we can hopefully consolidate our knowledge. Other dances on the programme are ones that we've been doing over the last month or two, all of which were pronounced fun dances, but were previously unfamiliar so I am hoping that getting them back on the programme fairly quickly will stop them being forgotten - especially the lovely Rose of the North with 3 couple rights and lefts. See you on Tuesday Jx
This week's class seems ages ago, so much has happened since and so much is happening it's a bit overwhelming, in fact very overwhelming... however I never signed up for a quiet life. P & I have just returned from a lovely few days in the North to film the Orphean Singers performing in Bellapais Abbey - a really lovely experience with opportunities to meet interesting people too, and everything is linked, so from that experience we've hopefully got more people interested in coming to the Picnic in the Park; a choir member has also stepped forward to try and help the little cat who attracted the attention of one of the IB dancers from America - and by the way, when hopefully we've located this lucky kitty, (and if she's not interested) if anyone is interested in being a cat companion on a flight to California the offer is available to have a paid for trip and (depending on the timing of the trip) dancing holiday - certainly an unusual offer, but sincere. Other events coming up are the Barn Dance at the UKCA tomorrow night - not a Society event but in aid of the Cancer Patient's Support Group, a very worthy cause, so hopefully many people are planning to join in and attend, next Saturday there is also a Charity fair at the UKCA which I confess has crept up on me, I'd hoped we might do a demo but it may be too late to organise, especially since I have something on everyday this week - all of which need some form of preparation; if anyone out there fancies organising something for it however feel free, I'm available to turn up and dance, just have no time to spare for getting people together - talking of time, I better get off and get some sleep in - 3 different activities tomorrow, 3 more on Sunday and so it goes on - I'll hopefully see you tomorrow, or Sunday, or Monday and if not then definitely on Tuesday! Jx
In my last blether I hoped that some of the remaining IB members might join us for our Tuesday class night at the Avanti. I didn't really expect that they all would come! We also had a reasonably good attendance from our own class, despite several people, especially people living further away sending apologies. It is a very rough approximation but there were about 30 of us, and perhaps 60+ of them which was at least 70 more than Fred was expecting and had planned for! The atmosphere was fantastic... For a few people the occasion was a bit overwhelming and they retired early but graciously, however most thoroughly enjoyed themselves and yet again our visiting dancers were incredibly generous with their skills meaning that as many people as wanted to dance got through the dances whatever their skill level. I noted several of our people becoming miraculously capable once they were in this slightly more challenging environment requiring concentration and slightly less talking!! :-) With so many people in the room there was a real need for discipline but Fred controlled the masses with ease - a very impressive achievement. Overall the evening was a great success, but it is going to nice to get back to normal too so I hope no-one will be disappointed that it's just me this week :-) and our normal, slightly chaotic but friendly fun night. See you there. Jx
It was worth it, it was brilliant - but also challenging, occasionally frustrating and very hot! The International Branch workshop weekend is officially over - although there are many dancers who are continuing here for a few more days holiday and hopefully many of them will be joining us tonight for our Tuesday night class which this week is to be held at the Avanti Hotel (see directions on the class program page); this is another generous contribution to the St Andrew Society Paphos from the IB. Fred DeMarse the IB chairman is going to lead the class and in addition we are going to have the wonderful experience of dancing to live music from the accordion of Andrew Lyon - those who missed the chance of joining in with the weekend will at least have a taste of the magic live music from a brilliant musician can bring to a dance. I truly hope we get a good number at the class if only so as many as possible can enjoy it. See you tonight - and bring some water! Janine x
Originated in Manchester, England: Worked almost 20 yrs in the Emirates: Lives in Cyprus, Teaches Scottish Country Dancing (RSCDS qualified 2015) -just the average life. Also loves Photography & Photoshop, Gardening, Music, Sewing, Design, Reading, Sudoku, God, my husband & my cats (not necessarily in that order). Hates - cooking, housework, TV, politicians, cruelty and greed of any kind