Once the Ball is over we always have a drop in class numbers, this year is no exception - though in fact we are well up on previous years at this time. After the dreadful weather last week - when winter seemed to have finally arrived it was a surprise to be again dancing on a glorious evening - no-one even thought to put on the heaters, and jumpers and cardigans were discarded after the first dance. Regretfully we were saying more goodbyes as swallows took their leave to head back to the UK for Christmas - but it was gratifying to hear that they are intending to continue dancing while they are at home; it was also wonderful to greet 2 newcomers to the class
We have been working on the dances since we started back at class in September, I've made posters, flyers, programmes, table names, table mats, seating plans and raffle vouchers, the new coasters were designed, printed & made up - the committee negotiated, organized & negotiated some more with the venue, sponsors and prize donors; we decorated the place, dressed to impress, crossed our fingers, ate & drank & danced till we dropped... and now it's over, but the Ball was great. See HERE for pictures from event.
I am now concentrating on a little Christmas celebration - planned for the final dance class on Dec 23rd. It is also wonderful to ring the changes for the Tuesday dance programme - I hope everyone will enjoy going back to some old favourites.
It was an up and down class last week - numbers still incredibly high despite so many of our usual dancers being away or not well. It was lovely to see friends from the North - driving all the way over to join us for 2 hours & then driving back - it puts the rest of us to shame! We are already missing friends who have had to head back to the UK or but it's lovely to see, however briefly, familiar faces who are again joining us while they holiday here. The different mix of people meant that some dances - that are normally considered 'easy' were unknown to the more experienced dancers - a degree of confusion was the occasional result (I'm just so polite!) though the prize went to the supremely hilarious rendition of 'The Bees' - if we could have filmed it - it would have gone viral for sure! Well done to everyone for having a go.... the correct version wasn't even half as good - at least for those of us who were watching!! Lots of things are going on in the next couple of days - 'Beginners Class' on Friday - hopefully there'll be lots there, filming on Saturday.. hopefully the sun will shine & we'll have a good turn out there too - at some point we have to go & check the audio system at 5th floor, and I have lots and lots of printing to do - such fun!
We've topped 40.. in fact we had 42 in the class despite several regulars being away. I wasn't sure but I've checked all my records and I think this is the biggest class we've ever had. Of course quantity doesn't necessarily mean quality! In our case though we can be fairly sure if the quality wasn't there the quantity just wouldn't turn up! So well done to the whole class because without everyone joining in, making everyone welcome, keeping the atmosphere light and the whole evening fun this just wouldn't happen! Amongst all the milling about some may have noticed the appearance of a small Scottish library complete with dedicated librarian - from now on this select collection of Scottish's literature will be available to peruse every week. Any additions to the collection are welcome as long as they are Scottish in content or character.
3 more classes to go and the excitement is mounting. 64 tickets have been sold so far for the ball and it feels like everyone is coming on Tuesdays - though in fact we haven't quite reached 40 so far and it's probably just as well since we are running out of room - the atmosphere is great, the dancing is coming on really well and even beginners, getting up for brand new dances are doing well though they may not think so since it is a steep learning curve for them! It is hard work to teach such large classes but great fun - keep coming everyone and we are going to have not only a marvelous ball but lots of good dancers at the end of all this too
Combining a dance class with a meal out is a great idea - especially such a marvelous meal - it gives you the excuse to take maximum advantage of the buffet! However the intention to come straight home and write something while the high from class is still current is foiled by the inevitable desire for post postprandial sleep.... And then time passes, but I couldn't not mention what a brilliant time we had. Well done to everyone who came - some from as far as Kyrenia! It was a strenuous class, inevitable when the focus is initially on pas-de-basque but I hope you all enjoyed the dances we did - Cadgers in the Canongate; The Pines of Pitlochry; Neidpath Castle and Sands of Morar (with the new formation The Tourbillon). I look forward to seeing most of you tonight hopefully you'll have a bit more chance to sit down if you need to.
Dancing has magical moments - that is why so many people love it, this week's class definitely contained at least of one very magical moment. For the first time we danced The Ring of Brodgar, a lovely square set, with 4 sets - 32 people dancing. That was practically everyone in the room on the floor and everyone enjoyed the dance and completed it well; people not familiar with the class may not appreciate the significance. This week we had 2 absolute beginners and plenty others who consider themselves beginners or didn't know the dance well - without such a great atmosphere of encouragement from the more experienced dancers it is hard for beginners to join in like this, even though that is the only way anyone can learn and improve. So I'd like to say very very well done to all the newcomers who are getting up to dance and even more to all the rest of the class who are helping and encouraging them - I even got to dance myself. Wonderful - I can't wait till next week.
It was a very strange night in one way - to try and avoid the most slippery areas of an over polished floor we rearranged the room - instead of sitting in front of the bar we danced in front instead - which felt strange but did seem a bit more roomy so we may try it again. We had 35 people in the room - most of them dancers, a very gratifying number especially with nearly 10 of our regular dancers away. Welcome and well done to the new dancers who joined the Tuesday class for the first time, it is a steep learning curve but great fun to join in at this stage - I can't wait till next week!
It was destined to be a memorable night - as we drew up at the LPH we were greeted by a piper in full flow - a gentleman completely unknown to us - but very good - and then he disappeared!. It was great to see some old friends back at class last night & despite having quite a few regulars away the numbers were still above 30; it was very easy to fill up sets, several times managing three, even for our guest teacher's 'challenge' we managed 2 sets .. (& well done to everyone who managed to get through La Moulin Rouge - twice - with the minimal of hiccups ). One potentially disastrous problem was the condition of the floor - it looked unusually beautiful but it was the closest we have yet come to dancing on ice! Despite half a bottle of (very expensive) slip stop being sprinkled abundantly around people slid rather than danced to ensure they stayed on their feet. Hopefully next week things will be back to normal and thank God that we had no accidents. One thing it did highlight was how much people wanted to dance and also how they could work together to keep things safer - well done to everyone, including myself since I actually managed to get three dances in for a change!
At the risk of becoming monotonous, and predictable - we had another great night of dancing - taking repeats into account we actually danced 12 dances; virtually all of them with 2 sets up and several with 3 sets. The level of background noise is definitely increasing too - reflecting the welcome return of more and more of our 'swallows' including our Chairman and his lady, back to these shores. Numbers are now over the 30 mark and I expect them to stay at least at that level until the Ball. Hard work trying to control all these enthusiastic dancers but very rewarding and the standard of dancing is improving all the time. A hilarious attempt at Black Mountain Reel disguised the fact that many of the set had never really tried anything that complicated before - or perhaps not for a very long time - and it was really very well done of all of them to give it a go. We will be doing it again next week and I hope everyone will get up to try it again - there are 7 weeks before the ball, well before the night we will have plenty of people capable of dancing it.
I lost this post for a day or two but - it's back - and 'chatting' to the nice man at the Weebly help desk made it worth the stress of thinking I'd have to type it all again :-)
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