May 2018 – Annual Dance 2018
On the evening of the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, while their guests partied at Windsor Castle, 45 dancers from our region met at Lowdham Village Hall and enjoyed dancing to the music of Neil Barron and his Scottish Dance Band.
An excellent Bring and Share Supper fortified the dancers after the challenges of Mrs Stewart of Fasnacloich and The Dancing Master in the first half and kept everyone going until Auld Lang Syne at the end of the evening! It was a great dance at the end of our season and the lovely photos were taken by Lucy Tyler, Elizabeth’s granddaughter who came to help with the refreshments.
May 2018 – ASCDS Festival 2018
On Saturday 12th May, after a pub lunch, fourteen dancers represented the Branch in the massed dances at the Association of Scottish Country Dance Societies’ 58th Annual Festival held at the Retford Oaks Academy hosted by the Chesterfield group. Altogether there were 200+ dancers from the East Midlands and South Yorkshire all enjoying dancing to the music of Chris Dewhurst and his Band. It was lovely to meet up with friends from other groups that we meet each year, all great fun.
Some of the groups performed demonstration dances during the afternoon, and Nottingham’s team danced a 3 couple Strathspey Twenty-three Two Ninety which was very well received. Check out the video!
A fish and chip supper was on offer before a hundred or so dancers stayed on for yet more dancing at an evening social dance to Chris’s music hosted by Retford RSCDS. Altogether it was a most enjoyable day…here’s to next year!
May 2018 – Celebration Social Dance
The Nottingham Branch had a lot to celebrate recently. At the end of a very successful year which saw us launch a new website, had 11 beginners join our group this season, ran five very well-attended and enjoyable Saturday dances during the year and to top it all, classes no longer running at a loss. This enabled us to reduce our weekly class fees much to everyone’s delight!
But there was another reason for our celebration night, which had been a closely guarded secret up until then and in fact was the original idea for the evening. We were recognising milestones for three of our RSCDS teachers for their contribution to Scottish Country dancing at the branch and elsewhere. It was exactly 50 years since Tony Payne passed his full certificate, 45 years for Margaret Livingston and an amazing 55 years for Eleanor Balfour, a total of 150 years between them! That is an incredible achievement.
After extended social dancing, our chairman Elizabeth Gull made a short speech and presented each of them with a specially prepared certificate in gratitude for their work and then they were invited to cut a celebration cake, complete with the Branch logo. Everyone then enjoyed chatting over tea, coffee and a piece of cake in an extended break. It was a really lovely evening enjoyed by everyone and David Page took these lovely photos.
February 2018 – Burns Night Demonstration
Eight members of the branch demonstration team were invited to give a display of Scottish dances to entertain over 60 guests at a Charity Burns Supper held by the Thoresby Masonic Lodge at Chilwell on Friday 2nd Feb.
It was a splendid evening and we were piped into the hall by piper Colin McAlpine. All the guests were seated to watch the dancing of a mix of jigs, reels and strathspeys before their traditional Burns Supper of haggis, neeps and tatties. The kilts and sashes swung to the lively tunes and it was a pleasure to dance for such an appreciative audience!
Thanks to the team for a great performance.
This demonstration is featured in the West Bridgford Wire: http://westbridgfordwire.com/scottish-country-dancing-west-bridgford/
November 2017 – National Events in 2018
It might see a long way off but it is time to start thinking about the big RSCDS events that are being held in 2018.
The RSCDS events website is the best place to find out about all their forthcoming events: https://www.rscds.org/article/events-holding-url
There are two events that we thought you might be particularly interested in:
Summer School 2018:
Over a month in the summer the RSCDS organise four weeks of music and dancing. In 2018 Summer School will begin on the 15th July and runs until the 12th August. Lots of different classes, courses and events will be held and full details can be found here: https://www.rscds.org/article/summer-school-2018
Lots of our members have attended Summer School in the past so please get in touch if you would like any more information.
Spring Fling & Spring Fringe 2018:
Spring Fling is an annual event for 12-35 year olds who have a basic grasp of Scottish Country Dancing. This year the event is being hosted by local groups in Glasgow on behalf of the RSCDS Youth Services Committee. It is being held on the 20th-22nd April. Like Summer School a range of classes and social events are arranged over the weekend, but ultimately it is a designed to be a weekend that is fun and full of dancing!
More information about Spring Fling can be found here: https://www.springfling2018.com/
Alongside this there is a parallel event called the Spring Fringe for everyone else who would like to be involved in a fun weekend of dancing. Some of the social dancing is shared with attendees at the Spring Fling but there are also dedicated Spring Fringe classes.
More information about Spring Fringe can be found here: https://www.springfringe2018.com/
November 2017 – RSCDS Conference and AGM Weekend
I have just come back from the beautiful city of Perth in Scotland where I was a delegate for our Branch at the Annual General Meeting which was held on Saturday 4th November. These meetings have a reputation for lasting getting on for 3 hours, but this year, much to everyone’s delight it was over in 45 minutes due to a different format over the weekend. Open forums were held on Saturday morning where reports and updates from the various committees were given, which very much shortened the agenda! The only motion, which was not contentious, was to keep the annual membership subscription for next year (2018-2019) at £20, so this went through without any difficulty!
There was an open teaching conference held on Friday, archive displays, RSCDS shop stalls, a talk on Scottish dance music, two dance classes on Saturday and Sunday mornings with live music and a display of dancing in the town on Saturday morning. There was also a Civic Reception with presentations before the ball.
The highlights and the fun of the weekend were undoubtedly the two nights of wonderful enthusiastic dancing with 500 or more dancers from all over the world in the main arena in the Bell’s Sports Centre. All the dances were fully re-capped and Friday night’s music was provided by Scott Band and his Scottish Dance band and Saturday night’s formal ball was danced to the music of Colin Dewar and his band. The music was amazing, wonderful wide sets and everyone looking their best! It was lovely to meet up with people that I have met at Summer School, dancing holidays and festivals and dance with them again. I am sure that video clips of the dancing will soon be appearing on the HQ website and Youtube. There was for the first time this year an alternative ceilidh held on the Friday night.
October 2017 – Thoughts from a New Dancer
At the start of the dance season in September we welcomed several new members to the branch. One of our new dancers, Liz, provided us with her thoughts on her first weeks:
“I’ve recently joined the RSCDS at their meetings in West Bridgford on Wednesday evenings. Along with two other new starters we’ve had the benefit of really useful classes with a very experienced dance teacher, showing all the basic steps and movements needed to join in the dances with the other members.
We’ve managed now to join in several different dances and been helped and encouraged by everyone. It’s a friendly group and a very enjoyable two hours which is not only good exercise but also needs concentration to remember the patterns of the dance movements. It’s a step up from casual ceilidh dancing and takes a bit more concentration, but just as much fun, if not better!”
May 2017 – Annual Dance
Saturday 20th May was our Annual Dance, an event which is held at the end of every dancing season. The dance was well attended by our members along with visitors from lots of nearby branches. Held at Lowdham Village Hall, everyone enjoyed participating in dances such as Nottingham Lace, Major Ian Stewart and the Saltire Society Reel, which were all accompanied by the music of Chris Dewhurst and his Band. A selection of pictures from this event can be seen here.
May 2017 – ASCDS Festival
The ASCDS Festival in May was a very enjoyable event, with dancers attending from many Scottish Country Dancing groups in the region. This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate and enjoy the tradition of Scottish Country Dancing. Much work had gone into learning the dances for this occasion, and our group was well prepared by Tony in the practice sessions beforehand. There was a mixture of experienced and less experienced dancers in our group, and this is an enjoyable way of encouraging people to increase their experience of dancing. The hall looked wonderful with the men in their kilts and the ladies in their white dresses and tartan sashes, with a parade at first, followed by the dancing. It was really enjoyable dancing to the live music of Neil Barron and his Band. The massed dances were interspersed with demonstrations by teams from the various regional groups. Our Nottingham team gave an excellent demonstration of ‘Double Trouble Triangles’ and received wonderful, spontaneous applause.
This Annual Festival is a wonderful way of bringing dancers together from around the region, and of simply enjoying Scottish dancing, and I would encourage as many people as possible to become involved in the Festival, (the enjoyment of the afternoon far outweighs any apprehension)! Much hard work goes into the organisation of an event like this, so many thanks are due to all those who contribute to the organisation, preparation and smooth running of the whole event.
A video of the Nottingham RSCDS demonstration dance can be seen here: