May 6 and 7 will bring the biggest English Country Dance event of the year! Registration is now open for the Spring Dance Weekend, so download the registration form and get yourself signed up. The event includes workshops on Saturday afternoon, a dance and party on Saturday evening, and May in the Garden on Sunday afternoon.
Saturday, May 6, 2016 at Polish-American Hall, 327 Main St, Roseville, CA
1:00 – 4:30 Workshops led by Nikki Herbst with music by Charlie Hancock
- 1:00 – 2:30 Teamwork!
English country dancing provides us with both personal and interpersonal exhilaration! This workshop will focus on ways to make each dance be fun for all, while allowing it to be an artistic ‘happening.’
- 3:00 – 4:30 Pat Shaw Centenary Celebration
This year, there will be special events all over the world to celebrate 20th century choreographer Pat Shaw, one of the greatest contributors to the renaissance of English country dance. Come explore a selection of his widely varied dances!
4:30 – 7:00 Dinner Break
Visit one of the many nearby eateries for a relaxing dinner, then return in time to change into something dressier for the evening dance. The building will re-open at 6:30.
7:00 – 10:00 Party and Dance
Music by Quite Carried Away with calling by Nikki Herbst. All dances will be taught. Elegant but comfortable attire of all sorts is encouraged. Refreshments will be served.
Sunday, May 7, 2016 May in the Garden!
New Location: Camp Pollock, American River Parkway, 1501 Northgate Boulevard, just north of downtown Sacramento off Highway 160 (click the Directions tab at the link for more details). Brunch and dancing outdoors, under tall trees, with the American River nearby, surrounded by a native plant garden.
11:00 Potluck Brunch
12:00 Native Plant Garden Tour
12:30 – 3:30 Dance on the Green, including a Maypole
Music by Quite Carried Away, with calling by Yvonne Couvillion, Gary Sandler, and Joyce Uggla
Our national and local talent is detailed below.
Charlie Hancock will provide music for the workshops on Saturday afternoon on piano and accordion. Charlie is equally adept playing for English country, Scottish country, contras, and display dancing. Performed with drive and clarity, his music is infused with jazz, swing, and Irish influences.He studied jazz piano with Mark Levine. After cutting his teeth playing disco & punk rock in 1970’s Los Angeles, Charlie Hancock has lived for the last 30 years in the Bay Area. He has played for BACDS dances, camps, and balls for 18 years, with occasional gigs further afield, including Pinewoods and the Portland (OR) English ball. He is a member of several Bay Area dance bands, including the Raggedy Annes, and has recorded with Sylvia Herold, Holly Tannen, and Cathie Whitesides.
Nikki Herbst will lead Saturday afternoon workshops, and will call the Saturday evening dance party. A dance gypsy for many years, she travels frequently from her home in Iowa City, Iowa, to lead English country dancing and contra dancing at festivals and camps across the U.S., Canada, and England. She started teaching dance many years ago in the hope of spreading the goodness that she feels dancing together can bring to our lives. She loves meeting new communities and returning to familiar ones, and has been fortunate enough to lead English country dancing, contra dancing, and dance leader workshops at numerous festivals and camps and at community dances across the map. Nikki’s high-octane enthusiasm for dance is well known, and she strives to inspire dancers to have the most meaningful dance experience possible. In her teaching, she tries to blend dance instructions with historical information, demonstrations, style tips, memory aids, and cheerleading. She loves to share what she has learned from her many teachers as well as what she has come to know over the years by working with dancers of all ability levels.
Quite Carried Away will provide music for your dancing pleasure on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. More of a chamber orchestra than a band, the group has been honing its consensus of pitch and rhythm and drive since 2002. Quite Carried Away is David Wright on violin and mandolin, Arlene Jamar on piano, Martin Lodahl on viola de gamba and recorder, Sandra Westfall on concertina, Susan Jones on concertina and recorder, Jane Kostka on penny whistles, and our Kentish lad Dick Holdstock on cittern, mandolin, and banjo. Quite Carried Away is the home band for the monthly English country dance in Roseville.
Joyce Uggla started her folk dance career as a baby asleep on the piano at square and folk dances while her father called and her mother danced. She didn’t really get addicted to folk dance until she went to Stanford during the heyday of folk dancing in the 1970s. Over the years, she has taught folk dance at recreation centers and weekends; been on the founding board of the Bay Area Country Dance Society (BACDS); called numerous parties, weddings, and school events; and held English Country Dances in her living room (remodeled to accommodate two lines of dancers). Along the way, she became interested in English Country Dance. She has been on the Playford Ball Committee since about its third year. Way back at Stanford, she joined the Society for Creative Anachronism. One of the fellows there had a Maypole, and she began leading the dances. When he retired from the group, he gave her the Maypole and she and her husband became the local Maypole experts—dancing with Morris dancers and at fairs, schools, church events, a weaver’s convention, weddings, and at the 2016 SCDS Spring Weekend.
Gary Sandler learned ballroom dancing in college and came to International Folk Dance just 12 years ago through his son’s involvement in a youth dance program in the Sierra foothills. He learned a wide variety of dance styles and discovered a great love of English Country Dance. Gary likes helping dancers get more fun out of their dances, whether through safe and comfortable hand-holds or clear direct instructions. Gary likes to vary the dance structures for English Country Dances, shifting from lines to circles and squares. Gary calls and teaches a number of dance styles, mostly at his local Folk Dance group’s weekly dance. Gary had the opportunity in 2011 to teach a folk dance to a club in Utrecht, Netherlands, while he and his wife were on their 30th wedding anniversary vacation. The teaching was easy, he says, but following the rest of the class material in Dutch was tough!
Yvonne Couvillion began dancing (waltz, twist, and swing) at age 9 with her mother. She first performed dance in junior high school, and continued dancing in high school and college. She took a class in teaching International Folk Dance in graduate school, and began calling 30 years ago. She met her husband Andre at a contra dance in Bastrop, Texas 26 years ago. They now live in Sacramento where they regularly attend, teach and host a variety of dance events including English Country Dance.