ANST - Dance Teachers Event

dssweet at dssweet at
Wed Jul 1 17:37:55 PDT 1998

Philip White wrote:

>I almost lost my voice from teaching at Midsummer's Ball, and would 
>love a chance to dance without having to call/teach every one.  After 
>a discussion with other dancers, I find that their is a hope for this 
>kind of ball.
     There is a precedent for this type of non-teaching ball that's been 
     done in other kingdoms. It's called a "Caroso-style ball". Countess 
     Mara from the East researched the typical ball during Caroso's 
     lifetime and came up with this way to do a more authentic style dance 
     event. It's been recounted on the sca-dance list, and various events 
     have tried it out. I attended the one at the last Gulf Wars.
     A Caroso-style ball is very formal in nature. It is usually being 
     performed to honor someone (or a couple), who sits at the head/top of 
     the room, with the musicians at the foot of the room. Chairs line both 
     sides of the room, with the sexes sitting segregated across from each 
     other. If you're sitting next to the dance floor, it's assumed you 
     want to dance; if you're in the back row, you're just there to watch 
     (you can move switch which row anytime). There is also a Master of 
     Ceremonies who communicates between the dancers, musicians, and the 
     honoree(s). To start the ball, the honoree(s) may start or the person 
     of highest rank may. The person starting informs the Master which 
     dance he would like to do (chosen from a list of 30-40 dances that the 
     musicians have had prior time to practice on), and then chooses a 
     partner of the opposite sex. If more people than just two are required 
     to perform the dance, the starting person then chooses the appropriate 
     number of his own sex, who then choose their own partners. The Master 
     has informed the head musician of the choice, and then the dance is 
     performed. The ladies are escorted back to their seats by the lords. 
     Now the partner of the starting person gets to pick a dance and 
     partner and it continues thusly, until time runs out. The Master of 
     Ceremonies tries to make sure that everyone gets a chance to pick a 
     dance by asking those who've already chosen once to defer the choice 
     to someone who has not chosen yet. There's probably some other fine 
     points I've left out in this attempt to provide a brief description.
     No talk thru or walk thru, just getting out there and dancing. The 
     longest delay comes from someone looking at the list of dances and 
     trying to decide what to pick. Some people have likened it to a bardic 
     circle, but for dancing.
>A round table discussion also sounds like a good idea.  I'd like a 
>chance to discuss with other teachers why they dance/teach in a 
>certain way.  As well as a chance to compare sources/documentation.  
>It all sounds like fun.
>Interest sounds best voiced by the North right now, so why don't we try 
>and meet there.  Coronation sounds like a good a choice as any.
     I'll volunteer my brains for picking. (Brains, bring more brains.) And 
     just maybe we'll get some dancing in before pumpkins start appearing.
     Estrill Swet
     (that radical dance agitator)

Go to to perform mailing list tasks.

More information about the Ansteorra mailing list