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GIG CB Euroceilidh

Went to the GIG CB Euroceilidh at C# house tonight.

It's a nice idea (a combinations of English ceilidh, French bal-folk and Breton fest noz) and GIG CB are a good band.

But (you could see that coming along a mile away, couldn't you?), the event itself was a little "clunky" (for want of a better word). The majority of people there were complete beginners, which ok isn't a problem in itself.

Lovely as Chris is, I felt his calling let the event down somewhat. Partly because he was trying to play at the same time. I don't know many callers who can pull that off, the only one I can think of off the top of my head is Roger Watson from Boka Halat (but I think he waits until he's happy everyone knows what there doing to the extent he can stop calling before joining in with the playing).

Towards the end, it felt that he was pushing to get too many dances in. He didn't allow enough of a walk through to get the large number of inexperienced dancers through. This wasn't helped by the fact that some of the dances he chose seemed overly optimistic.

The Willow Tree for example, is a lovely dance and also really simple when you know where you're going. However, when you've got a set consisting mainly of complete beginners, you haven't done that many ceilidh dances through the evening (because obviously some of the time was taken up by the french), the only strip the willow you've done was much early in the evening and most of the people now in the set weren't in that dance and the short walk through, it doesn't work so well...

At the end of the day, most people seemed to have fun, which is the main thing though.

However, I know Chris is keen to get the Euroceilidhs known in the ceilidh circuits and make them more popular amongst experienced dancers too. I just don't think it's likely to happen until he decides either to just play or just call and not try and do both.

Intend to still try and go along and support it though, because I think it's a great idea and would be really good if it became more popular with more experienced dancers.

In terms of the actual dancing, it very much felt like I was acting like a teacher a lot of the time due to the large number of beginners there. I hope I didn't appear to arrogant though, when I was telling people where they needed to be.

Am, however, feeling rather proud of myself, as I managed to teach someone the Mazurka (well as much as you can teach someone in one dance - ie she pretty much had the stepping whilst I was talking her through them and guiding her round).

Mood: There isn't an overall term to mean, disappointed that it wasn't quite up to what I hoped it would be, bouncy from a fun dancy, general enjoyment and accomplishment, all at the same time. Will have to go for indescribable, until I have time to invent a new word to describe it (any ideas?).


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
18th Dec, 2005 08:55 (UTC)
Well, the first outing of any new idea is often not-quite-perfect.
I agree that trying to call and play at the same time sounds lke a tall order - I wouldn't want to try!
Stick with it, it sounds like an idea potentially rich in coolness and funk :-)
18th Dec, 2005 13:39 (UTC)
Ouch for the Willow Tree Massacre...

And I don't have any suggestion for a new word, I'm afraid - though I'd be intrigued to hear if anyone else does!
18th Dec, 2005 20:02 (UTC)
How about 'ecstatapointed' as an appropriately descriptive word?
18th Dec, 2005 20:04 (UTC)
ooo, I like that :-)
20th Dec, 2005 13:56 (UTC)
C# house? Is that named after the note or the programming language or something else?
20th Dec, 2005 18:53 (UTC)
No just an abreviation for Cecil Sharp

Cecil Sharp House is the headquarters for The English Folk Dance And Song Society (EFDSS), it's just North East of Regent's Park near Camden.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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