Early American Dance and Early California Dance
with Alan Winston

For both sessions, the live music is by William Allen, Stan Kramer, Susan Kramer, and Paul Kostka.

The Early American workshop is at the introductory level and is a form of community dancing.

Early American dance is the vigorous, joyful dance of the Founding Fathers (and mothers). It's the ancestor of our modern contra dances, but looks and feels very different (no ballroom swings, for example); mostly danced to jigs and reels. This is suitable for kids who are old enough and interested enough to dance apart from their parents.

We'll look at dances from the Revolutionary War Period to the war of 1812, with longways country dances and cotillions, and learn a little bit of footwork. The dances call for some amount of galloping and some skipping, but most can be faked with fast walking. Low-heeled shoes or dancing slippers recommended.

The Early Californa workshop is not quite introductory and is danced as couples or as community dancing.

"Early California" dancing covers the Spanish-influenced dance of the rancho era up through the influx of English-speakers in the Gold Rush. There's a heavy emphasis on waltz variants; it will help to already know how to do turning waltz. We'll look at dance sequences, and some country dances (which mostly involve waltz steps), as well as quickly learning and dancing the schottische and perhaps the polka. Low-heeled shoes or dancing slippers recommended.


SFFFF 2005: