English Regency
by Cathleen Myers
with music by Bangers & Mash

The English Regency, strictly speaking, is 1811-1820; that's the period when George III was too sick with prophyria to rule, and his wastrel son ruled in his stead as Prince Regent. This is the period of Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Mary Shelley, Lord Nelson, Napoleon, Beethoven, and Haydn - major names in literature, war, science, and music. Even the concertina was invented during the Regency.

Regency dancing - with its beautiful waltzes, elegant waltz country dances and quadrilles, lively English country dances and even livelier Scots Reels (which look more French and Irish than Scottish!) - has its roots in folk dance but evokes the spirit of the aristocracy of that period. In the workshop we'll do dances from the period and possibly some modern compositions in the style of the Regency. Fortunately for Regency enthusiasts, the Bay Area English Regency Society (B.A.E.R.S.) keeps the spirit of the age alive with both formal balls and informal dance classes and parties. For more information, check out their website at www.sfregency.org.

Cathleen Myers is the Dance Director of the Dickens Fair and the Artistic Director of PEERS (the Alameda-based Period Events & Entertainments Re-Creation Society), which produces full-scale historical costume balls on the first Saturday of almost every month (For PEERS' calendar of 2005-2006 dance events, please see our website at www.peers.org). A dancer since childhood, she has performed, reconstructed and taught historical and vintage dance in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1988. In her copious spare time, she performs with the Alameda Vintage Dancers and her own group, the PEERS Flying CirCUS, a historical music, dance and theatrical troupe most notorious for its Edwardian Peerless Music Hall and Le Theatre des Vampires.

Bangers & Mash started playing together in 1994 and have been performing music for English country and historical couple dancing ever since. They are regulars at events for PEERS as well as for BACDS (the Bay Area English Country Dance Society), They've done a number of formal balls, a well as playing for innumerable dance series. For the past four years, they've performed at Fezziwigs' Warehouse, the community dance stage of the Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco. See their website at http://www.well.com/user/cwj/bangersandmash/


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