If you’re looking to spice up your dance moves it might be worth looking backwards with some old-timey dance workshops at NUIG.
Galway Early Music is organising four workshops on medieval, renaissance, and playford dance for anyone curious about the rhythm of history.
The first two workshops will on Playford dance, social dancing enjoyed by the landowning classes in Britain from the seventeenth century to the mid-nineteenth.
This is the kind of thing that people might recognise from period dramas that the BBC specialises in bringing to our screens.
They’re named John Playford, who published the first edition of The Dancing Master in 1651 in a blatant thumbed nose at the stick-up-the-arse puritans who’d come to power in Britain at the time.
These will be led by Felicity Maxwell, a dancer since the age of three who’s worked with ballet, contemporary English and Scottish country and ceilidh, and most recently Irish and Renaissance dancing.
The second set of workshops will look back further to the renaissance and medieval eras, paying particular attention to two modern French dances with strong medieval roots.
The first workshop will look at the most common dances of the Middle Ages, the round dance (the carole) and the open-chain (the tresca).
The Renaissance workshop will focus on the branles and pavane dances from the courts of 16th century Europe.
In both workshops, most dances will be accompanied by live music played on bagpipes and flutes by Jacopo Bisagni and participants will also get to practice their singing voices.
Lisa Carrel-Bisagni will lead these two classes bringing her years of experience in everything from modern jazz to Irish step dancing and flamenco, and from Breton and other French traditional dances to Renaissance and Baroque dance.
The classes will take place at NUI Galway through late April and into May, and are suitable for everyone ages 10 and up.
Each workshop costs €5 or €15 for all four, no pre booking required.
PLAYFORD DANCES 1
SUNDAY, 28 APRIL, 2-4 pm, O’Donoghue Centre Rm G011 NUI Galway
PLAYFORD DANCES 2
SUNDAY, 5 MAY, 2-4 pm, O’Donoghue Centre Rm G010 NUI Galway
MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE DANCES 1
SUNDAY 12 MAY, 2-4 pm, ARAS NA MACLÉINN NUI Galway
MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE DANCES 2
SUNDAY 19 MAY, 2-4 pm, ARAS NA MACLÉINN NUI Galway:
Anyone who finds that they enjoy their new moves is invited to join Early Music Galway on Sunday, May 26 at the Meyrick Hotel to join the Early Music for Young Musicians Project, and our adult Ensemble in a concert directed by The Gregory Walkers.