The Early Dance Consort's classes in court dancing are a healthy, enjoyable and informative experience for anyone with a passion for early music, period drama, social history and our European dance heritage. The classes cover a range of dances from the wealth of dance sources.
Beginners' Classes focus on dances such as the Pavane, Galliard, Allemande and Branle from the courts of England, France, and Italy in the late 16th century, and on English country dances from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
During the year, students will be introduced to the noble baroque dance style from the court of Louis XIV of France. Epitomised by such dances as the Minuet, Gavotte and Sarabande, it laid the foundations for classical ballet technique.
No partner or previous experience required.
Each class begins with a warm-up and gentle stretch, and the dances provide exercise ranging from mild to moderately vigorous, in a relaxed and friendly environment.
Advanced Classes are by invitation, for students either with training in ballet/modern dance disciplines, or at least two years' experience in a range of early dance styles, including Italian Renaissance and French baroque. Advanced students may be invited to participate in Early Dance Consort performances.
Students in both classes are provided with reference notes on the dances taught, their sources and the music used in class.
Costumed Balls held usually towards the end of each term provide occasions to dress in period costume and display the dances learned, and to invite friends & family to come along and join in some dancing for all.