As the philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche earnestly said, “Every day I count wasted in which there has been no dancing.” Personally, there are two days throughout the year which I will highlight in my daily calendar— St Andrew’s Day and Burns Night, since on these special days I can get a kick out of freely enjoying dancing ceilidh.
Thanks to the Students’ Association’s Give it a Go week, I realised how many fascinating workshops and tasters are on offer. I finally discovered ‘New Scotland Country Dance Society,’ and realised that this wonderful society regularly runs traditional Scottish dance workshops every week. Whether you are a novice or an experienced dancing-lover, just confidently keep smiling, and give it a go!
The workshop I attended was called ‘Ceilidh, Contra and Country,’ which aimed to introduce three different forms of traditional Scottish dance. A good starting point is to try the celebrated ceilidh since it is simple to learn, and it is guaranteed to create a fun and warm atmosphere, especially when there are lots of people wear traditional dress — kilts and tons of tartan. As Gaelic folk music is enthusiastically played, which seems to last forever, you have to keep going and breathe properly with the rhythm. By the end, you will definitely understand the invaluable quality of persistence.
After taking a short break, there is another exciting social dance waiting for us— contra-dance, a folk dance made up of long lines of dancers in peer. The jumping-steps of the dance are pretty adorable and reminded me of Tigger in Winnie-the Pooh. Finally, finishing the evening with an interesting ‘lake and raven’ dance, which is a popular Scottish Highland country dance, as the name indicates, it can make one dance into flying.
Overall, one of the charming features of Scottish dance is that it makes people come together and interact with each other. All the participants dance hand-in-hand and share a moment that is full of happiness and freedom. Moreover, the long-lasting ceilidh is also a great exercise for your body, so give dancing a try before heading to the gym! One, two, three, my heart will go on until next time.
Image Credit: Royal Military College of Canada via Wikimedia Commons