Societies are listed in alphabetical order in the following chart.
Click on Society name to view more information.
Illinois Country Dancers
|Greetings from the Urbana
Country Dancers (UCD). The UCD is a community of people who support and
promote the history, artistry and enjoyment of contra dancing.
Country Dancers host dance events mostly on the first and third Fridays of
each month and occasionally on Saturdays. Our primary dance venue is the
Phillips Recreation Center, (217-367-1544), located at 505 West Stoughton
Street (off Springfield Avenue) in Urbana, Illinois.
During the summer some dances may be held outdoors at the Pavilion in
Crystal Lake Park. We also hold some special dances during the course of the
What is Contra Dancing?
Contra dancing is a traditional American dance. It is similar to square
dance, derives from English country dancing and has been done in this
country since the 1700's. We contra dance to live fiddle and string band
music with featured callers in an atmosphere friendly to singles, couples,
groups, and families. All dances are taught (walked-through) prior to
dancing. We ask dancers to wear clean, soft soled shoes to protect the
lovely sprung-wood dance floor. Comfortable clothes are also recommended.
Dances are generally from 8 to 11 P.M., though we occasionally offer
pre-dance workshops. A $5.00 donation is requested to fund the fees for the
bands, callers and facility.
St. Louis Missouri
English Country Dancers
WHAT IS ENGLISH COUNTRY DANCING?
English country dancing involves lines of men facing lines
of women. The dancers walk patterns with their partners and with other
couples in the set. Our dance leader is Peter Wollenberg, and all dances
are taught from scratch each evening.
Beginners are welcome at all events! Each dance evening starts at
7:00 with a beginners' workshop so that newcomers can learn the
fundamentals of English country dancing.
The St. Louis English Country Dancers are members of CDSS, the
Country Dance and Song Society.
WHERE DO THE ENGLISH COUNTRY DANCERS MEET?
All dances, regardless of location, start with a workshop
that begins promptly at 7:00 PM, followed by dancing from 7:30-9:30. The
workshop is the time for new and semi-new dancers to learn steps and
We dance on MONDAYS, once a month.
We also dance on Fridays once a
month. Specifically, on the 2nd Friday of the month and the 4th Monday
of the month.
out the web site for locations and times.
WHAT IS THE COST FOR DANCING?
Cost is $7.00 per person, students pay $5.00.
WHO ARE THE MUSICIANS?
Live Music for every dance evening by the Original Speckled
Members of the band are:
Jennifer Husky - bass
Rebecca Mayer - bass
Tim Hirzel, flute
Paul Ovaitt - mandolin, guitar, recorder, bodhran
Aileen Murphy, violin
Alena Wheeler, violin
Paul Stamler - guitar, resophonic guitar
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?
Wear comfortable clothes and soft-soled shoes.
You can come with or without a partner.
Dance Discovery is a performance dance troupe
based in St. Louis, Missouri. We formed the troupe in response to the
commemoration of the bicentennial of the Louisiana Purchase and Lewis and
Clark's Corps of Discovery expedition. Dance Discovery's mission is to
provide festivity and merriment to celebrations by researching, performing
and fostering historically appropriate social dances from Playford
(1600's) to the present including those of American, English, French and
Spanish origins. Dance Discovery is an affiliate of the Country Dance and
Song Society. We have danced at a variety of venues and occasions around
the St. Louis area including: Lewis and Clark Heritage Days in St.
Charles, MO, Missouri History Museum, May Day at the Missouri Botanical
Gardens, Lewis and Clark Historic Site in Hartford, IL, Historical
Festival in St. Genevieve, MO, Shakespeare Festival in Forest Park,
Private Balls and Parties
A variety of programs are available for your event. You may select
one of the following:
-- A choreographed performance by costumed dancers, including live music
played by the Tu' Penny Uprights. It may include audience participation if
-- A workshop led by an experienced Dancing Master who can teach your
group historical social dances with accompaniment played by the Tu' Penny
Or ...we will put together the kind of program you need for your event.
Tu' Penny Uprights are all classically trained musicians who find
themselves drawn to the folk and popular dance music of the 17th, 18th and
19th centuries. Just as composers from Bach to Beethoven and Bartok were
inspired by this music and often included it in their symphonies, the Tu'
Penny Uprights enjoy playing music that provided a creative engine for
much of classical music. The music is lively and energetic--sometimes
lyrical and sometimes raucous. People say the dance music "Lifts them off
Tu' Penny Uprights consists of three musicians, Martha Edwards
(fiddle), Kristin Graham (keyboard) and Paul Wexler with the Clarinet who
also plays recorder and the penny whistle. Currently, they are using the
resources of the Missouri History Museum Library and Research Center for
researching, reconstructing and presenting the music of the Lewis and
The band and our Artistic Director have
researched the dances and music used at the parties and balls thrown by a
St. Louis population eager to meet and entertain Captains Lewis and Clark
while they were in St. Louis. The Tu' Penny Uprights have put together a
fairly sizable collection of the music which is played for the dancers.
All our troupe members have dance experience from a variety of
traditions including English Country, Contra, French, Scottish Country,
International, Ballroom and Ballet dancing. We welcome new dancers to the
troupe who have experience in one or more of these traditions.
Dancers interested in joining the troupe should contact
us at DanceWithUs@worldnet.att.net for more information about joining the
troupe and for the rehearsal schedule.