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  • Phill Jones

    Phill Jones April 3, 2006, 8:24 p.m. (Message 44974)

    RE: Over 700 schoolchildren dance in Glasgow

    I think I must agree with you, and I am sure that the 100+ dancers that
    attended the RSCDS Spring Fling in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on Saturday
    evening would agree too.  Especially as at least 70% were under 35 years
    with the majority of those in their teens and twenties.  My only regret
    was being on the wrong side of the music all evening when I could have
    been dancing with my own age group for a change.  Some of those who
    attended the whole weekend will be able to testify that even I was
    enthused to attend a full morning of dance classes for the first time in
    almost a decade!  So they must be doing something right.
    And, of course, just because the attendees are being taught to dance
    'properly' does not mean that they can not add their own extra little
    flourishes to the dancing.  As Malcolm Brown and Deb Lees can no doubt
    testify :-)
    Kind regards,
    Phill Jones (who, as I am sure several more are too, is still recovering
    from very little sleep this weekend...)
    -----Original Message-----
    [] On
    Behalf Of Hannah Newfield-Plunkett
    Sent: 03 April 2006 17:51
    Subject: Re: Over 700 schoolchildren dance in Glasgow
    As an 18-year-old dancer from the Chicago area, I just wanted to
    contribute to the discussion on the lack of young people in the RSCDS
    and the Scottish Country Dance community. A lot of emphasis has been
    placed on the RSCDS'
    emphasis on proper dance technique, but I haven't found that resistance
    to learning proper technique is what causes many of my peers to be less
    interested in Scottish dance than other dance forms. Generally, I've
    found that younger people are eager to learn to dance "correctly," often
    more so than some older beginners are. Rather, I've found that there is
    a perception among younger dancers that Scottish dancing is less social
    than other types of set dancing, such as English Country Dance or New
    England Contra dance. I find Scottish dancing to be a very social
    activity, and enjoy it in large part because of the social opportunities
    it offers (especially communication within your set), although I also
    enjoy the challenge of "doing it correctly." I think, though, that if
    the RSCDS is interested in attracting younger dancers, the solution is
    not to lower the standards of the dance, but to emphasize other aspects
    of it, such as its social aspect, which younger people find appealing.
    Chicago, IL and Ithaca, NY

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