November 2016 – Take Advantage of the “Fall Back” Weekend and Dance!

Come take advantage of the “fall back” weekend to dance to your heart’s content..

When: Saturday November 5, 7:30 pm; quick teaching for newcomers at 7:15
Where: Unitarian Church of Calgary, 1703 First Street N.W.
Callers: Annette LeFaive and Steven Méthot
Band: Contraband
Admission: $12.00 per person
Next dance: Saturday, December 3

Reminder of Upcoming Events

As if we needed any reminder. But with winter comes the holiday season, and sure as snow in September that means Chautauqua and a visit from Charles Dickens! This year is our 12th anniversary, and we have a really special show planned to celebrate. Mark your calendars for Friday December 9th.

Mr. Dickens will be in Alberta to present his story “A Christmas Carol” on December 1st and 15th at the Lougheed House here in Calgary, and on December 11th at the Water Valley Church Events Centre.

The websites for these two venues will be updated this week with more details.

Videos (and other media)

A nice little video by Doug Plummer of a dance called at the NEFFA (New England Folk Festival Association) meeting earlier this year. A glimpse at a really large crowd. We’ll be prompting this dance on November 5th.

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October 1, 2016 – First Dance of the Season

Join us for our first dance of the season!

We’ve got the hall, we’ve got our beloved band, we’ve got callers, now all we need is YOU!

When: Saturday October 1st, 7:30 pm; quick teaching for newcomers at 7:15
Where: Unitarian Church of Calgary, 1703 First Street N.W.
Callers: Leslie Gotfrit and Steven Méthot
Band: Contraband with surprise guest(s)
Admission: $12.00 per person

Winter is coming!

As if we needed any reminder.  But with winter comes the holiday season, and sure as snow in September that means Chautauqua and a visit from Charles Dickens! This year is our 12th anniversary, and we have a really special show planned to celebrate. Mark your calendars for Friday December 9th.

Mr. Dickens will be in Alberta to present his story “A Christmas Carol” on December 1st and 15th at the Lougheed House here in Calgary, and on December 11th at the Water Valley Church Events Centre.

More details to follow!

Videos (and other media)

“Ask Google!” or “What does Wiki say?” Our modern reference librarians have displaced the card catalogue, but Wiki is a good source of information on Contra. Perhaps it’s more than you’d ever wanted to know, but here it is.

Then again, you could always watch a video of dancers kicking up their heels. This one is from the Concord Scout House, the epicenter of our particular variety of Contra Dancing and the place that gave a name to one of our favourite dances, the “Scout House Reel”.  We’ll be prompting this one on October 1st.  It is called “A-1 Reel”, and don’t let the exuberant flourishes worry you, this one is very straightforward.

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June 2016 – Last Dance of the Season!

When: Saturday June 4th, 7:30 pm. Quick lessons for newcomers at 7:15
Where: Unitarian Church of Calgary, 1703 First Street N.W.
Caller: Michael Pollock and Steven Méthot
Band: Contraband!
Admission: $12 / person at the door.

Last month and this month

We had so much fun last month with “locally grown” dances that we’re programming a few more, including at least one new dance written for the occasion.

It being spring we might have snow or we might be baking.  We’ll err on the side of the baking temperatures and keep things easy and flowing.

Video link

If you’re new to contra or have had people asking you what it’s all about, here’s a neat little video from New Hampshire, one of the places where our dance form evolved.  If you’re on vacation out there, they dance every Monday all year round!

https://youtu.be/fCh7LtWdxag

Next Dance:  Saturday September 10th

September!  That’s a long time to wait, isn’t it?  But stay tuned, we might have a “flash mob” guerrilla summer event in a park somewhere on a sultry evening.

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May 2016 – Locally grown, organic dances!

When: Saturday May 7th, 7:30 pm. Quick lessons for newcomers at 7:15
Where: Unitarian Church of Calgary, 1703 First Street N.W.
Caller: Steven Méthot
Band: Contraband!
Admission: $12 / person at the door.

This Month

With the return of warm weather we’ll try to keep things cool. Easy dances and home-grown dances, gluten-free dances and juicy dances, all to the wonderful musical stylings of our very own CONTRABAND!

This is the first time in several years that we’ve been able to hold a May dance. There may not be a May pole, nor Morris dancers who ring in the month of may with their jingling, but we can dance up a storm of our own!

Video link

My brain hurts. I am not sure that I have ever seen so many dancers in one place. If it looks like organized mayhem, it likely is.  But we’ve danced this one successfully as recently as last month!

Last Dance of the Season

Saturday, June 4th, 7:30 pm.

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April 2016 – Fancy a Spring Swing? C’mon out!

When: Saturday April 2nd, 7:30 pm. Quick lessons for newcomers at 7:15
Where: Unitarian Church of Calgary, 1703 First Street N.W.
Callers: Steven Méthot and James Prescott.
Band: Contraband!
Admission: $12 / person at the door.

Last month

We had a grand time.  Lesley Jefferson returned to Contraband and brought the cutest little dude along for us to coo at.  Lesley fiddled up a storm for us.  We danced a medley, a set where Steven wove two simple dances together and without practicing we danced the transition flawlessly.  We danced “Contra Corners” without stumbling.  But due to time constraints we didn’t get to dance this one that we’d promised, “The Zombies of Sugar Hill”:  https://youtu.be/eL1E4D2lkgo  We WILL get to it this month.

This Month

We have a surprise feature to share with you.  We’re not offering any hints because then it wouldn’t be a surprise, would it?  Suffice it to say that it is something that we’ve rarely attempted at one of our contra dances, and that it is something that any dancer will be able to accomplish.  For this month’s video, a look at what a typical dance might look at from a higher perspective:

https://youtu.be/PiCLedRtVAM

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