How do I pronounce
Say it 'KAY-LEE'
What is ECeilidh?
Ceilidh) is an energetic form of Barn
Dance or Country dancing from all over.
The sort of dancing patterns in various set
formations (that most people have bumped into at
a wedding, birthday, PTA, fundraiser or at
school sometime in their lives!
We dance an eclectic mix of traditional and
modern British dances with many American and
European dances thrown in. (Folkies tend to use
the term 'ECeilidh' because we filtched the
Scottish word "Ceilidh" - and it's not a
traditional Scottish dance!)
The dancing is infectious and great fun.
It's a wonderful way to meet people, mix the
generations, get some exercise, laugh a lot and
hear some really amazing sounds - LIVE.
The music tends to be faster (and often louder!)
than your average PTA/special event dance, but
the figures can be danced or walked, as
energetically as age, agility and fitness
allow. There'll usually be several different
'styles' of dancing within the same set.
With ECeilidh the emphasis is more on having fun
than getting it right or 'historically correct'.
And if you do go mega wrong - it's no big deal!
(just please don't walk away and leave the
other dancers in the set short!)
Do I have to know what I'm
doing before I come to a dance?
It doesn't matter if
you've never done it before, and you don't
need to go to classes.
The Caller walks you through every dance first
to explain the moves and prompts during the
first few times through. Just listen, watch
and follow. Sorted! You'll probably see more
experienced dancers adding extra bits and
twirls - you'll soon be able to do that too.
Most of the dances are as couples in sets of
couples - but you don't need to come with a
partner, anyone can dance with anyone, nobody
But of course it's more fun if you come along
with a friend/s to start off with.
Women ask men to dance, no problem.
Men dancing the 'ladies' part / women
dancing in the man's place - not a problem
Only top-level festival
and ceilidh-circuit bands & Callers are
Modern ECeilidh bands use a mix of traditional,
more recent and self-penned tunes, with
influences from Britain, Europe and the World ~
reflecting the many influences that have shaped
English cultures over the years. There's as much
Jazz, Rock & Roots as there is traditional Folk;
drumkit, brass and some very strange instruments
(!) are often in the line-ups.
Each band has its own particular sound and style
and the different Callers also have their
favourite repertoire of dances too, making every
Meltdown a slightly different night.
Bands tend travel into Sussex from quite a
distance. They've travelled from Wales and
Northumberland - so you're probably not going to
be hearing them at another gig near you next
What do I wear?
OK - YOU WILL GET HOT!
This can be energetic stuff, even with the
air-conditioning on! So - loose comfortable
clothing is probably best.
Plus low sensible shoes with some grip
(stiletto-ing someone in a gallop is SO not
funny and we'd rather you didn't risk breaking a
heel - or your ankle!)
Trainers are great, even worn with 'smart'
Party frocks, shorts, sweatbands, tutus, kilts
or fairy wings are all optional! (and yes - we
have had them all!)
We also have the occasional special 'colour
dress-code' party night - usually black plus a
colour. (the December dance is always
Blacks'n'reds). Non-compulsory, natch - but adds
to the fun.
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