A barn dance or 'ceilidh' is simply a social gathering with traditional music and dancing... In other words: a jolly good knees-up! It consists of a band which, in our case, is usually a violinist, recorder player, guitarist, accordianist and a double bassist, plus a 'caller' who dictates the steps or moves of the dance to the dancers. The band play traditional folk music which can be from England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland and from countries even further such as Spain, Sweden and America. Although each country has its own distinctive style, often the same tune will have travelled from player to player, country to country over the years and so will have developed slightly different characteristics. Basically - one is unlikely to ever hear the same tune played exactly the same twice!
A barn dance is surprisingly suited to all sorts of occasions, whether it's a wedding, party, anniversary, corporate function, or just a local social gathering. Its main quality is that, whether young or old, experienced or first-timer; absolutely anyone can do it. It is a wonderful way of getting everyone involved and interacting with each other... It is often the case at events that not everyone will know each other - but because at a barn dance it is almost certain that everyone will dance with everyone else at some point - it can be a great 'ice-breaker' and way of meeting other people. But above all - a ceilidh will ensure everyone has a brilliant time that they won't forget for a while!
Our experienced caller will start by explaining the steps of a simple dance by taking the dancers through a 'walk-through' without music, before dancing with music. The caller will judge the abilities and experience of the dancers as the evening goes on and will pick suitable dances to cater for all involved. This means that no two ceilidhs are likely to be the same! Between dances, the band can play music to allow the dancers a breather and to re-fuel before the next dance!