What is the ‘Dansstage’?
The Dansstage is a weekend filled with balfolk dancing in the Netherlands. There are workshops of every level, so anyone who likes to dance – from beginners to expert dancers – can enjoy this weekend. Participants will be welcome from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon. The weekend includes breakfast and lunch on both days, dinner on Saturday, and optionally a place to sleep. During the day there will be workshops, so you can practice all kinds of balfok dances. Depending on your level there will be a more broadly oriented workshop or several specific workshops to choose from. In the evenings, we have balls with several bands playing great balfolk music! (See the programme for details.)
The most important thing, however, is the atmosphere. Every year we feel very lucky to be surrounded by lovely people, having nice dances, making music, playing crazy games or generally just having fun all over the place. If you can’t join us for the entire weekend, the ball on Saturday evening is open to everyone, so feel free to come and enjoy the great Dansstage atmosphere for just one night. Please read the texts on our website or visit our Facebook page for further information. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us.
What is Balfolk?
To get an impression you can take a look at this video-clip or read the text below.
Balfolk is a collection of West-European dances. You can compare a balfolk dance-night – or ball – to a salsa or tango evening, but with European music instead of South-American. There are couple dances such as Scottish, mazurka, waltz and bourrée, but also group dances such as the chapelloise and the Circassian circle. There will always be live music, which gives the balls a great atmosphere.
Everyone can join a balfolk event. You don’t need a dance partner of your own, because it is very common to change partners after a dance, or sometimes even within a dance. The most important thing is to enjoy dancing with the people around you and have fun. Dancing the steps and figures perfectly is less important. The basic dances are relatively easy to learn. At the beginning of a ball there is usually a short instruction which allows you to join most of the dances of the evening. Advanced dancers will not get bored however, as each dance has plenty of room for refinement and improvisation.
In summary balfolk can be described as a lively tradition with influences from various other styles of dance and music. The historical traditions are secondary to the joy of the contemporal dancers.