Welcome to CDNY! Newcomers are always welcome at our dances. Here are some things you may be wondering as you consider attending your first contra or English Country dance.
How do I know what to do?
Each and every dance features a beginner lesson. For English Country Dancing, the Beginner Lessons run from 7 to 7:30 p.m. Contra dances have Beginner Lesson from roughly 7:30 to 8 p.m. These lessons are great, are included with the price of admission, and will acquaint you with the figures for the evening. And every dance all evening, in both English country and contra dancing, is taught by the caller before it begins. In contra especially, you can pick up most of what you need just from listening to the caller throughout the dance, and keeping your eyes open to see what your partner and other dancers are doing. If you are brand new, ask an experienced dancer to be your partner! They will not only be glad to dance with you, but this is one of the best ways to learn.
Do I need to come with a partner?
Nope! At CD*NY, we generally change partners for each dance. So go ahead, ask someone new! We especially encourage folks to ask dancers who have been sitting out, and experienced dancers to ask new dancers, so that everyone gets a chance to dance and to learn the ropes. Coming with a friend or a group of friends may be more fun for some, but most people come by themselves.
Do I have to dance each and every dance?
You may dance as many or as few dances as you like. Some people never sit down, others take breaks between dances. It is best to start dancing at the beginning of the evening, as movements later in the evening are likely to make use of things learned in the early part of the evening. If you sit out a dance be sure to stand up and look interested when that dance ends, so dancers know you are available for the next dance.
What do I wear?
Be comfortable, first and foremost!
Shoes: Please either bring a pair of dance shoes, or be prepared to brush off your street shoes before the dance. You can also dance barefoot or in socks. Please do not wear spiked heels, they damage the dance floor.
Clothes: Contra dancing is quite aerobic! If you tend to sweat, think about bringing a few shirts to change into over the course of the evening. Your partners will thank you. English dancing usually isn’t as vigorous as contra so extra clothes may not be necessary.
For more information please visit our dance etiquette page.
Can I view the “CD*NY Dances” calendar events in my personal Google Calendar?
Yes you can!
If you use a personal Google Calendar, you may find it useful to add a display of the “CDNY Dances” calendar (located on the home page of the CD*NY website) to your calendar. You will then be able to view CD*NY dances without the need to visit the CD*NY website.
Here are instructions you can use:
1) Log into your Google account and access your calendar. (See note 1).
2) Go to the CD*NY home page at cdny.org
3) Scroll down to view the calendar.
4) At the bottom right corner of the calendar, click the colorful icon that says “+ Google Calendar”.
5) You will see a new display that asks if you want to add this to your calendar. Choose “yes”. (See note 2).
6) Your personal calendar, with CD*NY dances added, will be displayed.
You can hide the “CDNY Dances” calendar.
To bring it back:
A) In the “other calendars” drop-down box, click “settings” to get a new screen.
B) Near the bottom, find “CDNY Dances”. Under “SHOW IN LIST”, click to check the calendar(s) you want displayed. (See note 3).
C) Near the top left, click “back to calendar”.
If you do not use Google Calendar and want to try it, you will need to set up a Google account, using an email address to identify yourself. That address does not need to be a gmail address.
If you have multiple Google accounts, make sure you are logged onto the one you want to use to display the CD*NY calendar.
If you are not logged on to Google, you will first get a page that shows your Google account(s) so you can log on.
You can also unsubscribe from this screen.