The Summer School at
St. Andrew's, Scotland
Now that the chill of winter is with us I persuaded our roving ambassador to take us back to the summer heat of St. Andrew's annual summer school.
Who attended this year's school?
Hundreds! There was a large contingent from Northern Ireland, as always, and I danced in sets with people from Germany, Japan and Russia.
Can you tell us about some of the new dances?
The new dances were very nice. The patterns ensured everyone was involved and the dances flowed very well. There was more knotwork and a new pattern: cross and cast to the right, seemed to feature in many of them. Muriel Johnston was the pianist and really made the dances come alive.
It had to be "The Silver Thistle".
Great, hopefully we'll all get to try it. It's a very busy week at St. Andrew's; of all the classes and events which was the most fun?
Well I enjoyed everything but the Friday Night Ceilidh is memorable!
I'm glad you do remember it..... given the renowned hospitality of the Scottish.......... what happened?
A group of us had been asked to perform a dance. One of the couples dancing were a hoot: the lady was a tall person and the man was a non-tall person and as they danced allemandes to perfection the dance was quickly renamed "the Long and the Short of it". The summer school teachers also performed a dance in fancy dress "the Piper and the Penguin". It was a great night.
You said earlier that the dancing was of a high standard and you experienced some tiredness. Are you obliged to attend all the classes and events?
No, the morning classes are recommended but afternoons are free and you can choose whatever you want to do in the evenings. Some peole go into town for sightseeing and coffee. The meals provided at the summer school though were delicious: that keeps your energy up! My favourite was definately the Chocolate Bombe.
And with all those calories burnt off with the dancing you can afford to eat as many as you like! Looking forward to next year then?
We hope to have further reports from our ambassador as they visit more dance events around the globe.
© Linda Barnes, 2003
Last updated on 22 August, 2005