Queer Contra Dance Chicago will hold its next dance on Saturday, April 25 2015 from 6:00-9:00pm in the community hall at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church of Logan Square, located at 2649 N. Francisco Ave, Chicago, near the Blue Line Logan Square stop. Contra dance is a form of folk dance, similar to square dancing, but with lines of dancers rather than squares. This dance will feature live music by Common Taters performing dance music from the British Isles. The caller will be Maggie Jo Saylor.
Admission to Queer Contra is a sliding scale of $ 0-10, payable at the door. No advance planning or experience is needed and no one will be turned away for lack of funds. Everyone, gay, straight and in-between is welcome! Potluck snack and beverages encouraged. For more information, contact the new organizers Stephen Ulrich at firstname.lastname@example.org and Das Janssen (email@example.com) or www.facebook.com/ContraChicago.
SCHEDULE FOR Saturday April 25:
6-6:30pm LESSONS FOR NEWCOMERS
6:30-8:30pm CONTRA DANCE FOR NEWCOMERS AND EXPERIENCED DANCERS
8:30-9pm POTLUCK REFRESHMENTS
We think Contra Dancing is a great way to have fun, stay active physically, and connect socially. And we have some great people who help make this all happen. It’s a welcoming, diverse community and we hope you can join us.
“St. Luke’s firmly believes that music and all the arts build community across lines of difference by bringing people together in an environment of creativity, self-expression, and joy. We’re proud to have queer contra dancing coming to St. Luke’s, and excited to see how we can be part of supporting a diverse, inclusive neighborhood.” — Pastor Erik Christensen
MORE ABOUT CONTRA DANCE: Contra dance is a centuries-old New England folk dance tradition. It’s the rowdy red-headed stepchild of English country dance (the kind of dancing you see in Jane Austen movies). Contra dancing is done to live traditional fiddle music in a variety of styles, from lilting Celtic-inspired tunes to rollicking bluegrass. All dances are taught by a caller, who “calls out” instructions throughout the dance. Queer contra dance takes the traditional division of the dance into “gentlemen” and “ladies” and gives it a queer twist. Instead of gender roles, dancers choose whether or not to wear an armband, which determines their role. (If you’re curious, the “armband” role corresponds to the traditional gentleman’s or leader’s role, but there’s not much difference between the two roles.) The caller uses the term “armbands” or “bands” to refer to the dancers wearing armbands, and “barearms” or “bares” (no, not bears) to indicate those without armbands. (Description courtesy of Lavender Country and Folk Dancers – www.lcfd.org)
We organizers are currently making arrangements for a dance on May 30 as well, and will provide additional information on that as details become available.