The Richmond Renaissance Dancers are a performance group that showcases dances enjoyed at the court of Queen Elizabeth I in historically accurate costumes. These dances include the Pavane, Bransle, Alman, and the Galliard, and involve different steps and formations than are danced in the current English Country Dance repertoire. We perform bi-annually at Richmond's Agecroft Hall, and can be booked for event entertainment or educational talks.
No partner is needed to participate as you will usually switch partners between dances. Each dance is taught by the dance master with a step-by-step break down of footwork and formations, so no prior experience is needed. New dancers are asked to contact the dance master before attending their first session as we can not accommodate beginners during performance rehearsals.
Our Renaissance group dance rehearsal is held every 2nd and 4th Monday of the month from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm, except in summer 2023 . Please check the schedule for the meeting dates and locations. Rehearsal sites include two different Henrico County facilities, the Belmont Recreation Center (Northside) and Deep Run Park (West End), plus a local church.
We are meeting only twice a month so we tend to cover a lot of material in each session, some of which can be quite technical. More regular attendance will lead to faster mastery of the repertoire and less forgetting of steps and footwork between sessions. You are warmly welcomed at the practices even if you are not interested in joining the public performances. Members of the performance group will need to attend the dedicated rehearsals scheduled before a performance.
The first session is free! After that we ask for a contribution of $2 for adults and $1 for students at our Monday evening rehearsals, plus the annual dues of $10 for an individual or $20 for a family. Our Pre-paid dance cards do not expire.
Not at all. Practice sessions are informal. We suggest wearing comfortable clothing and non-marking, low heeled shoes for dancing (no flip-flops or high-heels please). As members become more experienced, they may be invited to participate in a performance -- in that case our dance leader will help them find a costume.
Children who are interested in dance and have the maturity to maintain attention for the 90 minute practices are allowed to attend with permission of the dance master. Parents are expected to stay during the session and supervise their children as needed. Dancing parents may bring non-dancing children if they are able to engage in quiet activity on the sidelines, but the children can not go to other parts of the building without supervision.
Due to the close contact of dancing, FULL vaccination is recommended. Masks are recommended for all dance participants when community transmission rates are high.