Dance Scottish St John’s
Dance Scottish St John’s sponsors and participates in many activities related to Scottish Country Dancing in the St. John’s area. We offer classes for beginning and experienced dancers. Socials, with music provided by the band Corryvreckan, are held several times during the year to provide more formal occasions to enjoy Scottish Country Dancing. The members of the demonstration team perform at various festivals and functions throughout the year.
Scottish Country Dancing is the social dancing of Scotland. It belongs to the family of dance forms which include English Country Dancing, Irish Ceilidh dancing, New England Contra dancing, American Square dancing, as well as traditional Newfoundland dancing. Modern Scottish Country Dancing is characterized by its unique formations and its attention to footwork.
Many of our dances are done to jigs and reel tunes. Some of our dances use the strathspey, a slower tempo with a distinctive rhythm that is unique to Scottish music. All are group dances, carried out in sets.
Dance Scottish St John’s is the provincial affiliate of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (R.S.C.D.S), an international organization of more than 20,000 members worldwide.
For more information, to book a demonstration, or to experience this unique and vigorous style of dancing, please contact us at:
Catherine Wright (chairperson) – firstname.lastname@example.org (709) 754-1703
Kathy Simonsen (secretary/instructor) – email@example.com (709) 864-8531
R.S.C.D.S. St. John's (Newfoundland) Branch,
P.O. Box 23097, Churchill Square Postal Outlet,
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador A1B 4J9
Or follow us on Facebook at Dance Scottish St. John’s.
Dance Scottish St John’s
Judy Knee, a native Newfoundlander, started dancing at the age of four. At the age of thirteen she decided to make dance her career. After graduation from high school she completed her professional dance training in London, England. Judy holds teaching certification in Ballet, Modern Theatre, Tap, Scottish Country and holds the highest attainable teacher qualification (fellowship) in Ballroom and Latin American, both with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and the Canadian Dance Teachers Association. She was also the winner of the Ballroom Faculty Scholarship awarded by the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing, England. Judy has taught at various dance studios in London, England including the University of London for two years before returning home to open her own studio in 1976. Now Judy is celebrating over 40 years of teaching dance in Newfoundland.
• Modern Ballroom Dance Faculty
• Latin American Dance Faculty
• Cecchetti Society Classical Dance
• Modern Theatre Dance Faculty
• Tap Dance Faculty
• Scottish Country Dance Faculty
Extensive Training in Argentine Tango and Salsa
I started Scottish Country Dancing at an early age and continued into the teens where it was part of the school curriculum. The programme for our school dances as a teenager was Scottish dances. When I moved to London in 1952, attending weekly Scottish dances was a way of making new friends.
In 1954, I moved to Toronto where again I sought out a Scottish Dance group. At this time many Scots were immigrating so more groups were established in Toronto and I became part of a demonstration group performing at many local events and appearing on TV. As the number of members increased, this called for more teachers. A teacher training group was established and in 1957, Miss Milligan, founder of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS) came to Toronto to examine candidates for the Preliminary Teacher's Certificate. I was a successful candidate and prepared for the final certificate when again, in 1959, Miss Milligan was to return for the examinations. Again I was successful and was presented with the certificate.
While in Toronto I joined an international folk dance group and acquired a repertoire of folk dances from many different countries. We had access to teachers from many ethnic groups and often had workshops in dances of specific countries. From this time, I have a library of resources - books, course outlines, recordings etc. I can make available any of these if anyone wants information.
I moved to Newfoundland in 1964 and in 1966, at the request of Father Shea, was asked to to teach a teenage group on Shea Heights then known as the Brow. Soon after there was a request to form an adult group. With both dance groups, musicians and singers,we did performances in various communities on the Avalon the highlight being, in 1970, a concert in Holy Heart auditorium, with a full house and the Lieutenant-Governor in attendance.
In 1980, I joined the Scottish Dance Group, and soon after became the teacher. A performance group was formed and we participated in many events in the city. We were invited in 1985, to the Codroy Valley to take part in their summer Festival and in 1986 at the request of the French government, we travelled to St. Pierre to be part of the Bastille Day Celebrations. From the summer of 1987 on we organized week-end workshops every two years with visiting teachers from many parts of Canada and the United States.
In 1997, an English Dance group was formed after I had been to a week long session at Pinewoods Camp near Plymouth, Mass. where song, dance and music weeks are organized all through the summer. With Martin Mulligan, a Scottish dance teacher, we began a group to teach English Dances. This has been very successful, and we are now into our 16th year. We welcome newcomers in the fall, but in the winter session, previous dance experience is required. We meet on Tuesdays, 7.30 pm at St James Church on Elizabeth Avenue.