We're so excited to welcome to the dance stage, power trio Faustus (UK) as well as the Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra (Canada) and a host of other great acts from Tasmania and around Australia. 

From the opening bush dance with the Tassie Devil's Own to the Faustian Grand Finale with Faustus, festival goers in our dedicated dance venue, the Town Hall, will have the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of exhilarating dances from many cultures, all taught so that no dancing experience is required (and you don't need to bring a partner either). 

Other dance styles covered include Appalachian squares, Argentinian Tango, Georgian, contra and technocontra, renaissance, Swing, Balkan, First Nations, Irish, English Country and Steampunk. 

For the year of Scotland in Australia we'll also showcase Scottish Ceilidh and Country Dancing.  Travel the world on two feet in one weekend, with a light heart and a big smile!  Bring a refillable water bottle.  It'll be a workout.

Over the weekend we have 22 different dances, many featuring the festival's top bands and outstanding concert acts. Paired with skilled callers they will have you dancing in community and in synch, with minimal fuss and maximum joy.

If dancing is not your thing, just come along to watch and listen to fabulous music featuring some of the festival’s headline acts.

Some highlights

"Didebata is a popular song/participatory dance from the mountainous area of Svaneti, Georgia.
It looks very simple but has a mindbending challenge:  The song progresses in 16 beat cycles, the dance in 10.  The workshop starts by learning one verse of the song in three parts. Then all participants will attempt to sing and dance without falling over. Hilarious fun. Quite addictive."

"Taking you back to when the Leyland P76 was car of the year, Gough Whitlam was still prime minister, university education was free, computers were the size of a house and bushdancing was the coolest alternative thing around. Bring along your flares and thongs and strip the willow with us."

"Cat and Clint play Old Time Mountain Music with the authenticity and respect that it demands.  They and friends with guest caller Sarah give you an Old Time Square Dance like the ones they've been to at the legendary festivals of the Appalachians including Galax and Clifftop.  Rollicking banjo, crooked fiddle, cooking up a storm!"

"Black lights, glow sticks and trad dance!  Hamish Stevenson is an electronic music producer and virtuosic double bassist. Emily Sheppard is a wildly experimental concert violinist. They create the most danceable beats overlaid with bass and strings.  Caller Twinkletoes will get you into the groove of the smooth moves and energy of contemporary US contra dancing.  Glow sticks available."

"Rocking tune sets and high energy English dancing from Faustus (members of Steeleye Span, Bellowhead, Waterson:Carthy, Whapweazel and War Horse).  You're in for a devilishly good time with this internationally renowned band."

For more details, see the dance program listing below, and the listings under individual artists.

So, if you want to take the weight of the world off your shoulders, get your smile on and get some exercise and joy, give it a go. 

If in doubt, dance!

-- David Wanless, Dance Program Coordinator


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