Cambridge University Strathspey and Reel Club (CUSRC), or simply the Reel Club, is a society devoted to Scottish Country Dancing (SCD).
If you've never come across SCD before and want to know more, follow the links to videos, which were taken at a mixture of formal balls and more relaxed special events. The dances shown are more difficult than the ones you'll do to start off with, but they'll give you the general idea - a lively style of dance which is addictive, done to a simple step.
During term time, we hold two meetings a week, social dancing on Mondays and Advanced Class on Wednesdays. The Monday sessions are led by a team of four qualified, expert teachers and everyone is very welcome - you don't need any experience or a partner. In Michaelmas, new dancers are introduced to basic figures (or patterns) in the first half hour or so, followed by general dancing where we put what we've learnt into practice. In Lent and Easter terms, teaching in the first half hour continues, and programmes are usually based on upcoming dances and balls. New figures are taught as required, and if you've missed the Michaelmas introduction, don't worry, it's all very friendly and we'll catch you up. All dances throughout all sessions will be walked and called
Wednesday's Advanced Class, run jointly with the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS) Cambridge and District Branch (www.rscds-cambridge.org), is for dancers with a little experience who want to polish their technique. They're also a lot of fun, and we encourage those who've mastered the basics to attend both Monday and Wednesday sessions.
We usually dance to fantastic live music on Wednesdays; on Mondays, we generally use recorded music, but from time to time, the great new Reel Club band plays for us. If you're a musician and want to know more about this, we can put you in touch with the leader Lindsey, or have a chat with Becky, one of the band members, at Monday dancing.
We meet at the same time and place on both Mondays and Wednesdays: 8pm, Wesley Methodist Church Hall. If the front door is locked, use the entrance on King Street. Go through the car park, up the ramp to the glass door at the end. (If you arrive before 8pm, please don't disturb anyone who has the room booked before us.)
To cover costs, there's a charge of £2 for students, £4 non-students, or £15/£30 for the term. The first two weeks are free so there's really no excuse not to give it a go! Refreshments are provided.
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You don't need to restrict your dancing to Mondays and Wednesdays. There are regular, but less frequent Highland classes (tbc) and Step classes (Sunday). The local branch of the RSCDS holds beginner/intermediate classes on Tuesdays (http://www.rscds-cambridge.org/classes/), and Scot Soc dance on Thursdays (http://www.camscotsoc.org.uk). Follow the links to find out full details of where and when these sessions will take place.
There are also a number of local dances and balls held throughout the year, including the Oxford and Cambridge Highland Ball, at the end of Lent term, when we meet up with dancers from the other place and have a grand time.
We encourage dancers to attend events like the RSCDS Spring Fling and Summer School, and travel bursaries are sometimes available upon request to help defray costs. Not forgetting the Inter Varsity Folk Dance Festival, an annual, peripatetic weekend celebration of myriad styles of folk dance, attended by enthusiasts from across England, Scotland and beyond - if you haven't been before, you'll never have seen anything like it!