Hi there! My name is Kat, and I really like dancing. It's pretty much my favourite thing in the world, and I do some sort of it four or five times a week, every week. Sometimes I squeeze in the other good things I like --mathematics, teaching, writing, circus arts1-- but mostly, my main form of social interaction and joy acquisition is to go dancing.
Most of the dance forms I do welcome beginners. If you're interested in trying any of the below, please let me know and I'll help you get set up! My typical week looks something like this
Monday night: Scottish Country Dance in Watertown. SCD is a kind of set dancing, where short lines of couples repeat choreographies to move throughout the room. It differs from most other well known set dances (contra, square dance, English country) by having steps --you aren't walking, you're skipping! It is very energetic, infectiously joyful, and the style I have put the majority of my dancing energy into over the last eight years.
Tuesday night: Modern Western Square Dance at MIT. Tech Squares is exactly the sort of dance club you'd expect at MIT. We're doing square dancing (like you learned in elementary school gym class) only harder, faster, and restructured as a multi-person realtime puzzle. It's the most mentally challenging dance form I do, though not particularly physically intense.
Blues Dancing in Cambridge. This is a bit of a misnomer really, since I've only been to Bluesy Tuesy about three times in the last two years, but I'm trying to get out there more often (in between and after weeks at Squares). Blues is a very close couples dance, that focuses on slow movements. I like it for the opportunity to do improvised leading, and, let's be honest, because it's kinda sexy and I'm an often-unpartnered2 twenty-something.
Wednesday night: Highland Dance in Arlington. Highland is a solo performative style. It's extremely bouncy, extremely precise, and extremely difficult. If you've seen a person in a kilt performing a dance while leaping over a sword, that's part of Highland. I've only been taking lessons since September of 2014, which means I am still extremely rubbish. I may never be what's considered "good" at Highland, but I do hope to be passable someday.
Excess or Allure, in Boston. These are nightclub events, that run from 10pm-2am. They involve a lot of flailing around like a fool, gothy arm-waving, and sometimes a spot of swing or blues. Given how late they run (and that I have a pretty strict midnight curfew) I don't make it out often, but I enjoy it when I get there.
Thursday Night: This is my night off! I use the time to clean my room, hang out with friends, and sleep. I love dancing, but by the time I hit Thursday, I'm always ready to relax.
Friday-Saturday Nights: Assorted dance styles in assorted places! I don't have anything regular on the weekends, but there's inevitably some sort of event going on --SCD, contra, blues, and more!
Sunday: SCD Demo Team practice, in Arlington. This runs "many" Sundays from September-April(ish), and is where I get my serious SCD technique and footwork practice. We do two major performances a year (the SCD Boston Branch fall concert and NEFFA), and several minor ones.
Contra dance in Cambridge. The BIDA3 contra is my favourite of the *many* contras set in the greater Boston area. Contra is another kind of set dancing, only with much longer lines of couples --you may well dance with 40 or 50 other people in one dance! It's plenty enthusiastic and very beginner friendly. I go as often as I can, but between demo team and other adventures, that's only about once every 4-5 months.
Whew! And that's not even getting into festivals, or balls, or dance camp, or...
1: Which, I mean, many circus arts are extremely close to dancing anyways. They are very physical activities, often set to music, and require a lot of practice and skill. I juggle, hoop, and stilt-walk (poor-to-mediocre) and have done the barest bones of silks and acro-yoga.
2: I mean outside of dancing --usually, it's pretty easy for me to find a partner for any given dance form. I use "unpartnered" rather than "single" very deliberately --I have several partners at any given time, but the majority of them are nowhere near me geographically.
3: BIDA = Boston Intergenerational Dance Advocates = Good People!