This year’s Fezziwig Ball is fast approaching! All the pertinent information can be found on the Fezziwig Ball page here on our website. Posted here will be a few housekeeping details and rules of etiquette for the event.
First off, this will be our last year dancing at the Lauritzen botanical gardens. The Lauritzen has graciously sponsored us for ten years now, and so we understand that it is time for us to move on. We are so thankful that they allowed us to dance there for so many years! And we are open to suggestions of affordable places for next year’s Ball.
Practice, practice, practice! We ask that everyone review the dances before the big event. It’s always hard to hear at the Fezziwig, which makes for a lot of confusion and therefore even more noise. Our sound system is maxed out at four speakers, so the dance caller and band are as loud as they can get. The rest is up to you. Here’s some guidelines to help minimize confusion on the dance floor.
- Learn the basic steps of ECD beforehand by watching this youtube playlist.
- Go over the dance card and watch the videos for each dance
- If you’re coming with a group, get together before the Ball and practice together
- And as always, while on the dance floor, be quiet and listen to the caller.
Let’s move on to some basic etiquette for this formal event.
Chaos on the dance floor… what to do?
- We always walk through each dance at least twice before dancing it, so during that time when the caller is teaching, try to be quiet. Even though it’s tempting to tell your partner what to do, once everyone starts doing that, no one can hear for all the babble. If your partner or neighbor is confused, direct their attention to the caller or use body language to help them. If they are still confused after one or two walkthroughs of the dance, you can raise your hand to get one of our dance helpers to come to your set and assist. When you are not dancing, please chat outside the ballroom in the hallway.
- Absolutely no pushing or pulling other members of the set to get them where you want them to go. Respect other people, the dance will be fine in the end.
- Parents, please make sure if you bring younger children that they are always paired with an adult in the dance set. We generally suggest that children under the age of 10 not attend. We also ask that parents not drop off their children and leave.
- Please do not disrupt the skits at intermission. Those who exhibit inappropriate behavior will be shown to the door. Inappropriate behavior includes yelling, shouting, pushing others, and running in the building. Such behavior at a dance is rude to all, disruptive, and is poor stewardship of the space we use. This standards goes for all of our events, not just the Fezziwig Ball.
Now on to happier topics, what are some traditions we encourage dancers to observe?
- Gentlemen traditionally ask a lady, may I have this dance?
- Gentlemen, feel free to lead the lady on and off the dance floor. This is especially nice for the ladies when it’s crowded and it can be hard to get through groups of people.
- Throughout the dance, gentlemen’s hands are underneath, lady’s hands on top.
- We’ve mentioned this before(we’ll probably mention it again)- be quiet and listen to the caller!
- After each dance, partners bow and thank eachother for the dance, and then turn to thank the band(enthusiastically!).
We strongly encourage parents to not drop their children off at the dance and leave. In general we suggest children be 10 years old before attending. Parents, please make sure if you bring younger children that they are always paired with an adult in the dance set.
The Fezziwig Ball is a formal event at a high-end facility. Feel free to wear fancy dress so long as you can still dance in it! Dancing requires movement, and good shoes. Heels are not a good idea. Flexible shoes that will not slip off your feet are best. We welcome historical costumes! Again, they should be practical enough to move about in, and not impede other dancers on a crowded dance floor(think: hoop skirts). We also ask people to dress conservatively since this is a family event.
All the band and callers have volunteered many hours of their time to bring this dance about. We are excited to have this special dance and we hope it will be special for all the attendees as well. Our last dance at the Lauritzen- let’s make it a good one!