About Eurosession

Sheffield Eurosession is open to all. Anyone who wants to play can lead a tune or join in at their own level and the musicians are always happy to take requests for dances. The session is run by a small group of volunteers. If you’d like to offer help or make suggestions, please do so! Sheffield Eurosession is aligned with both traditional and balfolk styles and we are willing to explore any kind of dance originating within Europe, without being too fussy about how to define this. Sessions so far have been influenced by Breton, French, Portuguese, Scandinavian, Klezmer, Basque and Bulgarian traditions.

Sessions are normally monthly, starting at 8pm if there’s a themed pre-session workshop, or 8:30pm if not, and the evenings continue to 11pm and beyond.
(Note that there is normally a pre-booked musician for the workshop).
We also hold extra occasional gigs with bands and teachers from other places. Here are the next few dates:

Thursday 10 October – Eurosession and Poitou workshop

Thursday 14 November – Schottische Variations and Eurosession

Thursday 12 December – Scandinavian – details coming soon

* * * January 4 January – Bal with 3 Pas D’Ici * * * 

Contact & List

For more information or to be added to our email list, contact sheffield.eurosession at gmail.com.
Our Facebook page also sometimes has more recent updates immediately before events.

Thursday 14 November: Schottische Variations and Eurosession

strictly_schottishe.png

Warm up on a cool Autumn’s evening with Eurosession!  

We’ll be exploring Schottishe variations in the workshop this week, deconstructing the basic framework, and rebuilding it with inspiration from various traditions. Along the way we’ll consider the trade-offs between creativity and connection; and explore the possibilities of directionality, musicality, breaking the frame, and learn a little more about leading and following.
Dancing led by Susannah Diamond, and music with Sol Loreto-Miller.

Workshop 8-9pm, then free open music and dance session.
£5 for the workshop if you can afford it, nowt if you’re skint.
Venue: upstairs in Shakespeares Pub, Gibraltar St as usual.

All welcome.
x Eurosesh

Thursday 10 October: Eurosession and Poitou workshop

For our October workshop, Anna Pack will teach dances from the Poitou region of France.  This region has a particular style of bourree, plus popular dances such as the Avant Deux, Maraichine, and Rond d’Argenton.  How much of these we do will depend on who is in the workshop, but we can guarantee the opportunity to try moving your body in unfamiliar ways, give your heart a little workout, and stimulate both your brain cells and your cheek muscles.  Bring shoes with a smooth sole and some good cushioning.  No partners required – we change partners in the workshop.

Image of a circle of dancers photographed from above.
Image by wikipedia user Unuaiga, CC-BY-SA-4.0

* * *  NB. This workshop will also be great preparation for getting the most out of our January bal, for which we have a fab Poitou band booked called “3 Pas D’Ici” – here’s a preview with the fiddler playing and calling at the same time: https://youtu.be/s1g32zNQYWk. * * *

For Thursday 10 October, we’ll be upstairs in Shakespeares Pub as usual.
Please contribute £5 to the pot if you can afford to do so.  All welcome. 
Workshop from 8pm, open session for magical tunes and dance requests from 9pm through till 11pm.

Thursday 12 September: Eurosession and Bal Basics Workshop

Hi everyone, 

Hope you’ve had a lovely summer break and haven’t missed Eurosession too much!
We restart Eurosessions on Thursday 12 September.

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8pm-9pm – Bal basics workshop
We’d like to reconnect back to our key European dance inspirations with a bal basics workshop ahead of another exciting year of more specialised music and dance workshops [and also ahead of another uncertain month for our European identities!].  So September 12 will be a great workshop to flag up to people you know that haven’t come to Eurosession before.  And if you can do the basics in your sleep, then do come and share some Euro love with others to help them get on board with planet Eurosession, or change roles and see if that helps or hinders your interest or mellowness on the dance floor.

9pm onwards
We’ll continue with our usual open session of superb music and revitalizing dancing until 11pm and probably beyond.  Bring along any new tunes or dance requests picked up or half-remembered over the summer!

Venue: Upstairs in Shakespeare’s Bar on Gibraltar St, S3 8UA.
Bring your instruments and your dancing shoes, or simply your interest. All welcome.  
Suggested donation for workshop £5, but nowt if you’re skint

See you soon, xx Eurosesh

Thursday 11 July: Mazurka workshop and Eurosession

For our July workshop we’re offering a mazurka workshop to make ready for the summer festivals, with tips for both beginners and experienced dancers; come dance, come play

Mazurka magic…

We’ll include aspects of leading, following, and improvisation, particularly paying attention to hips and middles, and give everyone a chance to a chance to consolidate steps and style. The mazurka is popular across France, Belgium, and beyond, including within the UK balfolk scene. It can be funky and fun, or mysterious and magical, but at its essence, it’s an intimate couple dance, with an intriguing lilt. We’ll include aspects of leading, following, and improvisation, particularly paying attention to hips and middles, and give everyone a chance to a chance to consolidate steps and style.

The workshop will start at 8pm, to be followed at 9pm by our usual open eurosession for tune offers and dance requests. The venue is upstairs in Shakespeares. All are welcome, donations requested.

Thursday 13 June: Finnskogspols and Eurosession

Heia!   In June, our 8pm workshop will revisit the Polsdans from Finscogen, an exhilarating dance loosely related to polskas, but with a strong Finnish influence.  

In this workshop we’ll experience the driving rhythm of the Finnskog tempo, and the combination of well-grounded springiness and quick rotation.  Expect to release tension and generate endorphins

Previous experience or partner not necessary, but comfortable shoes and supportive underwear recommended!

From 9pm the usual Eurosession will be open to all contributions and requests for balfolk music and dance. Venue: Shakespeares’ upstairs room. Pay as you feel (£5 suggested).

Sees snart!  [See you soon!]  x Eurosesh:

9th May Eurosession: refreshing and troubleshooting

May is a magical month and therefore this month we have not one, but two offerings for you! You already know about the Norwegians at Victoria Works on Thursday 2nd May, right?

It’ll be difficult to follow that, but we don’t want to miss our usual Thursday 9th back at our familiar Shakespeare’s. So Susannah and Jo will be upstairs in Shakespeares from 8pm for a troubleshooting dance workshop. Bring any queries, complexities, half-remembered ghosts of dances, and we’ll try and resolve the mysteries, or just polish up your style. If any musicians are keen to try out your workshop-playing skills, then come and join us, and otherwise, we’ll see you at 9pm.

To be followed at 9pm by our usual open Eurossession. All welcome, with or without a donation of £5.

Eurosession Extra: Norwegian Dance Workshop, Concert, and Session

Sheffield Eurosession is very happy to welcome Vegar and Mette Vardal for a niche Norwegian dance workshop and concert event this on 2nd May at Victoria Works.
Vegar and Mette are on their way from Norway to teach Valdesspringar at Scandimoot (the lovely Scandinavian music and dance event in the Yorkshire Dales), but are kindly stopping to give us an exciting taster in Sheffield.

7:00-9:00 pm dance workshop
9.00-9.30 pm concert
9:30 pm onwards: More dancing and informal session with Vegar! Bring your instruments!

We might not achieve the full Valdesspringar in an hour’s workshop, but if you’ve a working pair of legs, and a sound pair of shoes with a smooth sole, then you can probably experience a good bit of fun and freedom, Scandinavian style – imagine striding across springy bogs, skiing effortlessly down hillsides, and freeing up to respond creatively to the music.

If dancing isn’t your thing, then sit at your ease and drink in the music in the concert, and join in the session yourself – The music is other-worldly, complex and driving and you may just get hooked for evermore.

We will be at the amazing Victoria Works venue this time, a historic factory building in the Kelham Island area with a great dance floor, about 10 minutes walk from our usual Shakespeare’s. We’ll be upstairs; come on up ! No bar, so please bring your own drinks (NB there may be an honesty bar).

Vegar is an expert dancer, teacher and musician. He won the national Norwegian dance competition in 2014 and is also an energetic and playful hardanger and fiddle player. He plays with several different groups, including Snowflake Trio and World Music Central.

Mette is an expert dancer and teacher, and also judge of the Landkappleik dance contest.

Here is a taste of Vegar’s music:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxYZkBVPomQ

And some Valdesspringar which they’ll be teaching in Scandimoot.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_wSAsjSTaI

Cost: £5 – pay what you can afford, all welcome !

Thursday 18 April: The Catalans are coming!

Eurosession is excited to be hosting 2 members of Julivert for a packed evening on Thursday 18th April. Julivert are a lively traditional Catalan band. Our 2 guest musicians are Jordi Suñé (vocals and guitar) and Gerard Torres (diatonic accordion and vocals), with the addition of Anna who will help with teaching the dances.

7pm – 8pm: Dance workshop 
This will include a range of dances such as a gentle bal pla promenade, an iconic sardana circle, and a more energetic jota.  These dances all provide a sense of shared community and enjoyment, and, in combination, are a great way to develop graceful poisenimble footwork, and a charismatic confidence.  Bring well-sprung shoes and plenty of laughter.

8.15pm – 9.15pm: Music workshop 
This will focus on how to transmit  dance rhythm in a Catalan tune, with harmonic accompaniment; this requires both energy and precision from the musicians.  All instruments welcome; Gerard plays a diatonic G/C but will accommodate D/G melodeons!

Later in the evening from 9.15pm we’ll move to an open Eurosession format for offerings and requests, interspersed with some further songs and dances from our Catalan guests.             

Usual request of £5 donation, around £7-10 if you participate in both workshops.  If you’re skint, whatever you can afford, your company and participation is the most important.

NB. Because we are so keen to catch the Catalans on their travels, we are postponing our April Eurosession; we’ll be upstairs in Shakespeare’s pub one week later than usual. 

Soveuen amics – come on friends, let’s festa!    xx Eurosesh