Folk Dances From Around The World

By Dilek

Life and danceNew year… New You… healthy livingThe first IN Day of the New Year was dedicated to healthy living:  healthy eating and regular exercise.  The tables were decorated with veggie and fruit centerpieces of seasonal produce to inspire and motivate people to eat less processed, more wholesome food in the New Year…

What is a more fun form of exercise than to get up and dance?  The program started with folk dances from Northern Iran performed by our dear Homa and her friends dressed in beautiful, colorful Iranian folk dresses. We then traveled around the world with Pen Pen, dance and yoga instructor, who taught us an Irish dance, Cumbia, Waltz, Bollywood, Hawaii, and Cha Cha dances. We also sampled English Country dance with guest instructor Robert and his team. There were also chairs around the dance floor for members who preferred to do chair dance.

IN members truly danced around the world!

Here is a message from Robert who led the English Country dancing:

Thank you for the opportunity to introduce English country dancing (ECD) to International Neighbors.  It is always a delightful challenge to introduce English dancing to a group of beginners.  It was gratifying to watch the participants put the pieces together so quickly in spite of a bit of chaos in the first few rounds of the dance.

Ann Arbor is very active in the international ECD community.  Your members and their families and friends are always welcome to attend the weekly English dances sponsored by the Ann Arbor Community for Traditional Music and Dance (AACTMAD).  Or stop by the Dawn Dance Weekend next month to see hundreds of dancers from across the United States and Canada.  The website has all the details.

One of the participants asked me about the music for the dance “Alice” that we did: The tune was from the “Siciliano” movement of the Concerto for oboe d’amore in A major (TWV 51:A2) by Georg Philipp Telemann.  The video has a nice performance of this.

Ray called (led) “Alice” at a local Memorial Day party in 2015.  You can find me in the pink shirt helping my young partner in the video at

The recording that we used on Thursday was from the CD “English Echoes” at