From about 2007-2017, dancers gathered at Bob and Martha's house almost every Wednesday for a wonderful, fun "Calling Party." The every-Wednesday-ness of the the Calling Parties stopped at the end of 2017, but we missed them enough in 2018 to restart at least monthly parties.
Currently, there are second-Wednesday house parties at Bob and Martha's house, which is at 433 Marford Drive in Creve Coeur, MO starting at 7:00 pm, except for the one on December 11, 2019, which will be at Sarah Kaiser's house.
And now, there's another house party with an every-fourth-Wednesday schedule at Sarah Kaiser's house, 6412 Ashbury Affton, MO 63123.
Here's a listing for 2020:
Wednesday, January 22, 2020 - House Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 - House Party at Bob and Martha's house
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - House Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - House Party at Bob and Martha's house
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 - House Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
Wednesday, April 8, 2020 - House Party at Bob and Martha's house
Wednesday, April 22, 2020 - House Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
Wednesday, May 13, 2020 - House Party at Bob and Martha's house
Wednesday, May 27, 2020 - House Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
Wednesday, June 10, 2020 - House Party at Bob and Martha's house
Wednesday, June 24, 2020 - seHouse Party at Sarah Kaiser's house
It's nice to bring a snack or drinks to share if it's easy, though such tidbits are also provided by the host.
What's a Calling Party / Dance Party?
What's a Calling Party / House Party? Well, people show up, and, when there are four or more, start lining up for a contra dance (or an English dance or a square — it's an open-minded group) and begin dancing. Sometimes it's the first time through a dance for one of the callers, and time is spent figuring out how the dance goes ( and how best to teach it), and sometimes, it's the last time through the dance before the caller takes it "live" and there's just the fun of dancing.
A lot ot times, one or the other of our wonderful local choreographers (or friend chorecographers from around the country!) brings a NEW DANCE to be vetted. That is the. most. amazing. fun.
NEW DANCERS by the way, are ESPECIALLY WELCOME. We dance, we talk, and yes, there is wine involved.
We dance several different kinds of dances from the "set dance" tradition (dancing in groups or sets, rather than in couples or by yourself). Most of the dances are modern American contra dances, but we also call some square dances, Playford-era (1600-1800 AD) English Country Dances, modern English Country Dances, Colonial-era American contra dances, and some early-mid- 20th-century New England "Chestnut" dances.
Dance writers! Find out immediately if that new cool move is a Hit or a Miss! Many fine dance writers have emerged in Missouri, and some of them got their start in this setting. Interestingly, people from all over the country have occasionally sent us dances to try - sometimes they even Skype or Facetime in and call their dances themselves over the Internet. When we counted them up in July of 2018, there were over 230 new dances that got vetted at Calling Parties!
People who called at Calling Parties from 2007-2019
- Brenda Appleby
- Eric Black ‡
- Billy Boyer ‡
- Larry Boyer ‡
- Deni Bouillon
- Lynnae Brumbaugh
- Chrissy Chapman
- Bill Coalson
- John Coffman ‡
- Kathy Coffman ‡
- Chloe Dunaway †
- Martha Edwards ‡
- Mariah Fabry †
- Joe Felsen *
- Chrystal Gallaci Jones ‡
- Bob Green ‡☁
- Jerome Grisanti ‡
- Kimberly Hall ‡
- Bruce Hamilton ‡
- Jim Hemphill ‡
- Dan Higgins*
- Adam Hinton ‡
- Colin Hume ‡
- Bob Isaacs ‡
- Karen Jackson ‡
- Ann Jenneman ‡
- Ken Johnson
- Allison Jonjak †
- Sarah Kaiser‡
- David Keller †
- Kent Koeninger *
- Jan Marra *
- Mac McKeever ‡
- Dave Morse ‡
- Jo Mortland ‡☁
- Andrea Nettleton ‡☁
- Carol Ormond ‡☁
- Karen Opp
- Wade Pearson ‡
- Lauren Peckman ‡
- Missy Reisenleiter ‡
- Stephanie Sappington
- Eric Schreiber ‡
- Diane Silver ‡☁
- Ted Steele ‡
- Kay Tomlinson †
- Nate Tripp ‡
- Keith Tuxhorn ‡
- Dale Wilson ‡
- Valerie Young ‡
*Hatchling (has called at least one dance in public)
†Fledgling (called a third to half a dance evening)
‡Caller (called a full dance evening)
☁Skyped in from the cloud
*The Calling Party blog: see http://dancecaller.blogspot.com. We haven't kept it up as well as we used to once many of us started enjoying Facebook, but it has some great stories, and a lot of useful discussion.