Weekly step clog class in Wirksworth
I run a regular class in the Derbyshire Dales town of Wirksworth, open to all levels. The emphasis is on dancing just for the fun of it, and we have live music! It’s not a performance side although we have been known to dance in public at local community events. See below for FAQs but don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any other queries.
If you are interested in having a go then please contact me for more information.
Where and when?
We meet on Tuesday evenings in Wirksworth, please contact me for directions etc. before coming for the first time.
Do I need any experience?
No experience is necessary, many of the class started as complete beginners (although if you have experience that’s great).
What are English clogs?
English clogs are different from the all wood Dutch clog, they are basically shoes with a standard leather upper but a wooden sole. They were often worn to protect the feet in industrial areas and were usually cheaper than leather soled shoes. Dancing clogs are tight fitting and sometimes highly decorated.
Do I need clogs?
You can start with hard soled shoes, ideally ones that are not too sticky and make a sound when you tap them on the floor. Most people decide to buy clogs as it’s much more fun but that’s up to you. There are English traditions of step dancing danced in ordinary hard-soled shoes.
How much does it cost?
Currently (March 2018) it’s £5 per class, just turn up and pay as you go!
What is English Step/Clog Dancing?
English step/clog dancing is a lively form of percussive dance performed to traditional music. It’s one of the precursors of tap dancing and closely related to step dancing from other parts of the British Isles including Scotland, Wales and Ireland.
There are various different styles and rhythms collected in different parts of England. In areas where people wore clogs, particularly the industrial areas of the north, people danced in them instead of shoes. Clogs give a different sound and a different set of possibilities, particularly when using wood against wood on the clogs’ soles, so a slightly different technique has evolved.
Clog dance also became an important act on the music hall stage, Charlie Chaplin started off as a Music Hall clog dancer in the Eight Lancashire Lads! Clog dance competitions were also very important and the great Victorian comedian Dan Leno was a renowned World Champion.