Summer Soirée is has always held the safety of dancers
to be paramount. Unfortunately, to preserve the protection of
the younger women Summer
Soirée has severed all ties to Jordy
Williams. He is no longer part of the weekend and will not
be welcome. This is not the first time Soirée
has had to ban a dancer, but because Jordy has been a part of
the dance - running the late night technos, for example - it feels
imperative that a public statement was made.
2018 will be June 22-24
Asparagus!! With Pokey and George Marshall calling! Plus Toss the Possum
be revealed ... if you haven't joned aleady, please join our Friends
of Summer Soirée Facebook Page.
"Burning Man" of Contradance Weekends!
of the schedule from past years will give you an idea of our general lineup!
Schedule and details for 2017 here: Weekend
Schedule and Details of What to Bring.
more pre-regdetails on the Dance
out who went to Soiree 2017 on the
Facebook Event Page. There are lots of videos and
photos posted there!
6.0 and Eloise and Co. as our contra dance bands
this year. Joyful Noise will play waltzes. Callers are
Diane Silver and Jesse Edgerton.
Bear 6.0: Andrew
van Norstrand, Noah van Norstrand, Mama Bear Kim Yerton (keyboard), Dana
Billings (drums), Chris Miller (sax), and Rebecca Bosworth-Clemens (clarinet).
and Co: Becky
Tracy (fiddle), Owen Morrison (guitar), Rachel Bell (accordion).
Noise: George Paul
(keyboard) and Cailen Campbell (fiddle).
will also be late night blues dancing, Rush Fest, workshops
galore including a callers workshop with specal guest, George
will be some other special treats, including a contra medley on Saturday
will be no gender or role balancing this year! So come as you are! ;)
SPECIAL REGISTRATION FOR THOSE WHO CAN'T USUALLY GET IN!
We have a few tickets set aside for dancers who have never attended
or who haven't attended in the last 3 or so years. So many dancers have
been frustrated by how hard it has been to register - (some years tickets
are gone in 15 minutes - though it is usually a few hours) and so they
If you fit this category, please
and let me try to get you in this year!
definitely be a member of the regular Friends
of Summer Soirée group - all the news is released
there first! But if you're not on Facebook or want to be sure to get all
the news, sign up for the newsletter below. You will not get any newsletters
that are related to ANYTHING but Summer
I will never share your email with anyone!
videos from the dance weekend:
2015 Summer Soiree Saturday evening
Posted by Trish Finn
on Monday, June 22, 2015
Late Night Contra Dance Party was a huge success again - all the best
disco hits from the 1970s and some great dance tracks from the 1980s.
Check out this Fleetwood Mac snippet:
2015 Summer Soiree Disco Techno
Posted by Trish Finn
on Monday, June 22, 2015
it gets any better than this, please tell me about it - we will try and
make it better.
the fastest way to communicate with contra dancers, so announcements are
made there first, and on the website immediately thereafter. Friends
of Summer Soirée.
Balance? Nope! No role balancing either!
Taylor, Summer Soirée Organizer
here to learn more ABOUT the Dance Weekend
A few details for dancers who have never been to Summer Soirée
Just Another High Energy Dance on Saturday afternoon:
An overview of the dance weekend shot and edited by John-Michael Seng-Wheeler
at the 2013 weekend:
folks say about about
this particular event is unique because it draws a national and even
international crowd who book months in advance. For many years, the
event is almost always sold out from preregistration. This is one of
a very few contra dance events that people make plans a year in advance
for. If dancing were an arts festival, this would be like Burning
Man...Maybe not as big, but still, the sort of thing that people
plan way in advance about. I hear people talk this way about NEFFA,
Dance Flurry, as well." Dan Kappus, Nashville,
MJ, what a wonderful event, every year it seems the best ever. Bands
were incredible, callers were incredible, organization was incredible,
and oh the weather! And the full moon! Thank you so much for all your
hard work, and the work of all who helped you make it happen. Homage,
and congrats!" James Morgan, Carrboro, NC.
music all weekend was top notch. Great Bear is just
about my favorite contra dance band, and of course they were just as
great as ever, but I have to say I just loved Eloise and Company
all weekend. I wasn't familiar with them as a group before Thursday,
but I was impressed: three real powerhouse musicians, excellent tune
selection and arrangements, great energy. I really enjoyed the contrast
between their sound, which was powerful and rooted in northern contra
tradition, and Great Bear, which continues to push the limit of contra
dance music." Gretchen Caverly, Asheville,
MJ Taylor for organizing/guiding another fabulous dance experience.
You are to be commended for having consistently good music over the
years and your ability to attract the skilled, high-energy dancers to
match the dynamic musicianship. And, there certainly was enough dancing
opportunities offered." Warren Doyle, organizer of Contradancers
from other years:
"Best dance camp I've been to in 15 years."
Tom Bowers of California who attended Soirée
for the first time in 2015.
face hurts from smiling so much. Words cannot accurately describe
the joy I felt this weekend. There were numerous moments where I felt
this weird lovely incredible natural high. Just a state of pure happiness.
You created that magical world for a weekend, and I can't thank you
enough. Thank you thank you thank you!!!! It was incredible... Great
dancers. Great musicians. Really- it was all I could do to keep my eyes
from rolling back into my head I was so caught up in that music, movement,
community, aerobic twirly trusting joyful dancing. You can see it in
the pictures and videos. People are just beaming. Loved every minute
of it. Thank you!" Chrissie Chapman.
a complainer, and I had nothing to complain about."
~ Debra Kirsch
thought the weekend was awesome. The housing was much better than other
dance weekends, where we've stayed in camp facilities, and the price
was very reasonable for what was included. The food was outstanding,
especially when compared to other dance camps, and the the music was
great. I enjoyed the swing lesson, but was disappointed that there was
no techno contra. I probably would have stayed and danced for about
an hour, if there had been one. The younger dancers add a lot of energy
and dynamics to the dances; they are important to the life and survival
of our dance communities ...." ~ Suzanne Patnaude
and weather were the best! The food was great!" ~ Mike
intermediate waltz and swing dance classes on Saturday morning were
great!!!! All weekend the energy in the air was magical-Had soooo much
fun!!!" ~ Marty Grist
a wonderful time at Soiree!! I like the dorms and the dancing and of
course PeM and GRD together was just over the top!!" ~ Cathy
love you MJ! Thanks for making one of the best weekends of my life."
~ Alan Best
Location and lodging: Summer
held at Warren Wilson College, just outside Asheville, NC. The college
campus is one of the lovliest settings in the area. Dancers from out
of town have the option of staying in the college dorms for $60 for
two nights, shared room. The largest dorm is air conditioned and most
dancers are housed there. Out of town dancers will find reasonably priced
hotels within a couple of miles of campus.
Meals: we offer a meal packagefor $60. Saturday breakfast and
lunch and Sunday breakfast are in the college cafeteria, which has excellent
food. Saturday night dinner is held in the Morris Pavilion and catered
by Whole Foods. Sunday lunch is wraps from Whole Foods. Folks are on
their own for Friday night. There are lots of snacks throughout the
weekend, and snacks and meals have lots of vegetarian and gluten free
get rave reviews on the food (see above and ask around.)
dancers stretch their weekend into a 5 day festival, arriving early
to dance at the Old Farmer's Ball on Thursday night and staying over
for the Monday Night Dance in West Asheville. The Soirée
bands always play at least
one of those dates, usually both.
It's not all dance, dance,
dance; there is relaxing and sharing snacks on the Grassy Knoll above
the Pavilion. Bring a blanket and join in the lazy moments, too.
Do you have trouble explaining
your love of contra dance weekends to your friends? This video is for
Some fun from previous
years: some extraordinary photos
by Kevin Riggs and videos by John Newsome. Here's
my favorite techno
contra video from John.
videos from Summer Soirée 2011 by John Newsome: