History of the FSCDC
The Frankfurt Scottish Country Dance Club (FSCDC) was founded in 1963 by Franziska Völker and David Morton as part of the Frankfurter Tanzkreis (lit.: Frankfurt Dance Circle), which itself belongs to the Association of Frankfurt Youth Clubs (Frankfurter Jugendring e. V.). Franz Palm, founder of the Frankfurter Tanzkreis, was still living then but did not dance Scottish country dances himself.
Tuesday has been our weekly dance evening right from the start, and a series of dance teachers kept – and is still keeping – the group on their toes:
- Franziska Völker (taught 1963-199x)
- David Morton (1963)
- James Alexander (1963-1981)
- Jack Campbell (1982-1998)
- Anselm Lingnau (1998-)
Our Scottish dance evenings are primarily devoted to a general class for dancers of all ages and abilities. We have taught dance technique over the years but the emphasis has always been on dancing for fun. In the late sixties and early seventies we had a »demonstration team« with more experienced dancers who met to practise for public performances. (Today we do this on a more informal basis). For demonstrations before the start of the event log see a list and some comments here.
We have held the Frankfurt Spring Ball since 1968 and this attracts about one hundred Scottish dance fans from the whole of Germany and neighbouring countries.
The FSCDC has international contacts through its affiliation to the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS). We have had visiting dancers who moved to Frankfurt for shorter or longer periods for work or as students at the university, and likewise members of our group attend events elsewhere in Germany or abroad, such as the RSCDS annual summer school in St. Andrews (Scotland). Hence we are tied into the worldwide network of Scottish dancers.
Weekly Dance Venues
»After the war there was dancing in the Herderschule's gymnasium, without windows and with puddles on the floor when it was raining.« – Franziska
Dancing on Tuesday: At first, the Frankfurt Scottish dance group met in the cellar of the canteen of the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University in Frankfurt. However, soon afterwards Franziska arranged for the group to use the gymnasium of the Herderschule (now IGS Herder) near the Frankfurt Zoo, where we still meet every Tuesday except during the school holidays. The Frankfurter Tanzkreis had been using the gymnasium long before the FSCDC was founded. It now belongs to the newly established IGS Herder
»Suddenly all the spectators were gone, when the torrential rain shower started in the Ostpark right in the middle of our performance, and the pavilion tent was very crowded afterwards because everyone wanted to change clothes.« – Antje Erben
»Everyone was laughing, including myself, when at a performance in the Kastanienallee in Darmstadt I fell off the stage and slid prone under a chair, eye to eye with an equally astonished dog.« – Liesl
Dancing on Friday/Demonstration Team (up to 1974): The demonstration team was formed soon after James Alexander's arrival and then met every Friday. At first they danced in the »Haus der Jugend« (in the cellar/table tennis room) but after James' tape recorder was stolen from his car, the dem team moved to a room in the Anglican/Episcopal church in Miquelallee. It remained there until it was dissolved in about 1974 – Claude and Peter Zensinger went to Berlin, Meinhard Reiser moved to Stuttgart, Chris and Colin to Rome (they now live near Geneva and are active in the SCD community there), Brigitte (Gitte) Lotzkat and Crichton to Bangladesh. Margaret Penny moved away, Heidi married in the US and Sharon in Darmstadt. Franziska, Liesl Otterbein, and Peter Bergschmidt stayed faithful to the Frankfurt club.
James was the one who exclusively decided on who could be a member of the dem team. Since it was composed of only 4 to 6 couples at most, there was a considerable moral obligation to come along every single Friday.
Franziska Völker looked after the paper work at first, and she was also the contact person for the Frankfurter Tanzkreis until »Schorsch« Lusky took over that function. From 1984 on Hannelore Mansky was the administrative backbone of the group and looked after jobs such as organising the ball, contacts to the RSCDS, answering enquiries, making announcements to the Group, etc.
From 1996 on, Schorsch took over some of these functions, such as contact to the Frankfurter Tanzkreis, keeping the address lists of our dancers up to date, looking after the keys of the gymnasium on Tuesdays and transporting musical equipment.
In 2004 Eva Schiedrum took over from Hannelore as official »Secretary« while Schorsch continues to fulfil the functions mentioned above. Eva stepped down for private reasons in December 2010. Since then, Maria-Theresia Schwarz and Anselm are sharing these tasks.
The Internet domain, »frankfurt-scd-club.org«, was registered by Anselm in July 2001. Since 2006 it is possible to sign up online for balls and tea dances. The club logo, originally conceived on a provisional basis, also dates from that time.
Our special thanks to (in alphabetical order): Anselm Lingnau, Eva Schiedrum, Gerd Jörger, Liesl and Jochen Otterbein, Hannelore Mansky, Meinhard Reiser, »Schorsch« and Heidi Lusky, Ulrike Köppler, and also to Indra Heinz, Tobias Hünger, Knut Wissenbach and many others. Iris Startup contributed to the English translation of these pages.