53rd Frankfurt Spring Ball & Day School
- Event type:
- Ball, Workshop
- March 16, 2024, 10 a.m.–11:59 p.m.
- Pfarrheim St. Sebastian
Hanauer Straße 17, Mühlheim am Main, Germany
- Birgit Stefanowicz
Our 52nd Spring Ball takes place on 16 March 2024 in the hall of the Pfarrheim St Sebastian (St Sebastian Parish Centre, Hanauer Str. 17, 63165 Mühlheim-Dietesheim), with music by Christine Moos (fiddle), Anselm Lingnau (piano), and surprise guests.
As in previous years there will be a Day School (for intermediate dancers and above). Our teacher this year will be Viktor Lehmann (accompanied by Anselm Lingnau on the piano). There will be a walk-through session of dances from the evening programme later in the afternoon.
|Walk-Through for dances from the evening programme
The Day School and walk-through will also be held at the St Sebastian Parish Centre.
Update: On 6 February 2024, a typo was corrected in the diagrams (Whippety Stourie, bars 25–28).
Admission to the ball is 45 euros and includes a cold buffet dinner. There is a €5 discount for RSCDS members. The walk-through in the afternoon is free for ball attendees. The day school alone is 20 euros (€15 for RSCDS members), and there is a special combination price of only 50 euros (€45 for RSCDS members) for the ball and day school together.
Important: An additional early-bird discount of €5 applies to all registrations received before 9 February 2023. I.e., Ball+Day School €45 (RSCDS €40), Ball only €40 (RSCDS €35), Day School only €15 (RSCDS €10).
Please register by 9 March 2024 using our online form (see the button at the foot of this page). Pre-payment details will be sent out by e-mail in response to your registration. Guests from outwith the SEPA may pay at the door but must still register ahead of time.
Feel free to contact Birgit Stefanowicz or Anselm Lingnau on firstname.lastname@example.org for questions or assistance. We can also be reached by phone on +49(0)6158-7409936.
We’re looking forward to seeing you!
Our 53nd Spring Ball programme features dances from the Frankfurt SCD Club’s fourth ball in 1972, as well as the 28th Spring Ball in 1996. We padded it with some dances from old and new RSCDS books, plus perennial favourites of the Club.
|The Happy Meeting
|Campbell: Glasgow Ass.
|The Grassmarket Reel
|The Starry Eyed Lassie
|Sprague: RSCDS XXIII
|The Falkirk Lass
|Brunken: RSCDS LIII
|Goldring: RSCDS XL
|Priddey: Sutton Coldfield
|Dix: Reel Friends 1
|Miss Milligan's Strathspey
|Just a Dance
|Sands of Morar
|Priddey: RSCDS XLV
|The Montgomeries' Rant
|Castle Menzies (18C): RSCDS X
|Light and Airy
|Campbell: RSCDS IV
|The Minister on the Loch
|J. B. Milne
|Foss: RSCDS 30 popular, Vol 2
Mühlheim-Dietesheim is on the Rhine-Main area suburban rail (“S-Bahn”) network and is conveniently reached using the S8 and S9 trains. Both run between the main train stations of Wiesbaden and Hanau and pass Frankfurt Rhine-Main Airport as well as Frankfurt main station on the inner-city run. The S8 trains also serve Mainz. Travel times from Frankfurt main station to Mühlheim-Dietesheim are approximately 20 minutes.
The suburban trains run all night.
From the suburban rail station it is approximately a 10-minute walk to the St Sebastian parish centre – cross Fichtestrasse (B43) and follow Bettinastrasse all the way to the end, then at the “Dietesheimer Schänke” pub continue to the left onto Hanauer Strasse. The parish centre is on the left after approximately 200 yards.
From the North: Drive south on A5 and at the Bad Homburger Kreuz change to A661 to Offenbach. Take exit 16 (Offenbach-Taunusring) and follow B43 through Offenbach towards the east. In the Waldheim suburb, B43 forks and becomes a “one-way street” – keep to the right in order to go in the correct direction. After approximately 1,5 miles, in Mühlheim-Dietesheim, turn left into Elisabethenstrasse and follow it until you reach the B43 going the in the other direction (on the corner there is a bakery and opposite there is a bank). Turn left. The parish center is a few yards on on the left.
From the West: Drive on A3 to the Offenbacher Kreuz (exit 52) and turn onto A661 towards Bad Homburg. Leave the motorway at exit 16 (Offenbach-Taunusring) and follow the instructions in the previous paragraph.
From the East: Drive on A45/A66 to Hanauer Kreuz. Keep semi-right on B43a, and follow this to the “Hanau-Großauheim/Hanau-Hafen” exit, leave the motorway and turn right onto Rodgaustraße. Shortly afterward (after a curve to the right), turn left onto Kinzigheimer Weg and follow this for approximately 2/3 of a mile, then turn left onto Westerburgstraße (B43). Follow B43 for approximately 2,5 miles towards Mühlheim/Offenbach. In Mühlheim-Dietesheim, the parish centre is on the left-hand side shortly after a bank.
From the South-East: Follow A3 to exit 54 (Hanau), and turn off there north onto B45 towards Hanau. Follow B45 (i.e., keep left where B43a splits off towards the right) and after nearly 3 miles turn left onto Offenbacher Landstraße (B43). Drive on B43 to Mühlheim-Dietesheim; the parish centre is on the left-hand side shortly after a bank.
Parking may be possible to a certain extent in Hanauer Strasse; otherwise you will have to look for a spot in the surrounding residential areas. Please do not park in the area in front of the church; we need the scarce space there to allow for loading and unloading.
In Mühlheim-Dietesheim there appear to be a few hotels of the more basic kind. At first glance, the Hotel-Café Kinnel looks reasonable, but we only know it from its web site.
Thanks to the good suburban rail connection it would not be entirely out of the question to find a place to stay in Frankfurt. The usual hotel web sites should turn up various options which are reachable late at night by suburban rail, metro, a night bus, or a taxi, and should suit all tastes and wallet sizes.
There is also very limited opportunity for sleeping-bag accommodation with members of the group – please ask well in advance!
Q. Is there accommodation and/or hospitality?
A. There are a few (fairly basic) hotels in Mühlheim-Dietesheim. The Hotel-Café Kinnel looks fairy reasonable but we only know it from its web site.
If you prefer a fancier place to stay, the good suburban rail connection makes it feasible to find something in Frankfurt. The usual hotel web sites should turn up many options that are reachable late at night and cater to all tastes and wallet sizes.
We may also be able to arrange private hospitality (sleeping-bag class) with members of the Club. This operates on the time-honoured basis of “first come, first served”.
Q. Why is there another day school this year?
A. Previous day schools were very well-received, and we would both like to continue the tradition (three times is a tradition as far as we are concerned) and on the other hand give guests from elsewhere an extra incentive to come along.
Q. Will the day school cover dances from the evening programme?
A. Not necessarily – this is why there is a separate “walk-through” session in the afternoon. The teacher is completely free to select whatever they want to teach at the day school, but it is quite possible that they may intentionally pick dances with similar formations to ones on the evening programme.
Q. What do you mean, “intermediate and above”?
A. For the day school we stipulate that you can do the five basic Scottish country dance steps and the basic movements and formations (including grand chain, ladies’ chain, promenade, allemande, poussette, and reels of three and four) and are able to join them together. This should apply to pretty much anyone who has been dancing on a regular basis for 6–12 months and/or attending dance workshops. If you are unsure, ask your teacher.
Q. What is the “walk-through” in the afternoon?
A. We have 90 minutes to give a quick explanation of the more difficult or less well-known dances on the evening programme, and possibly dance them a few times through (typically “once and to the bottom”). We cannot provide comprehensive tuition, but such a quick walk-through is usually better than nothing. You can leave your fancy duds for the evening; simple “mufti” will suffice.
The walk-through is really meant for dancers from elsewhere, who are invited to make requests. Just because we had the question in the past: It is unfortunately completely unsuitable as a starting session for people who have never done SCD before :^(
The walk-through is free and you do not need to register – if you’re there, then you’re there.
Q. Will any dances be walked through during the evening?
A. No, but there will be recaps (brief explanations of the dances in English). This is a Frankfurt ball tradition; we try to adjust the ball programme accordingly, and to cover the more unusual dances during the afternoon walk-through. Note: We made an exception in 2022 on account of the pandemic but we don’t plan to change our traditional practice.
Q. I just want to watch. Do I get a special price?
Most of the admission fee covers food and the rent for the hall, both of which are largely independent of whether you’re dancing or not. This means no.
Q. Is there a concession for children who don’t eat that much?
That sounds reasonable. Ask us.
Q. Who are the ”surprise guests”?
A. If we told you it would no longer be a surprise, wouldn’t it? (Our regular visitors may not be all that surprised, though.)
Q. What about warming up?
A. It is customary for everybody to take care of themselves as far as the actual ball is concerned. There will be a collective warmup for the afternoon session. We usually pick the first dance of the ball programme such that it does not involve dozens of pas de basque, poussette or hello-goodbye setting; this is an opportunity to “ease into” the dancing for the night.
Q. Will the dances be walked through during the ball?
A. See above under “Walk-Through”.
Q. I haven’t been dancing for so long. Which dances on the program will I be able to join?
A. Our ball programme contains a rough guide to the degree of difficulty of each dance (the asterisks in the right part of the Pilling diagram title lines). This is of course subjective but may serve as a starting point. As a beginner one should probably stay away from three-star dances unless one has practised them specially (there are only a few of those on the programme, anyway). As far as the others are concerned, it depends on one’s own security and the trustworthiness of one’s partner. If one is absolutely unsure about a dance it is probably best to resist any attempts to get one to join it.
Q. Are kilts (for gents) or white dresses and sashes (for ladies) mandatory?
A. We don’t know who started that rumour. The only rule for our ball, as for most others, is “appropriately formal, if possible”. With a t-shirt and ragged blue jeans one would be clearly under-dressed compared to most of the attendees; however there is nothing to be said against a white shirt and dark (non-denim) trousers (for gents) or a skirt or summer dress (for ladies).
Q. Will guests who are not Scottish dancers be able to dance anything at all?
A. Guests can join the waltzes and Zwiefache at the end of the dinner break and, if they hang around long enough, the polka and last waltz after the »Auld Lang Syne«. Everything else, sadly, requires appropriate knowledge. Warning: The speed of Scottish waltzes is between that of the slow waltz and Viennese waltz that you may know from ballroom dancing.
Q. Why Zwiefache?
A. See the official history of the Frankfurt ball (German only for now, sorry).
Q. What about a seating order (and seats in general)?
A. Everybody finds their own place, there are no table registrations like in ballroom dance school (we have enough to organise already without keeping track of who will sit where, thank you very much). In any case, the tables will only be brought in for the meal, and we would be delighted if some of our more muscular guests could give us a hand when the time comes :^)
Many people reserve their seats when they arrive for the afternoon session, by marking them with spare garments or other sundry articles.
Q. What about a dressing room?
A. This time around that is actually not entirely unlikely. Do be advised, though, that we cannot assume liability for any valuables left there (or in the hall).
Q. When is dinner?
A. In Frankfurt we usually break for dinner after the first two three-dance blocks (six dances), approximately from 8.15pm to 9.45pm.
Q. When does the ball finish?
A. Since we want to tidy up as far as possible immediately after the ball, we aim to finish by 12.30am. The suburban trains are running all night so there is no cause for concern.