pennsicdance: Planning for Pennsic XXX

Julia E Smith julias+ at
Wed Nov 22 07:05:01 PST 2000

Vanessa Layne wrote:
> Greetings all!
> Juliana, a request:
> Could you please write up a description of what it was that you did
> for us last year, and send it here to the list?

Sure. Here's a draft version.  I'd love feedback and comments.

Juliana's Quick and Dirty Guide to Coordinating Dance at Pennsic

First, and foremost: remember, you're not "in charge." You don't have to
run dance every night; in fact you don't have to run it at all.  Your
job is to organize and coordinate, so that everyone can work together
and *have* *fun*.  If it's not fun, find someone to do it who will think
it's fun. If you do that, then you won't burn out, and everyone will
feel included, and that keeps dance healthy and happy.

Things to do:
- Find someone to cover each night of dance.  At Pennsic XXIX, we needed
someone starting Thursday of the pre-War week, and it just gets bigger. 
Talk to them about whether they need/want assistants, and if they need
help finding them.
- Find someone to coordinate the Masked Ball.  Either you or they need
to also find a head musician for the Masked Ball.  A list of dances
should be complete and available before Pennsic.
- Find someone to coordinate the Caroso Ball (generally some afternoon).
Either you or they need to also find a head musician for the ball. A
list of dances should be complete and available before Pennsic.
- Find someone to coordinate (or lots of people to teach) a series of
introductory classes.  At Pennsic XXIX, they were in the afternoon, but
they could be just before dance, or whenever.  However, they need to be
on the class schedule. 
- Talk to Dame Alys (or whoever coordinates A&S in the future) about
classes, and make sure that the balls get on the schedule.  Recruit more
teachers as necessary, and offer advice to the A&S coordinator about
- Discuss the placing of the dance tent, and the facilities for it, with
Dame Alys (the autocrat basically sees you as her deputy).  That means:
the dance floor, location, electrification, tables and chairs
).  We can
let other people use it, but only if we don't need it. 
- Find someone to create the Pennsic Pile.  This is a copy of music, so
that everyone is on the same page.  We need 15-20 copies of it.  The
master should be passed along to your successor (yes I have it).
- Make sure that we have a plan for court.  We need the Barn for the
Masked Ball, and so you have to schedule it around courts.  If
Æthelmearc court is at 6, then we can have it at 8 to set up for 9.  Be
sure to schedule setup at 8 and the ball at 9.  Otherwise, we might have
another court in there
  Additionally, there are courts Wednesday,
Thursday, and Friday: plans need to include that fact.
- Coordinate with the musicians.  This could mean asking individuals to
be "in charge" on certain nights, or just ensuring that a reasonable
number of musicians are going to be coming.
- Write copy for the Pennsic Handbook (due in May) about the balls, any
classes whose blurbs haven't been done, and any announcements about
what's going to happen with dance.

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