BannerPhoto1 BannerPhoto2 BannerPhoto3 BannerPhoto4

Cincinnati Contra Dancers


Welcome to Cincinnati Contra Dancing!

There are shortcuts to happiness, and dancing is one of them. (Vicki Baum)

The fiddler tunes the strings. The guitar player strums a couple of chords. Around the room, the dancers ask for a partner for the first contradance of the evening. Smiles are plentiful. Cares are left at the door. For the past two hundred years people across America have gathered in houses, churches, and dance halls for the wonderful evenings of social contradancing. And people shall gather again soon. Easily accessible by all people, it requires no special training or natural talent. Young and old, tall and short, fast and slow, all can come and have a beautiful evening, interacting with friends in simple and beautiful traditional dances. Melodies, though old, sound fresh and new each time as the dancing lives on, each time similar to the last, but never the same. Every Monday evening, and the second Saturday of each month, the Cincinnati Contradancers host a dance at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center for the enjoyment of all who care to attend. Come be a part of the tradition. It won't be the same without you! (S. Tossey )

Dance Location and Schedule

The dances are held at the Wyoming Fine Arts Center in the Cincinnati suburb of Wyoming. We generally dance every Monday night at 8 pm, but check the schedule for updates. There's free training on Mondays at 7:30 and the dance runs from 8-10 pm. Monday dances cost $4 for ages 18 and over and $2 for ages 13-17. Children 12 and under are free, and must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Once a month we have a Saturday night dance, typically on the 2nd Saturday of the month. The dance runs from 8 - 11:30 pm and can be more advanced than on Mondays, so it helps to have some experience. Saturday dances are $7.

Some contra basics

Contra is a communal style folk dance that is fun and easy to learn. No partner or experience is necessary, but you do need soft-soled shoes. A caller leads the dancers though a series of moves. Since it's a communal dance, most people change partners after each dance.

Dress comfortably, since the dances are energetic and you will get warm! Common attire for either gender is shorts or jeans and t-shirts. Many women prefer flowing skirts because they're fun to dance in.

Contra is a style of dance where it's more important to have fun than do the dance a particular way, where people are friendly and welcoming, and where others will be glad to help you learn the basic steps.


Why We Contra Dance

This excellent video from Jim Crawford features dancers from the Chattahoochee Country Dancers (Atlanta area) speaking about their appreciation for contra dancing.