All Hands In: Steáfán and Saskia w/Sue Gola

Saturday, November 14, 2020. “Doors” at 6:00PM, Dance from 6:30 PM – 7:45 PM

MMTD is joining forces with communities across North America to produce All Hands In, a virtual contra dance event open to dancers world-wide.

November 14th: Music by Steáfán and Saskia, with Sue Gola calling

We are delighted to feature Steáfán Hannigan and Saskia Tomkins, an incredibly talented husband and wife duo who each play a wide assortment of contemporary and Celtic instruments. Steáfán and Saskia are from Cobourg, just outside of Toronto along the shores of Lake Ontario. Their music is enchanting and full of energy – you’re in for a treat!

Our featured caller will be Sue Gola. A long-time contra dancer, Sue was drawn into calling for contras in 2014. Since then, she has called at dances both large and small throughout the Northeast. Sue gives instructions concisely and clearly, and has a friendly way about her that makes dancers feel welcome.

Because this dance uses pre-recorded video to feature our band, it is best if you join via laptop or PC; those joining on a mobile device will have difficulty if they like to pin or watch other dancers. Or join with both – use your PC for sound and your mobile device for pinned dancing.

Have you been to a virtual dance yet? If not, you might be surprised how fun it can be. In virtual (online) contra dancing, dancers interact with imaginary people (“ghosts”) in the majority of dances. Because of this, we presume that everyone in attendance has contra dancing experience. Walkthroughs are concise, and there won’t be a beginners’ lesson.

That said, when you dance alone in your living room, the contra line is exactly where you imagine it, and unexpected moves become glorious new choreography! So, everyone is always welcome to join.

To attend the dance, click on the following link:

Join the event at 6:00PM Central on Saturday to join our community social room. When you log on, you will be able to select the Mid-Missouri community room (or tell the moderator in the chat box that you would like to join the Mid-Missouri room) where we will be able to socialize as a local group for about 30 minutes.  Then we will rejoin the large group where there will be a brief introduction to virtual dancing at 6:30PM, and dancing will begin promptly thereafter.

At in-person dances, an entry fee is collected; for All Hands In, we work on the honor system, asking dancers to make a donation to the band. Recommended donation is $10 (more if you can; less if you can’t.

All of our callers and helpers are volunteering, to help our musicians during a difficult time. You can make your donation to our musicians at this link:

Steáfán and Saskia have put in a tremendous amount of work preparing this set of tunes specifically for our dance, so please give generously.

Toronto’s contra dance community hosts the infrastructure and provides the funding to produce All Hands In, with further volunteer assistance from participating communities like ours. MMTD board members volunteer to assist in various ways, so we do our part of this collaborative initiative.

All Hands In is scheduled every 2nd and 4th Saturday evening until we can dance in person again. MMTD participates as a group every 2nd Saturday of the month, but you are still welcome to attend the 4th Saturday events on your own. You can keep track of MMTD scheduled events on our community Facebook page or the MMTD website:

We have a generous limit of 500 participants, so tell your contra dancing friends, and feel free to reshare this announcement.

See you at the dance!

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