Big Dance Weekend

By Hazel Last edited 151 months ago
Big Dance Weekend

The sun is shining, the music is high... why walk when you can dance?

There are loads and loads of events taking place between today and the last night of the Big Dance Festival on Sunday, so many that we can't list them all here. Most events are free and range from taster classes in ceroc, lindy hop and tango to dance displays at places like the Trocadero to big shows at Sadlers Wells and the Coliseum. The following events are worth a mention, just for the fact they're unique and perfectly suited for the long, hot evenings we're experiencing at the moment...

Friday 21 July

Rainha de Bateria (Queen of Bateria) Competition at Guanabara on Drury Lane. The London School of Samba is holding its annual competition to find a Rainha de Bateria to represent them at the Notting Hill Carnival and other events where the London School of Samba will perform. "The position of the Rainha is a great honour in the tradition of Rio carnival. As the only such title in London to be selected in an open competition every year, it's sure to be hotly contested."

Judging by the ladies pictured on the website, ooh, its gonna be scorching. Competition is going to be fierce, but all are welcome to enter - or just stand at the back and gawp. Rainha de Bateria competition, at Guanabara, Drury Lane from 5pm, Friday 21 July. More information about the event and how to enter is available on the London School of Samba website here.

Saturday 22 July

Full listings for Saturday can be gound here but the one to go to is The Big Dance - this is the event that gives this festival its name takes place in Trafalgar Square - and it really is going to be BIG. Join thousands of others in an attempt to create the biggest mass choreography Nelson has ever seen, with the greatest number of dance styles performed to one track. This will also be broadcast on BBC 1 in the evening, so if you'd rather take part by watching it from the comfort of your sofa, you can. For more information and for dance instructions if you want to take part, go to the Big Dance website here.

Other events today include Summer Free Time at Somerset House: this family event features John Hegley guiding through the galleries, dance films, dance installations and performances in the square. There are lots of opportunities for hands-on workshops too, and it runs for four days. More information here.

There's also the Brazilian Carnival and Samba Event outside Sadler's Wells to coincide with the summer show Brasil Brasileiro. The carnival starts at 2.00pm - more information to be found here.

Sunday 23 July

Lots of events, lots of classes dotted around today - check the listings here to see what is going on if you're feeling like trying something new, as this is your last chance as part of this festival. The big event that closes this festival is the BBC Blast event at Trafalgar Square from 12.00pm. Lots of classes and competitions that need to be pre-entered (no enrolment on the day) but for spectators, there's a lot to see: dance and sign language workshops, juggling, dance for pop videos and VJ workshops make up the day.

Last Updated 20 July 2006