Stepping On: A Conference on Stepping in Dance across the British Isles and Beyond

16 – 17 November 2019

Cecil Sharp House, London, UK

The British Isles have a rich history of step dancing in many forms and in many forms and contexts, spanning centuries and linking with traditions across the world. Some of these dances and their histories are relatively well-known, others largely lost. The aim of the conference was to further our knowledge and understanding in these traditions and to stimulate debate.

Download the proceedings from the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library

Buy the printed proceedings from the EFDSS


  • In Search of ‘Street’ Clog Dance. Alexandra Fisher
  • Ontario Old–Time Step Dancing and its Connections to the British Isles. Sherry Johnson
  • How fast should we dance: An investigation using recordings. Sean Goddard
  • Hornpipe stepping at barn dances and ceilidhs in England. Chloe Middleton-Metcalfe
  • Finding our Footing: a discussion of the evidence for a social dance step vernacular to these islands. Anne Daye
  • The Movements, Motifs, and Influences of The Mullagh Set Dancers. Siobhan Butler
  • Everything you wanted to know about Welsh Clog Dancing but were too afraid to dance. Huw Williams
  • Competition, Consumerism, and Conformity: A study of the manifestation of North American ideals in Competitive Irish dance culture. Annabelle Bugay
  • From Family to Team: the transmission of Pat Tracey’s clog steps and the formation of Camden Clog. Kate Tattersall, Ru Rose and Jon Davison
  • Steps in Australia: The history. Heather Blasdale-Clarke
  • Whistling Billy’s Barefoot Hornpipe – A presentation on the process of creating a hornpipe sequence from named steps in Henry Mayhew’s London Labour and the London Poor (1851). Simon Harmer
  • Exploring the notion of the Scotch Reel as a solo dance. Mats Melin
  • A History of the Scotch Four: Early Step Dancing in Cape Breton. Heather Sparling
  • Are these steps percussive? Reflections on an interpretation. Pat Ballantyne
  • Dancing Hands and Rhythmic Voices: Transmission Methods in Irish Step Dance. Samantha Jones
  • Dartmoor Stepdancing: Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow. Lisa Sture