Court dancing

The dances

All court dances are choreographed dances. This means that they all have their set steps and a specific order in which they are done, although different variations of every dance do exist. This happened because most choreographies have never been written down or only imprecisely. There was no need to do this—dancing was an essential part of proper education for every young gentleman and lady, so everyone knew at least the basic steps. On top of that, ball dancing trends can be just like fashion trends: changing and sometimes fleeting. What was absolutely “not done” one year, was acceptable or even “in” the next.

Because of the reasons above, some of our dances do have historical choreography whereas others were adapted from or based on what little written evidence we could find.Some of our own members were even brave enough to write their own choreos!


When attending a ball, a gentleman will invite a different lady to dance with him for every number. We uphold this tradition during dance rehearsals so that our members get to know everyone and learn from each other.

A court dance is never danced alone, but always with a (varying) partner. Every couple consists of one man and one woman*. Sometimes, this is it: you’ll dance alone, with just the two of you. In most cases however, dances are performed with three or four such couples in various formations such as lines, circles and squares.

*The more appropriate labels here might be “lead” and “follow”. We just use these binary terms to enhance the historic experience. Members are always free to choose whichever role they feel most comfortable with.