Queen's Jubilee @ Euston - See a Ceilidh in action

Written by Colin Holmes. Posted in Ceilidhs

Someone kindly made a video of the band playing at the Queen's Jubilee event and Euston, Suffolk. This gives you a flavour of the kind of dancing you can do at a Ceilidh.

What is a Ceilidh?

Written by Steve Wiles. Posted in Ceilidhs

"It's not hard to pronounce Ceilidh, if you practise deilidh!"

First some official definitions:

Ceilidh, noun, Late 19th century: from Scottish Gaelic ceilidh and Irish célidhe (earlier form of céilí), from Old Irish céilide 'visit, visiting', from céile 'companion'. –

Oxford English Dictionary

In modern usage, a céilidh or ceilidh /ˈkeɪli/ is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Scotland and Ireland and is consequently common in the Scottish and Irish diasporas, as well as throughout England where it has undergone a fusion with English country dance. In Scottish Gaelic it is spelled cèilidh (Scottish Gaelic pronunciation: [ˈkʲʰeːli]), and in Irish it is spelled céilí (Irish pronunciation: [ˈceːlʲiː]).


Is it the same as a Barn Dance?

You are right, it means pretty much the same thing, although a barn dance can have a hint of Americana about it. We are not hung up on what it’s called, we just want you to have a good time. 

So whatever you call it, it's what you get when you take the gentler Country or Folk dancing and add excitement. An evening of dance with Skylarking is great fun, it’s energetic, and crosses age barriers. Despite the Celtic or American sound to its title, we feel that what we give in one of our dance sessions is quintessentially English. You don’t have to wear a kilt or a cowboy hat, and you only need to sit on straw bales if there is no other seating!

Ok, that’s the funny word taken care of but you still may be thinking this sort of thing is only suitable for people wearing traditional dress, who live in VW camper vans in the forest or bearded, flip-flop wearing eccentrics. How wrong you are. Ceilidhs are for people who like to socialise, get up and dance and have a really good time. If this doesn’t apply to you, skip the rest, otherwise continue reading...

European Folk and Dance Music

Written by Steve Wiles. Posted in Ceilidhs

I have always felt proud of England’s heritage of music and dance, and I’m very pleased to be part of its continued exposure and development. So much so that I recently began to wonder whether I was betraying my ‘roots’ by not sticking to a consistently English repertoire when I play in Skylarking. When I really started thinking about this dilemma, it did not take me long to find a way to put my mind at rest…

Public Ceilidhs