Jul 27 2019


Presented by FOOTMAD at YWCA Birmingham

FOOTMAD has been on the scene in Birmingham since 1980 and is still going strong.  We have at least one dance a month with some additional dances and parties during the year. We also put on two highly acclaimed weekends of dancing — a contra weekend in Mentone, Alabama, and a southern square dance weekend at Cheaha State Park. Both are amazingly fun.

What to Expect

Learning the Dances
Saturday night dances begin with a warm-up session at 7:00 and dancing begins at 7:30. The warm-up sessions give new and experienced dancers a chance to meet and go over the basic dance moves and techniques before the dance begins. A caller teaches every dance. He or she walks the dancers through each sequence of moves before the music begins and continues to call the moves throughout the dance.Who to Dance With
Don’t worry about bringing a dance partner. You will find a lot of friendly dancers, but don’t wait for one to ask you to dance. Feel free to ask someone you haven’t met yet. At FOOTMAD men ask women to dance, women ask men to dance, women ask women to dance and men ask men to dance. The only rule is to have fun!

Can the Kids Come?
Yes! Children are welcome at dances. They can join the dancing or just enjoy the music. There is a space at the end of the hall reserved for them to play in.

What to Wear
No matter how cold it is outdoors or how well the gym is air-conditioned, you will get warm when you dance. Avoid sweaters and heavy clothes that can’t be removed when the dancing gets hot. And you’ll enjoy dancing more if the soles of your shoes don’t grip the floor, so test them out before you come.

We primarily do three types of dancing at FOOTMAD dances — contra dancing, square dancing, and waltzes. If you find yourself patting your foot or moving to good music, if you can walk and listen, then you can do all of our dances. Of course you can improve your skills as you gain experience, but nothing prevents even true beginners from dancing and having a good time. We do not require special clothes or skill levels at our dances. Our more experienced dancers will gladly help you with all of our dances and we love to have beginning dancers attend.

Contra Dancing

Contra is traditional New England folk dancing. Americans have enjoyed contra dances since Revolutionary times. They combined ideas from French and English country dancing with their own way of having fun and came up with contra dancing. It’s a social dance akin to square dancing that has retained its simple, open, community-oriented spirit.

Contra dancing is great exercise and great fun enjoyed by people of all ages and lifestyles. It shares some elements with square dancing such as “swing your partner” and “do-si-do,” but the couples form long lines rather than squares. It involves mixing with the other dancers as each couple does a set of other figures, called by a caller, with another couple before progressing to a new couple and repeating the routine. Since the routine always repeats in contra dancing, the role of the caller tends to diminish as the dance progresses.

Square and Circle Dances

Square dances consist of four-couple squares. Our squares differ from most modern square dancing because we do it to live music, we do not require lessons or uniforms, and we tend to stick to more traditional dance forms. Our circle dances (often called big circles) start with everyone in one or two big circles.


Usually we will have a waltz just before the break and as the last dance of the evening. If you don’t know how to waltz, let our experienced dancers help you learn how to do this beautiful couple dance. Although it may not look like it, at the most basic level waltzes consist of simply walking to the music — just as in squares and contras.

Our band for this dance is Juniper Swing with calling by Chrissy Davis-Camp

Admission Info


 $10 for adults
$8 for college students
$4 for those 13-18,
and free for those 12 and under.
Pay at the door.

Phone: 205-999-4574

Dates & Times

2019/07/27 - 2019/07/27

Location Info

YWCA Birmingham

309 23rd Street North, Birmingham, AL 35203