What is Circle Dance?"We come spinning out of nothingness, scattering stars. The stars form a circle and in the centre we dance." RUMI

Sylvia Williment is a sacred circle dance teacher in West Yorkshire trained by June Watts. A life long lover of dance, Sylvia was introduced to sacred circle dance by Breda Aherne in 1999. She has since been passionate about sharing its meaning and magic in a joyful and caring environment.

The roots of sacred circle dance lay in our far distant past when dancing in circles or lines was one of the earliest forms of religious expression. The circle is a very ancient universal symbol of wholeness, unity, community and the turning of the year. Throughout history people have met to express these values by dancing in circles, a living tradition that is still found in parts of Europe.

Sacred circle dance as we know it today was brought to Britain by Bernard Wosien, a German ballet master and choreographer. He was born on 19 September 1908, the son of a clergyman. From a very early age he danced folk dances with his family. As a young adult he was introduced to classical ballet and decided, after first studying theology as his father had, to become a dancer. In 1960 he turned wholly to teaching and in the holidays regularly took groups to Greece and Yugoslavia to learn the old European dances in their place of origin. He was fascinated by the sacred quality and the symbolism expressed by the ancient steps and rhythms. However, there was nowhere in Germany where Bernard could develop his ideas of dance being rooted in the community, serving ordinary people in their everyday lives.

In 1976, Bernard met Peter and Eileen Caddy, two of the founders of the Findhorn Foundation in Scotland. They felt the need for dance and music at Findhorn and invited him and his family to the community, the first of many visits. He took a number of the old European dances and some of his own choreographies to Findhorn where they struck a chord as a way of building and enhancing the community. He regularly visited Findhorn in following years, combining choreographed dances with traditional folk dances, reflecting his deep understanding of the connection between spirit and movement.

From Findhorn others took the dances to other parts of Britain and the repertoire increased, drawing on traditional dances from Europe, Israel, Russia and Celtic Britain and new choreographies to all kinds of music by many talented dancers and teachers.

The Sacred Circle Dance network has now spread throughout the world. Dances can take on many forms, styles and moods. The aim is to create a sense of well-being and communion with others, inviting a sense of wholeness and sacredness into our lives, moving together in unity, beyond words to that still, silent point within ourselves.

Sacred circle dance is open to all. There are dancers of all ages, no partners are needed as we all join the circle together. New dancers are always welcome, with or without any previous dance experience.

Dancing with Sylvia "wherever a dancer stands is holy ground" Martha Graham

Upcoming Events

Sylvia has now retired from teaching Sacred Circle Dance. However, this website will be maintained for the time being for its resources. A big thank you to all those who have danced with Sylvia in the past.

Circle Dance in Yorkshire

“THE GODDESS LEADS US INTO THE SPIRAL DANCE OF LIFE. THROUGH DANCE SHE TEACHES HER CHILDREN MOVEMENT AND CHANGE.” Merlin Stone

Bradford with Sophia Hatch - 7.45 pm Wednesdays at Saltaire Methodist Church Hall

Catterick with Sue Mellish - Tuesday at 7pm at Booth Hall

Easingwold with Margaret Whitcombe - 2.30 pm last Saturday at Alne Village Hall

Harrogate with Alison Moore - Alternate Fridays in term time at St. Mary's Church Hall, Harlow Terrace

Hebden Bridge with Sophia Hatch - 7.30 pm Tuesdays at Central Street School

Leeds with Joan Peart - 8 pm first, third and fifth Tuesdays at St. Giles Church Hall, Bramhope

Marske-by-Sea with Anna - 7 pm Mondays and 10 am Tuesdays at Methodist Hall, Hummershill Lane

Middlesbrough with Anna - 1.15 pm Tuesdays at Nunthorpe School

Pickering with Marion Elliott - Most Tuesdays at 2 pm, Friends Meeting House

Scarborough with Kate White - 7.30 pm Wednesdays at St. James Community Arts Centre

Sheffield with Hilary Webster - 1.15 pm alternate Mondays at The Heeley Institute
- 7.30 pm last Monday, The Shakespeare

Todmorden with Sophia Hatch - 10.15 am Thursdays - women only

Wensleydale with Wendy Bannon - 7 pm Mondays at Harnby Village Hall

York with Karen Michaelsen - 7.30 pm Mondays at Priory Street Centre
noon Tuesdays at York Explore
10 am Thursday at Huntington Memorial Hall
7.30pm Thursday at Clements Hall

York with Paul Boizot - 7pm Wednesday at St Columba's, Priory Street

Please email for further details

 

Links

Chalice Well
Findhorn Foundation
tiana art

Andy Bettis
Andy has been teaching and leading Sacred Dance / Circle Dance groups since 1986. He is co-focaliser of the Sacred Dance Department at the Findhorn Foundation, and regularly teaches both beginners and experienced dancers.

Derrie McGahon
Derrie believes we only have to open gently to the flow and rhythm of nature and through the movement of the circle dance can have support and encouragement to receive gentle healing to body, mind and spirit. Derrie runs regular evening and day workshops in Copper Beech Centre, which is located in the grounds of Quarryfield House, South Co. Sligo, Eire. Derrie teaches Bach Flower dances, traditional folk circle dances and more modern choreographed dances to beautiful and inspirational music from all over the world.

Hazel Young
Hazel is very much involved in the circle dance family, teaching regular groups, organising and teaching longer special events, and creating new circle dances which have been taken all over the world.

Judy King
Judy King is a trained Physical Education teacher and has been teaching Circle Dance full time since 1987. She is an enthusiastic and humorous teacher who manages to combine these qualities with aeaching style that encourages awareness and precision. She is known for her ability to take you beyond the steps towards a deeper understanding of the movement within the dance.

June Watts
June's particular focus is the relationship of the human with the natural world, and the re-awakening to the sentient beings of the Earth — the devas, angels, fairies — and how to work in harmony with them. She journeys consciously with the cycle of the seasons and the eight festivals of the year. Whatever the occasion — be it a danceshop, or a regular evening group, the dancing will always have this awareness — of the cycles of the Earth, Moon and Sun, and of the world of Faerie

Karen Michaelsen
Karen Michaelsen has been leading Circle Dance since 1997. She leads regular classes in York as well as an annual programme of workshops and special events in York and the UK. Karen has also been leading residential weekends since 2001.

Laura Shannon
Laura has studied with many expert teachers and has travelled widely to experience folk dance in its original context, specialising in Armenian, Balkan, Rom (Gypsy) and women's dances.

Lynn Frances
Lynn Frances offers a range of Sacred Circle Dance workshops and classes in Surrey/Hampshire as well as nationally and internationally. Lynn is one of the most experienced Sacred Circle Dance teachers in Great Britain.

Mandy de Winter
It has been Mandy's passion to promote and bring live music to dance events. She has made several recordings of Circle Dance music with the wonderful musicians and dancing friends she has met along the way.

Martine Winnington
Martine Winnington lives in Switzerland and teaches circle dance internationally. She combines a thorough knowledge of the Bach Flower remedies with a holistic approach to health and personal development. She trained in different dance styles and traditions with many teachers. She now promotes and develops Anastasia's work, marvelling at the healing qualities of these dances.

Paul Boizot
Paul has taught Circle Dance since 1992, and currently runs a weekly group in Chesterfield, and shares teaching at two groups in Sheffield. Since 1993 he has run day events in Sheffield every couple of months, for dancers with some experience.

 

Please email for further information