Cambridge Dancers' Club

The Cambridge Dancers' Club is a town & gown society. As well as serving students in the region (eg from both Cambridge University and Anglia Ruskin), our classes and practices are for adult members of the local population who want to dance and we even have a few non-resident members.


Rock'n'Roll vs Salsa - the September mash-up!

On the evening of Wednesday 27th September, we'll be running a pair of beginners level classes in social rock'n'roll (7:30pm) and Cuban salsa (8:30pm) in the upper hall of the Stoneyard Centre. Both of these styles are fairly relaxed and suitable for all levels of ability. You don't need to be super fit to start dancing with us.

The class price is £4 per person. Since we're currently between academic years, club membership is not required for these; but 2016-7 members might still have a free class slot on their membership card to use (for one or the other or even both!).

Freshers Fair and Freshers Week

Find us at the CUSU Freshers Fair (probably in the big tent on Parkers Piece) on Tuesday 3rd and Wednesday 4th October all day and then in the evenings the competitive dancers will be in action at practices.

We are also be running some free taster sessions in ballroom and latin. The public ones are:
• Thursday 5th October at 8:30pm in St.Columba's Church halls
• Friday 6th October at 8:30pm in the University Centre's Main Dining Hall
• Saturday 7th October at 5:30pm in St.Columba's Church halls

A 25% membership fee discount is available for students (or people on benefits) who join the club during Freshers Week, ie £15 instead of the normal £20. After that, students only get a 10% discount on the full annual membership fee, ie £18. There is a similar 25% class fee discount for students who join the competitive dancesport teams, ie £3 for your dancesport classes instead of £4.

DanceSport Team Trials

For those dancers interested in competing for the university team, the DanceSport Ballroom and Latin trials are going to be held on Sunday 8th October from 9am onwards in Parkside school gym. Note that Anglia Ruskin students are also eligible to compete for Cambridge University. More details about signing up should be available later from the CUDT.


We are currently in the tail end of the summer holiday period. The only regularly timetabled items still running are the Tuesday DanceSport practice and the free Friday social dance. But we also have a couple of beginners level classes on Wednesday 27th September.

The 2017-8 academic year begins in October (matching Cambridge University terms rather than school terms). There will be some free taster sessions in Freshers Week and normal classes will resume on Monday 9th October - for which you will need to renew your club membership (or join us for the first time if you haven't been a member before).

The timetable for regular classes will be up by the end of September but a sneak preview of the work in progress is here. Please don't attempt to attend these classes before term starts as they won't exist yet!

Exceptions to the regular timetable will sometimes be noted on the timetable (eg if we received advance warning that a venue was not going to be available) but otherwise additions and cancellations will show up on this homepage as announcements above and in the termly outline below.

Michaelmas 2017 Term Outline

Week -1 (Monday Sep.25 to Friday Sep.29), "are we nearly there yet?":
Tue. Sep.26 = DanceSport practice 7pm to 9pm in Parkside school gym
Wed. Sep.27 = Beginners RnR 7:30pm and salsa 8:30pm in Stoneyard Centre upper hall
Fri. Sep.29 = free social dancing in grad.pad MDH from 8:30pm to 10:30pm

Week 0 (Monday Oct.02 to Sunday Oct.08), freshers week (everything is free to try):
Tue. Oct.03 = Freshers Fair day + DS-B+L practice 7pm to 9pm
Wed. Oct.04 = Freshers Fair day + DS-RnR practice 7:30pm to 9:30pm
Thu. Oct.05 = free taster session in St.Columba's from 8:30pm to 10pm
Fri. Oct.06 = free taster session in grad.pad MDH from 8:30pm to 9:30pm
Sat. Oct.07 = free taster session in St.Columba's from 5:30pm to 6:30pm
Sun. Oct.08 = dancesport team trials in Parkside school gym from 9am to 5pm

Week 1 (Monday Oct.09 to Sunday Oct.15), amnesty week (non-member fee waived):
Thu. Oct.12 = no DS practice due to an in-school event

Week 2 (Monday Oct.16 to Sunday Oct.22):
Sat. Oct.21 = no class/practice in grad.pad MDH due to a university (careers?) event

Week 3 (Monday Oct.23 to Sunday Oct.29)

Week 4 (Monday Oct.30 to Sunday Nov.05):
Tue. Oct.31 = DS-Ballroom practice is 6pm to 9pm in Hills Road 6th Music Room
Fri. Nov.03 = no GD in grad.pad MDH due to a university (careers?) event

Week 5 (Monday Nov.06 to Sunday Nov.12):
Sat. Nov.11 = OTNT competition (within Cambridge)

Week 6 (Monday Nov.13 to Sunday Nov.19):
Sun. Nov.19 = Warwick dancesport competition

Week 7 (Monday Nov.20 to Sunday Nov.26):
Sun. Nov.26 = Nottingham dancesport competition

Week 8 (Monday Nov.27 to Sunday Dec.03)

Revision Notes

Revision notes are available for a few of our classes. If you've danced before, these may help you work out what level of class is suitable for you - ie if you recognise the names of some of the figures and already know how to do them. This page also includes some examples of music suitable for the various dance styles, so that you can practise away from classes.

General Dancing

Our General Dancing sessions on Friday evenings, from 8:30pm to 10:30pm in the Main Dining Hall of the University Centre (grad.pad), are intended to be for everyone to practise dancing together in a friendly social environment. It's completely free to attend GD, whether you want to dance or merely to watch. You don't need a fixed practice partner and you don't need CDC membership either. Eg some ex-members return from time to time and people also bring visitors and family along - including children.

It's not as formal as a ball or even a tea dance. Most people wear very casual clothes; but a few do prefer to dress up a little - or simply come as they are from other events. Sometimes there's a special seasonal theme to the music with matching decorations etc and the option of wearing appropriate fancy-dress costume for a more party-like atmosphere.

There's normally no official tuition at these social events (ie any teachers present are usually just there to have fun themselves) but there are typically several experienced dancers around who are willing to show beginners (or improvers) a few steps. Although, obviously, you'll gain more benefit by attending proper classes too. You can try dancing with different people during the evening or stick with your one special partner as you wish. So do come along and introduce yourself to the regulars.

During normal term-time, the first half hour will concentrate on beginners dances (pairs of waltz, quickstep, cha-cha and jive tracks with some rumba and social foxtrot) to allow new students to start to integrate fully in the social side of the club and/or practise their routines outside the class situation. However, GD also continues outside academic term times into the holidays - apart from national holidays when the building itself is closed or when booked by rival events.

DanceSport Practice Sessions

These practices are for people who already know what they want to practise as there is no formal dance tuition provided. You do not have to be on the team or even a CDC member to attend these sessions but you do have to agree to be bound by the club's health and safety rules (see the committee member in charge of the session). We try to book enough practice space slots to accommodate the expected number of dancers at a price the collective group of them can afford.

The subscription price for Michaelmas Term is £25. There will be an extra £5 for those staying on through December. Note that this is the rate for *members* of the Cambridge Dancers' Club because practices are typically subsidised somewhat by the rest of the club's funds to ensure that students can afford the necessary practice space. If you don't have a valid club membership (the 2016-7 membership card lasts until October), then you will be asked to pay the non-member fee of £8 per session. However, club membership this late on in the academic year is also only £8.

Music will be played as appropriate during the sessions - typically favouring latin american in the smaller venues and modern ballroom in the larger ones. That doesn't mean you can't practise different dances at a particular session. You just need to be considerate of other users of the space. Any RnR (or salsa!) people attending a public practice may prefer to bring their own tracks and co-ordinate with Reggie, Sofiya or Nina etc for these to be played when they want a complete run-through of a dance.

We are also running a somewhat separate set of practices on Wednesday evenings aimed specifically at beginner to improver level dancers who might be intimidated by the more advanced dancers at other practices or need more help. So they will be supervised by the CUDT Beginners Captains. These practices are even more heavily subsidised by the club to deliberately keep the price low and accessible to as many of our new dancers as possible: which means they will be completely free for dancesport beginners in Michaelmas. If you have a normal dancesport practice subscription but really need to use the Wednesday practice for some reason, please respect the right of way of the beginners.

Private Lessons

The CDC as a whole does not arrange private lessons for people. Those teachers who are willing to have their details made public are included on our links page (and, if you already attend CDC lessons, you may approach them there too). However, if you are already on the DanceSport teams or are hoping to be selected, you may be able to arrange for a private lesson with one of the team coaches. Contact the CUDT Secretary to book a specific time slot. Non-team people should contact the new CDC competitive group to find out if there are any spare private lesson slots available with the coaches.

CDC Committee

The Cambridge Dancers' Club is a non-profit, combined town & gown, community organisation run by unpaid volunteers - ie those people you see everywhere helping out at classes. To keep costs down as far as possible for all our club members, only the professional teachers and venues we hire get paid (beyond absolutely essential expenses such as some printing costs and performance licence fees!). This means we really do need your help to keep the club going - especially as we have a high turnover among the student volunteers.

If you regularly attend more than one class per week and are committed to dancing, you might want to consider joining the CDC committee. Email the club or ask any door-duty person what this involves. There are a few perks, such as cheaper classes, too. This is obviously particularly relevant to people who attend more than one class per week (from the financial point of view alone!) and for those who want to improve their dancing, learn more things and progress more quickly (as you'll be exposed to more styles, more figures/steps and probably try out both roles).

Competitive DanceSport Ballroom & Latin

If you're a student in the Cambridge area who might be eligible to compete for Cambridge, or if you'd simply like to try the competitive side of dancing for fun, then come along to our DanceSport classes. If you were a beginner in the past competition year (ending with IVDC), then you should attend the intermediates classes and/or continue with team or squad sessions and private lessons.

Students who have not had formal lessons in ballroom and latin before can join the Cambridge University Beginners' DanceSport Team where there's no fixed limit on places and you'll only be competing against other beginners. Note that, for dancesport purposes, Anglia Ruskin students count as Cambridge students. If you're interested in competing but have other questions about eligibility etc then contact the CUDT Beginners' Captain at

If you're a student but not a beginner then you can still trial for the Cambridge University DanceSport Team - by far the most successful university team in the country last year! The main auditions are at the start of the Michaelmas term for places on several teams. For more information, please contact the CUDT Captain(s) at

The CDC also has members competing very successfully on the open circuit (in which non-students may compete). To learn about competitive opportunities for non-students, including out-of-term practice spaces or to seek a partner, please join the "CDC Competes on the Open Circuit" Facebook group. For more information contact our club Secretary at

Competitive Rock'n'Roll

Another dance style featured in the inter-varsity competitions is rock and roll. This has evolved from its authentic social dancing roots to encompass continental-style high kicks as well as showy acrobatics. If this sounds and looks like your sort of thing then anyone is welcome to join and train with the Cambridge University Rock'n'Roll Team. For more information contact the CURnR Captains at

This year they will have their own DanceSport RnR class and public practice on Wednesday evenings; but it's possible to try that as well as our social RnR classes (still on Tuesday evenings) if you want to keep your options open and learn a wider range of styles and figures.

CDC T-shirts

We are now able to offer CDC logo T-shirts again. The price is £8 each. The sizes range from adult small to extra-large (with most women being small or medium and most men being medium upwards). The new batch have red print on a black T-shirt and include some which are printed on the back instead for people who want to wear them while partner dancing; but we do also have a few other colour combinations left from the previous batch. See a committee member (ideally at St.Columba's) to purchase one.

Mailing Lists

If you don't want to join the CDC at the moment but do want to receive emailed announcements of our events during the year, you can subscribe yourself to our mailing list for interested non-members (by clicking on that link). You will then have to reply to the confirmation email you receive.

If you want to unsubscribe from our lists you *must* use the exact form of your email address which you originally used to subscribe to them, not some forwarded or modified version (eg gmail is not the same as googlemail and academic sub-department addresses are not the same as generic ones). Our system can only recognise automatically the information you gave it. If you no longer have access to your originally specified email address then you'll need to request a manual removal.


See our links page for other dance groups (with their own classes and events), private teachers and suppliers of dance equipment etc.

Non-CDC activities in the immediate space-time vicinity include:

  • Ceroc is on Monday evenings at the University Sports & Social Club on Mill Lane.
  • The LindyHoppers have classes and social events on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.
  • CamTango run Argentine Tango classes and socials (though not currently their former Wednesday class in St.C's Gibson Hall).
  • Cambridge Cuban Salsa is operating the Thursday Salsa Social Club and the Sunday Salsa Lounge.
  • Wolfson college has cross-body salsa on Thursdays and Argentine Tango on Saturdays (7pm to 11pm).
  • There is more cross-body salsa on Mondays at St.Paul's, Wednesdays & Fridays at the USC and Thursdays at OLEM Parish Centre.
  • There is English, Scottish, Irish and American folk/country dancing in town plus morris and molly dancing.
  • The next Tea Dance at the Guildhall will be on Tuesday 10th October from 1pm to 4pm. This features a mixture of standard ballroom and latin dances and sequence dancing.
  • Tea Dances of a similar nature occur regularly in many villages around Cambridge (eg out at Prickwillow).
  • More local dance events can be found via meetup.

If you are intending to take your dancing more seriously at any point, then you may need to be fitted for specialist shoes. The best options are usually men's ballroom or ladies' latin shoes for DanceSport B+L (although you'll need heel protectors too for stiletto heels!) and jazz-ballet shoes for coping with *any* dance style, especially salsa or RnR (although light trainers / sneakers are the preferred choice of some salsa and RnR dancers).

Our local supplier, Attitude Dancewear, has recently moved a little further out from the centre of Cambridge to Level 1, 182 Histon Road CB4 3JP (ie towards Arbury, near the Aldi shop). The advantages are better parking and more space to keep more stock in store. They offer a 10% discount to anyone presenting their CDC membership card.

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CUDT : CUDT on Twitter CUDT on FaceBook CUDT on Instagram
CURnR : CURnR on FaceBook (private group)