12-14 April 2019

Jane Austen Festival Australia is an annual celebration in Canberra where Austen and Napoleonic fans from all over Australia come and indulge themselves in everything Regency - including dancing, music, food, games, archery, fencing, theatre, promenades, grand balls, talks, workshops, costumes and books. This festival is now a regular part of the ACT Heritage Festival, Australian Heritage Week and is supported by the ACT Government, the Australian Costumers Guild and the Earthly Delights Historic Dance Academy. Since its inception in 2008 this little festival has blossomed into one of the most delightful four days anyone could experience each April in an old and beautiful part of Canberra, the Federal capital of Australia.

January 31, 2015

JAFA15- Newsletter 2

Welcome to newsletter number two,  JAFA 15

More updates on festival services. Remember if you would like to have something mentioned, or know someone who does, just email your copy to the JAFA volunteer editor (TM) : editor@janeaustenfestival.com.au

See http://janeaustenfestival.com/about/jafa-2015/  for festival details and a guide to accommodation available. You can also follow JAFA 15 on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/JaneAustenFestival  

Submissions by Wednesday morning please, for Thursday publishing.


Some important news. Update on food vendors - The Chameleon Icecreamery will be serving their delicious homemade icecream and pancakes. Standby for hours.

• Specialising in homemade Boutique Ice Cream, Sorbet and Gelati.
• Specialty flavours include Rose Petal, Pomegranate and Guinness.
• We use the freshest ingredients and homegrown fruits.
• Birthday cakes and takeaway packs.
Special diets catered for including diabetic, soya, sheep & goat milk.
Gold & Silver Awards - Sydney Royal Easter Show

Here’s the coffee http://www.heresthecoffee.com.au/ will be selling their delicious organic coffees and beverages, along with other food items – more details to come.

Costumes by Adrienne

Some of you will remember Adrienne Unger, trading as Costumes by Adrienne. In 2012 she gave a presentation on making a gown from a sari, and in 2013, a workshop on Regency sleeves. She is offering a dress making service, with delivery at JAFA. Her creations can be viewed on her Face Book page, Costumes and Beautiful Frocks .
She will have new gowns and possibly other items of clothing to sell. If anyone wants to order ahead of time – standard sizes preferred for delivery at the beginning of the festival , please contact Adrienne on ungera@bigpond.net.au or phone her mobile 0419 180 671.

Sewing Workshops : Pre Festival costume preparation
Beginner/Intermediate Regency Bodiced Petticoat Sewing Class - no need to wear a bra, corset or stays under your regency gown! This boned, front opening petticoat will do the job.
6 x Thursday nights, 7pm – 9pm, starting Thursday 12 February 2015. Some home work will be required during the course.
Materials needed: sewing machine, needles, pins and fabric cutting scissors. Pattern, fabric and sewing thread provided. Participants need to know how to use their sewing machine before the class and have a standard and zipper foot. Hand sewing will be required at times.
Enrol and pay in advance. Because we pre-purchase & pre-wash class supplies we cannot offer refunds but you can transfer your enrolment to someone else.
Class limited to 5 participants. Enrol now at http://www.earthlydelights.com.au/historic-costume/Classes

JAFA 15 - The Festival dance schedule

Just released by Dr John Gardiner-Garden, Dancing Master to the Quality


Dancing to Battle!

Social dancing features very prominently in Jane Austen’s novel, as it did in life at the time, and people coming this JAFA will understand why. The fun we will all experience on the sprung wooden floor at our new grand and historic Albert Hall venue (a Bath away from home), is only part of the answer. The rest of the answer is in Pride and Prejudice: ‘To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love’ and ‘There is nothing like dancing after all.—I consider it as one of the first refinements of polished societies’.

In Emma is the answer for why we all keep coming back to dance at JAFA: ‘It may be possible to do without dancing entirely. Instances have been known of young people passing many, many months successively without being at any ball of any description, and no material injury accrue either to body or mind; - but when a beginning is made - when the felicities of rapid motion have once been, though slightly, felt - it must be a very heavy set that does not ask for more.’

Indeed, it’s at dances that people met and learnt something special about each other (and indeed, it’s in the course of country dances in Pride and Prejudice that we learn of Elizabeth’s feelings for Wickham, Darcy and Mr Collin). In so many Austen letters and novels we also find references to cotillions, quadrilles, minuets and finishing dances such as La Boulangere.

In April 2015 we’ll enjoy all the different dance forms Austen refers or alludes to in her writings—dance forms that were being enjoyed right across western Europe in her day, and as we will be making a special feature of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo, we will be making a special feature of country dances that marked that and other battles of the Napoleonic wars, of fun dances in the fabulously popular ‘English style’ not only from English manuals but from contemporary French, German, Italian—and even Latvian and Russian manuals.

To get us in and out of all the fabulous music and dance being enjoyed at the time the Earthly Delights Historic Dance Academy players will be sharing the stage with the fabulous professional and award-winning wind trio Aeolus, led by Canberra arts institution David Whitbread, who will be bringing us a sound very close to that of small c.1800 ball ensembles and playing for our dancing pleasure lots of beautiful French bal music and perhaps all 12 of Beethoven’s famous contredanses.

The exact program and guest calling spots is still to be finalised but a rough plan is as follows:

FRIDAY 10 APRIL—with dances mostly from the late 18th century.
Friday 9.15-10.30: The Georgian era country dance—dances for the evening Pleasures.
Friday 11.00-12.30: The Cotillion—the craze that spread from France across Europe, to England and beyond.
Friday 1.30-3.00: Dances in big formations—period fun in squares and rectangles for 12 and 16 dancers.
Friday 3.30-5.00: Couples dances of the late 18th Century–the revered minuet and the knotty allemande.
Friday 6.30 for 7:00-11.00: GEORGIAN PLEASURES EVENING
In between eating and joining in on lots of led-dancing from the late 18th century, enjoy a smorgasbord of guest performers—from those offering baroque ballets to Charlotte Kerr who brought the house down with her brilliant Friday evening finale at JAFA 2014. Come in Georgian or Regency attire, imagine you are at Bath and enjoyed the theatre, card rooms, supper and ballrooms all combined!

SATURDAY 11 APRIL— with dances mostly from the early 19th century.
9:00-10:30: Essentials for ‘capital dancing’—country dances for the evening ball

11:00-12:30: Dances in different formations—mixers, reels and show-off dances:

1:30-3:00:  Latest longways crazes—the Ecossaise, Spanish, Swedish and Mescolanze

3:30-5:00: Couples dances of the early 19th century—the waltz, polonaise and mazurka.
6.30 for 7:00-11.00:  THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO BALL
In the venue the Duchess of Richmond would have loved to have had, enjoy all the dances previewed in the daytime workshops —all dances enjoyed at the time with many linked to the Napoleonic wars and its protagonists. In tribute to the European context and in a first for JAFA, enjoy some brackets dancing to Aeolus wind trio playing Beethoven contredanses. To end we might have Aeolus and the EDHDA players combine to offer you an opportunity to dance a wild Scottish reel before leaving for battle!

SUNDAY 12 APRIL—with dance from late 18th and early 19th century
2.00-6.00: THE COTILLION BALL—the shifting alliances of the late 18th and early 19th century and that long dance party that was the Congress of Vienna has spread dance crazes in all directions—so mixed in with country dances led from the floor in English Regency manner callers will be lively Paris opera style cotillions, newly fashionable quadrilles and other dances of the sort that might have enjoyed at the ‘Cotillion Ball’ Austen referred to in her writings—all taught and led for all! The EDHDA players are again joined by Aeolus wind trio. A fun finale to the dance program.

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