Dance Like The Valois:

Improvised Dances for the music of the French Renaissance Guitar

I have been fortunate to co-teach this class with Lady Wenllyan Goch on several occasions (Atlantia University sessions, Pennsic 47 and Return to Crecy).  This class is a result of a guitarist (me) discussing dance music with a dance teacher (Wenllyan)!  There are many beautiful dance pieces from the extant renaissance guitar and lute literature, but we rarely have the opportunity to play this music for dancers.  I sent Wenllyan some recordings of a few renaissance guitar dance pieces, and she quickly worked out the dances for each one.  So, we decided to teach a French Dance class that focuses on the dance music of the late period French renaissance guitar composers Adrian Le Roy and Guillaume Morlaye.  Wenllyan teaches pavans, galliards, branles, branles gay, and the tourdion as described in Arbeau's Orchesographie from 1589, while I play the music.


See below for the class notes from Pennsic 47.  This class has been a particular joy to be a part of.  Using a late period french dance manual and dance music composed/arranged by the most famous french guitarists of the period, we can recreate dance as it would have been done in the mid- to late-1500s in France.  This music likely hasn't been danced to since the 17th century.  We do such cool things in the SCA!

Dance Notes by Lady Wenllyan Goch

Guitar/Music Notes - Johann von Solothurn

Johann von Solothurn

Johann is a bard and Court Musician in the Kingdom of Atlantia.  Johann enjoys sharing his art.  If you would like Johann to assist you in organizing or judging bardic/music competitions, teaching classes, or if you would like him to drop by your camp and perform, just send him a note (email below).  

Johann von Solothurn

Barony of Black Diamond

email/contact Johann here