Regency Dance Weekend in Edinburgh

27 May (Saturday) 10:00 – 15:00

Cost: £21.75

New Town of Edinburgh, UNESCO World Heritage site from 1995, started from James Criag’s plan of 1767 and transformed Auld Reekie to ‘Athens of the North’. Social scene was an essential part of the new lifestyle with dance playing an important role in education and entertainment. Moreover, survived Georgian Street Assembly Rooms are now one of the gems of New Town Georgian architecture. A ball dedicated to the Queen Charlotte’s Birthday, similar to the one featured in Bridgerton series by Netflix, was one of the first events hosted in the elegant ballroom.

Duirng this guided tour we will explore historical and social background of the 19th century Scottish dance scene in Edinburgh. We will walk through the elegant streets of the New Town focusing on major centres of dance during the 1800s. Building and sites used to house ballrooms, theatres and dance schools will tell the stories of the people who enjoyed dancing and contributed to the development of Scottish dance scene. The tour will finish with a guided visit to the Scottish National Gallery to look at other material traces of dance activities of the Georgian period.

The themed guided walk can be booked through Edinburgh Adult Education Programme.

TO BOOK: please call 0131 556 7978 or 0131 469 3003. Phone lines will be open: Monday – Thursday 10am – 4pm; Friday 10am – 3pm.

28 May (Sunday) 18:00 – 20:00

Doors open at 17:30 

Ticket costs: £25

Booking is via the Georgian House’s Eventbrite page

An immersive Georgian-inspired experience with historical dance to live music on the Georgian House Horsburgh’s square piano (1802), special tour dedicated to the Scottish – born musician Nathaniel Gow featuring the barrel organ bought in his shop, and historical fashion display.

The doors will be open from 5:30 pm. The entertainment commences at 6 pm. Light refreshments and historically inspired drinks menu will be offered during the evening.

The dress code is 1790 – 1830s (contemporary evening attire with long skirts for ladies or kilts for gentlemen will be also acceptable).

Who is Nathaniel Gow?

Nathaniel Gow (28 May 1763 – 19 January 1831) is Scottish musician, celebrated performer, composer and arranger of tunes, vocal and dancing music. He pursued musical career following the success of his father, Niel Gow. Nathaniel led the fashionable Edinburgh Assembly music band between 1797 until 1830s which played for King George IV during his visit to Scotland in 1822. In 1796, Gow started a music-selling and publishing business with William Shepherd at 41 North Bridge, Edinburgh (later 16 and 40 Princess Street), which continued until Shepherd’s death in 1813. c.1819 Gow reopened the business with his son at 60 Princess Street. Georgian House collection features the barrel organ bought from Nathaniel Gow’s shop.

The special tour of the Georgian House will be run by the House’s expereienced visitors managers.

Alena Shmakova (guide and dance leader) is a dance historian based in Edinburgh. She teaches and performs historical dance as part of Les Danses Antiques ( since 2013 focusing on social dances from the 17th – 19th centuries. She performed historical dances for the events at Scottish historic sites including the Stirling Castle, the Holyrood Palace, St Cecilia’s Hall, Abbotsford The Home Of Sir Walter Scott as well as at early dance festivals. Alena is currently studying History at the University of Highlands and Islands. Her main research interest is the Scottish dance scene during the Enlightenment period. The latter project she is doing as a research volunteer at the National Trust for Scotland.

Frances Scott (piano) trained at the Royal Northern College of Music. She worked for Scottish Ballet, the Royal Ballet Company and as the Youth Music Initiative Coordinator for the City of Edinburgh Council. Frances has a deep interest in dance and music in 18th-century Scotland. The latter she performs as part of the Bruntsfield Baroque Trio.

Kamila Dzięgielewska (historical fashion,) is an Edinburgh-based fashion history enthusiast and historical content creator. She a self-taught seamstress enjoying making historical costumes from undergarments to outwear. Examples of her work can be found on her Instagram (@hedwig.macbutterfly). In her spare time, Kamilla can be found volunteering and sharing her passion for history with visitors at the Georgian House.

  1. The themed guided walk can be booked through the Edinburgh Adult Education Programme. The Programme online platform is unable to process online payments/bookings at the moment. TO BOOK the guided tour please call the Programme administrators: 0131 556 7978 or 0131 469 3003. Phone lines are open: Monday – Thursday 10am – 4pm; Friday 10am – 3pm.
  2. The Soirée is part of the Georgian House events and can be booked online via the Eventbite page.

If you need any help with the bookings or other arrangements please get in touch: