Colonial Williamsburg teaches guests to dance with new evening progam

Once the sun starts to set on Colonial Williamsburg, guests will get a chance to experience “Nimble Toes & Dancing Woes,” the newest addition to the attraction’s roster of evening programs, which offers a mix of theatrical comedy and 18th-century dancing lessons.

The new show will run through the summer and fall on Thursday and Saturday evenings, and will take place in the historic Raleigh Tavern on Duke of Gloucester Street. Evening programs like “Nimble Toes” are offered in Colonial Williamsburg’s historical site every night of the week once its regular hours are over at 5 p.m.

Robert Currie, director of entertainment for Colonial Williamsburg, says the evening shows allow the Colonial Williamsburg production team to take a more lighthearted approach to the historical setting.

“With evening programs, we can take a different slant on things than we do during the day,” said Currie. “We’re very big on education during the day and while we’re still big on education at night, we can definitely use some more entertainment tools to instill our message onto folks.”

Guests with evening show tickets can sit in on historical trials in the Capitol Building, take a ghost tour through the streets of Colonial Williamsburg’s historic site and watch a magic show in the Courthouse. Despite this variety in its programming, Currie says he saw a lack of comedic shows within its portfolio.

“We noticed we didn’t have very many funny things out there,” said Currie. “We have a lot of serious evening programs with the ghost tours and the trials, but we wanted to create something that was laugh out loud that the guests could also interact with and learn to dance.”

“Nimble Toes & Dancing Woes” is an hour-long fast-paced interactive comedy that tells the story of a bride and groom learning to dance on the night before their wedding. Guests will learn the traditional 18th-century dances along with the groom, who has trouble getting the steps right.

Abigail Schumann, a producer and scriptwriter at Colonial Williamsburg and the director of “Nimble Toes” developed the script along with Currie. He said it was important to repackage the fun and excitement around dancing in 18th-century culture for modern audiences.

“First and foremost, I hope guests are laughing themselves silly and they have a really great time,” he said. “We hope they get interested and learn just how fun 18th-century dancing was in early America, where they danced because it was fun, not because it was stuffy or stodgy.”

Want to go?

“Nimble Toes & Dancing Woes” will be at the Raleigh Tavern on Thursday and Saturday evenings with five showings per night, at 7:00, 7:30, 8:15, 8:45 and 9:15 p.m. The show runs until Sept. 1.

To buy a ticket online, visit: Annual, Good Neighbor, and Collegiate Pass holders can receive a discount on evening program tickets at any Colonial Williamsburg ticketing location, or by calling (888) 965-7254.

Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.

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