New Hampshire Old-Time Country Dance Web Site

The Lamprey River Band


The Lamprey River Band & The First Thursday Durham Dance

The Lamprey River Band has been playing for Seacoast NH dances since 1983. We play a monthly dance at the Unitarian Fellowship in Durham. We keep alive the New England tradition of the large country dance orchestra with a solid beat, strong melody and clear phrasing. This section has an up-to-date Durham dance schedule and lots of information about the band and its history.
•••> The Durham dance is On Hold for the indefinite future. Given the premature relaxing of precautions without reasonable testing or monitoring programs in place it seems unlikely conditions will be favorable for dancing for some time. We will make it widely known when we are able to resume safely!
Dates will continue to be listed below but sadly there will be no dance until further notice.

Page & Section Contents

  • On This Page: (1) Listing for First Thursday Durham Dance with dates, and (2) About the Lamprey River Band.
  • The Lamprey River Band Story I and The Lamprey River Band Story II. A fairly detailed history of the band with stories, pictures, and some comments on how the band got started, band membership, the Thursday night dance in Madbury, Dover & Durham, its influence on local dancing and more. If you have any interest in the band I recommend that you look at these pages.

The Lamprey River Band First Thursday Dance in Durham, NH — On Hold

First Thursdays, Durham, NH, Durham Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. Lamprey River Band, Peter Yarensky & Sarah Mason calling; guest musicians & callers invited. 8:00 – 10:00, 20 Madbury Road, Durham, NH 03824.

Upcoming Dance Dates: June 6 (CANCELLED), July 4, August 1, September 5, October 3, November 7, December 5, & January 2.
Contact: Peter, peter dot yarensky at unh dot edu,
Map: Click here to download a map to the dance.
Guest Calling: As this is a short dance we generally have no more than two guest callers. Talk to Sarah Mason or Peter Yarensky as early in the dance as you can to get a slot. Please do not try to reserve in advance. (Exceptions may be made in unusual circumstances, e.g. someone travelling a long distance).

About the Lamprey River Band

The Lamprey River Band is a traditional New England country dance (contradance) band. I should say right away that I am writing as the founder of the band and a member for over 35 years as I write (winter 2020). The band comes out of the tradition of the larger country dance orchestra; we are modeled loosely after the Canterbury Country Dance Orchestra and the Maine Country Dance Orchestra.

We play for public dances and private dance parties to promote enjoyment and community on the part of the dancers. We started in 1983 and continue to exist for the enjoyment it brings us as musicians, and for the enjoyment we bring to our dancers. Our playing is characterized by a strong beat, clear melody and clear melodic phrases, all characteristics desirable in any band playing for New England dancing.

A quick mention of why the Lamprey River Band pages are so near the beginning of the Dance website. First, we are the oldest band that plays regularly in the Seacoast area of New Hampshire, and during much of that time our dances were the largest in the area. Therefore the band ends up being involved in many aspects of dancing in this part of the state. Second, this is the band's only website, and making it prominent helps with publicizing our dances.