ceilidh vs SCD

Anselm Lingnau

Message 35410 · 4 Jun 2003 21:42:37 · Fixed-width font · Whole thread

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Oliver Thinius <xxxxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.xx> writes:

> But why is it so? Ceilidh is probably more traditional than the RSCDS
> standards of moving,

By 50 years or so. Most of the dances done at ceilidhs today (note how
I'm avoiding the term »ceilidh dances«) were invented around the turn of
the 20th century or later (exceptions like the Dashing White Sergeant or
Strip the Willow prove the rule). This includes stuff that many people
believe has been around for at least as long as Ben Nevis, such as the
Eightsome Reel and the Gay Gordons. If one were to argue tradition (that
is, *real* tradition as in Flett & Flett, as opposed to the popular
notion), the single most popular ceilidh dance would have to be the
Foursome Reel, which is, to my knowledge, never done socially at today's
Scottish dance ceilidhs at all. -- Which is fine, of course, since
traditions do change over time, but extolling ceilidh dancing by
claiming that it is somehow more »traditional« than SCD is really a case
of the pot calling the kettle black.

> and there is more to it than Gay Gordons, St.
> bernhard's Waltz, Dashing White Sergeant and Strip the Willow (the
> latter are regarded as Ceilidh by some people over here). Why have
> "reputated Country Dancers" got objections against Ceilidh Dance?

Personally I have no objections whatsoever against ceilidh dance. I play
music for ceilidhs every so often and it is a nice source of pocket
money. The dancers do seem to have fun, too, so why should it be bad?

As far as my own bodily exertion is concerned, I vastly prefer country
dancing because IMHO it is more social, the repertoire is more diverse
and most of the dances don't bore me stiff after at most three times
through. Mind you, I enjoy a nice ceilidh if the opportunity presents
itself -- especially if the attendees are not all of the Doc Martens
persuasion -- but if I had to choose between a SCD social and a (dance)
ceilidh on the same night I'd take the SCD any time, thank you very
much.

Anselm
--
Anselm Lingnau .......................................... xxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxx.xxx
Faith: Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks without
knowledge, of things without parallel. -- Ambrose Bierce

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