strathspey Archive: Princess Royal Bars 21-22

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Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32811 · Lara D. Friedman~Shedlov · 4 Dec 2002 20:50:16 · Top

I am interested in how others learned bars 21-22 of The Princess Royal.

One of the other teachers in our branch was taught that on bars 21-22,
1C turns BH halfway using pas de basque. He said that is how C. Stewart
Smith taught the dance in 1979 (he still has the notes). He was quite
surprised to see me teach those two bars as turn RH halfway (using skip
change). So, we checked the books. My copy of RSCDS book 2 (purchased
within the last 5 years) specifically states that 1C cross or turn
halfway with the RH to finish on their own sides in 2nd place. Since
no mention is made of pas de basque, I assumed skip change. His copy
of RSCDS book 2, which is a 1960s edition, is ambiguous: It just says
1C turn halfway to their own sides in 2nd place. It doesn't specify
the handing or the type of footwork. There is no clarification of this
point to be found in either the RSCDS manual or TAC Notes.

I am curious how many people learned bars 21-22 of the dance as BH and
pas de basque vs. RH and skip change, and at what point the RSCDS book
added the instruction to use RH.

--Lara Friedman-Shedlov
Minneapolis, MN USA
RSCDS Twin Cities Branch

*******************************
Lara Friedman-Shedlov
ldfs@bigfoot.com
*******************************

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32817 · Fyreladdie · 5 Dec 2002 00:50:53 · Top

Lara,
The way I learned it and taught it was with the RH and skip change. But one
never knows with us people in Californmia. Ha!

Bob Mc Murtry
San Francisco Branch
Felton, California.

In a message dated 12/4/02 11:51:14 AM, laradf@si.umich.edu writes:

<< I am curious how many people learned bars 21-22 of the dance as BH and
pas de basque vs. RH and skip change, and at what point the RSCDS book
added the instruction to use RH. >>

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32818 · ron.mackey · 5 Dec 2002 01:08:26 · Top

> I am interested in how others learned bars 21-22 of The Princess Royal.
>
> One of the other teachers in our branch was taught that on bars 21-22,
> 1C turns BH halfway using pas de basque. He said that is how C. Stewart
> Smith taught the dance in 1979 (he still has the notes). He was quite
> surprised to see me teach those two bars as turn RH halfway (using skip
> change).

Hi, Lara
I have never danced a p-de-b turn for those two bars but in the
past (50s - 60s) there was an element in SCD who taught, without
foundation in my HO, that any turn was p-de-b unless otherwise
stipulated. I feel that this might have been an elitist fad of the
time when some RSCDS teachers from Scotland, especially, gave the
impression that they were the fount of all dancing knowledge.
At a day school I attended about that time we spent about 35 minutes
trying to do a one and a half turn using p-de-b _in 4 bars!! It was
''just' possible but it was not dancing. I believe the dance being
taught was Cadgers. I stand to be corrected but I think the original
printing of the instructions did not stipulate left hands for the
turn on bars 37-40 hence the ridiculous waste of 35 mins dance time.
.
Happy Dancing
Cheers :)
Ron

Ron Mackey. London Branch (and Croydon)
39, Grove Park Road,
Mottingham
London SE9 4NS

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32820 · SMiskoe · 5 Dec 2002 01:53:19 · Top

My reply is as more philosophical than based on fact.
Historically, according to Miss M, Princess Royal was a great favorite of the
Girl Scouts or Girl Guides. I would be surprised if pdb was part of it when
they danced it. Also, there are some regional differences where dancers
routine use a skip change in place of pdb (it is easier).
Cheers,
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA

Turns in Cadgers: was Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32836 · mlamontbrown · 5 Dec 2002 12:04:32 · Top

Ron wrote:

At a day school I attended about that time we spent about 35
minutes
trying to do a one and a half turn using p-de-b _in 4 bars!! It was
''just' possible but it was not dancing. I believe the dance being
taught was Cadgers. I stand to be corrected but I think the original
printing of the instructions did not stipulate left hands for the
turn on bars 37-40 hence the ridiculous waste of 35 mins dance time.

I also came across the two handed turn in Cadgers, (in 1971,) but unlike
Ron, I thought it was a good idea. (At that time most people did a two
handed spin at that point of the dance, and then made a mess of the
entry into the rights and lefts). The point being made with the two
hand, pas de basque turn was that you had to be moving forwards at the
end of bar 4 so that you were half way round at the end of bar 5 - what
follows is two half turns on bars 6 and 7, and a bar to retire on bar 8.
Why bother? Because at the end of bar 8 everyone is balanced, ready for
the entry into the rights and lefts. The original instructions in the
books available at that time just said "turn", so turning with two hands
wasn't "wrong" - the teacher said that this was how it had been taught
to him originally, and I have since heard Bill Ireland repeat the
remark. However the revised, clarified instructions clearly state "left
hand" - anyone else think that a right hand turn makes more sense?

Malcolm (who has been told by Helen that he no longer has sufficient
"spring to make the two handed turns look effortless!)

Turns in Cadgers: was Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32843 · ron.mackey · 5 Dec 2002 21:38:08 · Top

> Malcolm (who has been told by Helen that he no longer has sufficient
> "spring to make the two handed turns look effortless!)
>

Always thought that Helen was clear sighted! Hi Helen.
Sign of the times, my friend, sign of the times! One sympathises! :)
Happy Dancing
Cheers :)
Ron

Ron Mackey. London Branch (and Croydon)
39, Grove Park Road,
Mottingham
London SE9 4NS

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32848 · Patricia Ruggiero · 5 Dec 2002 23:21:08 · Top

Ron wrote:

>At a day school I attended about that time we spent about 35 minutes trying
to do a one and a half turn using p-de-b _in 4 bars!! It was ''just'
possible but it was not dancing.

There's some other dance -- I can't recall the name, but I believe it's in
one of the early books -- that has a 1.5 turn, two hands, PdB, in 4 bars --
a figure so demanding and usually so poorly executed that our group doesn't
want to do the dance, which explains why I can't now remember its name....

If the only step choices are PdB and skip-change, I can imagine Someone In
Authority deciding that for the two-hand turn the PdB was the better choice,
maybe for maintaining a more rounded figure....?

Yes, I have heard (on this List and in other places) that in Edinburgh the
choice is the skip-change (or a kind of shuffle, as you say in another
post). Unless I am at my best, the "kind of shuffle" is what I usually
accomplish because I'm striving for the PdB. I wonder how it would feel to
strive to execute the 2-hand turn with skip-change....I wonder if dancers
can maintain an open, rounded figure....that may explain why in Edinburgh,
as you said, sometimes the dancers take crossed hands.

Pat
Charlottesville, Virginia
USA

2H or RH

Message 32851 · Stella Fogg · 5 Dec 2002 23:47:00 · Top

I am sure the dance Pat is thinking about is Fight about the Fireside in
book 1.

Bars 29-32 say:
and turn to own side turning either 1/2 or 1 1/2 times according to taste.

TAC notes say: Half turn with 2H and pas de basque (older method), or turn
one-and-a-half with RH and skip change.

In my Full certificate class, one of the dancers was given this dance to
teach. The guidance given to her was: it was up to her, she could choose
which way. Neither is wrong but keep in mind, the examiners probably would
expect her to teach the 2H pas de basque.

Stella Fogg
Richmond, VA

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32821 · Patricia Ruggiero · 5 Dec 2002 02:42:24 · Top

Lara wrote:

"One of the other teachers in our branch was taught that on bars 21-22, 1C
turns BH halfway using pas de basque.... His copy of RSCDS book 2, which
is a 1960s edition, is ambiguous: It just says
1C turn halfway to their own sides in 2nd place. It doesn't specify the
handing or the type of footwork. There is no clarification of this point to
be found in either the RSCDS manual or TAC Notes."

For what it's worth --

My understanding is that in *original* dance instructions, "turn" means a
2-hand turn unless modified in some way (such as "right-hand turn
half-way"). Keep in mind, though, that we are looking at either an RSCDS
reconstruction of an historical dance or an RSCDS interpretation (or
recordation) of a traditional dance; therefore, we need to know what the
RSCDS means by the term "turn." The index to The Manual does not contain an
entry for "turn" and right now I am not prepared to try to track this down.
Perhaps someone more knowledgeable can answer this.

Additionally, my understanding is that two-hand turns are danced using the
pas de basque.

Never having danced this one, I'd have to say that looking at my copy
(Pocket Edition, 1961) I would assume a 2-hand turn with PdB.

Pat
Charlottesville, Virginia
where we're wondering if we're going to have a snow- or an ice storm
tonight.......

generic turns

Message 32824 · Lara D. Friedman~Shedlov · 5 Dec 2002 05:40:06 · Top

Quoting Patricia Ruggiero <ruggierop@earthlink.net>:
> My understanding is that in *original* dance instructions, "turn"
> means a
> 2-hand turn unless modified in some way (such as "right-hand turn
> half-way").

Is this true?!? I have always assumed that "turn" with any specific
modification would be a right-hand turn, not a two-handed turn.

--Lara Friedman-Shedlov
Minneapolis, MN USA

*******************************
Lara Friedman-Shedlov
ldfs@bigfoot.com
*******************************

generic turns

Message 32826 · Fyreladdie · 5 Dec 2002 06:21:53 · Top

In a message dated 12/4/02 8:41:05 PM, laradf@si.umich.edu writes:

<< Is this true?!? I have always assumed that "turn" with any specific
modification would be a right-hand turn, not a two-handed turn. >>

Yikes! Terminology will be the death of us. Depending on where and when
you have learned Scottish country dancing, terminology will tend to be vague
and sometimes questionable. I think it is best never to assume anything
unless the dance comes from the same source, as RSCDS or 18th Century text,
etc. This is why it is equally important for new dance devisers to be
specific about hands, feet and step. The bottom line is, what you and your
set or partner agree on. I would much rather people enjoy the dance, than
worry about whether the words mean right hand or both hands, pas de Basque or
skip change.
Now, that doesn't mean I don't try to teach the correct way. It is just
means that there is more than one way to look at many dances. Different ways
may both be right, depending on source. I was recently confronted with a
dance that had just changed in a newer edition. Either way worked but I did
feel like an idiot for not keeping up with the terminology change. But I also
feel that change is an important factor in this living history of dance. I'm
only a dance teacher. It's a good thing there aren't any malpractice suits
for teacher screw ups. Just remember it's supposed to be fun.

Bob Mc Murtry
San Francisco Branch
Felton, Califoria

generic turns and finding out about changes

Message 32827 · Lara D. Friedman~Shedlov · 5 Dec 2002 06:57:59 · Top

Quoting Fyreladdie@aol.com:

> In a message dated 12/4/02 8:41:05 PM, laradf@si.umich.edu writes:

<< Is this true?!? I have always assumed that "turn" with any
specific modification would be a right-hand turn, not a two-handed
turn. >>
>
> Different ways may both be right, depending on source. I was
> recently confronted with a dance that had just changed in a newer
> edition. Either way worked but I did feel like an idiot for not
> keeping up with the terminology change.

Princess Royal is apparently a case where the Society
changed/updated/clarified the instructions to remove any ambiguity as
to how to dance bars 21-22. The most recent editions of book 2 state
that dancers should use RH.

So my next question is: How are teachers supposed to find out when a
dance (and here I am talking about RSCDS dances) is officially changed
or clarified so they don't have to feel like idiots? Has the Society
ever published or considered publishing a summary of the changes that
are made with each new edition of the books?

--Lara Friedman~Shedlov
Minneapolis, MN USA

*******************************
Lara Friedman-Shedlov
ldfs@bigfoot.com
*******************************

generic turns

Message 32828 · GOSS9 · 5 Dec 2002 08:35:39 · Top

In Playford and later sources, an unmodified generic
turn is a 2 bar 360 using the right hand, except as
modified by context:
1. as on bars 3&4 5&6 7&8 when preceded by a right
hand turn, then the turn is with the left hand.
2. when the following figure demands more less than a
full 360, but not to be equated with a half turn
which is more less a 180 synonymous to a cross.

generic turns

Message 32830 · GOSS9 · 5 Dec 2002 09:00:46 · Top

I should have added, that the two handed turn, at the
time the Society started would be considered a
stylistic innovation as the current style was a one
handed turn (see RSCDS vs current versions of Dashing
White Sergeant).

Synchronicity is always a problem with reconstructing
dead dances as there is a choice to be made as to the
style of which period and where.

DWS is an example of asynchronic adaption because the
Society´s then current is a violation of the rules of
choreography. When one follows the "set to and turn,
use two hands" rule in DWS, the default turn is
always CW (deasul as opposed to withershins - another
rule). However a default rule for reels is to have
them end with the dancers facing in appropirate
direction for the next figure. In DWS, after the
second CW turn (should be, and is, CCW in one handed
versions) the reel ends with the middle person facing
backwards for the next figure, advance and retire.
DWS never needed reviving and comes from a time when
the style was set to and turn one hand (right first,
then left second), the two handed turn period had
already ended before DWS and other "Swedish
Progressions" [3somes facing, orig. up and down,
later round the room].

So since the subject is generic, I prefer default,
the two applicable rules are ...
1. left hand after right, and
2. if the reel is to end with actives facing each
other, it should start by them dancing towards each
other [no matter which shoulder, either will work],
e.g. if on opposite sides, they must start by dancing
in to be able to cross back to own sides.

generic turns

Message 32854 · Patricia Ruggiero · 6 Dec 2002 03:36:31 · Top

Goss wrote:
"In Playford and later sources, an unmodified generic turn is a 2 bar 360
using the right hand, except as modified by context: 1. as on bars 3&4 5&6
7&8 when preceded by a right hand turn, then the turn is with the left hand.
2. when the following figure demands more less than a full 360, but not to
be equated with a half turn which is more less a 180 synonymous to a cross."

Cecil Sharp interpreted "turn" as being done with two hands. Others, such
as Bernard Bentley (Fallibroome Collection), Douglas and Helen Kennedy, W.S.
Porter, and Pat Shaw, did the same for many dances. Sharp's reasons are
unknown to me; the others may simply have been following his example.

One contemporary researcher, Patri Pugliese, in his _English Country Dancing
in the Seventeenth Century_ (preliminary version, 1996), also interprets
"turn" as being done with two hands. Given that he has the benefit of
access to historical sources unavailable to Sharp, I'm inclined to think he
has a sound reason for this choice, but his book does not say.

As to whether "turn" means half-way, once around, or some other fractions,
and the number of bars required, these can be determined, with more or less
success, from the context. For example, a description between dashed lines
(the convention at the time to separate phrases) that reads "-- foot it
twice and turn your partner --" would be interpreted according to the number
of bars for that phrase (not always 8) and according to where it seems the
turning dancers should end up so as to be in the correct place to start the
next figure. Assuming an 8-bar musical phrase, and assuming the turning
dancers are supposed to end where they began, we can interpret this
instruction as "set twice, and turn your partner two-hands once around."
The turn occurs on bars 5-8. A description that reads, for 8 bars of music,
" -- set to corners and turn them --" would call for 2-bar turns.

My 18 years experience of dancing ECD tells me that if there is a "standard"
number of bars for the full turn (any handing), it is 4 bars. In 2/2 and
6/8 time, the 2-bar full turn is considered a "fast turn," as is turning
one-and-a-half times in 4 bars.

I'm thinking I'll ask on the ECD list if anyone knows a historical source
for interpreting the term "turn"; the origin might lie in the 16th and 17th
c. court dances.

Pat
Charlottesville, Virginia
USA

generic turns

Message 32852 · hways · 6 Dec 2002 02:02:33 · Top

Let us go back to Book 1 Fight About the Fireside, last 4 bars "turn to own
side, turning either 1/2 or 1&1/2 times according to taste". Since no step
is specified, presumably that can also be done to taste! For me the
preceding 4 bars of setting neatly lead into a two hand 1 & 1/2 turn with
pas de basque.

Harry

generic turns

Message 32841 · Martin Mulligan · 5 Dec 2002 19:47:20 · Top

>Lara Friedman-Shedlov wrote
>Is this true?!? I have always assumed that "turn" with any specific
>modification would be a right-hand turn, not a two-handed turn.

I recall being taught or told at some stage that the generic "turn"
instruction could be danced either as a two hand p-de-b turn halfway or as
a right hand turn one and one half times at the discretion of the dancing
couple. I recall once dancing at Pinewoods with a visiting teacher where
we chose one on our first time through and the other on the second.

Martin
in St. John's

=========================================================================
Martin E. Mulligan
St. John's (Newfoundland) Branch, RSCDS
mulligan@morgan.ucs.mun.ca
=========================================================================

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32931 · Lara D. Friedman~Shedlov · 9 Dec 2002 19:45:38 · Top

Thanks for all the responses thus far on how the turn is done in bars
21-22 of Princess Royal. The consensus seems to be that the
instruction "turn" without any other modification, is generally
interpreted as a 2-handed turn, and in SCD, a 2-handed turn is
generally done with pas de basque (in quick-time). Since the original
instructions for Princess Royal as printed by RSCDS only said "turn,"
without any other specification, it was interpreted by many (if not
most) as turn 2H using pas de basque.

In later editions of RSCDS book 2, the instruction do specify turn RH
(and by extension, use of skip change, rather than pdb). I'm still
curious as to when and on what basis this change/clarification was
made.

By the way, the instructions do specifically say, I think even in the
older version to turn *halfway*, so there is no question as to whether
it is turn 1 1/2 or turn 1/2 in this particular dance.

--Lara Friedman-Shedlov
Minneapolis, MN USA

*******************************
Lara Friedman-Shedlov
ldfs@bigfoot.com
*******************************

Princess Royal Bars 21-22

Message 32844 · ron.mackey · 5 Dec 2002 21:38:09 · Top

> Additionally, my understanding is that two-hand turns are danced using the
> pas de basque.
>

Yes, unles you are dancing trad. Edinburgh style which is skip
change or a kind of shuffle. Take a look if you ever see a vid. of
the Royals or similar. Sometimes the hands are crossed as in an
incipient swing.

Happy Dancing
Cheers :)
Ron

Ron Mackey. London Branch (and Croydon)
39, Grove Park Road,
Mottingham
London SE9 4NS

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