strathspey Archive: Easy demo dances

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Easy demo dances

Message 35358 · Alan Paterson · 30 May 2003 09:40:00 · Top

I have just been asked to put together a SCD demo.

It looks as if the demo team will have at least one relatively
inexperienced dancer, so I am keen to hear of suggestions for dances which
look good but are not too difficult.

Any ideas folks?

Alan

The Bumpkin book 2

Message 35359 · Pia Walker · 30 May 2003 10:34:49 · Top

Taught reels of three to my teens yesterday, and as there were nine of
them - decided to have them doing it in rows of three like the dance the
Bumpkin in book two (you can have them going in all direction without having
to move them and as they change partners all the time, they will learn to
recognise the movement rather than their partners.

I had a quick look at the Bumpkin, and am looking for help.

1) Is the set to and turns with right hand only,

2) Do you start the reels with right shoulder to the person you turned
first, or second

or

3) do you start the reels with left or right shoulder and to which person
(first or second turnee)

Thanks

Pia

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The Bumpkin book 2

Message 35365 · marjoriem · 30 May 2003 16:41:55 · Top

Pia,

Ironic to find the Ninesome (Bumpkin) surfacing twice in a short time. Just
two weeks ago it was taught/danced at the 10th annual Victorian/Scottish
Ball put on by the Monterey class of the San Francisco Branch. They have a
vintage dance/Scottish dance workshop during the day (I learned to dance a
mazurka and the Congress of Vienna waltz!) and a lovely Ball with a mixed
programme in the evening.

I was asked to teach the Ninesome and I interpreted it as using standard
set and turn corners reels of three", e.g. two hand turns and a left
shoulder reel beginning with "first corner". During the first two sets of
reels in each repetition, if the center dancer in the front and back lines
remembers to set to the person in his/her same line first, and then to the
person next to them in the middle line, it makes the memory part a bit
easier.

However, I took one or two liberties . . . to make it, imho, a bit more
manageable as part of a full length programme. The skip change forward, turn
around, skip change back, and turn around for the first 8 bars looked a lot
to me like the English country dance figure forward and back a double. So I
taught it that way using rhythmic walking steps. The forward and back does
help with orientation between each repetition.

I also suggested to the dancers that they could use pas de basque to set to
their "corners" but then use skip change or rhythmic walking for the two
hand turns and the reels. Neither of these changes seemed out of character
with the Victorian period.

We had a great time with it and at the evening dance there were six
ninesomes", complete with hats, of course, on the floor. Everyone had such a
good time that the dance was encored! Now that's not something we're not
likely to see again.

Enjoy,
Marjorie McLaughlin
San Diego

-------Original Message-------

From: strathspey@strathspey.org
Date: Friday, May 30, 2003 01:35:23
To: strathspey@strathspey.org
Subject: Re: The Bumpkin book 2

Taught reels of three to my teens yesterday, and as there were nine of
them - decided to have them doing it in rows of three like the dance the
Bumpkin in book two (you can have them going in all direction without having
to move them and as they change partners all the time, they will learn to
recognise the movement rather than their partners.

I had a quick look at the Bumpkin, and am looking for help.

1) Is the set to and turns with right hand only,

2) Do you start the reels with right shoulder to the person you turned
first, or second

or

3) do you start the reels with left or right shoulder and to which person
(first or second turnee)

Thanks

Pia


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The Bumpkin book 2

Message 35375 · Pia Walker · 31 May 2003 14:18:27 · Top

Thanks to all who answered my queries- I certainly look forward to working
on it with my teens after the summer hols - I have the feeling that when you
have done this dance, you will never have a problem with reels of three ever
again. And the walking bit is immaterial when you are only 13 - the amount
of energy which is used in class defies description. As I said before we
once did Hamilton House AND Petronelle in one 1-hour class.

Pia
----- Original Message -----
From: "Marjorie McLaughlin" <marjoriem@cox.net>
To: <strathspey@strathspey.org>
Sent: Friday, May 30, 2003 3:41 PM
Subject: Re: The Bumpkin book 2

Pia,

Ironic to find the Ninesome (Bumpkin) surfacing twice in a short time. Just
two weeks ago it was taught/danced at the 10th annual Victorian/Scottish
Ball put on by the Monterey class of the San Francisco Branch. They have a
vintage dance/Scottish dance workshop during the day (I learned to dance a
mazurka and the Congress of Vienna waltz!) and a lovely Ball with a mixed
programme in the evening.

I was asked to teach the Ninesome and I interpreted it as using standard
set and turn corners reels of three", e.g. two hand turns and a left
shoulder reel beginning with "first corner". During the first two sets of
reels in each repetition, if the center dancer in the front and back lines
remembers to set to the person in his/her same line first, and then to the
person next to them in the middle line, it makes the memory part a bit
easier.

However, I took one or two liberties . . . to make it, imho, a bit more
manageable as part of a full length programme. The skip change forward, turn
around, skip change back, and turn around for the first 8 bars looked a lot
to me like the English country dance figure forward and back a double. So I
taught it that way using rhythmic walking steps. The forward and back does
help with orientation between each repetition.

I also suggested to the dancers that they could use pas de basque to set to
their "corners" but then use skip change or rhythmic walking for the two
hand turns and the reels. Neither of these changes seemed out of character
with the Victorian period.

We had a great time with it and at the evening dance there were six
ninesomes", complete with hats, of course, on the floor. Everyone had such a
good time that the dance was encored! Now that's not something we're not
likely to see again.

Enjoy,
Marjorie McLaughlin
San Diego

-------Original Message-------

From: strathspey@strathspey.org
Date: Friday, May 30, 2003 01:35:23
To: strathspey@strathspey.org
Subject: Re: The Bumpkin book 2

Taught reels of three to my teens yesterday, and as there were nine of
them - decided to have them doing it in rows of three like the dance the
Bumpkin in book two (you can have them going in all direction without having
to move them and as they change partners all the time, they will learn to
recognise the movement rather than their partners.

I had a quick look at the Bumpkin, and am looking for help.

1) Is the set to and turns with right hand only,

2) Do you start the reels with right shoulder to the person you turned
first, or second

or

3) do you start the reels with left or right shoulder and to which person
(first or second turnee)

Thanks

Pia

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Easy demo dances

Message 35360 · Colin Norton & Elizabeth Low · 30 May 2003 12:04:20 · Top

Alan

I have used the Goatfell Gallop from Roy Goldring's Graded and Social Dances 2
slightly modified in a couple of demonstrations here in Canberra.

Probably to the horror of many (and with apologies to the dance author) I
modified the first 16 bars slightly to give a bit more feel of movement by
swapping bars 5-8 with bars 9-12 (and then bars 9-12 with bars 5 - 8).

Anyway, it works, it isn't too difficult and looks quite good.

ELizabeth Low

Alan Paterson wrote:

> I have just been asked to put together a SCD demo.
>
> It looks as if the demo team will have at least one relatively
> inexperienced dancer, so I am keen to hear of suggestions for dances which
> look good but are not too difficult.
>
> Any ideas folks?
>
> Alan

Easy demo dances

Message 35361 · Elainerb · 30 May 2003 12:32:27 · Top

Alan,

I use The Barmkin (Roy Goldring). It's a square set, looks great, but is
rights and lefts and wheels, and turns and circles, with a great advance and
retire figure. I use it in demos at any level.

Let me know if you don't have it.

Elaine

Easy demo dances

Message 35363 · Priscilla M. Burrage · 30 May 2003 15:24:51 · Top

On Fri, 30 May 2003 Elainerb@aol.com wrote:

> I use The Barmkin (Roy Goldring). It's a square set, looks great, but is
> rights and lefts and wheels, and turns and circles, with a great advance and
> retire figure. I use it in demos at any level.

I think you've picked a great batch of figures for a performance
situation.

Elaine, do you modify the dance to turn it from a social dance into a
performance dance? For example, use two chords with the dancers bowing to
the audience on the second chord (if the performance hall is somewhat
formal). With the advance and retire, are any of the dancers going towards
the audience? Do you position the square so that no couple have their
backs to the audience? And can your dancers maintain that diamond
position relative to the stage?

happy dancing,
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Priscilla Burrage Vermont US
(pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu)

Easy demo dances

Message 36314 · Alan Paterson · 26 Aug 2003 12:07:41 · Top

My belated thanks to all people who last May presented me with ideas for simple
demonstration dances.

The demo was last Saturday and went as well as could be expected (actually -
that isn't as bad as it sounds :-)

The expected relative beginner (so chosen because of the Y-chromosome present)
didn't in fact take part, so the only reason for keeping the dances simple was
in order not to confuse the spectators.

As an aside - by far the most difficult part of the demonstration was the work
involved in persuading the public to take part in (the usual) Cumberland Reel.

Alan

Easy demo dances

Message 36316 · Marilyn Knight · 26 Aug 2003 13:14:58 · Top

Alan,
What were the specific dances you included?
Marilynn
In sub-tropical South Carolina

-----Original Message-----
From: Alan Paterson [mailto:alan.paterson@paranor.ch]
Sent: Tuesday, August 26, 2003 6:08 AM
To: strathspey@strathspey.org
Subject: Re: Easy demo dances

My belated thanks to all people who last May presented me with ideas for
simple demonstration dances.

The demo was last Saturday and went as well as could be expected
(actually - that isn't as bad as it sounds :-)

The expected relative beginner (so chosen because of the Y-chromosome
present) didn't in fact take part, so the only reason for keeping the
dances simple was in order not to confuse the spectators.

As an aside - by far the most difficult part of the demonstration was
the work involved in persuading the public to take part in (the usual)
Cumberland Reel.

Alan

Easy demo dances

Message 36327 · Alan Paterson · 27 Aug 2003 08:07:56 · Top

Marilynn Knight wrote:
>
> Alan,
> What were the specific dances you included?
> Marilynn
> In sub-tropical South Carolina

We danced:
Reel of the Royal Scots (for the big sweeps in 17-24)
Wild Geese (for the lead down and up and R&L)
Silver Hamer (no particular reason. I just like it)
Reel of the 51st division (for the X formation)
Milton's Welcome (for the covering in 1-8 and in the - 3-couple - poussette)
Hooper's Jig (for the clap!)
Australian Ladies (for the high energy)

There were a copuple of Highland dances done as well. Together with two attempts
at getting the public to dance, this filled 45 minutes well.

Alan

Easy demo dances

Message 36328 · Marilyn Knight · 27 Aug 2003 13:00:42 · Top

Alan,
Thank you, not only for sharing your program of dances, but also, even
more, for the rationale behind your choices!!!!
Sincerely,
Marilynn

-----Original Message-----
From: Alan Paterson [mailto:alan.paterson@paranor.ch]
Sent: Wednesday, August 27, 2003 2:08 AM
To: strathspey@strathspey.org
Subject: Re: Easy demo dances

Marilynn Knight wrote:
>
> Alan,
> What were the specific dances you included?
> Marilynn
> In sub-tropical South Carolina

We danced:
Reel of the Royal Scots (for the big sweeps in 17-24)
Wild Geese (for the lead down and up and R&L)
Silver Hamer (no particular reason. I just like it)
Reel of the 51st division (for the X formation)
Milton's Welcome (for the covering in 1-8 and in the - 3-couple -
poussette) Hooper's Jig (for the clap!) Australian Ladies (for the high
energy)

There were a copuple of Highland dances done as well. Together with two
attempts at getting the public to dance, this filled 45 minutes well.

Alan

Easy demo dances

Message 36332 · Volleyballjerry · 27 Aug 2003 19:42:57 · Top

I suppose that the following would better fall under the category of
"intermediate" than easy, but it makes a great dem. presentation: short, nicely
varied, and requiring only three couples:

Music: (3 X) Neidpath Castle

Dances (danced once each in this order): Neidpath Castle, MacDonald of the
Isles, Byron Strathspey

Robb Quint
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

The Robertson Rant

Message 36340 · Eddy West · 28 Aug 2003 12:37:59 · Top

Book 39 in publishing the original instructions for this dance notes many
variations. However one difference found in different parts of New Zealand is not
discussed.

The instructions for bars 49-56 include ".... face their partners, with whom they
set, and turn with both hands...." while those for bars 57-64 include "...men cicle
to the right to places, and set and turn their partners...." . In my local area this
distinction is understood to mean that the turn on bars 63 & 64 is with the right
hand, in another area however the rule is held that an unspecified turn after
setting is with two hands. I would refer to turn with two hands but am interested to
know what is the accepted rule im other places.

Eddy

The Robertson Rant

Message 36344 · Ray D. Sampson · 28 Aug 2003 18:44:35 · Top

About Eddy's request for a clarification of the turns in Robertson
Rant....

I was taught that if a Strathspey turn is not specified, it implies
making a two hand turn....thus, in the second turn in Robertson, it
should be a two hand turn! I have danced this dance on both the East
and West Coasts of the US, and up in Canada, and never encountered a
right hand turn after the men's circle. I do tell my students though,
to slow down a tad, as the second turn is only a 3/4 turn. My two bits
worth(oops! for those of you who do not know, two bits is a US 25cent
coin).

Dance for Joy!

Ray S
On Thursday, August 28, 2003, at 03:35 AM, Eddy West wrote:

>
> Book 39 in publishing the original instructions for this dance notes
> many
> variations. However one difference found in different parts of New
> Zealand is not
> discussed.
>
> The instructions for bars 49-56 include ".... face their partners, with
> whom they
> set, and turn with both hands...." while those for bars 57-64 include
> "...men cicle
> to the right to places, and set and turn their partners...." . In my
> local area this
> distinction is understood to mean that the turn on bars 63 & 64 is with
> the right
> hand, in another area however the rule is held that an unspecified turn
> after
> setting is with two hands. I would refer to turn with two hands but am
> interested to
> know what is the accepted rule im other places.
>
> Eddy
>
>

The Robertson Rant

Message 36345 · Volleyballjerry · 28 Aug 2003 18:56:45 · Top

We have been doing The Robertson Rant quite regularly in the San Gabriel
Valley Branch. For us it has been a two-hand turn after setting, and I personally
believe that this is as well the intent of the instructions. (And I have
just checked our branch cuebook; it states: "set to ptnrs, turn 2H")

Robb Quint
Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

The Robertson Rant

Message 36356 · ron.mackey · 29 Aug 2003 01:19:38 · Top

I am in the process of typing out the original instructions as
written for the dance from the instructions which were published in
1950.
If anyone would like to have a copy of the proper words, let me
know.

Happy Dancing
Cheers :)
Ron

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

The Robertson Rant

Message 36358 · Elainerb · 29 Aug 2003 02:09:35 · Top

In a message dated 8/28/2003 7:22:55 PM Eastern Standard Time,
ron.mackey@mail.btinternet.com writes:

> I am in the process of typing out the original instructions as
> written for the dance from the instructions which were published in
> 1950.
> If anyone would like to have a copy of the proper words, let me
> know.
>

Now that will really confuse people....... as it bears little resemblance to
how most of us do the dance, and how it was published by the RSCDS.

I have the leaflet (original instructions) ...... I like the way we do it
now.

Elaine

The Robertson Rant

Message 36369 · ron.mackey · 30 Aug 2003 00:23:06 · Top

> Now that will really confuse people....... as it bears little
> resemblance to how most of us do the dance, and how it was published
> by the RSCDS.
>
> I have the leaflet (original instructions) ...... I like the way
> we do it now.
>
> Elaine

Hi, Elaine
Considering all the various threads we have had past our eyes here
on the subject of doing a dance as the devisor wrote it, it seems
incongruous to me that the original has been superceded and at the
instigation of the RSCDS no less!!! :~)
Oh, tut, tut! :)
In fact most of the present variations are catered for by the way
it was written.

Happy Dancing
Cheers :)
Ron

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

The Robertson Rant

Message 36371 · Eddy West · 30 Aug 2003 01:09:08 · Top

Thanks to all who replied regarding The Robertson Rant, and also to those who added to
my knowledge on American Currency. To remain off topic canone of the Americans on the
list tell me whether "half four" as a time of day is before or after 4 o'clock.

Eddy

The Robertson Rant

Message 36372 · SMiskoe · 30 Aug 2003 02:10:35 · Top

We never say half four (at least where I live), instead we say 4-thirty or
half past four,and that means 30 minutes after four.
Cheers,
Sylvia Miskoe

The Robertson Rant

Message 36390 · Ron Taylor · 31 Aug 2003 07:21:53 · Top

I have been doing this dance for 40 years and know only of
the version as published by the RSCDS - which does make a note of five versions.- we dance versions 2 3, 4 and 5.

I think it is unfair to say that the Society has in any way altered this dance, they have published a version universally
followed and have noted that there are regional variations.

I think the Society would have been criticised if they had published a version which is not danced at this time.

Regards
Ron Taylor
RON29@blueyonder.co.uk

The Robertson Rant

Message 36476 · Richard Goss · 6 Sep 2003 20:37:11 · Top

The one or two hand rule is an example of a case where the Society´s early discussions, specifically between Allie Anderson and Jean Milligan were not resulved until after beginning of Milligan rule [Mrs Stewart went to S Africa & Miss Anderson stopped comming to meetings - same time as the therm "co-founder! was applied to Miss Milligan, and "country dances as danced in Scotland" became "Scottish Country Dancing.")

Allie Anderson, founder of Edinburgh Branch - without the laying on of hands from Miss Milligan belonged to the 2 handed tradition which has died out in the Society except for those dances with strong Edinburgh traditions, as in "Duke and Duchess of ...."

Since "Robertson´s Rant" did originally pass through the publications committee we are having this discussion.

There is a second issue here and that is the concept of dances vs dancing. Sometimes we get a bit too up tight when it comes to the minor points of one vs two hands. In this case it is the same dance which ever custom is used. Related to this is the "folk process" which is very difficult to change by edict. I suspect that the difference between one or two hands is one of both time and place. The problem came when the Society published dances with only one style, ignoring the fact that the sources of their dances extends over 200 years. It is my opinion, that in the early days, the traditional way of turning in Edinbrgh, and also in various places in Scotland was always by two hands. In spite of the RSCDS rule, the one hand practice was passively resisted. Especially when there was no documented tradition involving dances done to reel tunes having a different hand style than those to strathspeys.

Two Bits

Message 36347 · hways · 28 Aug 2003 23:15:21 · Top

Two bits is a slang term indicting the value of a U S Quarter Dollar coin.
However, one might also have 4 bits, 6 bits, 8 bits etc.--Most often heard
in the 1930's expression "Shave and a haircut, 2 bits". Also used as a
derogatory adjetive preceding various nouns

Harry
---
From: "Ray Sampson" <raysunshine@earthlink.net>
My two bits
> worth(oops! for those of you who do not know, two bits is a US 25cent
> coin).
>
>

Two Bits

Message 36354 · SMiskoe · 29 Aug 2003 00:46:42 · Top

And the verse:
2 bits, 4 bits, 6 bits, a dollar
every body stand up and holler
Insert what everyone wants to cheer
i.e. Go Miss M!
Go Miss M!
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA

Two Bits

Message 36359 · Mike Briggs · 29 Aug 2003 03:41:48 · Top

"Pieces of eight," said Silver's parrot. If you broke a Spanish dollar
into eight pieces, you'd have eight bits -- and yes, each one worth 12.5
cents. Like the guinea and the crown, once real coinage, now merely a
fiction.

Mike
--
-----------------------------------------------
Norma Briggs Voice 608 835 0914
Michael J Briggs Fax 608 835 0924
BRIGGS LAW OFFICE
1519 Storytown Road Oregon WI 53575-2521 USA
-----------------------------------------------
www.briggslawoffice.com
-----------------------------------------------

Two Bits

Message 36362 · Anselm Lingnau · 29 Aug 2003 08:24:07 · Top

Mike Briggs wrote:

> "Pieces of eight," said Silver's parrot. If you broke a Spanish dollar
> into eight pieces, you'd have eight bits -- and yes, each one worth 12.5
> cents. Like the guinea and the crown, once real coinage, now merely a
> fiction.

Bill Bryson's »Made in America« has a chapter on the linguistic history of
American money. This tells you interesting trivia such as the
nearly-forgotten fact that originally there were supposed to be 200 cents (!)
to a US dollar :^)

The book in general is a kind of cultural history of the United States, from a
language point of view. Great fun, and, with Christmas only 118 days away,
possibly useful to be aware of.

Anselm

Two Bits

Message 36365 · Marilyn Knight · 29 Aug 2003 14:08:34 · Top

As is true of any of Bill Bryson's delightful books, I might add!!!
Hey, he originally hails from that great section of middle America,
Iowa!!!
Where, I understand, SCD does take place(to stay on subject). To
imagine Bill Bryson describing SCD is as delightfully humorous to me, as
imagining what Dr. Seuss' take might have been.... Given that Bill's
wife is English, and that they lived in England for many years, I wonder
if he and his family have ever ventured on an SCD dance floor.
Marilynn Latta Knight
Columbia,SC/USA

-----Original Message-----
From: Anselm Lingnau [mailto:anselm@strathspey.org]
Sent: Friday, August 29, 2003 2:09 AM
To: strathspey@strathspey.org
Subject: Re: Two Bits

Mike Briggs wrote:

> "Pieces of eight," said Silver's parrot. If you broke a Spanish
> dollar into eight pieces, you'd have eight bits -- and yes, each one
> worth 12.5 cents. Like the guinea and the crown, once real coinage,
> now merely a fiction.

Bill Bryson's >Made in America< has a chapter on the linguistic history
of
American money. This tells you interesting trivia such as the
nearly-forgotten fact that originally there were supposed to be 200
cents (!)
to a US dollar :^)

The book in general is a kind of cultural history of the United States,
from a
language point of view. Great fun, and, with Christmas only 118 days
away,
possibly useful to be aware of.

Anselm

Two Bits

Message 36366 · Mike Briggs · 29 Aug 2003 14:53:12 · Top

SCD in Iowa? Sure, in Des Moines and in Ames (where they do a wonderful
weekend every year on Mother's Day, when Iowa is busting out with spring
flowers). And, speaking of the great American Midwest (shameless
commercial coming), join us here in Madison on September 21 for the
first ever dance program of the newest RSCDS branch, the John Muir
(Wisconsin) Branch.

Mike
--
-----------------------------------------------
Norma Briggs Voice 608 835 0914
Michael J Briggs Fax 608 835 0924
BRIGGS LAW OFFICE
1519 Storytown Road Oregon WI 53575-2521 USA
-----------------------------------------------
www.briggslawoffice.com
-----------------------------------------------

The Robertson Rant

Message 36361 · Priscilla M. Burrage · 28 Aug 2003 19:14:04 · Top

On Thu, 28 Aug 2003, Ray Sampson wrote:

> About Eddy's request for a clarification of the turns in Robertson
> Rant....
>
> I was taught that if a Strathspey turn is not specified, it implies
> making a two hand turn....thus, in the second turn in Robertson, it
> should be a two hand turn! I have danced this dance on both the East
> and West Coasts of the US, and up in Canada, and never encountered a
> right hand turn after the men's circle. I do tell my students though,
> to slow down a tad, as the second turn is only a 3/4 turn. My two bits
> worth(oops! for those of you who do not know, two bits is a US 25cent
> coin).

Two bits is 2 pieces of the Spanish coin commonly used in the western US
and Latin America until about 150 years ago. The coin was divided into 8
pieces, which were used as currency. Two bits was a quarter of that coin.
I'm not going to get into a discussion of what the coin was named.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Priscilla Burrage Vermont US
(Priscilla.Burrage@uvm.edu)

Easy demo dances

Message 35362 · Priscilla M. Burrage · 30 May 2003 14:48:34 · Top

On Fri, 30 May 2003, Alan Paterson wrote:

> I have just been asked to put together a SCD demo.
>
> It looks as if the demo team will have at least one relatively
> inexperienced dancer, so I am keen to hear of suggestions for dances which
> look good but are not too difficult.

First things first: Who's the audience? Have they ever seen SCD before?
What types of dancing are they used to looking at? It takes a very
sophisticated ausience to appreciate Mairi's Wedding. To the un-iniated,
it looks like a 50%-off sale in a bargain basement, regardless of the
capability of the dancers.

Second: What's the shape of the stage? Where are the audience relative
to the dancers?

Third: What figures can your dancers do in a relaxed fashion? With lots
of smiles and luaghter?

Fourth: Why can't you make up a dance that gives the character of SCD
and fits all of the above?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Priscilla Burrage Vermont US
(pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu)

Easy demo dances

Message 35364 · Oliver Thinius · 30 May 2003 15:52:35 · Top

Hi Alan,

try the "Blacksmith of Elgin" (Imperial Books as far as I remember) -
nothing really difficult apart from a "Snowball Chain" and a bit of
Set Advance and Set Retire.

Regards,

Oliver Thinius
othinius@scottishsupplies.de

Alan Paterson schrieb am 30.05.2003:
>I have just been asked to put together a SCD demo.
>
>It looks as if the demo team will have at least one relatively
>inexperienced dancer, so I am keen to hear of suggestions for dances
>which
>look good but are not too difficult.
>
>Any ideas folks?
>
>Alan
>

Easy demo dances

Message 35368 · adriana linden · 30 May 2003 18:49:09 · Top

I find that often in demos we have complicated choregraphy... lots of reels,
turns (of varying "amounts") etc... but these do not "show" really well unless
the audience is in a similar position to that found in a large concert
hall/theatre (ie: most of the the audience is above the stage, so the patterns
show). As it is, we are usually demoing at the same height as the audience, or
on a platform/stage above the audience... and all this interweaving can simply
look boring to an audience, even sometimes just complicated and messy. And
many dancers sort of end up smiling in a sort of rictus... knowing that they
need to smile, yet terrified that they will screw up the complicated
choregraphy.

What shows well IMHO, in the usual demo situation are our special figures...
allemande, poussette, the knot, tournee, even "dips & dives", etc...

So, you can make an effective demo with a very simple dance and simple/basic
figures. <grin> I once demo'd Miss Caterine Brice's Reel at an Irish Ceili (4
x though, 1's and 3's starting), and audience loved it... they adored the
allemande, since it was so novel for them. Although I had mostly beginner
dancers in the dem (a younger group, mostly in their late teens and early
20's), they all were relaxed and showed such energy and joy in dancing, that
the crowd loved them!

BTW... something like the Round Reel of Eight looks good to an audience, in
fact, better than something complicated such as Ian Powrie's Farewell to
Auchterarder in most circumstances IMHO.

Cheers,
Adriana Linden
Montréal QC

--- Alan Paterson <alan.paterson@paranor.ch> wrote: > I have just been asked
to put together a SCD demo.
>
> It looks as if the demo team will have at least one relatively
> inexperienced dancer, so I am keen to hear of suggestions for dances which
> look good but are not too difficult.
>
> Any ideas folks?
>
> Alan

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Easy demo dances

Message 35369 · Fiona Grant · 30 May 2003 20:52:05 · Top

Hi Alan,
The Scotia Suite of Scottish Country Dances, recently published by the RSCDS
and RSGS (Royal Scottish Geographical Scoiety) to celebrate the centenary of
the voyage of the Scotia to the Antarctic, looks to me to have great
potential as a source of easy demo dances. Dances are devised by Roy
Goldring, with music by Muriel Johnstone.

My class especially like the "Piper and the Penguin" illustrated in the book
with a fine photograph of bagpiper in full highland kit being regarded by
short dapper penguin.

Fiona,
Bristol
UK

Easy demo dances

Message 35370 · Elainerb · 31 May 2003 04:20:29 · Top

In a message dated 5/30/2003 2:53:03 PM Eastern Standard Time,
fiona@freespiritfilms.co.uk writes:

> My class especially like the "Piper and the Penguin" illustrated in the
> book
> with a fine photograph of bagpiper in full highland kit being regarded by
> short dapper penguin.
>
Yes...it's great! .I danced this, at a workshop a couple of weeks and
thought 'what a great demo dance' . another square set......

elaine

Easy demo dances

Message 35371 · Elainerb · 31 May 2003 04:57:39 · Top

Actually Espie Mcnab is a real easy one also, with clean, easy figures.
Seann trubhas willichan

Circles, wheels, advance and retire, down the middle, cast off etc: easy,
geometric figures, easy to do and easy to see, always make the best demos.
(IMHO).

Elaine

Easy demo dances

Message 35372 · Elainerb · 31 May 2003 05:06:56 · Top

In a message dated 5/30/2003 9:25:54 AM Eastern Standard Time,
pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu writes:

> Elaine, do you modify the dance to turn it from a social dance into a
> performance dance? For example, use two chords with the dancers bowing to
> the audience on the second chord (if the performance hall is somewhat
> formal). With the advance and retire, are any of the dancers going towards
> the audience? Do you position the square so that no couple have their
> backs to the audience? And can your dancers maintain that diamond
> position relative to the stage?

No real changes, we do the dance as is. It is usually part of my square
set for demos.....

The Barmkin, The Robertson Rant , and Ian Powerie....

At the end of the whole set....... The Circle can open out the a line on the
'way back'
and thus finish in a line, backs to the audience (if in theatre type
setting) on last beat all pull back right shoulder and ta dah!

Easy demo dances

Message 35373 · Norah Link · 31 May 2003 06:11:55 · Top

I agree that simple, classic SCD figures are often the best for demos. Lead
down the middle and up, advance and retire, poussette, allemande, rights and
lefts, hands across. You can show a variety of ground covered and social
possibilities without getting overly complicated. An somewhat experienced
group can dance medleys or slightly modified versions of dances, and an
inexperienced group can dance a single dance with a reduced number of
repetitions.

I have used dances such as Wild Geese, Rory O'More, On the Quarterdeck,
Shiftin' Bobbins, Seann Truibhas Willichan, The Lea Rig, Reel of the 51st
Division, Deil Amang the Tailors, Blue Bonnets, Duke of Atholl's Reel. I've
also used Staffin Harvest where it was being seen predominantly from above.
I'll bet Munro Rant would work well. Even Cumberland Reel could make a fun
demonstration dance in the right circumstances - especially if audience
participation will be involved.

cheers,
Norah Link (Montreal, Canada)

Easy demo dances

Message 35376 · Priscilla M. Burrage · 31 May 2003 16:00:01 · Top

On Fri, 30 May 2003 Elainerb@aol.com wrote:

> No real changes, we do the dance {The Barmikin} as is. It is usually
> part of my square set for demos.....
>
> The Barmkin, The Robertson Rant , and Ian Powerie....
>
> At the end of the whole set....... The Circle can open out the a line on the
> 'way back'
> and thus finish in a line, backs to the audience (if in theatre type
> setting) on last beat all pull back right shoulder and ta dah!

Neat! How much of the Robertson Rant do you do? That is, do you
eliminate the"sides repeat" part of the dance?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Priscilla Burrage
Vermont US
(pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu)

Easy demo dances

Message 35378 · Elainerb · 31 May 2003 18:05:41 · Top

In a message dated 5/31/2003 10:00:37 AM Eastern Standard Time,
pburrage@zoo.uvm.edu writes:

> Neat! How much of the Robertson Rant do you do? That is, do you
> eliminate the"sides repeat" part of the dance?
>
> No we do the whole thing......It's fun and showy enough *with the highland
> schottiche setting) that it makes a good demo.

Elaien

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