strathspey Archive: Jig vs Reel

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42316 · campbell · 26 Sep 2005 13:32:16 · Top

John wrote:

> I've noticed that most
> dancers really don't (and often can't) distinguish jigs from reels.
> They do the same steps to all SCD, and the only difference in the
> footwork is the slower tempo for strathspeys.

Which raises a query in my mind that I have not yet had a reasonable
answer to, and that is how a deviser of a new dance decides to make it a
reel rather than a jig and how that affects his devising. What
restrictions govern the one form of dance rather than the other? I have
tried doing Mairis Wedding as a jig and it isnt very pleasant but it is
doable.

Campbell Tyler
Cape Town
South Africa
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Jig vs Reel

Message 42317 · SMiskoe · 26 Sep 2005 14:26:24 · Top


In a message dated 9/26/2005 7:34:11 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
campbell@tyler.co.za writes:

doing Mairis Wedding as a jig and it isnt very pleasant

Mairi's Wedding is a great dance but one reason it is a great dance is the
music. A great song that most folks know and can hum to after a few
renditions. An appropriate dance set will match other song tunes to the Mairi's
Weding tune. Try doing the dance to some other reels and see if it is as much fun
as in the original form. I expect it will have lost some of the excitement.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA

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Jig vs Reel (2)

Message 42320 · Martin · 26 Sep 2005 15:54:47 · Top

SMiskoe@aol.com wrote:

>
>In a message dated 9/26/2005 7:34:11 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
>campbell@tyler.co.za writes:
>
>doing Mairis Wedding as a jig and it isnt very pleasant
>
>
>... one reason it is a great dance is the music... a great song that most folks know and can hum to
>
Yes, indeed.
In fact, I somtimes think that is the dance's only redeeming feature!

When I first taught "Mrs Stewart Linnel", a 40-bar dance, I used M's W
music (which was not associated in theminds of most ofmy dancers with
the dance M's W)
Everyone loved the dance, even though it took some learning, and it was
requested again and again.
Should their enjoyment be attributed to the dance figs or to the music?

Martin

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Jig vs Reel (2)

Message 42321 · SMiskoe · 26 Sep 2005 16:07:53 · Top

I think that the enjoyment factor includes the personal preferences of the
dancer. Since I am such a melody oriented person I remember great dances by
their music and the way it is played. Lady Harriet Hope is not an easy dance
but the tune is so nice, although hard to play, that I would gladly do the
dance so I could dance to that tune.
It would be an interesting experiment to take some dances that are
uninteresting and set them to dynamite tunes and see if they become favorites.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA
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Jig vs Reel (2) & S. C Dancer Mag.

Message 42328 · Ron Mackey · 26 Sep 2005 23:43:00 · Top

On 26 Sep 2005 at 10:07, SMiskoe@aol.com wrote:
. Lady Harriet Hope is not an easy dance
> but the tune is so nice, although hard to play, that I would gladly do the
> dance so I could dance to that tune.

I, too have received the magazine direct. I found it excellent
and read it from cover to cover. I think they have it just right, print size,
layout, mix etc. Well worth the price of admission, s.t.s. especially as
we get two a year!
In it Muriel Johnstone says her favourite tune is 'Up in the Air'.
How right she is and I will dance the dance to it, with relish, any
time.

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42323 · Alan Paterson · 26 Sep 2005 17:14:52 · Top

On 26/09/2005 14:26, SMiskoe@aol.com wrote:
>
> Mairi's Wedding is a great dance but one reason it is a great dance is the
> music. A great song that most folks know and can hum to after a few
> renditions. An appropriate dance set will match other song tunes to the Mairi's
> Weding tune. Try doing the dance to some other reels and see if it is as much fun
> as in the original form. I expect it will have lost some of the excitement.

Isn't it wonderful how much variation in tastes exist? The main reason I
HATE the dance Mairi's Wedding is the horrible cheesy tune :-)

Alan

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42324 · Fyreladdie · 26 Sep 2005 17:47:02 · Top

Campbell,

<< how a deviser of a new dance decides to make it a reel rather than a jig
and how that affects his devising. >>

I think there can be many variables in choosing jigs over reels when devising
a new dance. I have been a musician all my life and am greatly affected by
what feels and sounds right together. It may sound "new age" but the two have
different energy. Many dances can be done as reels or jigs because there is no
specific energy assigned to them. I've always felt that jig had a lighter side
to them like children skipping on the sidewalk. Reels have more of a drive and
remind me of marching. When I write a dance I think about which energy I'd
like to attach. Tune and spead of the tune also have a lot to do with which will
work for any dance. A slow jig has a very loopy quality that lends itself
well to some dances. Basically, I think it's a subjective thing to the individual.

Bob McMurtry
San Francisco Branch
Felton, California
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Jig vs Reel

Message 42329 · Ron Mackey · 26 Sep 2005 23:43:00 · Top

On 26 Sep 2005 at 17:14, Alan Paterson wrote:

> Isn't it wonderful how much variation in tastes exist? The main reason I
> HATE the dance Mairi's Wedding is the horrible cheesy tune :-)
>
> Alan

Here I side with Alan. It may be the way it is often played, with
a very heavy first beat, but it drives me into the floor like a nail.
Wish I'd a pound for every time we ended a dem. with it
though. As the last dance in a strenuous dem. I found it torture.
Now I can go to the sitooterie! :))

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42330 · SMiskoe · 27 Sep 2005 00:50:36 · Top

As I said privately to Alan, I like the dance and the tune. It's not hard
to play, it's upbeat and fun. It's fun to find other silly tunes like I Love
a Lassie to go with it. You never want a heavy downbeat for quick time
(thank you George, Gordon and Angela) unless you are really racing the dance and
need to slow down. As a dancer I like reels across the dance and I don't
often get to do them. And it's nice to have different tastes.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord, NH USA
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Jig vs Reel

Message 42319 · Martin · 26 Sep 2005 15:47:47 · Top

campbell@tyler.co.za wrote:

>John wrote:
>
>
>
> I have
>tried doing Mairis Wedding as a jig and it isnt very pleasant ...
>
That's only because M's W happens to be a nice tune, well known, & well
liked.
Teach the dance to someone that has never danced it to the original
music; I'm sure they won't complain whether you use a jig or a reel.
In fact there's nothing to stop you doing it as a spey, provided the
whole set is unaware of the original music.

Martin,
in Grenoble,
France.

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42322 · Ian Brockbank · 26 Sep 2005 17:10:51 · Top

Hi Campbell,

> Which raises a query in my mind that I have not yet had a reasonable
> answer to, and that is how a deviser of a new dance decides to make it a
> reel rather than a jig and how that affects his devising. What
> restrictions govern the one form of dance rather than the other?

Instinct, smell, feel, ... If it's a dance with a lot of flight and
flowing movements, I'd tend to go for a reel. If I want a bouncy feel
I'd go for a jig. Of course sometimes it works the other way round -
I've got a tune and I'm trying to put a dance to it. I can't really
point to anything particular in abstract and say "that's why", but I
know the difference (sometimes, when it makes a difference...).

Cheers,

Ian Brockbank
Edinburgh, Scotland
ian@scottishdance.net
http://www.scottishdance.net/

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42331 · Susan McKinnell · 27 Sep 2005 01:13:27 · Top

Speaking only for myself, I listen to music first and decide if a dance
dances better to reel or jig music, then I label it a jig or a reel.
Sue

campbell@tyler.co.za wrote:

>John wrote:
>
>
>
>>I've noticed that most
>>dancers really don't (and often can't) distinguish jigs from reels.
>>They do the same steps to all SCD, and the only difference in the
>>footwork is the slower tempo for strathspeys.
>>
>>
>
>Which raises a query in my mind that I have not yet had a reasonable
>answer to, and that is how a deviser of a new dance decides to make it a
>reel rather than a jig and how that affects his devising. What
>restrictions govern the one form of dance rather than the other? I have
>tried doing Mairis Wedding as a jig and it isnt very pleasant but it is
>doable.
>
>Campbell Tyler
>Cape Town
>South Africa
>_______________________________________________
>http://strathspey.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/strathspey
>
>
>
>

--
Susan McKinnell luvscd@suedan.com http://suedan.com

"A house without a cat, and a well-fed, well-petted, and properly
revered cat, may be a perfect house, perhaps, but how can it prove
its title?"
- Mark Twain, The Tragedy of Pudd'nhead Wilson

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Jig vs Reel

Message 42338 · Richard Goss · 27 Sep 2005 11:08:02 · Top

I agree but this is not why I am posting this to this site. I have a spam blocker, that has recently been picking up some of the Strathspey messages on the same days and about the same subjects as those in my regular mail.

Any one have any idea why?

It is really a bother to find an important link to one of our discussions, in an area where it is likely to be trashed unread.
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Silver Birch Strathspey

Message 42372 · John K. Andrews · 1 Oct 2005 07:27:05 · Top

A friend of mine came across this dance in MiniCrib. However, there is no
attribution either in MiniCrib or DanceData. Can anyone point us at the
source and perhaps furnish a copy of the dance?

Thanks,

Jay Andrews
Alexandria, VA, USA

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