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strathspey@strathspey.org:45486

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  • Ian Brockbank

    Ian Brockbank June 9, 2006, 5:52 p.m. (Message 45486)

    RE: Regarding Dance Technique and Etiquette

    Hi Tom,
    
    > Regarding dance technique and etiquette -- I attend both Scottish Country
    > dance classes and vintage dance classes and I have been presented with a
    > problem...what to do when people want to turn using the so called "thumb
    > hold". I was always taught that this turn is incorrect and in most
    Scottish
    > classes people use the correct handshake hold for turns. 
    > However in thevintage classes (which dance a pretty good number of
    Scottish Country
    > dances) have what I call an American influence and while not all use the
    > thumb hold, a good many do.
    
    Is the handshake grasp correct in this instance?  When you say "vintage"
    class,
    what does that mean?  I have noticed when dancing at the Inter-Varsity Folk
    Dance
    Festival (of IVFDF to its friends) that dancers from some traditions give
    hands
    for turns and wheels at about eye level giving an effect like a maypole.  
    Conversely, the SCD dancers were the only ones to give hands at shoulder
    height
    in circles - most others had straight arms pointing down with the two arms
    of the adjacent dancers making a 'V' shape.  Now clearly taken in an SCD
    context
    both of these are not the expected grasp, but equally clearly it's what they
    have been taught in their dance style.  I'm afraid I'm inclined to agree
    with
    your wife here - do what the teacher asks or (if there isn't a teacher)
    what's common, and don't assume that SCD convention is correct for another
    dance
    form.
    
    > Another irritant is the propensity of the vintage class to want to dance
    the
    > "Postie's Jig" using the Tulloch turn rather than the usual turns by the
    > right and left giving the handshake hold.
    
    That's common enough among SCDers around here!  Some dancers seem to see it
    as a challenge for the number of spins they can do in the available time.
    If they're not endangering the set (too much), what does it matter?
    
    > Thoughts? Suggestions?
    
    Relax?  We've got enough of an image as boring and stuffy as it is
    (certainly
    here in Scotland).
    
    Cheers,
    
    Ian Brockbank
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    xxx@xxxxxxxxxxxxx.xxx
    http://www.scottishdance.net/
          

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