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Tandem Reels (was Re: Reels in Bishop of Columbus)

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  • ...

    Lee Fuell July 8, 2011, 12:44 p.m. (Message 61068)

    Re:
  • ...

    Alan Harrison July 8, 2011, 1:22 p.m. (Message 61070, in reply to message 61068)

    Hi Lee and All,
    
    Yes me again.  Sounds like these derive from what would have at one
    time been considered "bad" dancing.  I can just see Miss Milligan's
    face if she had seen it from the stage at the Younger Hall!
    
    I guess they can be fun if done well but many new dances seem to be
    devised around a particular figure of this ilk.
    
    Best regards,
    Alan Harrison.
    RSCDS Leeds
    
     www.piper-alan.co.uk
  • ...

    Heiko Schmidt July 8, 2011, 1:22 p.m. (Message 61071, in reply to message 61068)

    Hi,
    
    >> Never understood why anyone would call them "tandem" reels.  You
    don't see couples riding tandem bicycles getting off and changing
    seats every time the road curves.  Nor, to change the subject, have I
    ever understood the term "barn-door" turns for the figure in which one
    partner turns another person by right hand and the other partner turns
    another by the left hand.  Barn doors don't and can't revolve 360
    degrees.
    >>
    >> Mike Briggs
    > Yep - illogical!  That name assignment happened in 2005 when the
    RSCDS updated the manual.  Having published Pelorus Jack as an RSCDS
    dance, the Society seems to have decided they needed to name what I'd
    usually heard called "double switchback tandem reels" (two wordy) as
    simply "reel of three in tandem."  What I think of as a "tandem reel"
    is what we do in bars 9-16 and 17-24 of Ferla Mor - 1M following 1W
    throughout with no change of lead.  Had the RSCDS published Ferla Mor,
    I suspect we'd have gotten more logical formation names:  "Reel of
    three in tandem" being what we do in Ferla Mor, and "reel of three in
    tandem with change of lead" for Pelorus Jack.
    >
    > "Shadow reels" is a new term for me; it's certainly not in the RSCDS
    lexicon (but neither are the more commonly used "mirror reels" a.k.a.
    "reflection reels").
    
    "Shadow reels" is the name Terry gave it in the dance's description. In 
    my imagination, one dancer is following her/his partner like a shadow, 
    i.e. dancing as one item.
    
    Chris Ronald gives a nice overview over the history of the terms shadow, 
    tandem, dolphin and falcon reels in his book "12 Scottish County Dances".
    According to that Barry Skelton used the term "tandem reels" first in 
    the publication of "Pelorus Jack" in RSCDS Book 41.
    
    I also stick to Chris' decision to use "shadow reels" when the partners 
    do not change lead and "dolphin reels" in case they do. The latter term 
    I had learned quite a while before hearing the term "tandem reels", 
    which I agree is not logical for a movement changing the lead... a 
    hilarious picture to imagine on a tandem, but I do not want to be part 
    of the experiment.
    
    Differently to this, in "petronella in tandem" the term is more 
    intuitive as there is no change of lead.
    
    I have never heard of "barn-door" turns yet (is there an example?). The 
    term "revolving doors" seem to be more abundant here, e.g. to describe 
    the turns at the end of the "Tournee".
    
    
    If you are interested in an electronic copy of Chris Ronald's book "12 
    Scottish County Dances" which contains the text on those reels, he 
    offered to send it on request in his post on "Re: The Strathspey 
    Anniversary Challenge (8 years later)" (26.5.2011).
    
    Cheers,
    Heiko
  • ...

    Mike Briggs July 8, 2011, 1:33 p.m. (Message 61072, in reply to message 61071)

    When I first danced Ferla Mor (oh, many years ago before the Flood)
    the "shadow" reels were called "Shetland" reels.  Is that term still
    current?  My sense is that  "shadow" might refer to the big gray guy
    referred to as Ferla Mor, but I may be wrong.
    
    Mike Briggs
    
      
    1519 Storytown Road
    Oregon WI  53575-2521  USA 
    +1 608 835 0914 (o)
    +1 608 770 2304 (m)
    +1 608 237 2379 (f)
  • ...

    Iain Boyd July 8, 2011, 2:48 p.m. (Message 61074, in reply to message 61072)

    Dear Mike,
    
    The description "Shetland Reels" probably more correctly refers to the type of 
    reels in John Drewry's dance "The Saint Nicholas Boat".
    
    I came across these reels in a 'Shetland' context some years before John devised 
    his own dance.
    
    Unfortunately, I can not remember where I originally found them - perhaps in one 
    of the Flett's books.
    
    Regards,
    
     Iain Boyd
    
    
    Postal Address -
    
    P O Box 11-404
    Wellington 6142
    New Zealand
  • ...

    Iain Boyd July 8, 2011, 1:52 p.m. (Message 61073, in reply to message 61071)

    Greetings all,
    
    Been there, done that!
    
    All of this has been discussed extensively already.
    
    On this occasion the RSCDS got it wrong. We have to live with it, but, we do not 
    have to agree with them.
    
    As far as I am concerned, reels where one dancer follows another closely without 
    overtaking are "tandem reels" - because that is how they were first described 
    when I learnt them. "Shadow reels" is an acceptable alternative, but, not one I 
    intend using.
    
    On the other hand, reels where one dancer follows another closely and 
    'overtakes' them at the end of the reel are "swap over reels" - because that is 
    the name I gave them when I first published a dance which included this type of 
    reel. "Swap over reels" can be 'single' (when dancers change places at one end, 
    only) or 'double' (when dancers change places at both ends).
    
    I have no intention of calling them 'dolphin' reels because Barry Skelton did 
    not create this type of reel. They were created by Barry Priddey, and, if we 
    must give them a colloquial name then it should be 'falcon' reels, although, I 
    have no intention of calling them that either.
    
    Regards,
    
     Iain Boyd
    
    
    Postal Address -
    
    P O Box 11-404
    Wellington 6142
    New Zealand
  • ...

    Rod Downey July 9, 2011, 1 a.m. (Message 61078, in reply to message 61071)

    On Fri, 8 Jul 2011, Heiko Schmidt wrote:
    
    > SNIP
    
    > Chris Ronald gives a nice overview over the history of the terms shadow, 
    > tandem, dolphin and falcon reels in his book "12 Scottish County Dances".
    > According to that Barry Skelton used the term "tandem reels" first in the 
    > publication of "Pelorus Jack" in RSCDS Book 41.
    >
    
    
    In that account Chris says ``And the last step in the evolution came with
    Pelorus Jack, by Barry Skelton which had half reels of three with changes 
    of the lead in each corner.''
    
    I am not sure that is quite correct in that, in a 4 couple dance, ``The 
    Capercaille'' Barry Priddy had 4 diagonal
    swapover reels (of 4), and I had similarly one  in 
    the Island Bay book called ``The Silkie''(inspired by the flight of the
    falcon; I did not know of the Capercaille at that time). 
    As with the tourbillon, it is 
    clear that this is Priddy's formation. It is unfortunate that because of
    the penetration of the RSCDS books compared to privately published ones
    formations often become attributed to the first RSCDS source rather than
    the original place someone published. Witness inverted double triangles
    which many think occurred in the nurseryman whereas they can be found much 
    earlier in Garry Morris' Jig by Alec Hay who also gave us set and link. 
    (On the othert hand, these are not
    scientific papers and we don't need a literature review at the beginning
    of each dance description! But henceforth I have decided that, if I write 
    a dance ``borrowing'' a formation, or at least being inspired by one,
    I will attribite this fact.)
    
    Lately we have been doing acheological digs into many of the
    earlier devisors books, particularly Hay, Foss, Priddy, Cosh, Boyd
    and have found many ``recent'' ideas.
    
    regards
    
    Rod Downey
  • ...

    Anselm Lingnau July 9, 2011, 2:19 a.m. (Message 61079, in reply to message 61078)

    Rod Downey wrote:
    
    > It is unfortunate that because of
    > the penetration of the RSCDS books compared to privately published ones
    > formations often become attributed to the first RSCDS source rather than
    > the original place someone published.
    
    »The Flight of the Falcon« is in »Anniversary Tensome«, which was published to 
    commemorate the 10th anniversary, in 1992, of the RSCDS Sutton Coldfield 
    branch. The late Barry Priddey was probably more timely about publishing his 
    anniversary books than yours truly, so it is reasonable to assume that the 
    book actually came out at around that time.
    
    »Pelorus Jack«, before the RSCDS picked it up for Book 41 in 2000, appeared in 
    Barry Skelton's »Dolphin Book«, which is dated 1994 (along with a whole bunch 
    of other dances featuring the same style of reel). With private publication of 
    dance books being as Rod describes, and with Barry Priddey being based in the 
    UK and Barry Skelton in New Zealand, it is not at all unlikely that we have a 
    case of »parallel invention« here, especially as it is impossible to say after 
    the fact exactly when the two Barrys came up with the actual dances, as 
    opposed to publishing the books. So, at least from the accessible evidence, I 
    personally would be hesitant about making statements like »These so-called 
    ›dolphin reels‹ must be called ›falcon reels‹ because Priddey had them first«.
    
    Which is not to say that maybe it wasn't one of the Society's brightest ideas 
    to call the formation a »tandem reel« in the Manual. It is probably sensible 
    to stay away from cutesy formation names involving animals (much like we're 
    told to stay away from cutesy formation names involving kitchen utensils 
    except for porridge stirrers), but I would defy anyone riding a two-seater 
    bicycle to change places twice while going around a tight figure-of-eight 
    curve.
    
    Anselm
    -- 
    Anselm Lingnau, Mainz/Mayence, Germany ................. xxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxx.xxx
    Love all, trust a few. Do wrong to none.                -- William Shakespeare
  • ...

    Rod Downey July 9, 2011, 2:49 a.m. (Message 61080, in reply to message 61079)

    Hi Anselm,
    
    your points are well taken, but I did not advocate using Falcon Reels
    but personally use ``swapover reels'' which is descriptive.
    Naming formations  is something which should 
    be done without animals, birds, nor references to particular dances.
    
    best
    
    rod
  • ...

    Bruce Herbold July 9, 2011, 3:21 a.m. (Message 61082, in reply to message 61080)

    If so what do YOU call petronella turns?
    
    
    Bruce Herbold
  • ...

    Rod Downey July 9, 2011, 3:34 a.m. (Message 61083, in reply to message 61082)

    alas; there are things which cannot be changed,
    and petronella turn is now part of the millieu.
    I wonder if this is what the movement was called before
    the RSCDS.
    
    However, it is not a good plan for the future.
    
    
    rod
  • ...

    Chris Ronald Aug. 8, 2011, 1:22 a.m. (Message 61706, in reply to message 61079)

    Anselm wrote (a month ago!):
    
    
    > »The Flight of the Falcon« is in »Anniversary Tensome«, which was published
    > to
    > commemorate the 10th anniversary, in 1992, of the RSCDS Sutton Coldfield
    > branch. The late Barry Priddey was probably more timely about publishing
    > his
    > anniversary books than yours truly, so it is reasonable to assume that the
    > book actually came out at around that time.
    >
    > »Pelorus Jack«, before the RSCDS picked it up for Book 41 in 2000, appeared
    > in
    > Barry Skelton's »Dolphin Book«, which is dated 1994 (along with a whole
    > bunch
    > of other dances featuring the same style of reel). With private publication
    > of
    > dance books being as Rod describes, and with Barry Priddey being based in
    > the
    > UK and Barry Skelton in New Zealand, it is not at all unlikely that we have
    > a
    > case of »parallel invention« here, especially as it is impossible to say
    > after
    > the fact exactly when the two Barrys came up with the actual dances, as
    > opposed to publishing the books. So, at least from the accessible evidence,
    > I
    > personally would be hesitant about making statements like »These so-called
    > ›dolphin reels‹ must be called ›falcon reels‹ because Priddey had them
    > first«.
    >
    > During the last month I have been too busy dancing to contribute much to
    Strathspey.  So, sorry about the delay.  As Heiko mentioned, I did some
    research on 'tandem/dolphin/falcon' reels and wrote it up in an annex to my
    book: 12 Scottish Country Dances.  Shortly after completing that book, I met
    Barry Skelton in New Zealand, and he agreed that Barry Priddey was the
    originator of reels of three where 1st couple dance in tandem and change
    lead at each end of the reel.
    
    This doesn't mean I'm going to start calling them 'falcon reels'.  As a
    teacher, the language I use is what I feel will most easily convey to a
    group of dancers what I mean.  In this part of the US, this means that I
    often say 'dolphin' reels.  There are some places in the UK where I might
    say 'falcon', because that's the term dancers know best.
    
    I taught a dance at TAC Summer School in Canada the week before last, and it
    had one of 'those' reels in it. I started off being orthodox, and was
    carefully showing and explaining how 1st couple dance in tandem and change
    lead at each end, until someone said: "Oh, you mean dolphin reels!"
    Chris, New York.

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