Thursday, February 16, 2012

Lesson Plan for February 20 - Beginner Class

New step taught: strathspey setting
New figures: promenade, back to back

NEW CALEDONIA JIG (J4x32) 4C set R Goldring G & S Dances 2
1- 8 1s+2s+3s advance for 2 steps & retire,
turn partners RH ending in centre for promenade
9-16 1s+2s+3s dance Promenade
17-24 1s dance down the middle to bottom, up between 4s, & cast down to 4th place
25-32 All circle 8H round & back

Dance Information:

Caledonia is the Latin name given by the Romans to the land in today's Scotland, north of their province of Britannia, beyond the frontier of their empire. The etymology of the name is probably from a Brythonic source, related to the name that the Britons used to refer to their northern neighbors. Today, it is used as a romantic name to refer to Scotland as a whole. In reference to this, there are three places called New Caledonia. I do not know which of these Roy Goldring had in mind when he wrote the dance, but here are the possibilities:

New Caledonia is an archipelago that is a special collectivity of France located in the Pacific Ocean, east of Australia and north of New Zealand. The earliest traces of human presence in New Caledonia date back to the Lapita period. The Lapita were highly skilled navigators and agriculturists with influence over a large area of the Pacific. Europeans first sighted New Caledonia on September 4, 1774, during the second voyage of Captain James Cook. He named the territory New Caledonia, as the north-east of the island reminded him of Scotland. The west coast of Grande Terre was approached by Jean-François de Galaup, comte de Lapérouse in 1788, shortly before his disappearance, and the Loyalty Islands were first visited in 1796. From then until 1840, only a few sporadic contacts with the archipelago were recorded. Contacts became more frequent after 1840, because of the interest in sandalwood from New Caledonia.

New Caledonia was also the name given to a district of the Hudson's Bay Company that comprised the territory largely coterminous with the present-day province of British Columbia, Canada. Though not a British colony, New Caledonia was part of the British claim to North America. For all intents and purposes, New Caledonia came into being with the establishment of the first British fur trading posts west of the Rocky Mountains by Simon Fraser and his crew, during their explorations of 1805-08. The origin of the name is generally attributed to Simon Fraser and his companions, to whom the hills and woodlands were reminiscent of the Scottish Highlands.

Additionally, the Darien scheme was an unsuccessful attempt by the Kingdom of Scotland to become a world trading nation by establishing a colony called 'New Caledonia' on the Isthmus of Panama in the late 1690s. From the outset, the undertaking was beset by spoiled provisions, English and Spanish politics that prevented trade, devastating epidemics of disease and increasing shortage of food; it was finally abandoned after a siege by Spanish forces in April, 1700. As the Darien company was backed by about a quarter of the money circulating in Scotland, its failure left the nobles and landowners – who had suffered a run of bad harvests – almost completely ruined and was an important factor in weakening their resistance to the Act of Union (finally consummated in 1707). Although the scheme failed, it has been seen as marking the beginning of the country's transformation into a modern nation oriented toward business.

MR WATSON'S FAVOURITE (R8x32) 2C (4C set) Bk of Graded SCDs
1- 8 1s+2s Promenade
9-16 1s lead down the middle & up to top
17-24 1s+2s dance Allemande
25-32 2s+1s circle 4H round & back

LADY GLASGOW (S8x32) 3C (4C set) MMM 1
1- 8 1s+2s+3s set, cross RH, set & cross RH into pstn for Promenade
9-16 1s+2s+3s Promenade
17-24 1s set, cast to 2nd place & dance BtoB
25-32 2s+1s+3s circle 6H round & back

Dance Information:

Lady Glasgow is a folk song about certain women of Glasgow who were definitely not ladies.

EUAN'S JIG (J8x32) 2C (4C set) RSCDS Bk 28
1- 8 1M+2L set & turn RH, 1s set & cast to 2nd place
9-16 1L+2M repeat above Fig
17-24 1s & 2s dance BtoB, 1M+2M & 1L+2L dance BtoB on sides
25-32 1s+2s dance double fig of 8 (1s down between 2s)
1s dancing down to 2nd place & 2s up to top to end

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