Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Lesson Plan for Oct. 29

Figures Taught: Reel of Four, Progressive Grand Chain

THE GREEN ISLE BRIDGE (J8x32) 3C (4C set) B Forbes Craigievar Bk 4
1- 8        1s+2s+3s dance reel of 3 on sides (1s dance in & down to start)
9-16       1s cross down RH to double triangle pstn, set,
              cast down behind 3s & dance up to 2nd place
17-24     1L dances LH across with 2M+3M
              while 1M dances RH across with 2L+3L,
              1s cross to other side to continue the wheels
25-32     1s+2s dance double fig of 8 (1s crossing up to start)

SWISS LASSIE (R8x32) 3C (4C set) R Betsche RSCDS 39
1- 8       1s dance in & cast to 3rd place, 2s+1s turn partners RH 1.1/4 times
              to form a line up & down middle of set (Men facing down Ladies up)
9-16       2s+1s dance reel of 4 up & down middle of set
              ending with 2M facing Ladies side & 1L facing Mens side
17-24     2s+1s chase round clockwise 1/2 way, 1s+3s+2s Advance+Retire
25-32     3s+2s 1/2 turn partners RH, dance RH across 1/2 way,
              1s+2s 1/2 turn partners RH & dance RH across 1/2 way

MACDONALD OF THE ISLES (S3x32) 3C Set D Haynes Carnforth Coll 2
1- 8        2s dance full diagonal Reels of 4 with 1st corners,
              passing by the LSh to face 2nd corners
9-16       2s dance full diagonal Reel of 4 with 2nd corners
              to end in original places
17-24     Dance Progressive Chain:
                 1s cross RH &
                 change places LH on side with 2s
                 1s change places RH with 3s while 2s cross over RH
                 1s cross LH while 2s & 3s change places LH
25-32     3s+2s dance 1/2 R&L,
              3s dance 1/2 fig of 8 round end couples (3M up & 3L down)
              to end in 2nd places

THE HUNTING HORN (J8x32) 3C (4C set) P McBride SCD Archives
1- 8        1s cast 1 place, cross RH, cast below 3s & lead up middle to 2nd place
              BtoB in centre for Double Triangles
9-16       1s dance Double Triangles & end facing 2nd corners
17-24     1s dance diagonal reels of 4 with 2nd corners,
               pass partner LSh to face 1st corners
25-32     1s dance reels of 4 with 1st corners, pass partner LSh
               to end in 2nd place facing out to start next sequence

THE MICHIGAN REEL (R4x32) 4C set J Trew Martello Tower & Other Dances
1- 8         All Advance+Retire & dance BtoB with partner
9-16        1s+2s also 3s+4s dance R&L
17-24      All dance RSh reels of 4 on sides
25-32      1s dance down to 4th place, others step up on bars 27-28 &
                all turn partner RH

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Lesson Plan for Oct. 22

Figures Taught: Reel of Three, Petronella

THE MAIDS OF CURRIE (R8x32) 3C (4C set) 
H&T Cruickshank SCDs for Children
1- 8       1s dance fig of 8 round 2s+3s (own sides) giving RSh to 2s
9-16      1s+2s Advance+Retire & dance RH across
17-24    1s followed by 2s lead down & 2s lead back followed by 1s,
             1s end facing 1st corners
25-32    1s turn 1st corners RH, partner LH,
             2nd corner RH & cross LH to 2nd place own sides

Dance Information:
Currie Kirk
Image via Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary
Currie is a suburb of Edinburgh, Scotland, situated within Midlothian 10 kilometres southwest of the city centre, between Juniper Green and Balerno on the Lanark Road. The earliest record of a settlement in the Currie area is a Bronze Age razor (1800 BC) found at Kinleith Mill and the stone cists (500 BC) at Duncan's Belt and Blinkbonny. There are a few mentions of this area in mediaeval and early modern documents, but the Index of Charters 1309-1413 records Currie as being 'favourite hunting grounds' for the Lords and Knights of Edinburgh Castle. A settlement took shape around Currie Kirk and the main Lanark Road. The weaver poet James Thomson was brought up in the village in the late 18th century, and is commemorated by the dell of the Kinleith Burn being named the "Poet's Glen" where it runs down from beside his cottage at Mid Kinleith Farm to join the Water of Leith.

FALLING LEAVES (J8x32) 3C (4C set) M Glenn
1- 8       1s cross RH, cast 1 place, cross LH & cast up to places
9-16      1s dance reels of 3 on own sides dancing down between 2s to start
17-24    1s lead down the middle & back to top
25-32    1s+2s dance Poussette

THE BYRON STRATHSPEY (S3x32) 3C set J Drewry Deeside Bk 2
1- 8       All petronella turn into the centre, set to partner &
             turn 2H 1.1/4 times back to places
9-16      1s+2L & 3s+2M dance RH across,
              2s pass RSh & dance LH across with other couple
17-24    2s in prom hold dance reel of 3 with 1s passing 1L RSh,
             end 2s in centre at top
25-32    2s+1s+3s dance Allemande

Video of Byron Strathspey

THE DEN O'MAINS (J8x32) 3C (4C set) 
D Henderson Douglas Henderson Coll
1- 8       1s+2s+3s turn RH,
             1s set, cast 1 place into middle facing up in prom hold
9-16      1s dance reel of 3 with 2L+3M giving RSh to 2L
17-24    1s dance reel of 3 with 2M+3L giving LSh to 2M &
             1s end BtoB facing own side ready for…
25-32    1s dance Double Triangles with 2s+3s

MASON'S APRON (R8x32) 3C (4C set) Border Bk
1- 8       1s turn RH, cast to 2nd place, cross RH, cast to right,
              ending 1M between 3s & 1L between 2s
9-16      1s set & turn RH 1 1/4 to opposite sides between 2s+3s,
              set & turn RH to face 1st corners
17-24    1s set & turn 1st corners, set & turn 2nd corners
25-32    1s dance reels of 3 on opposite sides
              giving LSh to 1st corners & cross to own sides

Dance Information:
George Washington's Embroidered Masonic Apron
Image via Pennsylvania Grand Lodge
See their page for symbolic explanations.
White lambskin Master Mason aprons are an emblem of Freemasonry, derived from the working aprons of ancient stone masons.  These aprons are considered emblems of purity of mind and body.  Read more on the Masonic Lodge of Education page.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Lesson Plan for Oct. 15

Figures Taught: Poussette, Set To and Turn Corners

BLUE BONNETS (J8x32) 2C (4C set) RSCDS Bk 3
1- 8        1L+2M Advance+Retire & dance BtoB
9-16       1M+2L Advance+Retire & dance BtoB
17-24     1s lead down the middle & back
25-32     1s+2s dance Poussette

1- 8        1s cast to 3rd place, set, cast up to top & set
9-16       1s lead down the middle & back, cross to end facing 1st corners
17-24     1s set & turn 1st corners, set & turn 2nd corners both hands
25-32     1s turn RH 1½ times & 2s+1s+3s turn RH

Dance Information:

Arms of the Countess of Sutherland
Image via Wikipedia
The current Countess of Sutherland, Miss Elizabeth Millicent Sutherland-Leveson-Gower became the 24th holder of the title in 1963. She also inherited large land-holdings, including Dunrobin Castle, hereditary seat of Clan Sutherland and the largest house in the northern Highlands. She subsequently changed her surname to Sutherland in order to be recognized as Chief of Clan Sutherland.

Dunrobin Castle
Image via Wikipedia
I do not know if the dance was written for her or for an earlier Countess.  It was published in 1977 by Jean Milligan, one of the founders of the RSCDS, in Miss Milligan's Miscellany.

Location of the County of Sutherland in Scotland
Image via Wikipedia
Sutherland is, counter-intuitively, one of the northern-most areas of mainland Scotland.  The name comes from the time when this area was under Norse rule, along with Orkney and Caithness.  From the perspective of its ruler, the Jarl of Orkney, Sutherland was actually the southern-most part of his domain! Sutherland boasts dramatic scenery, especially on its western fringe where the mountains meet the sea with high cliffs and deep fjords. The inland landscape is rugged and very sparsely populated. Despite being Scotland's 5th largest former county in terms of area, it has a smaller population than a medium-size lowland Scottish town. In the 18th century, Sutherland suffered from The Highland Clearances more than most parts of the Highlands, forceful eviction of people from their homes to make way for large sheep farms, displacing people to live along the coast scraping a life as fisherfolk and scattering others far and wide across the globe. The villages produced by this policy form the last Gaelic speaking communities to be found on the east coast of Scotland.

SIMON BRODIE (S8x32) 3C (4C set) J Young SCDs of 18th Cent
1- 8        1M+2L set advancing, turn 2H, 1L+2M repeat
9-16       1s lead down, cross below 3s & cast up to 2nd place opposite sides
               dance R&L (1 bar per hand) to end facing 1st corners
17-24     1s set & turn 2H 1st corners & 2nd corners
               ending in middle facing Ladies side Lady on Mans L
25-28     1s dance out between 2L & 3L
               cast round nearest Lady to meet in the middle,
               turn 2H to end facing Mens side Lady on Mans right
29-32     1s dance out between 2M & 3M
               cast round nearest Man to meet in the middle,
               turn LH to places

Dance Information:

Simon Brodie Lyrics:

Symon Brodie had a cow:
The cow was lost, and he cou'd na find her;
When he had done what man cou'd do,
The cow came hame, and the tail behind her.

Honest, auld Symon Brodie,
Stupid, auld, doited bodie;
I'll awa' to the North Countrie,
And see my ain dear Symon Brodie.

Symon Brodie had a wife,
And wow but she was braw and bonnie;
She took the dish-clout aff the bink,
And prin'd it to her cockernonie.

Heard ye e'er o' our gudeman,
The gaucy laird o' braid Dunwodie,
The wale o' cocks at cap or can,
Honest canty Symon Brodie!

Symon Brodie had ane wife,
I wat she was baith proud and bonny,
He took the dishclout frae the bink,
And preen't it till her cockernony!

An' Symon had a branded cow,
He tint his cow and couldna find her,
He sought her a' the lee lang day,
But the cow cam hame wi' her tail ahind her.

Other variations.

LORD ROSSLYN'S FANCY (J8x32) 3C (4C set)
Button+Whittaker RSCDS Bk 15
1- 8        1s+2s set, dance 1/2 RH across, set & dance 1/2 LH across
9-16       1s+2s+3s all set & cross RH, set & cross back RH
17-24     1s+2s dance Poussette
25-32     1s dance Double Triangles

ALLISON'S INVENTION (R8x32) 3C (4C set) A Collins Martello Tower Bk 4
1- 8        1s lead down for 4 bars,
              Lady passes under Mans arm & lead up to 2nd place
9-16       2s+1s+3s set, cross RH,
              set, 2s & 3s cross LH while 1s pass LSh to face 1st corner
17-24     Set & turn 1st corner, set & turn 2nd corner
25-32     1s dance 1/2 fig of 8 round standing 2s & 2s+1s+3s turn RH

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Lesson Plan for Oct. 8

Figures Taught: Ladies Chain, "Teapots"

KENDALL'S HORNPIPE (J8x32) 2C (4C set) Bk of Graded SCDs
1- 8          1s+2s dance R&L
9-16         1s lead down for 3, up for 3, cross over & cast down to 2nd place
17-24       2s+1s dance Ladies Chain
25-32       2L+1M & 2M+1L Advance+Retire on the sides, 1s turn RH 1.1/2 times

THE WHITE COCKADE (R8x32) 3C (4C set) Preston RSCDS Bk 5
1- 8          1s+2s+3s set & cross RH, set & cross back RH
9-16         1s lead down the middle for 4 bars & back to top
17-24       1s cast to 2nd place on own sides & circle 4H round to the left with 3s
25-32       2s+1s dance R&L

A MAN'S A MAN FOR A' THAT (S8x32) 3C (4C set) RSCDS Bk 30
1- 8          1s+2s set twice & dance RH across to places
9-16         1s lead down, 1/2 turn RH & lead up to face 2s
                 (1s BtoB in centre facing 2s who have stepped up),
                 set & 1s face 1st corners
17-24       1s turn 1st corner RH, turn partner LH, turn 2nd corner RH &
                 cross LH to 2nd place own sides
25-32       2s+1s+3s dance Grand Chain

Dance Information:

A Man's A Man For A' That, Robert Burns 1795:

Is there for honest Poverty
That hings his head, an' a' that;
The coward slave-we pass him by,
We dare be poor for a' that!
For a' that, an' a' that.
Our toils obscure an' a' that,
The rank is but the guinea's stamp,
The Man's the gowd for a' that.

What though on hamely fare we dine,
Wear hoddin grey, an' a that;
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine;
A Man's a Man for a' that:
For a' that, and a' that,
Their tinsel show, an' a' that;
The honest man, tho' e'er sae poor,
Is king o' men for a' that.

Ye see yon birkie, ca'd a lord,
Wha struts, an' stares, an' a' that;
Tho' hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a coof for a' that:
For a' that, an' a' that,
His ribband, star, an' a' that:
The man o' independent mind
He looks an' laughs at a' that.

A prince can mak a belted knight,
A marquis, duke, an' a' that;
But an honest man's abon his might,
Gude faith, he maunna fa' that!
For a' that, an' a' that,
Their dignities an' a' that;
The pith o' sense, an' pride o' worth,
Are higher rank than a' that.

Then let us pray that come it may,
(As come it will for a' that,)
That Sense and Worth, o'er a' the earth,
Shall bear the gree, an' a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
It's coming yet for a' that,
That Man to Man, the world o'er,
Shall brothers be for a' that.

THE DOVE COT CHASE (J8x32) 3C (4C set) J Hellinghuizer
1- 8          1s+2s+3s circle 6H round & back
9-16         1s set, cast 1 place while 2s set & lead up, 2s & 1s repeat
17-24       1s followed by 2s & 3s cast 2 places & lead up to places
25-32       1s+2s dance Allemande

A Anderson F Lesslie RSCDS Bk 39
1- 8          1s+2s+3s Advance+Retire & turn partners 2H with skip-change
9-16         1s cast, lead down between 3s, cast up behind 3s, lead up between 2s
                 & cast back to 2nd place
17-24       1s dance RH across Lady with 2s & Man with 3s, pass RSh &
                 dance LH across with other couple to end facing 1st corners
25-32       1s turn corner, partner, corner, partner to own sides 2nd place
33-40       2s+1s+3s circle 6H round & back

Dance Information:
Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh on their wedding day
Image via Martin Frost

When Prince Phillip married then-Princess Elizabeth, he renounced his titles as a prince of Greece and Denmark, and he was created Duke of Edinburgh, a title that had previously been used by grandsons and second sons of the kings and queens of England.  Until Elizabeth's coronation in 1952, the couple were known as the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh.

During the Victorian era, Alfred, Lord Tennyson wrote A Welcome to the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh for then Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Alfred and his bride Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia, on the occasion of their wedding.

Note: The two-hand turns in this dance are Edinburgh turns.  Normally, when turns with two hands in quick time are danced with pas-de-basque, but in this case, they are danced with skip-change-of-step.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Lesson Plan for Oct. 1

Steps Taught: Strathspey Setting
Figures Taught: Corner Partner, Double Triangles

LOCHABER (J4x32) 4C Set J Kelly Let's All Dance
1- 8         1s+2s dance RH across & LH back to places
9-16        1s cross RH, cast to 2nd place & turn RH
17-24      2s+1s+3s circle 6H round & back
25-32      1s cross LH, cast to bottom & 1s turn LH to own sides

ST ANDREW'S FLAG (R8x32) 3C (4C Set) S Gradon St Columban Bk
1- 8         1s+2s dance 4H round & back
9-16        1s cast below 3s & dance up into double triangle pstns
17-24      1s dance Double Triangles ending 2nd place own side
25-32      2s+1s dance R&L

DAVENA'S STRATHSPEY (S4x32) 4C set New Forest SCD
1- 8         1s+2s RH across, LH back
9-16        1s set, cast to bottom & lead up to 1st corners
17-24      1s turn 1st corner RH, partner LH, 2nd corner RH & partner LH
                to end in 2nd place on own side
25-32      2s+1s+3s Advance+Retire & 1s cast to the bottom

LADY HOME'S JIG (J8x32) 3C (4C set) MMM 1
1- 8         1s+2s+3s circle 6H round & back
9-16        1s+2s+3s dance Grand Chain
17-24      1s cross RH, cast to 2nd place, cross LH, cast round 3s &
                lead up to face 1st corners
25-32      1s turn 1st corners RH, turn partner LH, turn 2nd corners &
                cross LH back to 2nd place own sides

THE DURAN RANGER (R8x32) 3C (4C set) RSCDS Bk 13
1- 8          1s lead down the middle, Lady crosses under Mans arm &
                 they lead up to 2nd place opposite sides
9-16         2s+1s dance R&L 1s end facing 1st corners
17-24       1s turn 1st corners RH, turn partner LH, turn 2nd corners RH &
                 turn partner LH to places
25-32       2s+1s circle 4H round & back

Extra (non-beginner dance):

1-8            1s, 2s, 3s mirror reel of three on sidelines:
                 1s begin in and down, end in center facing down
                 2s begin out and up, end out and up, ready to dance to 1st place
                 3s begin in and up, 3M ends in place, 3W continues down the center
9-12          3W down the center, casts around 4W, up into 2nd place
                 1s, in promenade hold, chase her, cutting through 3W's place
13-16        3M casts off around 4M, up the center into 2nd place.
                 1s chase him, ending in the center of 3rd place
                 on opposite sides, facing up
17-18        1s and 3s set
19-22        1s and 3s dance slipping circle once around to the left
23-24        1s and 3s set
25-30        Mirror reel of three for bottom three couples (3, 1, 4):
                 1s begin in and down, 4s begin out and up, 3s begin out and down
31-32        1s cross to 4th place
                 4s dance out and up to 3rd place,
                 ready to continue in & up in the next repetition

Dance Information:

Originally written by Joan Hellmann in honor of the birth of Mary Wessel-Walker, this dance was on the program this week to celebrate Mary's birthday.  The chase figure represents a pair of parents chasing a toddler around the set. Today, Mary is not only a wonderful dancer, but also the founder and owner of Harvest Kitchen, where she turns produce from Ann Arbor area farms into delicious meals that she sells at the farmers market and to her subscribers.