Country Dances - Longways

Last updated: 2 August, 2020


Arkansas Traveller

Music:  40-bar:  40s: David Holt & Josh Goforth - *Billy Wilson;  39s: Dominique Dupuis - Gravel Walk.

or traditional, 48-bar reel:  WttD, CD1, 15 The Four Leaf Clover - Arkansas Set [48-bar];  53s: Noel Hill - Duke of Leinster;  50s: Blazin’ Fiddles - *Fiddle Cushion.

32-bar:  36s: 2nd South Carolina String Band - Arkansas Traveller;  33s: Geslison & Groberg - Arkansas Traveler set… , Tom Anderson - Soldiers Joy, Lazy Farmer - (rant) Arkansas Traveller.

Form:  Longways, proper, “as many as will” – best with an even number of couples (but not essential).

Preparation:  Take hands in fours from the top.

40-bar Main Figure:

    * * *
A1:  In long lines, balance (not Kick-balance)  (2 bars), forward, turn (Cw.), back-out to cross over with partner  (2).
Repeat to return home  (4).

A2:  In fours, r. hand star, l. hand star  (8 bars).


B1:  ‘1’s swing  (8).

B2:  ‘1’s (having swapped sides) lead down, turn as a couple, lead back and cast down a place  (8).

C1:  Full ‘right and left thru'’  (8).



or 48-bar alternative:

    * * *
A1:  Join hands along the line, lead forward and back  (4 bars).

A1:  Change places (passing right shoulders) with your partner - and turn Cw. 180º (to the right)  (4 bars).

A2:  Repeat - back to home place  (8 bars).


B1:  In fours, make a right hand star  (4).

B1:  Star left  (4).

B2:  ‘1’s swing in the centre.  (8)


A3:  ‘1’s (crossing-over sides) lead down, turn as a couple (Cw.), lead home and cast down a place to the next ‘2’s  (8).

B3:  Full ‘right and left thru'’ with the new couple  (8).



The Bonny Breastknot

Music:  32-bar reel.  WttD, CD1, 13 - Woodley Yeomen - B. B. (Boldovan Reel, Victoria Hornpipe);  36s: Liz Carroll & Doyle - *Ricky’s White Face/Boys … ;  35s: Corrina Rose Logston - *Highlander’s Farewell, The Elderberries - *Torn Jacket/Boy in the Boat/Toss … set;  34s: Máiréad Nesbitt - The Butterfly;  33s: Altan - The Curlew/McDermott’s/Boxty, Celtic Fiddle Festival - *Le Printemps, Arty McGlynn - Walter Sammon’s Grandmother/Concertina… set, Eliza Carthy - Scan Tester’s Country Stepdance/… (hornpipe);  32s: Jenna Reid, Aly Bain and Friends - *Fiddle Blast, Liz Carroll - Lost Indian;  31s: Blazin’ Fiddles - *Miss Johnstone/Rannie MacLennan/… set.

Form:  Three-couple, longways set.

    * * *
A1:  ‘1’s lead down between the two ladies, separate (man down/lady up), cast round one person.  They meet in the middle, without taking hands, go between the men, separate, cast round one person to lines of three across (‘2’s facing down and ‘3’s facing up).

A2:  In those lines, Kick-balance.  Repeat.  On the start of the next phrase, the first couple leap (normally to their right) to stand between the other two people of the opposite gender.  This leap/jump counts as the first jump of another pair of Kick-balances.


B1:  ‘1’s right-elbow half-turn their partner, then left half-turn their first ‘corner’.  Right three-quarters turn partner, left half-turn with their other ‘corner’.  ‘1’s meet (it doesn’t matter on which side they end-up).

B2:  ‘1’s swing down to third place (‘progressing’); all swing partners.



Boston Tea Party

Author: Jean Butler

Music:  32-bar jig;  35s: Lissa Schneckenburger - Jefferson and Liberty/Bert Ferguson;  34s: Sláinte - Celtic Jig/Leitrim Fancy Jig;  33s: Crowdie House - *Blue Bonnets;  32s: Trinculo - Drummond Castle/Shortys Revenge;  31s: Sláinte Mhath - *The Scrutch Blanket Set, The Dunne Family - Strike the Gay Harp/Jimmy Ward’s/Doberman’s;  30s: Adam Agee & Jon Sousa - An Giorra… (The Hare in the Corn)/… set.

Form:  5 or 6-couple longways.

    * * *
A1:  The top couple galop down, two-handed, between the lines to the bottom of the set.

They arch up over the ladies’ line - man in the centre.

A2:  At the top of the set they arch down over the men - man stays in the centre.

They return, two-handed, up the middle to the top and, still holding inside hands, face down the set.


B1:  All couples, except the ‘1’s, face up the set.  The top couple ‘duck and dive’ down the set.

B2:  The top couple, now at the bottom, make an arch…  the new top couple, followed by the rest, cast-out, through the arch and back to place.  Swing.



Bottoms Up

Music:  32-bar jig.  33s: Crowdie House - *Blue Bonnets, Patrick Street - *The Shores of Lough Gowna/Contentment is … set;  32s: Tiger Moth - Oats and Beans and Barley Grow, Trinculo - *Drummond Castle/Shorty’s … , Sean Mcguire - *Erin’s my Home/Larry O’Gaff;  31s: Fara - *Billy’s Short Leg;  15s jig: Blazin’ Fiddles - *Thursday Night in the Caley, Open House - Devil’s Jig/The Trip to Bantry/… ;  29s: Danú - Jim Ward’s, Howie MacDonald - Dan R’s Favourite/… etc..

Form:  5-couple longways set.

  * * *

Both lines hold hands.  Bottom couple join free hands to make a horseshoe-shaped set.

A1:  Top two men make an arch.
Ladies ‘thread the needle’ - twice if spry enough (the ‘eye’ needs to move forward - towards the needle ‘tip’).  Both the top two men need to ‘unwind’ under their arch together.

A2:  Top two ladies make an arch.  Men ‘thread the needle’ - twice if spry enough.


B1:  Heads join hands to make a circle of ten, circle left & right.

B2:  Bottom couple galop up to the top, where the top couple place their hands on the waists of the bottom couple, and the foursome galop to the bottom - the original top couple go to the very bottom place.



Bridge of Athlone

Music:  48-bar jig.  WttD, CD2, 07 Greensleeves Country Band - B. of A./Rakes of Kildare/… set;  46s: Jon Boden et al. - *Bridge of Athlone;  53s: Greg Joy and various artists (faster) - *Blarney Pilgrim;  44s: Eliza carthy - Zycanthos Jig/Tommy’s… (reel);  42s: Threepenny Bit - Coffee Zycanthos.

Form:  longways, four or five-couple sets.  Standing opposite partner, men have their left shoulder to caller, ladies with right shoulder to caller.

    * * *
Bars 1-8
Everyone joins hands in their lines and dances four steps forward-and-back (4 bars).  The men, keeping their hands joined and raising their arms above head-height, take eight steps, passing to left of their partners, to cross to the ladies’ side while the ladies duck under the men’s arch (to the left of their partner) to cross to the men’s side.  All half-turn to the right.

Bars 9-16
Repeat - back to places.


Bars 17-24
1st couple in each set galop down the set, two-handed, for 8 steps and back for 8 steps.

Bars 25-32
1st couple followed by the other three couples cast-off down the back of their own sides and make an arch at the bottom.  The other couples pass through the arch and lead to the top of the set.


Bars 33-40
All now make a two-handed arch with their partner.  1st lady comes up under the arches while the 1st man goes up the outside of the set behind the men’s line.  Then the 1st man goes down under the arches while the 1st lady casts down to the bottom of the set behind the ladies.

Alternatively: 1st couple arch up the set over the men - lady in the centre - and back down the set over the ladies.

Bars 41-48
Everybody swing.

Repeat for the other three/four couples.



Broken Sixpence

Author:  Don Armstrong

Music:  reel.
35s:  Celtic Fiddle Festival - Twilight in Portroe/… set, Trip to Durrow/… set (34s).

Form:  Contra, duple, ‘1’s improper.

Prep.:  Take hands - four from the top.

    * * *
A1:  Do-si-do neighbour;
Men do-si-do.

A2:  Ladies do-si-do;
‘1’s swing down the set between the ‘2’s.


B1:  Line of four walk down the set, turn alone, hold hands with neighbour and come back as a line.

B2:  Outside man (‘2’) curls round - dragging the line to a circle of four.  Circle left,
star right (by the left hand), peeling-off to face a new neighbour.



Country Bumpkin

Author:  Michael Barraclough

Music: 32-bar, versatile.  38s: Tom Doherty - The Three Sisters Reel;  36s reel: Trinculo - Touchstone/London’s Glory;  35s reel: Sláinte Mhath - *The White Crow;  34s reel: Celtic Music (Various) - Maid Behind the Bar/Gravel Walk, Patrick Street - Devanney's Goat/Leitrim …/… , Dulan - Reel of Rio/Fox Hunter;  33s: Celtic Fiddle Festival - *Le Printemps, The Four Star Trio - Reel of Rio/The Belles of Tipperary, Brendan Carey Block - *Wing Commander Donald MacKenzie;  32s: The Green Lads - Valley Greens.
35s jig: Lissa Schneckenburger - Jefferson and Liberty/… ;  33s: Mark Arrington - Kesh Jig/Haymakers;  31s jig: The Dunne Family - Strike the Gay Harp/Jimmy Ward’s;  29s: Danú - E Minor Jig/Jimmy Ward’s.

Formation: Longways, 5 or 4 couples.

    * * *
A1:  Lines forward and back.  4 bars

A1:  Men arch, couples cross over - passing by the right shoulder.  4 bars

A2:  ‘1’s galop down, two-handed, to the bottom of the set and back up.  8 bars


B1:  The ‘1’s, facing each other (the rest facing ‘up’) start a Grand Chain - initially passing by the right hand, then carrying on (passing by alternate hands) down the opposite line - the others follow.  When they meet at the bottom, the ‘1’s make a two-handed arch.  8 bars

B2:  The 2nd couple lead their remaining line outside the arch, up through it and back to progressed places…  swing - if there’s time.  8 bars



The Devil’s Dream

Music:  32-bar American reel.  30s: WttD, CD1, 05 - Orange and Blue - (2-bar intro.) Devil’s Dream (Up Jumped the Devil/Fred Radem's/The Flop-Eared Mule);  35s: Bucketboy Bluegrass Band, Bryan Sutton (33s) - *Kitchen Girl;  34.5s: Caladh Nua - *By Heck;  34s: Govannen - *Billy in the Low Ground/Blackberry Blossom;  30s: Ray Price - D. D.;  29s: unidentified bluegrass band (fiddle, banjo, guitar) - D. D.;  28s: Leahy - D. D..

Form:  Longways, ‘1’s improper - “As many as will”.  Skipping step for A1 & A2.

Prep.:  Take ‘hands down the line’ in fours.

    * * *
A1:  ‘1’s face down the centre and lead (all the way) down while the ‘2’s go up the outside.  4 bars

All half-turn alone and lead back to give their neighbour e.g. ‘1’ man with ‘2’ lady, a nearest short-arm half-turn.  4 bars

A2:  ‘1’s, facing down, go down the outside, while ‘2’s go up the middle.  4 bars

All half-turn alone and lead back - where men ¾ turn their neighbouring lady (so progressing) into…  4 bars


B1:  Ladies’ Chain across the set… and back.  4 bars + 4 bars

B2:  Promenade that person (i.e. neighbour) across the set - passing to the right of the oncoming couple.  (Ladies could add a flourish by twirling Cw. under the man’s l. arm as she half-circles around him.)  Half ‘right and left through’ (back into ‘progressed’ place) - ready to restart.  ‘End’ couples need to turn around (as a pair) and change their designation.  Note the new contrary dancer (i.e. new neighbour).  4 bars + 4 bars



The Foula Reel - pronounced ‘Fooler’

Music:  32-bar jig (double?):  39s: Spælimenninir - Da Shaalds o Foula; 34s: The Kilfenora Band - Jig It/Patsy Geary's/… set;  33s: Ale Möller – after 2m08 (but slow until 3m19) Unst Bridal March/Maggie O’Ham/Foula Reel;  32s: The Falconers (WttD, CD1, 17) - Shaalds of Foula, Celtic Fiddle Festival - *Maureen's Fancy/ … /Swinging Jig (double jigs) set;  31s: The Ranchers (WttD, CD1, 07) - Jigs: Lady Mary Douglas/Jump at the Sun/There Came a Young Man.

Form:  longways, 4-couple.

Difficulty: 2 - the poussette can be unfamiliar.

    * * *
A1 and A2:  ‘1’s lead down the middle of the set.  At the bottom they turn with a right short-arm or cupped-elbow (no thumbs!) once to ‘Strip the Willow’ back up (“right arm to your partner, left arm to the line” [of opposite gender]).


B1:  Back at the top, ‘1’s make an arch (with the man inside) and carry it down over the men’s heads, then back up over the ladies’ heads.

B2:  Poussette – All couples take two hands.  The 1st couple poussette to the bottom of the set: the 1st man pushes his partner (4 steps) while all the other men initially pull their lady.  The 1st couple weave their way down the set alternately pushing and pulling, weaving in and out, passing each other couple in turn as they go to and fro’ down the set.



Four around Four

Music:  32-bar jig.  31s: (WttD, CD1, 07) The Ranchers - Jigs;  33s: Patrick Street - *The Shores of Lough Gowna/Contentment is … set, Mark Arrington - Kesh Light Jig set;  31s: Fara - Billy’s Short Leg, The Scottish Fiddle Orchestra - *Jake's Jig/Going to the Well for Water/… set, Séamus Egan - Garrett Barry’s/The Hag at the Churn, Alasdair Fraser & Paul Machlis - Calliope House/Cowboy Jig;  30s: The Bothy Band - The Kesh Jig/Give Us a Drink/… set, Danú - Brown Eyed Bridget, Lissa Schneckenburger - *Jimmy Boyles/The Roaring Bar Maid/… ;  29s: Blazin’ Fiddles - Braehead Cottage.

Form:  Four-couple longways.  Easy.

    * * *
1-8:  Lines hold hands.  First woman pulls her line around the outside of the men.

9-16:  First man pulls his line around the ladies.


17-24:  Top couple galop to the bottom and back.

25-32:  Top couple cast out, form an arch at the bottom, all pass under, and swing.

next 1-8:  New first woman pulls her line around a new line of men.



Jack’s Maggot

Music:  32-bar reel.  Own tune:  33s: Tasker’s Chance - Newcastle/Jack’s Maggot.

or:  40s (then 32s): Adam Agee & Jon Sousa - *John Brennan’s/Man of the House;  34s: Sharon Shannon - Bonnie Mulligan, Séamus Egan - Poultry in the Parlour/Rolling in the Ryegrass.

Form:  longways, duple, proper. “As many as will”.

Prep.:  Take hands in fours from the top.  Couples with their backs to the stage are ‘1’s.

    * * *
A1:  1st man crosses down between the two ladies, passing second woman by the right shoulder.  They hey (so top lady faces down the line) - ending with the man back in his place.

A2:  1st lady goes down between the two men, passing second man by the left shoulder.  They hey (so the top man needs to face down the line).


B1:  (In pairs of couples) right hand star, left hand star back.

B2:  1st corners cross (with right shoulder leading), 2nd corners cross.

B2:  Hands-four (circle left) half-way round, 1st couple cast outside ‘2’s, into ‘2’s place as 2nd couple lead up.



Maid of the Mill

Music:  32-bar reel.  38s: Tom Doherty - The Three Sisters Reel;  35s: Adam Agee & Jon Sousa - *The Maids of Holywell/Cor Pheait/… Reel set;  34s: Patrick Street - Devanney's Goat/Leitrim …/… , Wild Asparagus - Faheys/Woman of the House/… set, Máiréad Nesbitt - *The Butterfly, Kevin Burke - The Doon Reel/… set;  33s: The Tune Makers - The Bucks of Oranmore, Brittany & Natalie Haas and Friends - Bill Malley’s/*The E-B-E Reel, Celtic Fiddle Festival - *Le Printemps, Brendan Block - Wing Commander Donald MacKenzie’s;  32s: Malachy Doris - *Bonnie Kate, Wild Asparagus - Congress Reel/Fisherman’s Island/Return to Milltown, Dominique Dupuis - *Westburne Reel (Andy Renwick’s Ferret), Celtic Music - Doherty Reel set, Natalie MacMaster - Catharsis, Kilfenora Ceili Band - Sheehan’s/Merry Blacksmith/… , Blazin’ Fiddles - **Fashion, Leahy - *Seamus Coynes;  31s: Caitlin Warbelow & Cuomo - *Headlands March/Sporting Paddy/Wing Commander Donald MacKenzie’s/Road to Errogie set, The Demon Barbers - *Kiss Me Quick/My Mammy’s … ;  30s: Banter - Harpers Frolic/Bonny Kate.

Form:  longways, duple, proper, ‘As many as will’.

Prep.:  Take hands in fours from the top.  Couples with their backs to the stage are ‘1’s.

    * * *
A1:  ‘1’s r. h. turn (palm-inward Allemande) twice.  They then cast around ‘2’s to stand between them - to make a line of four, all facing up.

A2:  Holding hands, four abreast walk three steps forward (‘up’ the set), kick, still facing up - three reverse steps, kick, three steps forward, kick, three steps back, kick.


B1:  ‘2’s curl upwards to make a circle of four, circle left (Cw.) eight steps, right eight steps.

B2:  R. h. star, then l. h. star back.

Restart the dance from the progressed place, i.e. the ‘1’s have moved down the line to their next ‘2’s.
Single couples left at either end swap their designation e.g. from a ‘2’ to a ‘1’…  and ‘wait out’ a ‘go’.



Nottingham Swing

Music:  16-bar hornpipe, e.g. a 32-bar hornpipe played without the usual repeats).  24s: WttD, CD 2, 16 - Greensleeves Country Band - Nottingham Swing (Philebelula All the Way/Paddy McGinty’s Goat/Country Garden);  24s: Banter/Bellowhead - *Kafoozalum;  23s: Jon Boden - 10 Nottingham Swing (FSCD002, 2005), John Carmichael Band - Canadian Barn Dance.

32-bar:  56s: Déanta - (0m22) *King of the Blues;  50s: Ardan - *The Boys of Bluehill/Off to California {from Dancing With The Celts}, Altan - *Dance of the Honeybees;

Formation:  longways, duple, proper.  ‘As many as will’.

Prep.:  take hands in fours from the top.  Demonstrate a ‘Step-hop’.

Difficulty:  moderate.

    * * *
A bars 1-4:  1st man and 2nd lady meet to turn by right elbow.

A bars 5-8:  1st lady and 2nd man meet to turn by right elbow.

B bars 9-12:  ‘1’s take two hands to take two steps down the set and two steps back, then cast outside the ‘2’s.  All the 1st couples have progressed down a place.

B bars 13-16:  all swing (cross-hand hold).
End couples sit-out one turn and change their designation from a ‘2’ to a ‘1’ - or vice versa.



Orcadian ‘Strip the Willow’

Music:  Often 6/8 double or 9/8 slip jigs.  32s: Waxies Dargle - Father O’Flynn/Irish Washerwoman/Blackberry Blossom;  30s: Leahy - Wedding Day;  29s: Spinach for Norman - Road to Dublin/The Foxhunters Jig/Drops of Brandy set.

Double jigs:  31s: The Scottish Fiddle Orchestra - *Jake’s Jig/… Well for Water/… Washerwoman, Natalie Macmaster - *David’s Jig/Pringle’s Reel!, The Blue Rock Boys - Doctor O’Neill’s;  30s: Brendan Mulhaire - Hag with the Money;  29s: The Barra MacNeils - *Wedding Party.

24-bar:  23s: Dominique Dupuis - *Mom’s Jig/Cape Breton Dream.

40-bar:  34s: The House Band - The Zakynthos Jig.

Slip Jigs:  35s: Altan - A Fig for a Kiss, Anne Marie Hildebrandt - Sixpenny Money/The Creel of Turf, The McNamara Family - The Barony Jig/The Leitrim Quickstep/Moll Roe;  32s: Dave Swarbrick - *Sheagh of Rye;  31s: Eileen Ivers - *The Humors of Ballyloughlin/Knocknagow;  30s: Noel Hill & Liam O’Connor - Foxhunter’s Slip Jig, James Keane - *Geese in the Bog.

    * * *
The Orcadian Strip the Willow dance comprises a continuous, rolling, double Strip the Willow figure for ‘as many as will’.  Each top couple commence half-a-dozen bars after the previous top couple.  Couples can join, or leave, the dance as desired, at the bottom of the line.



OXO Reel

Author: John Tether

Music: 32-bar jigs/reels.  36s: Jon Boden et al. - 11,OXO Reel (FSCD002, 2005);  35s: unidentified - (0m04) OXO Reel;  33s: Dominique Dupuis - *Jack Daniels’.

Formation:  6-couple longways, duple, proper.

Difficulty: 1

    * * *
A1:  Lines go forward and back.  Tops galop to the bottom.

A2:  Lines go forward and back.  Original ‘2’s galop to the bottom.


B1:  Top two couples circle left; bottom two couples circle right; middle two right hand star - OXO!  Then back the other way.  (8 steps + 8 steps)

B2:  2nd couple (now at the bottom) galop to the top; all swing.



Petronella

Music:  Own 32-bar tune.  35s: Lissa Schneckenburger - Petronella;  33s: The Boys of the Lough - The Lancers/Petronella/… .

Form:  longways, ‘2’s improper, ‘as many as will’.

Prep.:  take hands four from the top.

    * * *
A1:  ‘1’s Petronella turn: rotate ¾ Cw. while also moving Acw. into position (man at the bottom of the foursome - facing up, lady at the top - facing down).  All join hands and ‘balance’ (four steps: pull-in, close with a stomp, out, stomp).  Release hands and Petronella turn into the next position Acw., join hands, balance, release hands.  8 bars

A2:  All Petronella turn, join hands, balance and release hands…  repeat one more time.  8 bars


B1:  ‘2’s retire (to face each other) as ‘1’s lead down…  turn alone, and come on back… .  Giving ‘inside’ hands, turn ¾ around the ‘2’s into a progressed place.  8 bars

B2:  ‘Right and left thru'’ across the set, i.e. cross the new set - giving right hand to your partner, then, along the set - giving left hand - to swap places with your neighbour - finishing with a courtesy-turn (man turns ¾ Acw.) or ladies can finish by twirling Cw. under their man’s left arm as he rotates Acw..  4 bars

Repeat, back to the progressed place.  Couples left at an end, will need to turn back - as a pair - swap their designation…  and ‘wait out’ a ‘go’.  4 bars



Sir Roger de Coverley

Music:  (in 9/8) AABBCC Triple jig (or Slip jig).  36s: unspecified Flautist, or Feast of Fiddles (34s), or Blowzabella (32s) or The Seven Dials Band (31s) - Sir Roger de Coverley;  35s: Mark Arrington - *Foxhunter’s Slip Jig set;  32s: Rún - *Hardiman the Fiddler;  29s: Street Fiddlers - Nead Na Lachan (The Foxhunter’s Jig).

Form:  5-couple longways - can employ a running step.
Prep.:  explain that, due to ad-hoc figure timings as sets get out-of-sync., ‘calling’ will be curtailed.

    * * *
First corner (top man, bottom lady) skip (or run) towards each other and turn by a right arm hold e.g. linked-elbow or short forearm or cupped-elbow - no thumbs!…  then they retreat.  The finishing couple can make a slow, wide cast to clear the way for the following couple, until returning through their own place.

The second corner (top woman and bottom man) advance and turn by a right arm hold.

Then the first, followed by second, corner turn by:
the left arm,
two, crossed hands,
do-si-do (pass Cw., back-to-back, round each other).

Top couple ‘Strip the Willow’ to the bottom, i.e. a right, cupped-elbow/short-arm swing with partner for one complete turn, then left cupped-elbow/short-arm swings down the opposite line (alternating with right arm swings with partner down the middle).  16 bars

Top couple galop up the middle to the top, cast-out, dance to the bottom - followed by the rest - meet, arch and the rest pass through it.



Stoke Golding

Music:  40 bars. Slip Jig.  33s: Liz Carroll & John Doyle - John Cahill’s Jig/Tommy Doyle;  32s: Noreia - The Butterfly;  30s: The Ranchers (WttD, CD1, 06) - Keel Row/Twin Katy’s Reel.

Form: Longways, 4 or 5 couples.

    * * *
1:  Top man and bottom lady swing. (8 bars)
2:  Top lady and bottom man swing. (8)


3:  Top couple Strip the Willow (double) to the bottom.  ("Right to your partner, left to the line".) (16)
4:  Where, with the lady outside the set, they take a single-handed arch up over the ladies, and down over the men. (8) …  The lady continues-on to swing the new top man.



T. A. G. (Terry Armstrong Graham - not a ‘bloke’)

Roger Whynott

Music:  jig.  35s: Lissa Schneckenburger - Jefferson and Liberty/Bert Ferguson;  34s: Sláinte - Celtic Jig/Leitrim Fancy Jig;  33s: Donegore Tradition - Off She_Goes/Sgt Cahills Favourite/The Fair Night;  32s: Trinculo - Drummond Castle/Shortys Revenge, Malachy Doris Céilí Band - Cock o' the North;  31s: The Blue Rock Boys - Doctor O'Neill's set, Mandolin - Shandon Bells/Parson in Boots/Donegal Lasses, Thingumajigs - Medley of Jigs.

.

Form:  4-couple longways.

Difficulty: 2

    * * *
A1:  The top couple lead down the centre, come back up and cast out (the second couple don’t ‘assist’).

A2:  As the top couple cast, all the men raise their left arms and follow the top man into a left-hand star while all the ladies follow the top lady into a right-hand star.  As each couple meet each other at the bottom, they cross to the other star - the lady crosses in front of her partner to join the men’s (left-hand) star…  while men join the right-hand star.


B1:  As partners meet at the bottom again, they swap stars back into ladies doing the right-hand star while men do the left-hand star.

B2:  As the tops meet yet again at the bottom, they lead everyone up to the top and cast…  others follow.  The tops make an arch at the bottom and the others go through.  Couples can swing - if there’s time.

It helps if the lines/stars are close together to allow easier swapping between them…  and dancers stay in their stars as long as possible before swapping-over.



Thady you Gander (Irish Trot)

Music:  32-bar jig.  Candleford Ceilidh Band - T. Y. G..

Form:  4-couple longways, (skipping-step or step-hop).

    * * *
Top couple join inside hands and dance to bottom.  (4)

Couple cross over (lady under man’s arm), each return on outside.  (4)

Top lady leads the men around her partner and down the back of the ladies’ line.  (8)


Top man leads the ladies around his partner and down the back of the men’s line.  (8)

Top couple right elbow turn once then both short-arm or cupped-elbow swing down the set to ‘Strip the Willow’.  (8)

Restart when the top couple reach the bottom (on their own side).



Thread the Needle

Music:  32-bar jig.  John McCusker - [All the] Blue Bonnets [Are Over the Border] (very slow - speeding to 31s per 32 bars) or 33s: Crowdie House - *Blue Bonnets, Mark Arrington or Michael O’Donoghue (32s) - Haymaker’s Jig;  32s: Jimmy Blair and his Scottish Dance;  30s: Open House - Devil’s Jig/The Trip to Bantry/… set, Natalie Macmaster - Jig Party, The Gothard Sisters - Midsummer Jigs;  29s: Blazin’ Fiddles - Braehead Cottage;  28s: Altan - The Blue Idol.

Form:  3 (or four)-couple longways.

    * * *
1-8:  Thread the Needle:  Join hands along the lines.  Bottom couple also hold their partner’s hand - to form a horseshoe-shaped set.

The top two men (1st and 2nd men) raise their joined hands to make an arch; the top lady leads everyone through the arch - curving left down the back of the men’s line, round the set and back to place.  Both the top two men, keeping their joined hands raised, need to ‘unwind’ under their arch together.

9-16:  Repeat 1-8 but with the top two ladies making the arch and the top man pulling his line (and curving right…).  When everyone has passed through, both the top two ladies, keeping their joined hands raised, ‘unwind’ under their arch together.


17-24:  All circle left (men just continue their movement).  All circle right.

25-32:  First couple, slip down the middle (four steps, two-handed) and back, then, followed by the others, cast to the bottom of the set, and make an arch for the others to lead up the set to their advanced places.

Wilder variant.



Three Around Three

Music:  polka.  35s: Brian Roe - Sean Ryan’s;  34s: Mary Duff (dulcimer) - Jenny Lind/Three Around Three, Craig Duncan - Grandfather/Clarinet Polka set;  32s: Art Stamper - Barndance Polka;  31s: Eliza Carthy & KoC - Trip to Fowey/Amery/Queen;  30s: John Carty - Lakes of Sligo;  29s: Reelroad - *Sean Ryan’s Polka, Slainte - Britches Full of Stitches/Munster/Bill Sullivan’s;  28s: Jackie Daly & Creagh - Bill Sullivan’s/Britches of Stitches.

Form:  three couples, longways.

    * * *
Top lady pulls the line of ladies (skipping) upwards and around the back of the men’s line.  (8)

Top man pulls his line around the ladies’ line.  (8)


Top couple cast to middle place, & swing.  (8)

Old tops right-hand star with couple above.  (No left-hand star back.)  (4)

Old tops dive under an arch made by the 3rd couple.  (4)

The new top lady needs to be ready to re-start.



Virginia Reel

This is an adapted version (for Americans) of the English dance, Sir Roger de Coverley.

Music:

40-bar (5 x 16 beats) reel:  43s: Kenny Thomson - High Society;  42s: Colin Dewar - Virginia Reel Medley.

32-bar:  34s: The Rankin Family - *Mairi’s Wedding (vocal content) (Michael’s from 2m09, but “in your own time”);  32s: Melodian Band - Virginia Reel Medley (>9 mins long), Geslison & Groberg - V. R. or Black Rose - V. R. (lively, 2 second intro., then 8 x 31s).

64-bar:  63s: (WttD, CD2, 12) - Virginia Reel.

Form:  Longways four or five couples.

    * * *
A1: 1-4  2nd corner couple only (top lady and bottom man) advance 3 steps and, on the 4th beat, all ‘clap-clap’, repeated by 1st corner couple, i.e. 2nd in, ‘clap-clap’, 1st in, ‘clap-clap’.

A1: 5-8  2nd corner couple take 3 steps to reverse out, all ‘clap-clap’, repeated by 1st corner i.e. 2nd out, ‘clap-clap’, 1st out, ‘clap-clap’.

Alternative for A1:
1-4 (involving all couples i.e. no ‘passive’ couples) all advance 3 steps, all ‘clap-clap’ and retire 3 steps, ‘clap-clap’.
5-8 Repeat.

A2: 9-12  All advance, single turn partner with hooked right-elbow.  If the music is Black Rose, all can kick-up heels!

A2: 13-16  All hook left-elbow to turn back.

B1: 17-20  All turn partner Cw. with both hands.  (4 bars)

B1: 21-24  All do-si-do (passing by the right shoulder).  (4 bars)

B2: 25-32  Head couple join hands and do eight side-slips down the set…  and back.

B3: 33-40  Head couple cast-off to the bottom where they make an arch, others follow through the arch and return up the set (having progressed a place).


Alternative for A1-B2:

A1:  Head lady and foot man hook by right-elbow and turn while remainder 1, 2, 3, ‘clap-clap’ (8 beats) …  followed by the 1st corner turning…  and the remainder 1, 2, 3, ‘clap-clap’.
A2:  Head lady and foot man left-elbow turn…  then 1st corner.
B1:  Head lady and foot man do-si-do passing right shoulders…  then 1st corner.
B2:  Head lady and foot man do-si-do passing left shoulders…  then 1st corner.


Alternative for a 64-bar dance:

From bar 29 (B2) - i.e. a 36-bar addition…  so, okay for five couples:
Head couple join hands and do eight side-slips down the set, the couple then Strip the Willow up the set, cast, & arch at the bottom for the rest of the set to duck under and return to a progressed place.



Waves of Tory

Music:  polka/jig.  48-bar for 5 couples or 64-bar for 7 couples.  (Often AAB AAB [48 bars] - for 5 couples; AAB AABBB [64 bars] - for 7 couples).

48-bar jig (5 couples):  The Blue Mountain Band (WttD, CD1, 11) - WoT;  48s: Steeleye Span - Mooncoin;  46s: Jon Boden et al. - *Bridge of Athlone… ;  44s: Blowzabella - *Horizonto, Eliza Carthy - Zycanthos Jig/Tommy’s … ;  42s: Threepenny Bit - Coffee Zycanthos.

32-bar jig (twice through - for 7 couples):  32s: Michael O’Donoghue - Haymaker’s Jig, Sean McGuire - *Erin’s …/Larry O’Gaff set (3 x 64);  31s: Olive Hurley - Shandon Bells.

Form:  Longways set of 5 or 7 couples (need an odd number for the ‘waves’).

Step:  Jig or walking step.

    * * *
A1: 1-4  Hold hands in lines, four steps forward and four steps back.

5-8  Couples 1 & 2 and couples 3 & 4 r. h. star, 5 r. h. turn.

A2: 9-12  Lines forward and back.

13-16  Couples 1 & 2 and couples 3 & 4 l. h. star, couple 5 l. h. turn.


B1: 17-24  Top couple two-handed slip-step galop eight steps down and eight steps back.

B2: 25-32  At the top, they cast out, the remainder follow.  At the bottom of the set, the top couple make an arch for the rest to pass under.


C1 & C2: 33-48 (B music phrase is repeated twice more - or, for 7 couples, phrases A1-B2 are repeated en bloc for bars 33-64.)
There’s now a new top couple.  Everybody remember their new position.  Everybody, except the original top couple, face down and hold hands.  The original ‘tops’ start a ‘dip and dive’ i.e. alternately ‘duck under’ and ‘arch over’ approaching couples.  Other couples either push apart to ‘arch’ or pull together to ‘dive’, moving forwards until they join in (by following the couple in front).  When they reach the ends, couples can either turn about individually…  or (as an embellishment), since their inside arms are already raised (into an arch), the lady can swap places with the man using a California Twirl (to stay on his right).  They then continue the wave by ‘diving’ under the arch made by the oncoming couple - back to their places.  They then wait for the others to complete i.e. back to where they started the ‘waves’.  (16)


Alternative Waves of Tory

Music:  5 x 48-bar jig.  The Blue Mountain Band (WttD, CD1, 11) - WoT.

Form:  Longways set of 5 or 7 couples.

    * * *
A1:  Each line join hands and advance four steps & retire.  (4)

Lines advance & pass through by the right shoulder (8 steps).  (4)

A2:  Advance & retire.  (4)

Advance & pass left shoulder.  (4)


B1:  Swing partner.  (8)

B2:  Top couple cast off: men following the man, ladies follow the lady.  The top couple form a two-handed arch at the bottom of the set and the others, following, pass through and up to the top of the set.  (8)

The original top couple finishes as the bottom couple.

B3:  Holding inside hands, new top man turns his lady under his arm, faces down the set and they ‘duck and dive’ with the set.  (16)

Repeat as required until everyone has been the top couple.



Weaver’s Galopede

Music:  32-bar jig.  32s: Jimmy Blair and his Scottish Dance Band - Lord Rosslyn’s Fancy, Trinculo - *Drummond Castle/Shorty’s Revenge;  31s: Caitlin Warbelow & Friends - *Father Kelly’s/Reconciliation/… /… set, The Scottish Fiddle Orchestra - *Jake’s Jig/Going to the Well for Water/… set;  30s: Danú - Brown-Eyed Bridget, Blazin’ Fiddles - *Thursday Night in the Caley;  29s: Altan - The Wedding Jig.

Form:  5-couple longways.

    * * *
Both lines hold hands.  The bottom couple join free hands to make a horseshoe-shaped set.

A1:  The top two men make an arch and the women ‘Thread the Needle’.

A2:  Still holding hands, the top two women make an arch and men ‘Thread the Needle’.


B1:  The top couple galop down… as they pass, the rest cross by the right hand; top couple galop back up, the rest cross back with left hand.

B2:  Top couple galop down again and the rest cross by the right hand; all swing, ending-up back on their own side.



The Willow Tree

Author:  Hugh Rippon

Music:  48-bar jig four or eight times through.  55s:  Damien O’Kane & David Kosky - Morgan Rattler;  50s:  ITMA Staff - Humours of Ennistymon/Cliffs of Moher/Out on Ocean;  47s:  Spiers & Jon Boden - Oswestry Wake/Morgan Rattler;  44s:  Blowzabella - *Horizonto, Eliza Carthy - *Zycanthos Jig/Tommy’s … ;  42s:  Threepenny Bit - Coffee Zycanthos.

Form:  8-couple longways set.

Difficulty: 2

    * * *
A1 (1-8):  Top couple take two hands and galop to the bottom of the set; 1st man takes bottom lady with two hands and slips back to the top, leaving 1st lady behind.

A2 (9-16):  1st lady and bottom man galop up the set; bottom man returns with his own lady.


B1 and B2 (17-32):  End couples right elbow turn once and ‘Strip the Willow’ i.e. left cupped-elbow down the opposite line, alternating with right cupped-elbow with partner, to the middle (i.e. past 3 couples), then those two-couples form four arches in the middle of the set (the 4th and 5th couples will need to have space between them).

C1 and C2 (33-48):  Sides cast (top six people cast down, bottom six cast up), in through the side arches - out through the end-arches, back to place; swing if there’s time.



The Wizard’s Walk

By Ruth Ungar

Music:  32-bar.  Own tune: Wizard’s Walk by Jay Ungar.  Folk Godalkanje - W. W. after 32s & 1m05 (unstructured after 1m38), Snowflake? (also Craig Duncan);  Celtic Spring - W. W.. {after 1m10 & 1m41}.

Form:  longways duple lines or… Sicilian circle - i.e. a large circle comprising couple-facing-couple.

Preparation:  Hands four from the top.  Couples facing down are ‘1’s or, if a circle, ‘1’s face Cw., ‘2’s face Acw..

Watch at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3s_Kj7YDP9M

    * * *
A1:  In circles of four holding hands, starting on l. f. circle left half-way (4 steps/beats); balance (raise hands to chest height, step forward into the circle, small ‘stomp’ on the other foot while pulling together.  Two steps back out. (4 beats).

A1:  Repeat the circle left to get back to place…  and balance.

A2:  In circles of four - starting with neighbour - grand chain (r. hand first - men go Cw.) four places, i.e. chain right round (four ‘hands’); then smoothly gypsy Cw. (passing right shoulders) 1¼ times round your neighbour - on to a new couple - progressing.


B1:  In circles of four, holding hands, balance (pull & step inwards, tap, lean back, tap) and swing partner (in a ballroom hold).  Finish with ‘1’s facing Cw. and ‘2’s facing Acw. - men on their partner’s left.  If no new couple, swap designation, turn back and wait-out a turn.

B2:  Wizard’s Walk (a bit like a ‘reel of three’ - but where, throughout the ‘Walk’, participants don’t generally change the direction in which they’re facing): everyone walks forward, ‘1’s now separate outside (twirling outwards - if there’s enough space) the ‘2’s, who’ll be moving forward, together and up towards them, meet (with an optional inward twirl) and continue down to split the next ‘2’s (who’ll be moving apart and up) - ‘1’s now separate (with a twirl again - if desired) and back up outside those ‘2’s (who’ll also be backing), meet and back-up between the ‘2’s (whom they met at ‘B1’), with whom they re-form a four-person circle, to restart the dance.