Saturday, November 14, 2009

Woodbridge, Friday the 13th

It has been a very difficult week. For the third time I have had, as Jane Lataille so aptly put it, a class of very small numbers. Last night it was three (3). So Tony Kalbfus gets the 'Hero of the Night" award since he drove up from New York to attend and if he hadn't there would not have been a class.

So once again it was threesomes and foursomes, with one exception, until we dropped.

Eigg, Muck and Rum - 32 R 3some - Jane Lataille
The Gay Goshawk - 32 J 2 - Barry Priddey
This One's Four Isobel - 32 S 4some - Terry Glasspool
Four Paws - 32 S 4some - Terry Glasspool
The Four Winds - 32 R 4some - Terry Glasspool

Eigg, Muck and Rum: from Always Enough to Dance. A nice little dance and a superb reinforcement to reels of three. I have the dancers line up in a row across the normal axis of a set with the end dancers facing up and the middle dancer facing down.
The opening fig. 8 foreshadows the upcoming Reel of 3, both are in 6 bars, both are identical tracks, and the final 2-bar crossings (1 bar each) really force correct timing of the reel.

The Gay Goshawk: From The Sutton Coldfield Book - a tight little dance requiring strict phrasing and a concentrated mind. It is worth a second trial with a proper set. A 2-couple dance in a 2-couple set is a bit much.

This One's Four Isobel - a favourite of mine. Of all the foursomes I have done this one comes closest to having a story line (though it may simply be familiarity on my part) and is so pretty that one day, real soon now, it will show up on a ball or party program.

Four Paws - This one is a bear to teach. We danced the first two rounds but on the third round the reels fell apart. There is a moment there that boggles my mind. I normally have a very strong sense of pattern and in that transitional moment I want to go the wrong way every time.

The heart of the dance is the reel - two dancers have a normal(?) half reel of four, the other two dancers have half Schiehallion-like reels, and then you switch! And it is at that moment that I have been going the wrong way, giving right shoulder to the wrong person. The key people are the ones who are starting the Schiehallion-half reels. They go to the person on their right to pass right shoulders. If you are that other person you have to start to your LEFT to pass that opening right shoulder and it doesn't feel right. I may have it sorted out now. One can only hope.

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