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Sharlene Penman (piano), visiting from New Zealand, is the band leader for the 2019 Tea Dance.
Our fiddlers are Jenny Evans and Amy Beshara.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Waterbury Class - 1 April 2011

Thank you Barbara Austen for teaching these many weeks and taking care of the class when I could not.

Class relocated from Woodbridge and now getting enough dancers on a regular basis. Hooray!

I tried a new teaching method tonight and several dancers responded well to it. The method is a bit slower than is my wont, but I can bear that if I don't have to keep making teaching points and if they actually need less walking through.

I walked the first 8 bars - had 1C walk and then dance it - and to the bottom.
Second couple then danced the first 8 bars, I then taught them the 2nd 8 bars and had them dance that and to the bottom. Third couple then dances the first 16 bars, gets taught the 3rd figure and dance it - and to the bottom. Then fourth couple dances the first 24 bars, gets taught the last figure, dances it.
Next couple (original 1st usually) now gets the whole dance, and if it goes well I let the music run 8x through.

It worked well enough that I'm going to refine it and use it but maybe not ALL the time.

Tonight's dances were:
Bonny Blue Bride  (32 J 3) Tod McCall - Wee Hoose on the Prairie
Linnea's Strathspey  (32 S 3) Tim Wilson -Dunsmuir
Fireside Reel  (32 R 3) 18C
Hooper's Jig  (32 J 3)  Misc 2


Bonny Blue Bride:- A nice simple baby jig that I pulled out of my wee card file 'cause I wasn't prepared and it looked easy enough and busy enough to make for a good warm up dance. I was right. And I was surprised that the dance wasn't a throw away either. It is just different enough to be worth keeping available. But no nominations for a Dancer's Choice Award.

Linnea's Strathspey:- Dancer's (and Teacher's) Choice Awards for this one! Keeper and then some. As far as I am concerned this one is and always shall be part of my standard repertoire.

My one wish is that there was a recording for this dance.

Fireside Reel:- Love the dance and hate the huffing and puffing when I'm done. I love an old vinyl recording but I can't adjust the tempo and it is a wee bit on the fast side but boy is the pianist (Jim Nicholson) having a whole lot of fun.

Hooper's Jig:- this was a 'let's have fun' last dance of the evening. Had some breakdowns here. Timing, it is all about timing, especially this dance. And remembering left from right. And using all the music you're given...

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