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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.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

24 January 2017 - New Haven

Last night was a workout. Two absolutely brand new dancers (and boy does New Haven need them).

First dance was Saw Ye My Wee Thing from the Kilts and Ghillies Tea Dance program and it has IMHO the single most difficult figure in Scottish dancing - Rights and Lefts - which they mostly got.
Gold stars were given out.

The next dance was Campbell's Frolic. a poor choice. The formations weren't difficult but the piece count was fast and furious and too much to ask for from newbies.

Set, Right Hands Across, cast off.
Set Left Hands Across, cast off.
(a lot of new concepts and quick movements - a bit much for beginners)
Set, lead up, cast off

Getting the cast out of the Hands Across  was the hardest part, remembering which hand was also a problem but that got better.

These two dances took more than hour. I got bogged down and didn't see that more demonstrating and less talking …

In the second 'hour' we did three dances, the one we included the beginners in was More Bees A-Dancin'. They coped with the Reels of 3.  Actually really well considering it was their first or second  night.

The other two dances were 'specials' that I found as videos and just had to give a try. They called to me. Really they did.

The evening's dances were:-

Saw Ye My Wee Thing  –  (32 J 2)  –  25/9
Campbell's Frolic  –  (32 J 3)  –  15/3

Born to Dance  –  (32 J 3)  –  Gaye Collin
More Bees A-Dancin'  –  (32 R 3)  –  Goldring
Surprising Hannah  –  (32 S 3)  – Gaye Collin


Born to Dance: This one bent my mind into a pretzel the few times I watched the video. this is my second teaching of the dance and I found the tricky piece not so tricky this time. The important piece, out of the half hands across, is to impress on the dancers that the chase ends in lines of three across, men down, ladies up.

It received a solid round of applause, two thumbs up from several dancers, and is right on the edge of getting a Golden Ghillie Award. It shines!

More Bees A-Dancin':- "Good dance". This from the floor! And it is a good dance. It is simple and enjoyable.

Surprising Hannah:-Another very good dance from Gaye Collin. This has no convoluted spaghetti choreography. All it has are simple pieces that require GOOD technique: strong steps, timing, handing and all covered. And dancing it with mastery is the joy. Two thumbs up from the floor.

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