Programme for Wednesday 8th April

Our second virtual club night:

Warm-up Amazing Grace we will keep doing this, it’ll be great to all do it together when we meet again.

Dance. New Year Jig is a dance we did last year a few times. It is a popular easier dance on evening programmes. It was devised by Maureen Robson of Wellington and published in RSCDS Book 51. The first 8 bars only have 1st couple moving – that makes it easy for a couple that has finished their 2nd time to step down and the 4th couple to step up and be 3rd couple.

Here it is in diagram:

And the instructions:

Bars 1 to 8        1st dance figures of 8 on their own side, passing 2nd couple by right shoulder to begin, 1st lady finishes facing out

Bars 9 to 16     1st, 2nd and 3rd couples dance reels of 3 on the side (1st and 2nd couples pass right shoulder to begin), 1st lady finishes facing out

Bars 17 to 24   1st lady followed by 1st man cast behind 2nd lady, dances up between 2nd couple, behind 2nd man and crosses the set to 2nd lady’s place (2nd couple step up on bars 5 and 6), 1st lady finishes facing out

Bars 25 to 28   1st and 3rd couple dance right hands across, 1st and 2nd couples dance left hands across

Bars 29 to 32   1st and 2nd couple dance left hands across, 1st lady finishes facing out ready to repeat

Here is a video of it being danced New Year Jig. This is an instructional video done by RSCDS and shows the dance danced twice through by one couple (and then shows it again from a different angle).

Some points to note:

  • 1st couple phrase their dancing so that they never stop – each formation is completed in just the bars of music for it so that they flow smoothly into the next formation
  • The reels – all 3 couples start dancing from the beginning – the 3rd couple dance towards the right (they don’t wait for the other 2 couples to pass before joining in)
  • Look at how all couples keep eye contact with their partners at the ends of the reels (turning their heads slightly)

Just a dance to watch – danced as a demonstration at a RSCDS New Zealand Branch Summer School in Dunedin some years ago – Those Russians

Formation – Circle hands round and back. A deceptively simple formation, there really is a lot to think about. It starts (and finishes) on the side lines (straight lines) but is danced in a circle so the dancers dance on a curve to make the circle and danced out on a curve at the end into the sidelines. The feet move first and the hands come up to join the dancers as the circle is formed (no lunging). Hands are released top and bottom at the end of bar 6 to dance out to the sides. The change of direction at the end of bar 4 is anticipated. The whole formation is danced on the balls of the feet alternating 2nd and 1st positions. This video of Farewell to Balfour Road (Book 52) Farewell to Balfour Road shows hands round done beautifully, it is the first 8 bars of the dance and since the dance is a canon it occurs again in bars 17 to 24, 33 to 40 and so on.

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