[Callers] New Caller Assistance

Peter Amidon peter at amidonmusic.com
Fri Sep 29 11:23:34 PDT 2006

Hi Will,

Good luck.  Here is my 3¢:

I use a database rather than dance cards:
every record is a different dance.

I use Panorama, a product of Provue Development.  I have used it since
I first got a Macintosh Classic in 1991.

If I were going to start over, I would get Filemaker Pro which I
am guessing would be easier to learn.

Here are the fields I use most in this database:

#temp  (temporary changing field)
Name (name of the dance)
ForExport  (temporary changing field)
Called?     (have I ever called the dance?)
Peter's Repertoire?  (is the dance memorized?)     
date composed
Learned from:
date entered    (this is great for finding the latest dances I've entered)
Difficulty    (level of complexity of the dance)
band suggestions  (a prose description of the kind of tune
                    I'd like the band to play, sometimes with
                    specific tune suggestions)

When I am going to do a dance use the '#temp' field to number the
dances for the evening in order (say, 1 - 11) and export just those
dances' number, name, composer, and band suggestions.  I open that
export in Word and format it into a roadmap for the band.  I also
print my '9 up' view which prints the instructions to those 11
dances on a couple of pages 9 up (so there are 9 one one page
and the other 2 on the 2nd page).  That is for reference and
insurance as I always memorize the dances that I call.

I print out a list of a bunch of other dances (names and
composers only) so that I have some other choices if I
need to go off the planned dance program, as I usually have to
do to some degree or other.  These are all memorized, that is,
I just need the dance name to remember the figures.

When I am calling at a dance weekend where I'll be calling
a lot over a few days, I bring with me a stapled booklet of
all my current memorized dances that I have made from the database. 
Those would be most of the dances for which 'Peter's Repertoire?' has
a 'yes'.  On the cover I have the contra dances
listed in three groups: simple, intermediate, challenging,
and the other dances listed by formation: squares and mixers.

When I want to learn dances I select the dances I want to
learn by using the 'ForExport' field, print them out with
the 9-up view, and go for walks practicing teaching and
calling the dances to the dance music in my iPod.  Most
of the dances I want to learn I can find by sorting by
the 'date entered' field, that is, the dances most recently
entered in the database.

I hope this helps.



>Hi All,
>After many years dancing, I decided to start calling
>and recently completed Lisa Greenleaf's course at
>Pinewoods, which was great-stupendous.
>First of all, I want to thank all of you who have
>shared of your experience and knowledge on this and
>other sites so freely- your generosity is amazing and
>is of great assistance.
>As I begin to build a repertoire, I'm faced with how
>to develop dance cards that work for me, and recording
>systems for previous dance programs, event planning
>aids etc.
>Lisa shared what works for her, and I'd like to know
>what systems works for other folks, it seems that each
>person has found their own sorting/grouping structure
>and recording systems-ie: grouping dances by
>difficulty or prominant dance feature.  I'd appreciate
>feedback so I can choose among a range of
>possibilities that might fit me best.
>Thanks very much,   Will Walton
>I can also be reached at: mainesail113 atyahoodotcom
>Do You Yahoo!?
>Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
>Callers mailing list
>Callers at sharedweight.net

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