[Callers] Triple Minors in the Midwest

Jerome Grisanti jerome.grisanti at gmail.com
Fri Jan 18 06:16:32 PST 2008


Thanks! I believe your suggestions of keeping the dancers' focus on the
senses and not in the head will be very helpful.

On Jan 18, 2008 1:36 AM, Alan Winston - SSRL Central Computing <
winston at slac.stanford.edu> wrote:

> > Hello All,
> > I was considering adding some of the Chestnuts to my calling repertoire,
> and
> > I was wondering if I could get your best advice on approaching triple
> minor
> > dances in the Midwest (Lawrence Kansas). I believe most of the contra
> > dancers here have never seen such a critter, although a very few will
> have
> > seen it at an English Country dance.
> > I was considering calling a triplet or a duple minor dance with contra
> > corners in the first half to make sure everyone was comfortable with
> that
> > figure, and then calling "Sackett's Harbor" in the second half, which
> turns
> > the minor set 90 degrees (or 270 degrees, to be technical) so all the
> men
> > are all facing the stage and the women are facing down.
> > I want to lay out the rules of triplets very succinctly: Ones remain
> ones
> > all the way down the hall, while the twos become threes and then twos
> again
> > as they progress up. Threes also alternate roles, becoming twos and then
> > threes again. At the top, the first couple out waits out two iterations
> of
> > the dance before becoming ones. At the bottom, the threes must trade
> places
> > with the ones or they will remain out indefinitely.
> > Are these rules accurate as stated?
> No, because triplets are three-couple sets, and the progression is
> different;
> typically, you'll dance each of the three roles in three times through the
> dance.
> Substituting "triple minors"  I think these are essentially correct, as
> stated.
> I tend to lay out the rules with somewhat different verbiage (when calling
> to
> English dancers, anyway; I haven't called triple minors for contra
> dancers).
> I say to the ones "you can't come in until you have two couples of your
> very
> own to dance with."
> "Ones have it easy - they do the same thing all the way down.  Eventually
> you'll only have one other couple - dance with a ghost couple, or at least
> trade places with them, or they'll *never* get in."
> "The secret to triple minors", I'll say, "is not to fuss about whether
> you're a
> two or a three.  If you're not a one, you want to look *up* the set to
> where
> the 1s are, and then do what they need.  If somebody's trying to do a
> right-hand star with you, do it."  [What I'm trying to do here is to get
> the
> dancers out of their heads and out of counting, and into their senses,
> looking
> outward and seeing the whole dance.  I *think* this is at least marginally
> helpful, although some people are still going to spend the whole dance
> looking
> inward and constantly being surprised when they're supposed to do
> something.]
> I think you are correct not to mention the rather peculiar process of
> going
> from being a 2 to being a 1.  You've gotten up near the top, you do the
> dance
> as a 2, your 1s migrate past you, and you're out one round even though you
> have
> a couple above you.  Then you're in one round, then you're out two rounds
> and
> come back as 1s.  I generally try not to discuss this and just use the
> "until
> you have two couples of your very own" rule.
> > Any suggestions from New England? Elsewhere in the Midwest? Points
> beyond?
> I hope you'll accept California.  I'd suggest, as a first-ever triple
> minor,
> "Young Widow", if your band knows the tune.  No swings, but a killer fun
> dance
> with balancing, etc, and it isn't all solos for the 1s.
> -- Alan
> --
> ===============================================================================
>  Disclaimer: I speak only for myself, not SLAC or SSRL   Phone:
>  650/926-3056
>  Paper mail to: SSRL -- SLAC BIN 99, 2575 Sand Hill Rd, Menlo Park CA
> 94025
> ===============================================================================

Jerome Grisanti

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