[Callers] Gender free dances

Robert Golder robertgolder at comcast.net
Thu Dec 2 11:25:33 PST 2010

For more than two decades, Chris Ricciotti has been the leading exponent of the armbands/barearms method of role free calling. Chris has made available a web-based Gender-Free Dancing Callers Manual and History as a callers' resource. This is the best available published source of information. Go to:


From this page you can download the Manual in PDF format. Subjects include a FAQ about calling and dancing role free (including "agenda" issues), sample dances with comparative instructions in both traditional and role-free notation, an essay on "Programming an Evening of Gender-Free Dancing," discussion of methods other than Armband/Barearm (from which you could further develop "lead" and "follow"), a history of role-free dancing, etc.  ... Bob

Robert Golder
New Bedford, MA, USA

On Dec 2, 2010, at 1:02 PM, susie rudder wrote:

>   I have been asked to call for a new dance group forming in a small town
>   near our regular dance. Experienced dancers were asked to come help
>   these absolute newbies, and some local musicians have volunteered their
>   services. It became obvious that about half the dancers were lesbians
>   who asked me to use non gender specific terms when calling. I tried
>   'lead' and 'follow' because the syllable numbers worked, but I'm not
>   happy with that. I also had some regular dancers comment on not wanting
>   to deal with 'some' peoples' political agendas as related to contra
>   calling. I have never dealt with gender free calling and would
>   appreciate ANY help from those of you who may have been doing it for
>   years. What terms seem to work best? Any other hints to make things go
>   more smoothly?  These people are very enthusiastic and I want to see
>   the dance succeed.

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