I saw a 48 bar dance called Beatrice by Erik
Hoffmann - intrigued me.
I am planning to use it in December --- spoke with the
band about a 48 Bar tune set.
Never called a 48 Bar dance before ----
anything tricky about it - aside from the length
issue - staying focused for that extra section?
thanks for any insights.
Mavis L McGaugh
510-814-8118 (answering machine-leave message)
Get an Online or Campus degree
Associate's, Bachelor's, or Master's - in less than one year.
Thanks to everyone who so generously sent me suggestions for easy dances to use in the fourth slot that I, as a new caller will call at our Toronto Country Dancer's dance that Bev Bernbaum will be calling next Saturday.
I have attached a Word document that has all the dances, some of which are annotated with teaching notes.
I have two requests: I need the details of two dances: First Hey by Paul Balliet, and "Kiss of a Lifetime" bu Peter Stix (I could not find either through an internet search. [A suggestion: Please post the info to the whole list, so once someone has sent the info, others need not bother. Thanks!]
The other request is for suggestions on how to teach a hey. (I am a little bit terrified.)
Please note, that I have not chosen a dance yet, but need to do so by tomorrow, so I cam open to suggestions from the list I sent (including the two above) and any other dances that you think are suitable. [Note: If I am too terrified to teach a Hey, then Bev has graciously offered that I can choose another easy dance, so I am open to suggestions on that front as well.]
Thanks for 'Sharing the Weight', and helping me out! I have learned a lot from you out there in List Serve Land so far, and I am looking forward to more!
Facilitator of Sustainable Community Planning and Design
The Sustainable Living Network
& Sustainable Living Books
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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Save the date: 5th Hot Squares weekend!
When: July 6-8, 2007
Where: Private home; Atlanta, GA
Who: Dan Sahlstrom, calller
Limited to 20 people
This weekend is devoted to exploring Modern Western (Club) squares in an
intensive but fun environment. Unlike previous years we will not focus
on completing Plus or Mainstream levels (though we will probably do most
of Mainstream). Instead, Dan will pick fun and interesting calls from
all lists (Basic - Challenge). Also unlike previous years, we will have
more than the exact number of people, so not all will be required to
dance every tip.
2007 will mark the 5th Hot Squares event. We are holding Hot Squares
2007 in a homey atmosphere with room for two squares. Genders will not
be balanced. Meals will be home cooked. Fellowship and Camaraderie will
Official registration is not open, but email now to hold your space.
I am calling a dance this coming weekend for a 40th birthday party.
Since the group is mostly non-dancers, I have prepped a number of
simple dances. I am looking for an easy contra that has a smooth and
slow flow... almost English Country dance in the pace/tone. Any ideas
for me? It would also help if you could suggest how you might
describe this dance to the musicians so that they could play tunes to
Thanks very much,
So we're planning for a medley and I had a concern that perhaps
people were aiming too high. So I wrote:
> As you're thinking about dances for a medley, keep in mind that
> there will be no walk-through so you have to plan for the
> excellent words you will use (taking up no more than 8 beats of
> music) for the more complex calls. We shouldn't be late with a
> single call during a medley, since (IMHO) that takes all the fun
> out of dancing the medley.
In response, I heard back that I'd only succeeded in frightening
callers out of their wits (an exaggeration, but you get the point).
> there's an easy answer: call dances that you know inside out,
> forwards and backwards. The medley is not a time to show off fancy
> dances. All we need are good dances that flow.
> You can also practice by trying out your selected dances over the
> next couple of months. If appropriate for your dancers, try calling
> it no walk-through. If you can't do that, then try to use all the
> words you'd need during the first time or two through the dance.
> I'm not saying it's impossible to call hard dances, but iit takes a
> lot of preparation to be able to call dances with non-standard
> moves and we do the dancers a huge disservice if we screw up.
> So pick dances that you love and that you feel comfortable about
> calling, and then practice practice practice.
Am I being too judgmental? BTW, it's not NEFFA that we're planning
for, so we can't assume that every dancer knows every possible move.
And please share any other tips you have for planning medleys.
I wanted to extend my thanks to those who made suggestions on easy
dances that align well with a slow flow. I've made a note of your
advice and I'm planning on using it in the future! As I learned more
about the expected crowd for the dance, I rethought the program and
selected very simple dances. We had 4 year olds to 40+ year olds on
the dance floor with the ratio of children to parents being skewed
towards the younger set. At one point, two young girls under five
formed an arch for all to duck through! What a sight and I really
hope none of the adults strained their backs!
Thanks for your help,
To those of you who wrote so convincingly about the
fun you had a RPLDW in New Hampshire. THANKS
My husband and I just got back from a visit with my
family in Mass. and an absolutely terrific weekend in
Durham, N.H. Friendly, welcoming dancers, a truly
wonderful mix of dances and 3 days of the most joyful,
toe tapping music one could want to listen to. We
loved every minute. It was fun to put faces to
several of the names I have seen on the emails.
Mavis L McGaugh
510-814-8118 (answering machine-leave message)
Don't pick lemons.
See all the new 2007 cars at Yahoo! Autos.
"Lucky Five" is Bob's slight variation on "Lucky Seven:"
Circle Mixer -- Easy
A1: Circle Left, circle right
A2: Forward and back, face partner and do-si-do
B1: Grand right & left, counting partner as one. Swing the fifth.
B2: Promenade the one you swung.
Because you pass four people, this sets you up nicely for a square with a
grand R&L later in the evening. You can of course count aloud "one, two,
three, four, five" but Bob suggested "A, E, I, O, U" with "You!" being the
one you swing.
This can also be used as an easy square break, easy since there's no corner
allemande to set up the grand R&L. In a square I would change the B2 to
eight-count promenade and swing again at home. Or grand R&L all the way home
(16) & swing (16).
> Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2007 10:47:16 -0800 (PST)
> From: Karen Fontana <karen_fontana(a)yahoo.com>
> Subject: Re: [Callers] Thanks for New Years Ideas
> To: Caller's discussion list <callers(a)sharedweight.net>
> Message-ID: <197133.60827.qm(a)web30311.mail.mud.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=iso-8859-1
> Hi Jerome,
> Thanks for sharing, sounds interesting. I looked online for <<Bob
> Dalsemer's "Lucky Five" mixer>> and wasn't able to find it...
> Would you mind to share it?
> Karen Fontana
> Jerome Grisanti
I wanted to say "thank you" to the many folks who chimed in with great ideas
about orchestrating the midnight "moment" at a New Years Eve dance. I ended
up using several, plus one.
Firstly, I took the approach that there would be a New Years celebration at
the top of each hour, at least in some time zone, so we might as well join
in here too. For midnight local time, we sang "Auld Lang Syne," danced a
mixer (Bob Dalsemer's "Lucky Five"), got back to our partners and shifted to
a waltz. For one of the other times we did a grand march, shifted to a
circle with some ins and outs to get in the shouts, then went into a spiral
dance. This seemed new to a lot of the crowd, so it went really well. For
one of the other "midnights" we waltzed.
I like to try to feel out the crowd when deciding when to end a dance. It's been
suggested by many callers that the excitement of dancing a contra is almost like a
bell shaped curve. The excitement goes up and then comes back down. The trick is
to end just before the excitement starts to drop off.
> Send Callers mailing list submissions to
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> Today's Topics:
> 1. Card boxes and Dance ending (David Giusti)
> 2. Re: Card boxes and Dance ending (Peter Amidon)
> Message: 1
> Date: Sun, 14 Jan 2007 13:30:04 -0500
> From: David Giusti <David.Giusti(a)oberlin.edu>
> Subject: [Callers] Card boxes and Dance ending
> To: callers(a)sharedweight.net
> Message-ID: <f951c77935ce.35cef951c779(a)oberlin.edu>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
> So most callers have dance cards, and all dances have to be ended at
> some point. I have my ways of doing it, of course, and I've asked a lot
> of callers about theirs, but haven't found anything I'm quite happy with.
> Basically, how do you organize your box of dance cards and why do you
> like it that way?
> How do you figure out when to end a dance? Of course finish with all
> couples in, but how do you decide when it's about time to end it?
> Some callers simply set a timer, or count a number of times through, or
> end when couples have come back to where they started. What do you do?
> Does anyone try to gauge the energy of the dancers on the floor and end
> when it seems right?
> Thank you very much,
> David Giusti
> Message: 2
> Date: Sun, 14 Jan 2007 14:25:05 -0500
> From: Peter Amidon <peter(a)amidonmusic.com>
> Subject: Re: [Callers] Card boxes and Dance ending
> To: "Caller's discussion list" <callers(a)sharedweight.net>
> Message-ID: <p06230950c1d02f6221db(a)[192.168.1.100]>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" ; format="flowed"
> David Giusti wrote:
> >So most callers have dance cards, and all dances have to be ended at
> >some point. I have my ways of doing it, of course, and I've asked a lot
> >of callers about theirs, but haven't found anything I'm quite happy with.
> >Basically, how do you organize your box of dance cards and why do you
> >like it that way?
> Hi David
> I am very happy with my database way of organizing dances. I do not
> have dance cards. I do have a comfortable working knowledge of
> using databases; I use them in all of my work as a freelance musician.
> I use Panorama, but I would recommend anyone starting out to use
> Filemaker Pro.
> The short story is that I keep all of the dances on a database. The
> actual dance is recorded in eight 8-beat fields:
> Other fields, other than the obvious, include the date that I entered
> the dance,
> whether it is in my current repertoire, what the difficulty level is, whether
> I've ever called it. Of course there are a lot of other fields you could make:
> e.g. swings: how many and with whom, etc.
> I can easily select out dances that I want to memorize to build my repertoire;
> I export the dance instructions and a separate page that has just the
> titles and
> choreographers names. I drill and practice the dances until I can remember the
> whole dance just from the title.
> To prepare for an evening contra dance I might print out a big list
> of dances from
> which to choose from which to make the dance list for that night.
> Once I have chosen and sequenced dances for that evening, I number
> the dances I've chosen
> in the database from, say, 1 - 11, put them in order, and export the
> dances, the
> choreographer's name, and instructions for the band (what kind of
> tune - that is another
> field I have in the database), and put it all on one sheet that I
> print out and give to
> the musicians ahead of time so they can more easily plan the evening.
> I print, for
> my own use, the instructions to all the dances I am calling that
> night. They fit
> on two sides of one sheet; I usually only use this if I am calling new dances
> that are not yet ingrained in memory.
> I also print out a list of a bunch of alternate dances I might call in case
> I need to vary from the planned program. These dances are already memorized,
> so I do not need to print out the dance instructions to these.
> For a festival or dance weekend where I am calling a lot, I print out a couple
> of booklets of my current dances. One page has all of the titles and
> authors listed,
> and I sort the dances into three categories of difficulty. The other
> pages have
> all of the dances' along with the dance instructions. Again, this is an easy
> import from the database; I just choose which dances and fields to export and
> then format the resultant text in MS Word.
> Peter Amidon
> 20 Willow Street
> Brattleboro, VT 05301
> cell: 917-922-5462
> I have never been lost, but I will admit to
> being confused for several weeks.
> -Daniel Boone
> Callers mailing list
> End of Callers Digest, Vol 29, Issue 1