On Tue, Mar 6, 2018 at 5:41 PM, Kalia Kliban via Callers <
Dance logs, a cumulative record for a series of which
dances have been
called on any given evening, are very common in the English dance community
but vanishingly rare in the contra community. Why is that? They're really
helpful for incoming callers, and it's probably nice for the dancers not to
keep getting the same dances week after week.
Another factor is that English dances usually specify the tune that goes
with them. Contra dances very rarely do. So if a dance series has a house
band that plays most of the time, as some of the Bay Area English dances
do, then a repeated English dance may be the same figures done to the same
tune played by the same musicians. For a contra, even if the same band
played the same set of tunes, it's typical to change tunes partway through
the dance, anyway, so it's hard to achieve the same degree of repetition.
Of course, repetition isn't always looked down upon. I've heard that the
weekly dance in Nelson, NH always has Chorus Jig on the program, and other
dances that repeat week to week. Some contra dancers do appreciate
recognizing dances - ah, Poetry in Motion, I know how that one goes.
As Mac says, the type of repetition that contra dancers really notice is
within an evening - when four dances in a row have heys, or half of the
dances have Petronella turns, and all start to feel the same... and that's
a type of repetition that's less likely to appear in ECD, where dances that
have similar figures could easily be done to different tempos or meters.
Personally, I keep track of all the dances that I've actually called,
because I don't want to call the same dances all the time; most of the time
it's slightly different from what I programmed originally. I add notes to
myself if something didn't go well. I can't remember if I've been asked by
organizers for my program, but it may have happened once or twice.
Hope this helps!