Virginia Reel Dance

May 23, 2014
Much of the liveliness in

FezziwigThat great laughter is many notoriously in evidence in Charles Dickens' 1843 book, , when the party is performed during at Mr. Fezziwig's baseball during flashback to xmas Past and Scrooge's apprenticeship. The era of the flashback is confusing; the original example (at remaining; mouse click to enlarge) appears to depict the belated 18th century, judging from the garments, though that will make Scrooge rather elderly by 1843. The written text now offers Marley, that has been dead only seven years, in a pigtail and skirted layer; again, fashions of this late eighteenth century. It is also feasible that both Fezziwig and Marley had been simply traditional inside their gown or, in Marley's situation, also inexpensive to get new clothing. One suspects Dickens had not been very worried about these types of details! But having been created in 1812, Dickens could have adult with a "Sir Roger De Coverley" much like the one described below.

The track when it comes to party is within slide jig (9/8) time. Here's a brief snippet regarding the tune, obtained from the free areas record :

While there are other recordings of the track available, I recommend this one for Regency-era dance, because provides an extended adequate track to-do the complete dance with five or six couples and sensibly period instrumentation of flute, violin, and piano. Three various other 9/8 tunes of the duration are added to make a medley, returning to the original track at the end.

The dancers form a line of couples, dealing with lovers, ladies on one side and gentlemen on the other. The top the ready (nearest the music) should be to the gentlemen's left as well as the females' right. The initial an element of the party is completed subsequently by the top woman and bottom guy, followed closely by the most notable gentleman and bottom lady. For convenience, I will refer to these sets as first and second diagonals, though those terms aren't duration. The second part is led because of the top (active) couple, though the other partners participate in and partway through.
Component one

  • The initial diagonal set goes forward and fulfills in mid-set, then retreats to locations. The second diagonal does similar.
  • The very first diagonal then transforms by their correct hands; the second diagonal equivalent.
  • 1st diagonal turns by the remaining arms; 2nd exactly the same.
  • 1st diagonal turns by your hands (clockwise); 2nd exactly the same.
  • The first diagonal matches and executes a dos-à-dos; second the same.

Part two

  • The top (active) couple cross over (moving by right arms), go one place along the not in the set, cross-over once more (amongst the 2nd and third couples), and repeat entirely to the base of the set, crossing over one last time at really bottom if required getting back once again to their own edges. Wilson notes helpfully that if the set is quite long, they may move straight down two places for each cross to speed things up.
  • The energetic few (at this time at the bottom) today takes promenade position (right hand in correct entered over remaining in left) and promenades up the center for the ready. Another partners follow, dropping in from bottom. At the top of the ready, the energetic few casts down, followed by another couples, today backwards order. The energetic couple hits underneath and remains truth be told there; the rest of the couples have relocated up one destination.
  • The party restarts right from the start with new-people within the role associated with the first and 2nd diagonals, and is continued until every couple has had the opportunity to dance the energetic role.
Virginia Reel Dance-Off 2008
Virginia Reel Dance-Off 2008
Barn Dance-Virginia
Barn Dance-Virginia
LDS youth Jonesboro Stake Virginia reel dance practice at
LDS youth Jonesboro Stake Virginia reel dance practice at ...
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