On Monday we continued learning reels. Reels are the base formation which has the most variations so you never really finish learning reels.
We recapped our right shoulder reels of three on the side dancing New Year Jig and then moved on to mirror reels of three and danced The Auld Grey Cat using these.
For mirror reels of three the first couple dances in and down, the 2nd out and up and the 3rd in and up. Remember in the reels we have done so far the third couple are the ones who give way as they have been at the end of the reel not facing another person.
We then did a Strathspey, the Paisley Weavers. This is an unusual dance because it starts with two chords, one to bow and curtsey and one for the 2nd couple to cross to opposite sides. This dance gave us an opportunity to practice our Grand Chain, Ladies Chain and Half Rights and Lefts. It is important in all these chain formations that you take hands and pass with those hands at shoulder height and you keep the hand you are not using down by your side, otherwise someone else may take that spare hand by mistake!
Moving back into quick time we practiced our Pas de Basque and again looked at travelling using the jete. This time we added in quarter turns and then used that in the formation called a Pousette.) In quick time the Pousette is a square formation and the ditty goes: Away from the centre, quarter turn, up or down, a quarter turn, into the centre, half a turn, retire, retire” Remembering the ditty and the following two points will keep you going in the correct direction:
1. turn by pulling slightly on the right hand
2. Start by going out to the man’s side in top place and to the ladies side in 2nd place
You can see a fantastic video of the Pousette here:
We then danced the Flowers of Edinburgh using the Pousette and then Violynne using both the Pousette and mirror reels of three. Violynne was written by a local teacher Rod Downey for Lynne Scott the musical director of the NZ Branch of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS). Lynne plays the Violin.
The dance for the more experienced for the evening was The Irish Rover which is on Ngaio’s dance program.