September 24, 2008

Ladebraes 4x32 S


32 bar Strathspey for 4 couples in a 4-couple longwise set

2 Chords – on the second chord 3rd and 4th couples cross over with partner

1- 4    Taking hands on the sides, all set and turn partner both hands once round, to melt into:

5- 6     1st couple with 2nd couple and 3rd couple with 4th couple four hands round to the left halfway, finishing out on the sidelines.

7- 8     2nd and 3rd couples cross over with partners giving right hands, while 1st and 4th couples ½ turn partner right hands to finish in promenade hold (men have partners on their right) 1st couple facing 2nd woman and 4th couple facing 3rd woman.

9-12     1st and 4th couples ½ diagonal reel of four with 2nd and 3rd women. 1st and 4th couples pass each other right shoulder at the end to finish 1st couple facing 2nd man and 4th couple pacing 3rd man.

13-16     1st and 4th couples ½ diagonal reel of four with the 2nd and 3rd men. At the end, 1st and fourth couple approach the other couple dropping hands with partner at the end of bar 16 to finish in promenade hold 1st and with 4th woman facing out the women's side and 1st woman with 4th man facing out the men's side.

17-20     ½ reels of three on the sidelines. To begin, 1st man & 4th woman give right shoulder to 2nd man and 1st woman & 4th man give right shoulder to 3rd man to begin. At the end of bar 20, 1st and 4th couples drop hands finish in promenade hold with own partners, 1st couple facing out the men's side and 4th couple facing out the women's side.

21-24     ½ reels of three across the dance. To begin, 1st couple pass 3rd man left shoulder and 4th couple pass 2nd man left shoulder. At the end of bar 24, 1st and 4th couples approach each other again.

25-28     1st and 4th couple dance right hands across once round, finishing by retaining hold of partner's right hand ready for:

29-32     1st couple lead down, crossing below 3rd couple and cast up into 3rd place opposite sides, while 4th couple lead up crossing above 2nd couple and cast off in to 2nd place own sides.

Finish in the order 2 4 1 3.

Devised by Duncan Brown, Chudleigh, Devon, UK (duncanqlnbrown [at]

Tune: "Compliments to Ian Powrie" (Angus Fitchet), The Music of Angus Fitchet, Volume 1, published by National Association of Accordian and Fiddle Clubs. Suitable recorded music is any good 4 x 32 strathspey (trad type ones).

Notes: Ladebraes in St Andrews, Scotland is a short cut between South Street and the Boys Brigade Hall used by dancers 'in the know' on the long walk to the hall. Ladebraes was one of the possible titles of The Chequered Court when I wrote it in 2001. However, I decided that Ladebraes sounded like a strathspey rather than a quick time dance, so here is the dance to go with the title!

UPDATE: Tune information was updated on 20 October 2008

Posted by ldfs at 4:12 PM | Comments (2)

September 2, 2008

Twinkle in His Eye 4x32 S

32- bar strathspey for 4 couples in a 4-couple set

1 - 4    1st and 4th couple cross giving right hands, 1st couple cast off one place while 4th couple cast up one place. 2nd and 3rd couples step up or down on bars 3-4

5 - 8    1st and 4th couples dance right hands across once round, 1st and 4th couples keep hold of their partners right hand and finish 1st couple facing up and 4th couple facing down.

9 - 12    1st couple lead up, crossing over and cast off one place while 2nd couple cast off one place and cross up left hand to curve into first place.At the same time, 4th couple lead down, crossing over and cast up one place while 3rd couple cast up one place and cross down right hand to curve
into 4th place.

13 - 16     1st and 4th couples dance half rights and lefts.

17 - 24     4 couple set and link:
    17 - 18     All 4 couples, joining hands, set on the sidelines
    19 - 20     4th man, followed by 2nd man and 1st women followed by 3rd woman pulling the right shoulder back, cast and curve round to the right while 1st man followed by 3rd man and 4th woman followed by 2nd woman dance through the middle of the set, men passing left shoulders with the women and curve to the right to end in lines of four across the dance as shown in figure 1.
    21 - 22     All set in lines of 4 across the dance.
    23 - 24    4 4th man followed by 2nd man and 1st woman followed by 3rd woman, pulling the right shoulder back, cast and curve round to the right while 3rd man followed by 1st man and 2nd woman followed by 4th woman dance through the middle of the set and curve to the right to end in the sidelines in the order 3, 1, 4, 2, everyone on their own side of the dance.

25 - 32     Eight hands round and back.

Repeat from new positions.

figure: bars 21-22

In the 4 couple set and link, the same people are on the right hand ends of the lines in bars 17 -18 and 21 - 22 i.e. 2nd man and 3rd woman however on the left hand end of the line, the people change, so in bars 17 - 18 3rd man and 2nd woman are on the end, whereas in bars 21 - 22 1st man and 4th woman are on the end.

Devised by Chris Godwin, 8th September 2007. Dedicated to Roy Goldring, who devised so many of my favourite dances.

Posted by ldfs at 10:07 AM | Comments (0)

September 1, 2008

Miss Dow's Strathspey 8x32 S


32-bar Strathspey for 3-couples in a 4-couple set

1 - 4     1st and 2nd couples set and cross with partners giving right hand, and face out.

5 - 8     2nd couple followed by 1st couple dance down the sides, and in and up around 3rd couple. 2nd couple lead to the top, cross and face out in 1st position. 1st couple lead to centre of the set in 2nd position facing up.

9 - 16     1st, 2nd, and 3rd couples dance Reels of Three on the sides; 1st man with 2nd and 3rd ladies, and 1st lady with 2nd and 3rd men. To begin the 1st couple dance up and out, the 2nd couple out and down, and the 3rd couple out and up. 2nd and 3rd couples finish in 1st and 3rd places respectively, on their own sides by looping into place, while 1st couple finish in 2nd place on their opposite sides.

17 - 20     1st man with 3rd couple, and 1st lady with 2nd couple, dance Three Hands Round to the left. On bar 20 1st couple pass by their right to change circles. ( 2nd and 3rd couples retain their partner's hand, and the shape of the formation while 1st couple change circles.)

21 - 24     1st man with 2nd couple, and 1st lady with 3rd couple, dance Three Hands Round to the right. On bar 24 1st couple pull back left shoulders to face one another in the centre of the set; man facing down lady facing up.

25 - 28     1st couple set to one another and dance a petronella turn to 2nd place on their own sides

29 - 32     2nd, 1st and 3rd couples turn with both hands to places.

Repeat from new positions.

Music: "Miss Dow's Fancy? by John Reid ( arranged by Nan Main)

Devised by Alan Macpherson (amdmac [at]
"Miss Dow was a very influential figure in promoting and developing SCD in the Dundee area and some have described her as the "Miss Milligan" of the East. Alistair Macfadyen was of the opinion that Miss Dow deserved more recognition from the Society than was accorded to her, and Alistair suggested that a dance in her honour would be a fitting tribute and that I should write such a dance for publication by the Society. The strathspey, "Miss Dow's Strathspey", was devised by me and submitted to the Society in the mid 90s, but unfortunately it was rejected."

"The composer of the tune 'Miss Dow's Fancy' was John Reid (1869-1942), a famous Angus "Dancie" from Newtyle. He taught step dancing at the early Summer Schools and his Newtyle Orchestra provided the music for the Younger Hall dances. 'Miss Dow's Fancy' was first played by John Reid's orchestra at a Dundee Branch dance in the Training College Hall on the 14th December, 1934"

Posted by ldfs at 10:43 AM | Comments (1)