Curious as to what a particular figure look like? Our English Country Dance teachers have curated a selection of videos and links for your edification.
Learning English Country Dance on Your Own
There are a number of resources available online that may make the process of learning English country dance easier and faster. These are supplements to in-person instruction and actually dancing with experienced dancers such as you can find at the English country dance classes sponsored by Country Dance * New York Inc. Several different approaches are represented below, for those who learn in different ways. We should also say that there are a number of different ideas about how one should dance and even how certain figures are done, so it is quite possible that you will run across people who dance somewhat differently and tell you, “Oh no, that is not the way we do it here!”
There is a collection of over 400 videos from the web (compiled by David Tilove on the Lambertville ECD site) that show ECD being done at many different locations. This will give you an idea of the diversity of English country dances and the way they are interpreted.
To get an idea of how some dancers who are experienced and well- coached might look you can see a series of videos compiled by Paul Ross, one of the CD*NY teachers. He has a YouTube channel called Childgrove:
There are videos of standard country dance figures (though they are called “regency” on the website), with real English accents, at:
For those who learn best from diagrams, here is a link to a series of flash animations of common figures:
You may find it most helpful to choose one of the figures to identify with and follow that image’s track. Trying to look at all the pieces at once can get confusing.
And if you would like to read good definitions of standard figures (both English country dancing and contra, etc.) try:
However, note that the terms included are both from English country dance as we know it and from contra and square dancing (the English lump them all in together as folk dancing or English country dancing and do them all in one evening).
We hope to see you dancing at our Country Dance * New York Tuesday night English country dances. We dance from September through the middle of June – see the schedule on our website: http://cdny.org.
Would you like a handout to print out? Please click here: Learning English Country Dance on Your Own.