Country Dance * New York

ECD Figures

Back to back
Facing another person, move forward passing right shoulders and fall back to place passing left. May also start by passing left and falling back right.

Balance back
A single backward step.

Both hands
Face and give hands right to left and left to right.

Cast off is to turn outward and dance outside the set.
Cast up (or down) is to turn outward and dance up (or down) outside the set.

Circular hey
Dancers face each other as directed (i.e., face partner or face along the line) and pass each other alternately right/left/right a stated number of times (i.e., 2, 3 or 4 changes of a hey). Usually done without hands, the circular hey may also be done by more than two couples facing alternately and moving in opposite directions-usually to original places.

Slippingstep to right or left as directed.

In a ring, move to your left; in a turn single, turn to your right.

In a duple minor or two-couple set, the dancer diagonally opposite, i.e, 1st man and 2nd woman 1st woman and 2nd man.

The exact opposite of clockwise: in a ring, move right; in a turn single, turn to your left.

Cross hands Face and give left to left and right to right.

Cross over
Cross with another dancer passing right. Cross over one couple is to cross as above and go outside below one couple, ending improper.

Four steps forward (or back), closing the feet on the fourth step.

Fall (back)
Dance backwards.

Figure of Eight
A weaving figure in which dancers pass between two standing people and move around them in a figure 8 pattern. A full figure of 8 returns the dancers to their original positions; a half figure of 8 leaves them on the opposite side of the set from their original positions. In doing this figure, the man lets his partner pass in front of him.

Lead or move in the direction you are facing.

Two dancers move around each other in a circular path facing outward or towards the center as directed.

Hands across
Hands are given to corners diagonally across a set and dancers move in the direction they face. Three hands across: two dancers join hands, third dancer places his/her hand on top.

Hands three, four, etc.
The designated number of dancers form a ring and move around in the direction indicated, usually first to the left and back to the right.

A weaving figure in which two groups of dancers move in single file and in opposite directions (see Circular hey and Straight hey).

The person you are standing beside.

The person you are facing.

Change places with another dancer by moving forward; pass is by the right shoulder unless otherwise indicated.

Two dancers face, give both hands, and change places as a couple with two adjacent dancers. One pair moves a double toward the right wall, the other to the left wall. In this half-poussette, couple pass around each other diagonally. To complete the poussette, move in the opposite direction. Dancers end in original places.

Right and left
This is like a circular hey, but dancers give hands as they pass (handing hey).

Two steps in any direction, closing feet on the second step.

Straight hey
In a Straight hey for three, the first dancer faces the other two and passes right shoulders with the second dancer, left shoulders with the third, the other dancers moving and passing the indicated shoulder. On making the last pass, each dancer makes a whole turn on the end, earing right if the last pass was by the right shoulder, left if the last pass was by the left, and reenters the figure returning to place. Each dancer describes a figure of 8 pattern.
In a Straight hey for four, dancers face alternately, the two in the middle facing out. Dancers pass right shoulders on either end and weave to the end opposite. If the last pass at the end was by the right, the dancer turns right and reenters the line by the same shoulder; vice versa if the last pass was to the left. Dancers end in original places. Swing A turn with two hands, but moving faster and making more than one revolution.

Turn two hands
Face, give two hands, and make a complete circular turn to place, clockwise unless otherwise indicated.

Turn by right / left
Dancers join right (or left) hands as directed, move forward quite around, separate, and fall to place.

Turn single
Turn in four steps, clockwise (i.e., to your own right) unless otherwise directed.

From English Country Dancing, An Introduction, Notes gathered from friends and edited by Daniel Siegel, on the occasion of the 75th birthday of the Country Dance and Song Society. Published by the Fourth Wednesday English Country Dancers, Kensington, Maryland, 1990. These definitions are based on Cecil J. Sharp's in The Country Dance Book, parts 2 & 6. If you'd like more information and diagrams of some of these movements, see the introductions to these books.

Admission Rates for WEEKLY Dances

Admission:$12 for members of CD*NY and full-time students (must show ID), $15 for non-members.

Admission Rates for Children:Children under ten Free. Children ages 10-15 get in at half the regular rate, teens 16-18 get in at $12 (student/member rate).

There are special prices for special dances.

Unless otherwise announced, English Country Dances are on Tuesdays, from 7 to 10pm, and Contra Dances are on Saturdays, 7:30-10:45, at the Church of the Village, 201 W 13th Street.

© 2015   Created by Kate Fais.

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