First couple cross over inside below second couple (4); Up on the outside and turn partners to places (4); First couple down the centre, back and cast off (8); First lady swing second gent (4); First gent swing second lady (4); Right and left (8).
The earlier instructions from the two manuals by Howe are virtually identical except that he describes the second move as “up on the outside swing partner to place”, a distinction I will address below, and the swings of the first lady/second gentleman and first gentleman/second lady as “quite round”.
(Seventh in a series of posts discussing and analyzing the Swedish dances. The first post may be found here.)
While never a prominent format, the Swedish dances became enough of a success to outlast their originator. In the second edition of his Companion to La Terpsichore Moderne (London, c1830), dancing master J. S. Pollock, “Professor of Dancing, late of Paris” gives figures for many of the unusual country dance formats originating in the late 1810s and early 1820s, among them three different sets of figures for Swedish dances.
Pollock describes the Swedish dances as being suited to either a lady between two gentlemen or a gentleman between two ladies, though his instructions are invariably for the latter configuration. His diagram suggests a set of trios all of the same configuration. Interestingly, Pollock explicitly states that “no change of places is to be made either at the top or bottom of the same,” meaning at the ends of the set. This means that a right-hand dancer going down the set would become a left-hand dancer coming back up, a minor complication which Pollock was either indifferent to or regarded as a feature.
Pollock’s three dances, each thirty-two bars in length, are not given associated tune-names, only numbers, consistent with his descriptions of other types of dances. Any tune of the proper length might be used. My reconstructions are as follows:
I have a bunch of small events and workshops this month before I take my brief winter break. This is a particularly good month if you want to enjoy some waltzing -- I have waltz events in New York, Connecticut, and Boston!
I am also available for private lessons in Connecticut (New Haven or Middletown) generally, and in New York and the Boston area on specific dates.
Here's a quick list with links for more information:
Big Apple Waltz Holiday Party ~ Friday, December 16th ~ New York City DJ'ed waltz evening 8:30-11:30; beginner lesson (cross-step) 7:45-8:30; special mid-dance sequence dance lesson (Tango Waltz)
Jane Austen's Birthday Dance ~ Saturday, December 17th ~ Cambridge (Boston), Massachusetts Afternoon dance 2:30-5:30 with country dances, quadrilles, waltzes. Beginner-friendly; steps and dances taught. Costumes encouraged!
Holiday Waltz Party ~ Saturday, December 17th ~ Cambridge (Boston), Massachusetts DJ'ed waltz evening 8:00-10:30; beginner lesson (cross-step) 7:30-8:00; special mid-dance sequence dance lesson (Tango Waltz)
Private lessons (email me directly if you would like to schedule a private lesson) New Haven & Middletown, Connecticut -- generally available New York City -- December 10, 11 (morning only), 15 (daytime), 16 (daytime) Boston -- December 18
Coming in 2012: Regular monthly waltz & Regency-era lessons in New York City Victorian balls in Connecticut on February 4th and March 24th Waltz workshops in Boston (January 22nd) and Providence (March 11th) and more!