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February 01, 2009

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I would have loved to attend this event, but live 1000 miles or so too far away to have done so. I'm interested to know (given your other post about "real Regency dancers") what the program of dances included. Could you post it here? Thanks.

Hi Mady,
Yes, a thousand miles is a bit of a commute for a dance!

Planned programs always have a reality check when you actually run them, so what we actually danced was:

- three country dances
- four quadrille figures (Caledonians (1820) figs 1-2-4-5)
- three waltzes
- a Swedish dance
and
- the Country Bumpkin, which is an unusual dance for nine people in a square formation

I had four more dances ready -- another country dance, a Spanish dance (country dance in waltz time), La Boulanger, and Sir Roger de Coverley -- but as expected, I had more dances than time to run them all.

This was deliberately planned as an 1818-1820 program. A c1810 one would have lost the quadrilles and waltzes and the Swedish dance and gained more country dances and Scotch reels. I like the later years of the Regency because you get a lot more variety in the dancing.

Which country dances did you do? Which ones would be appropriate to 1820 or to 1810?
Also, as a longtime international folk dancer, I'd love to know what Swedish dance you did.

How do you get nine people in a square formation? One in the middle?

Mady,
Country dances in this period didn't have names; that's a modern concept. A "Swedish dance" is a particular genre of country dance for trios. It probably doesn't have anything to do with Sweden.

Marilee,
Like a tic-tac-toe board, with all nine dancers facing the same way to start.

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