THE SIXTEEN HAND REEL

Study Notes Copyright William Lynch 2007

POSITION OF COUPLES

(X = gent O = lady)

2nd Tops
4th Tops O X 4th Sides
O X O X
1st X O 2nd
Sides O X Sides
X O X O
3rd Sides X O 3rd Tops
1st Tops

CORNER COUPLES

1st corner X O 2nd corner
couple O X couple
X O

Home place

INTRODUCTION
Lead around and back, with inside hands held at shoulder level, partners dropping hands, turning towards each other and again taking inside hands to reverse direction and lead back to place. Partners drop hands, ladies quarter turn clockwise and gents threequarter turn anti-clockwise in place to face into the set. 16 bars
BODY
1 Slip sides: partners sidestep into each other's place (RULE - move L in front and R behind) and dance in place (4 bars) then repeat the movement back to place (4 bars). 8 bars
2 Circles: 1st and 2nd top and side couples each join hands with their 2nd corner couple and sidestep clockwise (2 bars), dance in place (2 bars), sidestep back (2 bars) and fall back to place (2 bars). 8 bars
3 Slip sides. 8 bars
4 Circles: this time 1st and 2nd top and side couples each join hands with their 1st corner couple. 8 bars
5 Half chain: partners face each other, R hand in R, and chain around the set until they meet R hand (12 bars), take crossed hand hold and lead anti-clockwise back to place (4 bars). 16 bars
6 Link arms: 1st and 2nd top and side gents each link R arms with their 2nd corner gent and dance around each other (4 bars), give L hand to turn the 2nd corner lady (2 bars), pass each other R to R to give R hand to their partners and turn into place (2 bars). 8 bars
7 House around each other: partners take crossed hand hold and 1st and 2nd top and side couples and their 1st corner couples house around each other. 8 bars
First Figure - Advance and Retire
1 Advance and retire: with inside hand hold 1st and 2nd top couples advance and retire twice. 8 bars
House around: changing to crossed hand hold they house around each other. 8 bars
2 1st and 2nd side couples now dance 1. 16 bars
3 3rd and 4th top couples now dance 1. 16 bars
4 3rd and 4th side couples now dance 1. 16 bars
BODY 64 bars
Second Figure - Gents Chain
1 Gents chain:1st and 2nd top gents pass R to R to give R hand to their opposite lady (2 bars) and turn her in place (2 bars), pass back L to L (2 bars) to turn their partners L hand in place (2 bars). 8 bars
The gents dance in and turn each other R hand one full turn (2 bars), turn their opposite lady L hand (2 bars) pass back R to R (2 bars) and turn partners R hand in place (2 bars). 8 bars
House around each other: taking crossed hand hold, the dancing couples house around each other. 8 bars
2 1st and 2nd side gents now lead to dance 1. 24 bars
3 3rd and 4th top gents now lead to dance 1. 24 bars
4 3rd and 4th side gents now lead to dance 1. 24 bars
BODY 64 bars
Third Figure - Arches
1 Arches:1st and 2nd top couples take crossed hand hold and dance one full turn into the set (2 bars). They drop L hands as the 1st couple make a R hand arch through which the 2nd lady dances (2 bars). The 1st couple half turns and the 2nd gent dances through the reversed arch (2 bars) and both couples take crossed hand hold and turn into the place opposite their own (2 bars). 8 bars
The whole movement is then repeated with the 2nd couple making the two arches as both dance back to place. 8 bars
2 1st and 2nd side couples now dance 1. 16 bars
3 3rd and 4th top couples now dance 1. 16 bars
4 3rd and 4th side couples now dance 1. 16 bars
BODY 64 bars
FINISH
1 Circle: all take hands in a circle and advance and retire twice. 8 bars
2 Sidestep R: with hands still held, all sidestep anti-clockwise (2 bars) and dance in place (2 bars), sidestep back and dance in place (4 bars). 8 bars
3 Circle: all advance and retire twice. 8 bars
4 Sidestep L: with hands still held, all sidestep clockwise (2 bars) and dance in place (2 bars), sidestep back and dance in place (4 bars). 8 bars
5 Swing partners with ceili hold. 8 bars
ENDNOTE
The timing of movements is not as critical as it would appear from the breakdown into 2 bar sections in the text. These are but a guide to help walk the movements in practice, and, so long you dance an 8 bar movement in the 8 bars then you're probably doing fine!
PUBLISHED SOURCE
"Ár Rinncidhe Foirne Thirty Popular Figure Dances Leabhar 1, 2, 3" page 15

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