THE BALLYVOURNEY REEL SET

Study Notes Copyright William Lynch 2007

First Figure -The Star (Polkas) 80 bars
1 Lead around: Partners take crossed hand hold in front, face anti-clockwise around the set and dance round to place, turning in to face centre on the last bar. 8 bars
2 Star R and L: top couples face the couple on their L, take R hands below shoulder level and wheel round, turn clockwise to take L hands and wheel back to place. 8 bars
3 Quarterhouse: taking waltz hold, couples dance 2 steps in place then turn 2 steps on to the next place. They repeat this 4 step movement into each place and back home. 16 bars
4 House around. 8 bars
5 Star R and L, top couples facing the couple on their R. 8 bars
6 Quarterhouse.
House around, with a stamp on the last beat of the 8th bar.
24 bars
Second Figure - Hand over the Shoulder (Polkas) 96 bars
1 Lead around. 8 bars
2 Hand over the shoulder: (partners keep R hands held throughout this movement) Ladies dance into the set, the gents dancing in place, turn anti-clockwise (2 bars), dance out and turn into R shoulder hold (2 bars) to lead around to the opposite place (4 bars). 8 bars
Ladies dance into the set, this time turning clockwise, dance out into R shoulder hold and lead around back to place. 8 bars
3 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
4 Hand over the shoulder. 16 bars
5 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
Third Figure - Swing the Girl Behind (Polkas) 96 bars
1 Lead around. 8 bars
2 Swing behind: gents swing the lady on their L, with waltz hold. 8 bars
3 Swing partners. 8 bars
4 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
5 Swing behind.
Swing partners.
16 bars
6 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
Fourth Figure - Sidestep (Polkas) 80 bars
1 Lead around. 8 bars
2 Sidestep: facing centre, partners sidestep past each other, ladies in front and gents behind (2 bars), dance 2 steps in place, sidestep back to place, gents in front and ladies behind (2 bars) and dance 2 steps in place. 8 bars
3 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
4 Sidestep. 8 bars
5 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
Fifth Figure - Half Chain (Polkas) 96 bars
1 Lead around. 8 bars
2 Half chain: partners face each other, R hand in R, and turn around each other so that gents face clockwise and ladies anti-clockwise around the set (2 bars). All chain to meet partners in the opposite place and take waltz hold. 8 bars
3 Swing. 8 bars
4 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
5 Half chain back to place. 8 bars
6 Swing.
Quarterhouse.
House around.
32 bars
Sixth Figure - Ladies In (Polkas) 112 bars
1 Lead around.
2 Ladies dance in to join hands in a circle and advance and retire, advance and fall back to place. 8 bars
3 Gents R and L hand star: gents dance in and, taking R hands, wheel clockwise, turn to take L hands and wheel back to take their partners in waist hold, L hands still held. 8 bars
4 Wheel, all four couples, around to place. 8 bars
5 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
6 Ladies in.
Gents R and L star.
Wheel.
24 bars
7 Quarterhouse.
House around.
24 bars
STEPS :
The normal polka step is used throughout, except when dancing the Sidestep in the Fourth Figure. This movement is danced using the same sidestep, and following the same passing rule, viz. move L in front of, and R behind, your partner, as in ceili dances but omitting the 'cut' on the first step.
The gent dances the step as follows:
Moving to the R the L foot is passed behind the R to take the weight on the count of 1. The R foot moves R on 2. The L, still behind the R, moves on 3 and so on to the count 7. There is a momentary pause on 8 to complete 2 bars and the step is completed with two 3s in place.
Moving back to the L this time the R foot moves behind the L in the same sequence as before, again finishing with two 3s in place.
The lady dances exactly the same step pattern, but starts by moving to the L first and back to the R.
SOURCE
Larry Lynch at Aras na nGael, London, 1991.

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Glossary