Study Notes Copyright © William Lynch 2007

First Figure - Swing Opposites (Polkas) 136 bars
1 Long quarterhouse: taking waltz hold, couples slide 2 steps towards the centre and 2 steps back to place then house 4 steps, turning twice, to the next place on their R. This movement is repeated from each place and back home. 32 bars
2 Top couples:
Advance and retire twice, with waist hold.
8 bars
Ladies chain R hands in the centre and give L hand to the opposite gent, turn clockwise under his L arm and round behind him as he dances in place facing centre and pass back R to R to their own partners. 8 bars
3 Side couples:
Advance and retire twice.
Ladies chain.
16 bars
4 Top couples:Swing opposites:  1st gent and 2nd lady  dance in and swing with waltz hold, falling back to place on the last 2 bars. 8 bars
Half lead around: with R shoulder hold, (R hand in R on the lady's R shoulder, and L hands held low in front) the dancing couples face anti-clockwise within the set and dance 2 steps to form a line across the set between side couples, dance 2 steps in place, dance 2 steps round in line and fall back 2 steps into the place opposite their own. 8 bars
Swing opposites 2nd gent and 1st lady. 8 bars
Half lead around back to place. 8 bars
5 Side couples now dance 4.(1st sides are to the R of 1st tops)  All couples dance the last 2 bars, with a stamp on the last beat. 32 bars
Second Figure - The Short Slide (Slides) 80 bars
1 Top couples slide and change: with waltz hold, both couples slide towards the centre of the set - 1, 2, 3, cut, and back, 2, 123 (4 bars), and house across into the opposite place (4 bars).  They then repeat the whole movement back to place. 16 bars
2 Side couples slide and change. 16 bars
3 Top couples slide and change. 16 bars
4 Side couples slide and change. 16 bars
5 Swing partners (6 bars), face centre and stamp. 8 bars
Third Figure - Christmas (Polkas) 208 bars
1 Top couples:
Ladies chain.
8 bars
Swing. 8 bars
1st couple slide and dance across: they slide to the centre and back (4 bars), house across for 2 bars and the lady turns clockwise (2 bars) under the gent's L arm into place alongside 2nd top gent, who takes both ladies' outside hands resting on their outside shoulders.  1st top gent takes the ladies' inside hands to form the three-and-one formation. 8 bars
Advance and retire: with the 1st top gent reversing, the formation dances four 3s across the set and two 3s back into the centre.  On the next 2 bars, the 1st top gent pulls both ladies' arms towards him to turn them outwards underarm and into the christmas formation. 8 bars
Swing four, dropping back to place on the  last 2 bars. 8 bars
Ladies chain. 8 bars
2 Side couples now dance 1. with 1st sides  leading. 48 bars
3 Top couples now dance 1. with 2nd tops leading. 48 bars
4 Side couples now dance 1. with 2nd sides leading. 48 bars
5 Swing partners (6 bars), face centre and stamp. 8 bars
Fourth Figure - The Long Slide (Slides) 120 bars
1 Long lead around: taking waist hold, couples face anticlockwise around the set and dance 2 steps into the next place, 2 steps in place, 2 steps on to the next place, 2 in place and so on back to their own place. 16 bars
2 Top couples:
Long slide: taking waltz hold, couples sidestep, the gents back-to-back, across to the opposite place dancing
hop 12345678 1234567. They repeat the movement back to place, the gents again passing back-to-back.
8 bars
House across to the opposite place. 4 bars
Long slide. 8 bars
House back home. 4 bars
3 Turn the Ladies: partners face each other L hand in L and the lady turns clockwise underarm 1 full turn while the gent dances in place then turns anti-clockwise beside her to take waist hold, facing clockwise around the set (4 bars).  Couples ½ turn anti-clockwise (4 bars) to face anti-clockwise around the set. 8 bars
4 Long lead around. 16 bars
5 Side couples now dance 2. 24 bars
6 Turn the ladies.
Long lead around, face centre and stamp.
24 bars
Fifth Figure - The Polka 120 bars
1 Circle: all join hands in a circle and advance and retire twice. 8 bars
2 Swing partners. 8 bars
3 Ladies move on: gents dance in place while ladies dance clockwise outside their partners, inside to pass the next 2 gents and on to the 3rd gent (R of their starting position) to take waltz hold. 8 bars
4 Swing new partners.
Ladies move on.
16 bars
5 Swing new partners.
Ladies move on.
16 bars
6 Swing new partners.
Ladies move on to their own partners.
16 bars
7 Swing partners. 8 bars
8 Long quarterhouse, face centre and stamp. 32 bars
Mick Mulkerrin at Priddy, Somerset, November, 1994.
Mick originally had the set from Joe O'Donovan and gave me a copy of Joe's notes, in which he states that "The set is danced at a moderate pace and is executed with grace and finesse.  There is no jumping or stamping except on the last beat of every part." Rather unfortunately, Joe's notes do not record which of the side couples is 1st or 2nd. Mick, as recorded above, has 1st sides R of 1st tops, but Connie Ryan with whom I danced the set at a later workshop had it the other way around. So it's perhaps best to agree the order of dance before you start!

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