A Barn Dance Repertoire

by Thomas Green

List of Dances

Names link to downloadable full descriptions with comments.
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A Grand Starry Night 3 sicilian-circle

circles, ladies chain, LH star, grand star (half star in current set, half with next set), repeat, do-si-do

A Year in the Life of a Penguin 1 set-dance

5-cu ring. 1s strut while others reel/star/etc. Squeeze in out in and stamp. Double speed balances, swing. Huddle together, outside couples keep squeezing in.

Alabama Jubilee 1 big-circle

in and out twice, allemande, do-si-do and move on, allemande, back to partner to swing, promenade and move on

Albert Quadrille 1 square

 heads fwd and back and do-si-do; sides ditto. Heads circle half, W cross, M cross. Sides ditto. Stars for 8, balance, promenade home.

Amazon, The 2 sicilian-circle

 circle L, do-si-do Partner; circle R, do-si-do Opposite; form pairs and woman steers couple round and back (the steering is hard to explain, hence difficulty = 2)

Ap Shenkin 1 longways

 1s circle with 2nd woman, then 2nd man; down, up, all single cast left and a bit more to progress

Apple Tree Square 1 square

heads forwards and back, 1s through and round, do-si-dos, allemandes, grand chain and promenade home

Balance The Star 1 sicilian-circle

In RH star formation balance in and out, then star; ditto LH. With corners, do-si-do and pass on; ditto with partners

Beaux of Albany 2 longways

 triple minor. Balance and swing, down and up, stars, rights and lefts

Belfast Duck 1 longways

circles, then lead and chassay down, ditto up, ditto down, duck through arch

Black Nag 2 set-dance

 doubles & slips; siding & change places; arming & heys

Blaydon Races 1 big-circle

 in and out twice, chassay in and out twice, promenade and move on, balance and swing

Borrowdale Exchange 1 set-dance

Circles, in and out, do-si-do, star, undo with new partner, scatter

Boston Tea Party 1 set-dance

 gallops and arches, short dip & dive, cast through arch

Bottoms Up 1 set-dance

forward and back and cross, thread needle, gallops with waist hold

Bridge of Athlone 1 set-dance

forward & back and cross, gallop cast, tunnels

Caedmon Capers 2 set-dance

little sets lead round, balance, dosido, reels, dip and dive

Canadian Barn Dance 2 couple-dance

 Foward and kick, backward and kick, chasse in and clap, chase back; ballroom hold, chase man's left, then man's right, polka round.

Carousel, The 1 sicilian-circle

do-si-dos, make circle and balance, then circle L, ditto R; elbow balances, then rotate a line of four

Chanctonbury Ring 2 big-circle

 circles, in and out twice, balance and woman moves on, chassay in and out, swing

Chinese Breakdown 3 square

chorus: turn your corner, turn the one the other side, balance and swing partner, promenade
figure: leading couple promenade round outside, ladies chain opposite couple, those couples ladies chain to right then to left

Cincinnati Reel 1 big-circle

 do-si-do, turn LH neighbour, do si do, turn RH neighbour, balance and swing with that one, promenade

Circassian circle 1 big-circle

 All in and out twice, women in and out, men in and out, swing partner, promenade

Circle Waltz 1 big-circle

Balance in and out and women roll past, four times. With new partner sway and turn twice. Chassay in and out. Waltz.

Clopton Bridge 1 set-dance

turns, stars, lead down

Coming Round the Mountain 1 square

1s promenade the set, stars, do-si-do and swing, promenade home

Cornish Six-Hand Reel 2 other-formations

all lead down, balance, back, balance, reel, turns, cast

Country Bumpkin 1 set-dance

(for 4 or 5 couples) Forward and back, down and up, grand chain, others cast down

Cumberland Square Eight 1 square

galops, stars, baskets, promenade

Danish Double Quadrille 2 sicilian-circle

 circles, in and out in 4s, rights and lefts, circles in 4s, polka round

Dashing White Sergeant 2 (or 1) sicilian-circle

circles, turns, reels, forward and back and on

Demon's Rant 2 set-dance

 men round women, vice versa; circles; arch, double cast, dip and dive

Devon Jig 1 set-dance

(for 4, 5 or 6 couples) arches, cast, 1s swing down, fountain cast

Dishrag Dance (Wring out the Dishrag : Grandfather's Polka ) 2 sicilian-circle

circles, dishrags, stars, find new couple.

Also known as "Wring out the Dishrag" or, after a tune commonly used, "Grandfather's Polka"

Dixon Sixsome 2 sicilian-circle

circle, middles swing ends, arches along lines, stars, baskets, forward and back and on

Double or Quits 2 sicilian-circle

circles, reels, half rights and lefts at one end then the other, balances and turns

Enrico 1 longways

stars, then single cast, double cast, 1s swing to bottom

Farandole 1 other-formations

lines of people weave, cross, spiral at whim

Farmer's Gallop 1 big-circle

step forwards, return, slip steps and return, turn partner, swing on diagonal

Five Hand Reel 2 other-formations

reels and stepping

Fivepenny Bit 2 square

stars on sides with 5's; reels on sides; 5s go through arches made by 1s, 2s, 3s, 4s, leaving 4s as new 5s

Flirtation Reel 3 longways

 Down and back, hey, gypsy-swing, forward and back and 1s swing

Flying Pieman 1 set-dance

weaving, 1s galop down and back, top 3 couples galop down

Flying Scot 1 set-dance

 (also works with 4 couples) weave, galops

See Flying Pieman for a more vigorous version

Foula Reel 2 set-dance

1s down, strip willow back up, arch over sides, poussette

Four Around Four 1 set-dance

sides lead round, 1s gallop, swing

Gay Gordons 1 couple-dance

 forward, pivot, backwards; repeat other way. Woman twirls. Polka briefly

Gingerbread 2 set-dance

 swings, stars, arches, baskets

Gipsy Hill Jig 2 set-dance

reels on sides, grand chain, stars, 1s down and all swing

Good Queen Vic 1 longways

1s galop, 1s and 2s galop, clapping, do-si-do, right arm turns, 1s swing past.

Grand National 1 set-dance

gallop sideways and turn partner, again other way, tops cross and weave down, all swing

Grandfather's Clock 2 square

Heads do-si-do and cast; ladies chain. Sides ditto. W do star promenade, drop partner, star on 3 places, balance and swing new partner

Hebridean Weevil 1 set-dance

1s down, arch up and down, up. Strip willow down, arch; all cast and through; 1s up and cast. Jogging step

Honeywell Circle 1 big-circle Circles, chassay in and clap, ditto out, arm-turn partner then arm-turn neighbour (new partner), balance and swing
Jig a Jig Square 1 square

1st M weaves, 1st W ditto, balance and swing, do-si-do, men star, then star promenade, then tunnelling

Joe Taylor's Dance 2 square

1s out through 3s and weave back, men star and move women, grand chain, crossings

Julia's Frolics 1 set-dance

arches go left and right while people burrow; turn partner, clapping, swing, step 1 place left, spare people burrow.

La Bastringue 2 set-dance

 stars, arch, strip willow

La Russe 1 square

balance and swing contraries, ditto partner, 1s keep swinging then promenade, crossing, circle and promenade home

Leaving for Barbados (A Trip to Barbados ) 1 set-dance

gallop to and fro with all couples joining in one by one

Levi Jackson 4 other-formations

sides right & left while heads lead down; circles and cast; dosido. 5 ladies chain, promendade, balance and swing

Little Log Cabin 1 square

two couples promenade, stars with diagonal pairs, circles, in and out, swing

Lucky Seven version 1 1 big-circle Circle L 16, in and out twice, grand chain for 7; OR in and out twice, do=si-dos, grand chain
Lucky Seven version 2 1 big-circle Circle L 16, in and out twice, grand chain for 7; OR in and out twice, do-si-dos, grand chain
Maggie Mixer 2 big-circle

 Side-by-side go forward, chassay to and fro, ditto other way. Counter-marching, do-si-do, swing person to the left (new partner)

McCann's Reel 2 sicilian-circle

do-si-dos, big circles, small circles, all march, one couple pops through arch to progess

Military Two-Step 1 couple-dance

Heel-&-toe twice, go forwards, turn, repeat; kicks, woman turns to face, polka round

Mock Turtle Hornpipe 1 sicilian-circle

step-hop. circles, arch under and back, stars, side-steps past

Moving Along 1 big-circle

 In and out twice, turn partner and move on, ditto next, ditto next, do-si-do next, swing the next

Ninepins 1 square

 4 couples + 1 person. Pairs galop across, ninepin swings people to middle, two circles, music stops, compete for partners

Nottingham Swing 1 longways

 corners elbow swing, 1s down and up and cast, all swing

OXO Reel 1 set-dance

forward and back and gallop twice. Make OXO, gallop, swing

Pat-a-Cake Polka 1 couple-dance

 heel & x2, go forwards; repeat the other way; clapping; move on

Pop Goes the Weasel 1 longways

1s pop 2nd woman, then 2nd man; 1s down and up; all swing and progress


Postie's Jig 2 set-dance

ends cross, figure 8, cross and gatepost, repeatedly

Pride of Dingle 2 set-dance

(4 couples plus 1 person) March up or down, dingle climbs ladder, forward and back, swing

Quarndon Hill 1 sicilian-circle

 1s gallop round and back, 2s ditto, stars, forward and back, arch through and back and on

Rachel's Reel 1 set-dance

slips and circle twice, elbow turn partner, top man/woman (alternating) cast to bottom

Reel of Ballymore 2 big-circle

 In and out twice, promenade forward, men pass on and promenade back, allemandes in figure-of-8, swing new partner

Return of the Antelope 2 set-dance

waves on the sides, turn, repeat; 1s swing, grand chain, all swing

Rosza 2 couple-dance

sway, turn and lock, chassé left & right, sway, unlock: balance in and out, chassé left & right, waltz

Scout House Reel 3 longways lines down and up, circle, ladies chain, do-si-do, swing, lines forward and back, 1s swing
Sibyl's Roundabout 2 big-circle

 In and out twice (men stay in 2nd time), do si do, chassay left and right, make wavy circle, balance, allemande, balance, figure-of-8 to new partner and swing

Silly Threesome 1 big-circle Sicilian threesome. Go forwards, middles turn ends, forwards, tunnelling
Snakes and Ladders 1 longways

 1st M leads both W lead round 2nd M, then 2st M leads them round 1st M; poussettes, arches

Soldier's Joy 2 longways

1s down and up, reel of four, all down and up passing through, polka round

St Bernard's Waltz 1 couple-dance

 forwards, stamp, back, chassay in and out, waltz on

St Lawrence Jig 3 longways

allemandes, swing, lines down and up, rights and lefts, lines forward and back, star

Steamboat 1 longways

lines down and back, all down and up passing through, stars, swing and change

Stepping Stone Rag 2 set-dance

diagonal do-si-dos, stars, 1s dip forwards and backwards to bottom

Steps of Waterloo, The 1 sicilian-circle

circles, stars, basket, forward and back and pass on

Strip the Willow (longways ad lib) (Orcadian Strip the Willow : Drops of Brandy ) 1 longways

strip the willow both sides at once

Strip the Willow (set dance) (Drops of Brandy ) 1 set-dance

Strip the willow!

Strip the Willow Square 2 square

heads galop, sides galop; heads strip willow rund square; circles, balance and swing

Suicide Square 1 set-dance

All couples against wall round the room, galops across and back. balance and swing, men do inner circle while women do outer, grab new partner

Swedish Masquerade 1 couple-dance

 marches; balance and waltz; balance and polka.

Sweets of May 1 sicilian-circle

 circles, stars, balance and swing partner and opposite, do-si-dos, forward and back and on

T.A.G. 2 set-dance cast into stars on the sides, swap stars, and another cast
The Demented Seagull 3 square

heads star through and half circle, pass through. Reels of four. Grand chain, promenade

The Guidman of Ballangigh 2 longways

Couples in turn go round other couples; setting, half-circles, change places

The Heartbreaker 2 square

circle L and R, 4-ladies-chain, 1s through arches, do-si-dos

The Heathfield Rag 3 set-dance

turns, chassays, circles, cross

The Mozart 2 set-dance

(radiating formation) To centre and back, 1s weave down, balance and swing, forward and back and on

The New Parliament House Jig (The Prime Minister ) 3 other-formations

3 rows of 3: double casts, circles, lines interchange

The Oak Tree 2 set-dance

cast, circle x 2, 2s corner-partner-corner-partner, gallops

The Pawnbroker 2 set-dance

gallops with chases, 3 circles, squeeze

The Ploughboy 2 set-dance

swing, down and back, stars, corners cross, circle and cast

The Short and the Tall 4 set-dance

Stars, Devil's Elbow, half circle, turn partner, down through arch, do-si-do

The Snowball 1 set-dance

progressive glossary dance - turns, stars, circles, lines, gallops, cast

The Tempest 2 set-dance

 circles, galops, ends swing while middles star, dip-&-dive or fwd-&-back

The Three-hand Reel 2 set-dance 2s swing 1st and 2nd corners; reels on sides; 1s swing down<
Tumbling Tom's Tonic 2 other-formations

 Reels, swings, clapping, women star while men walk round: women progress

Twelve Reel 2 square

square of threesomes. Forwards and back, repeat swapping ends, middles elbow swing, reels, middles move round

unknown square 1 square

middle and back, heads swap, sides swap, grand chain, swing

Untitled Square 3 square

1s dosido and right-&-left round the set, then women and men alternately roll to left; promenade

Virginia Reel 1 set-dance

advance/retire, tops down and back, all cast through arch

Waltz Country Dance (version 1) 2 sicilian-circle

 waltz time. Balance and change places with opposite then partner. Balance the circle, women roll across, four times. Waltz on

Waltz Country Dance (version 2) 2 sicilian-circle

waltz time. Balance and change places with opposite then partner. Balance the circle, women roll across, four times. Waltz on

Waterfall Waltz 2 sicilian-circle

waltz time. Men turn, do si do corner, women likewise, chassay past, turn partner, repeat, circle left and on

Waves of Tory 2 set-dance

 forward and back and cross; tops gallop down, all dip and dive

Weaver Jig 1 sicilian-circle

circle, star, do-si-dos, dip and dive 4 times to move on, basket

Weaver's Galopede 1 set-dance

 thread needle, gallops and crossings, swing

Whalebones 1 set-dance

casts and arches

Wherries Circle Contra 1 sicilian-circle

circles, big circles, stars, do-si-do, forward and back and on (unusual starting formation)

Whynot's Circle Contra 2 sicilian-circle

start in big circles) big circles right and left, do-si-do and swing, ladies chain, small circles

Willow Tree, The 2 set-dance

 galops down to fetch someone, ends strip willow to middle and make arch, others cast through arch

Witch's Reel 1 set-dance

down and back, cast, thread needle