Download this dance

Black Nag

Author:  Published by John Playford, 1670.
Formation: Set dance, 3 couples, longways proper.
Difficulty:  2
Style:  English

Part 1:
A1: All lead up a double forwards and back.
A2: Repeat.
B1: 1-6 top couple four chassés up : then middle couple : then bottom couple.
B1: 7-8 all turn single.
B2: 1-6 bottom couple four chassés down : then middle : then top.
B2: 7-8 all turn single.
Part 2:
A1: Side right with partner *.
A2: Side left with partner.
B1: 1-4 1st man and bottom woman change places (one double to pass and turn to face each other; second double to fall back into opposite person's original place).
B1: 3-6 middle couple change places.
B1: 5-8 bottom couple change places.
Note that these moves overlap.
B2: Repeat B1 to return to original places.
Part 3:
A1: Arm right with partner.
A2: Arm left with partner.
B1: Men do a reel of 3, starting with top 2 men passing right shoulders.
B2: Women do reel of 3 - if top 2 women start by passing left shoulders, two of the women end naturally facing their partners.

Repeat several times.  A dance to lend variety.
*Siding: "Face your partner.  Just like up-a-double and back: you go forward to stand beside your partner right shoulder to right shoulder, pause for a deep and meaningful glance at each other and then fall back to place.  You often side twice: right shoulder to right the first time and then left to left the second time."
From Hugh Stewart's book (see Resources page).
This interpretation is based on Michael Barraclough's version used with permission.

Colin says   I prefer Cecil Sharp's version of the second figure which continues the galloping you would associate with a Black Nag and also repeats the turn single from the first figure: see it here and for the third figure I get people to dance the reel of three in 6 bars (6 skip-change steps) and then everybody turn single both times.  As soon as you get involved in dance interpretation (or reconstruction as they say in the States) you find there are lots of different possibilities!

Music:  Own tune: or
Thumbnail:  Doubles & slips; siding & change places; arming & heys.