Download this dance
A Year in the Life of a Penguin Author: Thomas Green
Formation: Set dance, 5 or 6 couples, fun dance
For 5 (or 6) couples in a ring, partners side by side. Start by numbering the couples, and warn them to remember their numbers because they'll be in a different order next time. It doesn't matter where couples find themselves in the circle as long as they know when it's their turn.
|Penguins have four seasons in their year, as follows.|
|A1:|| Courtship : 1's strut across the ring and back, bisecting it into two pairs of couples. (In a 6-couple set, the 1s and one of the couples beside them - whichever one feels that its turn has come.) As they go they do penguin courting, whatever they think that might be - any suitable struts or gestures or penguinish pecks and cooing. Meanwhile the two couples on each side do a four hand reel as fast as they can. (If a reel is too hard, do something else. Star right and left or a Lady Penguins' (Henguins?) Chain).|
|A2:|| Rushing For Nests: with your partner, but with couples in any old order, everybody form a ring and squeeze in for 4 steps, out for 4 steps, in again, and stamp twice (that's your nest).|
|B1:|| Mating: Everyone face your partner and do penguin balances: 8 short quick jumps, feet together, left and right (i.e. twice the speed of the usual balance); then swing your partner.|
|B2:|| Surviving the Winter: huddle into a compact group, ones outside pushing their way in and ones inside shuffling along to let them (possibly grudgingly).|
|Then reform the ring and 2s become the active couple, wherever they happen to be in the ring.|
It's an exceedingly squashy, huddled-up dance during the B section. A dance for an exuberant crowd. I have been known to award prizes for the best penguin courtship display in A1 (Penguin biscuits, naturally).
Music: jigs or reels