Tag Archives: slice

Fairly Nicked From Nick – Becket – Don Veino and Nick Howe 20180815

Type: Contra Dance, Becket
Status: Proven

In a conversation with Nick Howe following Ogontz Family Week 2018, we reviewed a draft of his 2017 “The Cuckoo and The Robin.” Nick’s dance features a double Mad Robin sequence (CCW into CW) to a Circle Left to Swing. I liked his idea for the transitions and it inspired me to take a shot at flipping the Mad Robin rotation and grafting on other parts to arrive at this co-author dance nicking Nick’s core idea.

This dance has been called several times to great dancer feedback. While you probably want to stress with dancers to take big graceful 8-beat Mad Robins in the B1, the subsequent circle acts as a timing shock absorber should everyone rush them. Energetic music seems to drive dancers to really haul on that bit while flowing/romantic encourages them taking up the time.

A1
Slice Left, Ladies Allemande Right 1+1/2x

A2
Neighbor Balance & Swing

B1
(Gents thru Middle First) Mad Robin CW around THIS Neighbor,
(Gents thru Middle First) Mad Robin CCW around NEXT Neighbor

B2
(w/orig. Ns) Circle Left 3/4x, Partner Swing

End effects: If you’re in the dance and nobody’s at the end for the second Mad Robin, either Mad Robin around a ghost or SeeSaw your Partner across and back to your side to continue with the Circle. If you’re out, cross over and come in temporarily for the second Mad Robin then wait on the left diagonal for the slice.
Tune suggestions:
Video: Thursday Contras at the Concord Scout House, Inc., Top Hill Music dance at the Greenfield, MA Grange.
See also: Mad for Ogontz
First called by me at the NEFFA Thursday Contras dance at the Concord Scout House on 9/20/2018.

The Whole Slice – Becket – Don Veino 20170401

Type: Contra, Becket CW/Left
Status: Proven

I was reviewing candidate dances for the 2017 New England Folk Festival, and this dance literally wrote itself. It came to me in a straight stream of consciousness, in a little under a minute. Despite the date, that’s not an April Fool’s joke – don’t you wish they all came that easily? 🙂

This is one of a series of dances I’ve written featuring a Hole in the Wall* move taken from English Country Dance. Like Mad Robin, this is not a literal lift of the move here but rather a modification for contra dance use. For other compositions with a similar move, see my The Love Pirate & Ladies, Whirled, Linda’s Gifts, Give the Gents a Whirl and Another Gent-le Whirl dances.

Emphasize with the dancers that the Hole in the Wall bit takes a full 8 beats or it’s likely they’ll rush it (by design, the circle and swing can absorb that). One way to do this would be to tell them it’s effectively a hands-free Long Lines Forward & Back – except you swap facing direction with your Neighbor halfway through. Having a partner target for the left diagonal chain helps anchor dancers.

A1
(4,4) Slice Forward on left diagonal, Fall Straight Back
(8!) Hole in the Wall* (with N straight across – “Go Forward, Neighbor Swap, Fall Back”), look away from Partner

A2
(6) Circle Left 3/4 (w/same N & your shadow)
(10) Neighbor Swing

B1
(8) Left Diagonal Ladies Chain (to P)
(8) Half Hey Ladies Pass Right (straight across)

B2
(4,12) Partner Balance & Swing

End effects: When ejected for the circle, swing your neighbor on the left diagonal and be ready for the Ladies Chain. Wait out with your Partner on left diagonal to enter via the slice.

*Hole in the Wall: Borrowed from an English Country Dance move, you walk forward 3 steps to face N across, Gypsy Right 1/2x to swap places with the Neighbor and back out 3 steps. It’s very similar to a hands-free Long Lines Forward & Back (with the same cadence) – except you change places/facing direction with your Neighbor in the middle. For contra dancers, I call this with something like “Forward, Neighbor Swap, Fall Back” – I avoid using Hole in the Wall to limit the terms in play.

First called by me at the Monday Contras series at the Concord, MA Scout House on 6/5/17.

Slice AlleMANde – Becket – Don Veino 20160918

Type: Contra, Becket
Status: DRAFT

One of two takes on a similar theme – for a less zesty dance, see my Slicing the Waves.

A1
Slice Forward Left
Gents Allem Rt 3/4 *WHILE* Ladies Loop over their Left shoulder 3/4 to face CCW on the side
[All give P LH to form a wave]
Wave Balance Rt & Lt, Gents Rory Slide/Twirl Right to cross set to N

A2
Neighbor Balance & Swing

B1
Ladies Chain
Half Hey, Ladies Start by Right

B2
Partner Balance & Swing

Slicing the Waves – Becket – Don Veino 20160918

Type: Contra, Becket
Status: DRAFT

One of two takes on a similar theme – for a zestier dance see my Slice AlleMANde.

A1
Slice Forward Left, to Gents form Wave in Center
Gents Wave Balance Right & Left *WHILE* Ladies Fall Straight Back
[or even better, Ladies Loop over their Left shoulder 3/4 to face CCW on the side]
Gents Allemande Right 3/4 to short Wave, P in LH, Wave Balance

A2
Gents Rory Slide/Twirl Right to cross set to N
Neighbor Swing

B1
Ladies Chain
Half Hey, Ladies Start by Right

B2
Partner Balance & Swing

Wavy Star Slice – Becket – Don Veino 20170120

Type: Contra Dance, Becket Left/CW Formation
Status: Proven, Public

Respin on the theme from my dance Wavy Star Shuffle to move from a 4 Face 4 to Becket formation contra.

First called at the Monday Contras series at the Concord Scout House on 3/27/2017. I tried both the original version below and having a Circle Left in the B1 to a Gypsy & Swing B2 and dancers preferred Circle Right to the Balance & Swing.

A1
Slice left (Fwd on left diagonal, fall straight back)
Fwd to Wavy Star*, Balance

A2
Star CW 3/4x (Gents forward, Ladies back up 3 places)
N Swing

B1
L Chain to P
Circle RIGHT 1x

B2
P Balance & Swing

*AKA “Gypsy Star” – Take hands in wave with same role N, Gents below Ladies, for an interleaved wave facing opposite role N. Let go of outside hands (the one touching adjacent hands/4 folks) and retake hands with opposite role N before rotating the star.