Teach the Earth > Mineralogy > Crystal Symmetry Through Dance > "Old Time Dance" Conventions

Some Conventions Used in Old-Time Dancing

In almost all cases, old-time dances are done to music that has 8 phrases (usually played as reels or jigs; each phrase has 4 bars–8 beats), and therefore, there are typically 8 different steps that will be done. One time through the dance/song should result in all dancers "back to place" (i.e. where they started), or in some cases, advanced one position in the set. Each dance move will begin on the first beat of the music phrase and dancers have 8 beats to complete the move and get ready for the next. The call is generally initiated 2-4 beats before the next phrase so that dancers can anticipate what to do next when the music comes around. Listen to the music and you'll "feel" when the next phrase begins to start the next dance step. For more information about "old-time" dancing, check out the Country Dance and Song Society .

We will use three different dance forms to demonstrate symmetry elements:

Square Dance

Contra Dance

Triplet Dances

Let's Dance!!!

Strap on your boots, Resin up the bow, Find a partner, 'Cause here we go....

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