Dances by Eric Black

Web site: eric-black.com

email: eric@eric-black.com


Dutch Chocolate - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long lines forward & back (8)
   Ladies start 1/2 Hey for 4 (8)
   Hands 4, circle RIGHT 1x! (8)
   Slide left with partner to new neighbors (4)
            [ladies draw your partner with you]
      Take right hands across, balance (4)
B: Star Right 1/2 (4)
      Allemande LEFT Trail Buddy #1 1/2 (4)
   Star Right 1/2 new neighbors #2 (4) [Trail Buddy #2]
      Balance (4)
   Star Right 1/2 same 4 (4)
      Allemande LEFT Trail Buddy #1 1/2 (4)
   Swing partner (8)  face across

Inspired by the 4x4 grid dance "Dutch Crossing" by Ernst van Brakel;
Written November 2013 as an attempt to make the components of Dutch
Crossing more familiar and accessible to contra dancers.

EDGE EFFECT: do not cross over until the partner swing.

At BACDS American Dance & Music Week ("AmWeek") 2012 our
Dutch Crossing session may have set the record for shortest
time from start of teaching to first successful complete run
of the dance: 18 minutes.

Alison Wonderland - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Mirror allemande below 1-1/2 (8) [1's split 2's]
    Balance in long waves [1's face out] (4)
    All allemande LEFT 1/2 (4) [LOSE your partner!]
    1's do-si-do the one you meet in the middle (8)
    Swing that one (8)  [end facing UP, 2's face DOWN]
B:  New hands 4, circle Left 3/4 (8) [cross over at bottom]
    Swing partner [next to you] (8) end facing across
    THESE 4 take hands 4, circle Left 3/4 (8) [1's face up]
    Mirror do-si-do below 1-1/2 (8) [2's split 1's]

Written summer 1989 for my Reason For Living, Alison Date;
first danced 21 Oct 89 at the BACDS Fall Dance Weekend

NOTES:  This is NOT an easy dance.  Not At All.
1) you'll have 2 trail buddies (your "White Rabbit"), and it's
   a different one when you're a 1 than when you're a 2
2) 2's: make sure you face your Trail Buddy in the long wave in A1
3) EDGE EFFECT: you're never really out.  Be Where You Need
   To Be.
4) Enjoy your trip through the Looking Glass!

Alternate Harmonies - Eric Black
Duple Improper, 4-part Double Progression
A1: RH star below (8); circle L 1x (8)
A2: Swing neighbor (8); long lines F & B (8)
B1: Ladies chain across [to pt.](8); circle L 1x (8)
B2: R & L across (8); circle R 3/4 pass thru (8)

C1: LH star below (8); Ladies chain across (8)
C2: Ladies do-si-do 1-1/2 (8); swing opposite(8)
D1: R & L across (8); circle L 1x (8)
D2: Bal & swing partner (16)

Written at/for Camp Harmony, New Year's 1990.
It's two alternating dances, each a normal contra.

The Barron of Connecticut - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Allemande Left below (8)
    Actives allemande Right in center (8)
    Gents turn down, ladies turn up,
        take 8 steps alone (8)
    Return, cast around with hands (8)
B:  Hey for 4, pass R shoulders in ctr (16)
    Same 4 star Left with hands across (8)
    Star Right, hands across (8)

Note: active gent must "fudge" the hey to be in position for the LH star

Written in honor of Phoebe Barron, English fiddler and ex-President of
BACDS, on her departure from the Bay Area for Connecticut.

Balance in All Things - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: 1's allemande Right 1x (4) [zesty!]
     Neighbors allemande Left 1x (4) [zesty!]
   1's swing in middle, end facing same neighbor (8)
    [1's are back-to-back in center]
   Balance & swing same neighbor (16), end facing across (16)
B: Long lines forward & back (8)
   2's chain across (8) [right hand, courtesy turn with #1 across set]
   2's allemande Right 1x (4) [zesty!  1's take a step toward bottom]
      NEW neighbor allemande Left 1x (4)
   1's chain across (8)

Written 12/6/11 to experiment with gender-free dances without
resorting to artificial crutches like "Bands" and "Bares".

Bouncing Back - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long Lines forward & back (8)
   Star Left 3/4 (8)  [turn your back on the star]
   Do-si-do *next* neighbor 1x (4) [turn your back]
     Swing original neighbor (12) [end facing across]
B: Pass through across, cross trail (6)
     Circle Left 1x with *next* neighbors (10)
   Gents assist neighbor lady on left into center;
     Ladies hey across passing Left shoulder in center,
     Gents RICOCHET (8)
   Swing partner (8)

Bouncing Back Again - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long lines (8)
   Ladies chain across (8)
   LEFT DIAGONAL chain (8)
   R & L straight across (8)
B: Ladies hey across [Rt], gents ricochet (8)
   Ladies ricochet, gents hey across (8)
   Alle L trail buddy (4)
     Pt sw (12)

[written & first danced Nov 2010, to mark the end of
The Year From Hell for Diane & me]

Butterfly Reel - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Allemande Right neighbor 1-1/2 (8)
   Gents allemande Left 1-1/2 (8)
   Pick up partner, star promenade (4)
     Butterfly whirl (4)
   1/2 Hey for 4 (8)
B: Balance & Swing partner (16)
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Balance ring (4)
     California Twirl (4)

Written & danced August 3, 2002 in Palo Alto
for Sara Hiebert & Elliot Burch

California Street - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A.  All bal & swing partners (16)
    RH star (8)
    LH star (8)
B.  Ladies chain along set (8)
    Circle L 3/4 (8) [slow]
    Ladies chain across (8)
    Circle L 3/4 [fast] (4)
    Calif twirl (4) [into balance]

[emphasize forward & back aspect of balance as a greeting to partner,
not foot-swinging]

Written for Rhonda Birnbaum's housewarming 6/28/87 on California St.,
San Francisco

Chorus Jig Alternative - Eric Black
Duple Proper [var. of traditional]
A: 1's down outside (8)
   Return (8)
   1's down center (8) [turn alone]
   return, cast off around same neighbor* (8)
B: Contra Corners (16)
   1's balance & swing (16) [end facing down]

Repeat for 2's going UP the outside, then UP
the inside, then 2's do Contra Corners, end swing facing UP.

*NOTE: be sure to note the neighbor you first pass as you take
your walk, so you know who to cast with!
 
Yet another implementation of alternating Contra Corners
applied to a traditional dance!

Dancing Hearts - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Star Left 1x, hands across (8)
   Ladies drop out @ home, gents turn 1-1/2 (8)
   Face partner, Hey for 4 [pass partner right] (16)
B: Partner balance & swing (16)
   Circle Left 1-1/4 (12)
      Pass through to next (4)

Dawns's Dance - Eric Black
Duple improper
A.  Do-si-do below (8)
    Do-si-do partner (8)
    Bal & swing below (16)
B.  Hands 4, bal in & out (4)
        Circle L 1/2 (4)
    Bal in & out (4)
        Star thru w/partner (4) [pull into...]
    Swing partner (8) [face orig direction]
    Circle L 1/2 (4)
        California twirl (4) [face the next]

[written for Karen "Dawn" Plaskon, 17 November 1984,
in honor of her birthday]

Espresso George - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long Lines forward & back (8)
   Circle Left 3/4, pass through (8)
   Do-si-do new neighbor (8)
   Gents "gate" partner from right to left, all the way around (8)
B: Hey for 4, ladies pass Right (16)
   Balance & Swing partner (16)

"Think Slinky Thoughts!"

Written July 6, 2012 at the Post-AmWeek Slumber Party to fit
Emil Olguin's tune "Java George"

Exercise at Lunch - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long Lines forward & back (8)
   R & L across (8)
   Circle RIGHT 3/4 (8), turn alone ["flip" toward partner]
   Circle LEFT 3/4 with new neighbors (8)
B: Allemande Right partner 2x on side (8)
   1/2 Hey, ladies pass Left shoulders (8)
   Balance & swing partner (16)

Written over lunch as "homework" assignment for choreography
workshop by Penn Fix at the BACDS 10th Anniversary Urban Camp,
February 1991.

Fifty-Fifty - Eric Black & Kirston Koths
Duple Improper
A: Gents set to partner, take crossed hands w/partner (4)
      Pousette exchange (gents backing first) (12)
   Box the Gnat into Star Right 3/4 (8)
   Swing partner [on side!] (8)
B: Circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Swing neighbor (8)
   Long lines forward & back (8)
   Ladies set to partner, turn single back to place (8)

Written 1995 by Eric Black & Kirston Koths in honor of
Charlie Fenton's 50th Birthday Bash. Charlie enjoys both
Contra and English dancing, so this dance is half of each.
 
Var: begin with Long Lines (B2 above), so dance ends with
neighbor swing

Full Moon in June - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Circle Left 1x (8) [zesty!]
     Roll away neighbor across the set
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)
     Roll away partner (along side)
   Ladies chain across (8)
   Same ladies gypsy 1/2 (8)
B: Balance & swing partner (16)
   Circle Left 1-1/4 (12)
     California Twirl (4)

Written for the full moon, danced June 26, 2010 at Palo Alto
with Notorious.  Larry & Eden chose some very tasty tunes!

NOTE: timing tends to be sloppy in the A part, since
modern dancers don't circle 1x in 8 steps. The chain to
a gypsy 1/2 absorbs the slop.  Advise the band to make
a clear downbeat on the B at least for the first tune.

Harmonic Contragation - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Circle L 1x (8)
    Swing neighbor (8)
    Long lines forward & back (8)
    Ladies chain across (8)  [to partner]
B:  Circle right 3/4 (8)
    Long lines forward & back (8)  [facing pt.]
    Balance & swing partner (16)
        [end facing original direction]

Written at & for Camp Harmony, New Year's 1990.
Requires room up & down in set when all swing in center.
Good for small crowd.


Harmony - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A.  A mirror do-si-do below (8)
    An allemande handy hand below (8)
    A ladies center (turn alone) (8)
    Return, cast off (8)
B:  Men chain over & back (16) [w/left hand]
    A balance & swing (16)

Tunes:  something minor in A, major in B
    [Reel de Beatrice, Ronde de Voyageurs,
    Grumbling Old Woman/Growling Old Man]

Written for & danced at the San Francisco Folk Music Club New Year's
Camp held at Camp Harmon, known as "Camp Harmony", Jan 1, 1985 (2:30 AM)

Harmony Dance Floor - Eric Black
Becket
A: Balance & Swing partner (16)
   Long Lines forward & back (8)
   Do-si-do opposite (8)
B: Star Right 1x (8)  [wrist grip is best, really!]
   Star Left 3/4 with *NEXT* (8) [you are NOT with your partner!]
   THESE 2 ladies chain across (8) [to trail buddy]
   SAME 2 ladies allemande Right 1-1/4 (5)
     NEW 2 ladies pull past by left to partner (3)

Written & danced at SFFMC Camp Harmony, New Year's Eve 1994-95
to commemorate Eric Black & Alison Date first meeting on that
same dance floor ten years before.

Another in a long series of contra dances written and danced at
the San Francisco Folk Music Club New Year's Camp, held for many
years at Camp Harmon (and therefore known as SFFMC Camp Harmony).

Harmony Freeze - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Do-si-do below (8)
    Actives do-si-do 1-1/4 to long wave (8)
        [give RH to partner, LH to next active]
    Actives balance forw & back 2x (8)
    Actives alle. R 3/4 with partner (4),
        alle. L 1x with neighbor (4)
B:  Hey for 4, actives pass R shoulder (16)
    Actives meet in center & swing (16)

Tunes: Wizard Walk into Dancing Bear

Written at Camp Harmony New Year's Camp 1990-91 to commemorate frozen pipes
(and ensuing lack of showers, toilets, & dishwashing) caused by a long cold snap.

Hearts Across - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Star Left 1x, hands across (8)
   Ladies drop out @ home, gents turn 1-1/2 (8)
   Partner gypsy, melt down into swing (16)
B: Long lines forward & back (8)
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)  [1's face up]
   Balance ring (4)
      Ladies trade [pass by right] (4)
   Star Right 3/4, hands across (8)

The Housewarming - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Star R below (8)
   Star L above (8) [previous neighbors]
   Do-si-do below (8)
   Swing this one (8)
B: 2's 1/2-fig8 below & up outside (8)
   1's swing as soon as 2's have passed (8) end facing UP
   Balance ring (4)
     Circle L 1/2 (4)
   Balance ring (4)
     Pass through to next (4)

[written & danced at Eric's housewarming in the redwoods of La Honda, CA,
Nov 11, 1984]

Hugs on the Hoof ["Leaving Camp"] - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long lines forward & back (8)
   Do-si-do partner (8)
   Take 2 hands across (gent w/gent, lady w/lady), circle
      Left (6)
   Raise joined hands up & overhead to behind into basket swing (12)
B: Explode into Circle Left (8) [to end on original side of set]
   Star Left to face next neighbors (8) [lady is in front of partner]
   Right shoulder gypsy new neighbor 1x,
     Ladies pass Left crossing to partner (6)
   Partner swing (10)

Written July 2009 at end of BACDS American Dance Week to commemorate
all the goodbye hugs as people ran around packing up to leave camp.

Mendocino Redwoods - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Allemande Left neighbor 1-1-2 (8)
   Star Right with NEXT neighbors 1x (8)
   Gypsy original neighbor, melt down into swing (16)
B: Gents allemande Left 1-1/2 (8)
   Swing Partner (8)
   R & L across (8)
   Circle Left 3/4, pass thru (8)

Written July 2010 at what turned out to be the last year BACDS
American Dance & Music Week ("AmWeek") was held at the Mendocino
Woodlands camp.  In 2011 AmWeek moved to Jones Gulch YMCA Camp
in La Honda.

Mudslide Reel - Eric Black
Duple Improper
[40-bar! Fits AABBC tune!]
A: Bal & sw neighbor (16)
   Long lines (8)
   Ladies forw to pt, take him back with you (8)
B: Sashay down hall (8) [line up gents back-to-back]
   Pt do-si-do (8)
   Hey across (8) [pass pt Rt, left in center]
   Pt sw (8)  end facing UP
C: Line of 4 return (8)  bend the line
   Circle L 3/4, pass through (8)

[written 3/11/95 during a bad bout of storms, power outages,
flash floods, and mudslides in Northern California.  Our little
town was landlocked for 2 weeks by mudslides that wiped out the
road on either side.]

New Melody Hey - Eric Black
Becket
A: R & L across (8)  ["extra courtesy" on the courtesy turn]
   Left diagonal R & L through (8)
   Circle Left 1x (8)
   Allemande Right partner 2x (8)
B: Hey for 4, gents start passing Left shoulder (16)
   Partner balance & swing (16)

Written May 1987 at the New Melody Tavern in Seattle

Penicillin - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Ladies start Hey for 4 [pass Right in center] (16)
   Ladies cross once more to swing partner (16)
B: Pass thru across, turn alone (6)
     Circle Left 1x (10)
   Balance Ring (4)
     Petronella turn to right (4) turn extra 1/2 spin
   Allemande Left NEW neighbor 1-1/2 (8)

Yet another cure for the common clap.

Political Hey - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Circle L 1x (8)
    Swing neighbor (8)
    Circle L 3/4 (8)
    Swing partner (8)
B:  Long lines forw. & back (8)
    Ladies chain across (8)
    Hey for 4, L pass R sh. in ctr (16)


Written in honor (!) of the 1984 political campaigns, which in
California sunk to new lows. I had the privilege of meeting and
spending a lot of time with Sally Kabisch who was the Alaska
Democratic contingent at the 1984 Democratic Convention in San
Francisco. She moved to the Bay Area for some years, and then
moved back to Alaska.  We missed her a lot.  After her battle
with cancer, the whole world misses her a lot.  Sally, NO ONE
plays Cliffs of Moher like you -- no one!  And I sorely miss
my very favorite waltz partner ever.

As an example of parallel composition, this same sequence is known
as "Roll in the Hey" by Roger Diggle.  This predates Roger's dance,
but Roger published first...

Queenie and Charlie - Eric Black
Duple Improper, double prog.
A: Gypsy neighbor 1-1/4 (8)
   1's gypsy partner 1-1/2 (8) [make it BIG and Englishy]
   Face [same gender] neighbor, 3/4 Hey for 4 [pass N by Left] (12)
     1's meet [before end of phrase!] and 
B: Swing (16) end facing down
   Hands 4 with Next neighbors, Circle Left 1x (8)
   Do-si-do this neighbor 1-1/2, on to next (8)
   
Written for Alice LaPierre ("Queenie") and Charlie Hancock.  First
danced August 7, 1994 at their wedding party.

Recovery Reel - Eric Black
Becket RIGHT Progression
A: R & L across (8)
   Left diagonal R & L through (8)
   Hands 4 with new neighbors, circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Neighbor swing (8)
B: Ladies chain over & back (16)  [YES, he said "and back"]
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Partner swing (8)

Conjured up on the fly at the open mike night at the New Melody Tavern
in Seattle sometime in 1986 when the planned dance completely fell apart
and dissolved into little sparkles on the ceiling.

Redwood Reel - Eric Black
Duple Improper
(40-bar tune AABBC)
A: Circle Left 3/4 (8) face partner up & down
   Pass thru, gypsy trail buddy 1-1/2 (8)  [ladies lead out into:]
   Circle Left 1x (8) [zesty!]
   Balance Ring (4)
     Right to partner, pull by right, same neighbor pull by left
        ["Square Thru 2"]
B: Balance & swing partner (16)
   R & L across (8)
   Ladies chain (8)
C: 1/2 Hey for 4 [pass Right in center] (8)
   Pass thru up & down, do-si-do the next (8)
   [edge effect: do not cross over when you think you're out]

Written to commemorate the return of BACDS American Dance Week
to the Mendocino Woodlands, July 2004, after a few years of
wandering to Sierra Swing.

Rhonda's Reel - Eric Black
Double progression; Duple Improper
A:  Line of 4 down hall, actives in center (8)
    Actives raise joined hands, turn away from
      partner, come back up (8)
        [a la Symmetrical Force]
    Bend the line & circle L (cloverleaf) (8)
    L-hand star (8)
B:  Allemande R next couple below (4) [quick!]
        Act. allemande L in center (4) [quick!]
    Swing opposite (8) [short!]
    Actives bal & swing (16) [be on time!]

Alt: in B2, do-si-do opposite instead of swinging

Written in Summer 1982 for Rhonda Birnbaum.  My first dance
composition, and still my favorite.

Road to Somewhere - Eric Black
Duple Proper REVERSE PROGRESSION
A: 1's take "inside hands" [nearest to your neighbor], balance (4)
     Star thru (4) [leaves 1's improper facing down]
   Do-si-do neighbor [below] (8)
   These 4 circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Swing partner on side (8)
B: Circle Left 3/4 (6)
     Pass thru up & dn (2)  [1's are moving UP]
   Swing new neighbor (8)
   2's half-fig-8 above (8) [to proper]
   Long lines forward & back (8)

Ryan & Cali in California - Eric Black
Duple Improper
[dance ends with neighbor swing, face across with gent on left as usual]
A: [same] gents allemande Left 1-1/2 (8)
   Balance partner (4)
     Box the Gnat (4)
   Pull past partner by Right, pass Left in center for 1/2 hey (8)
   Swing partner (8)
B: Circle Left 1-1/4 (12)
     California Twirl (4)
   Do-si-do *next* neighbor (8)
   Swing this one (8) end facing across with gent on left
   
Visualized 6/12/14 at a house concert by Ryan & Cali McKasson

Say Goodbye - Eric Black
Square
A: Gents lead out to RH lady, balance (8)
   Allemande Right 1-1/2 (8)
   Ladies star Left 1x (8)
   Balance same gent, do-si-do (8)
B: Swing that one (12)  [end just a tad early!]
     Allemande Left corner (4)
   Promenade the one you swung to Ladies home place (8)

So, When was YOUR Wedding? - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long lines forward & back (8)
   Pass through, cross trail (4)  [zesty!]
     Balance trail buddy (4)
   Swing trail buddy (16)
B: Circle Left 1/2, slide left (8) to face new neighbors across
   Square through 4 (8)
   Balance & swing partner (16)

Written for & first danced at Erik Hoffman & Deirdre Hallman's wedding


Solsticial Contra - Eric Black
Duple Improper, Double Progression
A: Do-si-do neighbor, all turn to own right (8)
     [gents face in, ladies face out]
   Balance long waves (4) [left-right]
     allemande Left 1/2 (4)  [during walk-through: Notice New Neighbor!]
   Hey for 4, Ladies start pass Right shoulder in center (16)
B: Balance & swing NEW neighbor (16) [the one you noticed]
   Long lines forward & back (8)
   1's swing, end facing down (8)
   
Written for Summer Solstice 1996; A part is same as
"Equinoxial Contra" by Inge Morton of Denmark


Танцуем ("Tahn-tsu-yem") We Are Dancing - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Hands 4, circle Left 1x (8)
   Gypsy this neighbor 1-1/2 to trade places (8)
   Hands 4, circle Left 1x (8)
   1's hand cast up & around 2's (8)
B: Long lines forward & back (8)
   1's 1/2-figure 8 up between & around 2's (8)
   1's swing, end facing down (16)

Written for Craig Johnson & Simmy Cover's wedding, first danced
March 13, 1994 at Camp Campbell, Boulder Creek, CA

Too Hot to Trot - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Balance & Swing neighbor (16)
   Ladies chain across (8)
   Same ladies do-si-do (8) [smoothly & elegantly!]
B: Balance & Swing partner (16)
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Do-si-do neighbor 1-1/2 (8)

Written & danced at unbelievably unseasonably hot summer night
at the Palo Alto contra August 2006.  Tried to get dancers to
understand that you CAN dance when it's over 100 degrees, just
move slowly and deliberately.  i.e. Southern style.

Trip to Columbus - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A: Mirrored do-si-do below (8)  [2's split 1's]
   Handy hand turn 1-1/2 (8)
   2's 1/2 figure-8 between & up around 1's (8)
   Long lines forward & back (8)
B: 2's turn contra corners (16)
   2's balance & swing (16) end facing UP

Trip to La Honda - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long lines forward & back (8)
   Circle Left 3/4 (8)
   Pass thru up & down (4)
     Do-si-do new neighbor (4)
   Swing this one (8)
B: Gents allemande Left 1-1/2 (8)  face partner
   1/2 Hey for 4, passing partner by Right (8)
   Partner balance & swing on side (16)

Valentine Swing - Eric Black
Duple Improper
A:  Star R below 1x (8)
    Star L above 1x (8)
        [neighbor couple last time]
    Gypsy orig. neighbor (8)
    Actives gypsy (8)
B:  Balance & swing neighbor (16)
    Actives balance & swing (16)

Written for Valentine's Day 1992.

Zingy Swingy Reel - Eric Black
Becket
A: Long Lines forward & back (8)
   Ladies chain across (8)
   Same 2 ladies allemande Right ~3/4 (4) [zesty!!]
     NEW 2 ladies [in center] allemande Left ~3/4 (4) [zesty!!]
   Face partner, pass Right for 1/2 hey for 4 on LEFT DIAGONAL (8)
B: Gypsy partner 1-1/4 (8) [just a bit more than 1x, face across]
   Pass through across (4)
     "West Coast Swing Twirl" [similar to California Twirl]
   Swing partner (8) end facing across
   
   [end effect:  ladies be ready for that Left Allemande!]

Written July 2000 for Diane Zingale ("Zing") to match a commissioned
tune of the same name composed by Dave Wiesler.  (someone "Back East"
correctly attributes this dance to me, but with the incorrect title
"Razzle Dazzle")