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Tony Parkes 2 - Quadrilles and Visiting Couple Squares

In this interview, caller Tony Parkes describes the basic structure of quadrilles, the 19th century dance form that set the pattern for traditional New England squares, and contrasts that with visiting couple squares. In a typical quadrille, head couples interact often with each other (and the same for sides with each other). In a visiting square,…

La naissance du cotillon et du quadrille, contredanses françaises

Article (in French) by Simonne Voyer, who is the author of La danse traditionnelle dans l'est du Canada: quadrilles et cotillons. For a translation in English by Susan Kevra, click here.

"Social Dancing in America" - Rod LaFarge

This lengthy history of social dance was written by Rod LaFarge and appeared over three years in American Squares magazine. LaFarge begins with a short look at English country dance, moves to dancing in colonial America, both English-influenced and French, such as the cotillion. He considers the national origins of the American settlers, pointing…

Rosin the Bow  (Rod LaFarge)

The 1947 issue contains an introduction to the very basics of square dancing. It also has a detailed look at what is required for a Girl Scout to earn a Folk Dancing badge.

The 1950 issue contains a detailed set of instructions for the quadrille, among other dances.

Do Squares Come from Quadrilles?

This item starts with a 1957 article by Rod La Farge that takes a strong stand: "the assumption that our present day square dance is derived from the formal quadrille is completely false." Instead, he argues, "the square dance is a DIRECT descendent of the 18th Century Cotillion."

Several issues later, the magazine printed numerous responses…

Plain Quadrille - 1890

Caller Ralph Sweet provides the instruction and prompts the figures in this Retrospective Session from the 2000 Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend, held at the University of New Hampshire. The tunes are played by Rodney Miller, fiddle, and Bob McQuillen, piano. The tunes are: First Change: Patience Quadrille Second Change: Come Haste to the Wedding…

Windmill Lancers - Ralph Page

This recording of Ralph Page teaching the Windmill Lancers was recorded in 1972 at one of his weeklong camps. At the start, you hear Ralph providing some historical background on the Lancers before he starts teaching the figures. If you want to jump to the dance itself, it begins around 7:00. The music is "Alte Kameraden," played by the Heintz…

History of Square Dancing - Ralph Page

Between 1972 and 1974, Ralph Page wrote a series of essays entitled A History of Square Dancing. For ease in downloading, we have collected them into "chapters" that group together similar topics. The essays were published in the magazine Square Dancing as follows:Dancing In New England 11/1972The Revolutionary Era 1/1973Direct Ancestors…

Paine's First Set Quadrille (1815) - Quadrille Club

Danced by the Quadrille Club, under the direction of Ellis Rogers. The fourth figure (Trenis) has been omitted here.For comparison, this collection also includes the same dance performed by Nederlands Historisch Dans-en Theaterensemble.

Les Lanciers or Duval's 2nd Set. No.4 & 5

Intended as an introduction to Regency quadrilles for new members of Quadrille Club, the steps used in the Grand Chain have been simplified by leaving out the `Ballotes' called for in the origional instructions. Dance and clothes are circa 1816. More information about the Quadrille Club is here.

Quadrille Club, Les Lanciers or Duval's 2nd Set, Quadrilles No. 1, 2 &3

This video was intended as an introduction to Regency quadrille dancing for new members of Quadrille Club thus at one point in the first quadrille the ladies make a circle in the centre of the set instead of the more difficult `Cage' of the original instructions.

YouTube contributor: TAN1tH1

Peter Beemer manuscript - Idaho

This is a collection of mid-19th century dance tunes from a remote Idaho location; as such, it is a useful record of the music being used for dances of the period. This website also contains background information on dancing in the mining community that is the source of the manuscript.

In 1862, gold was discovered on Warren Creek in the…

Paine's First Set of Quadrilles, 1815

Paine's First Set of Quadrilles 1815 Nederlands Historisch Dans-en Theaterensemble, artistic director Maria Angad Gaur Performance: Jane Austen Bal, The Netherlands 2006 Part 2,3,4,5 and 6 only danced twice instead of the usual four times!For comparison, see the same dance performed by the Quadrille Club, London.

An Invitation To Dance: A History of Social Dance in America

This online exhibit on the history of social dance in America draws on documents in the collection of the American Antiquarian Society to offer a multi-faceted portrait of the changing nature of American social dance. Items in the exhibit include the cotillion, the quadrille, and other related square dance forms.

Quadrille and Cotillion - history

Part of a history of English country dancing in America, this segment looks at the quadrille and the cotillion.

Caution: The author is mistaken when he asserts, "The French had imported the English country dance about the end of the 17th century and apparently took a special liking to the square formation which occurred in some dances." While…

Las Cuadrillas: Five-Part Suite

The interpretation and choreography of the five part Las Cuadrillas is by Dr. Lorenzo A. Trujillo based on the teaching of Marie Oralia Duran Trujillo, Damian Archuleta, with additional notes by Helen Mareau. The music was compiled by Aurora Lucero-White and Eunice Hauskins (1940). The music is available on a CD, "The Golden Age of the Southwest:…

Beseda Quadrille, part I

František Bonuš, a noted dance pedagogue from Prague, led a quadrille workshop in Berea, Kentucky in 1987. The video of the entire workshop is lengthy and has been edited and divided into nine parts. This is Part 1 and shows figures from the Czech quadrille, Beseda, a dance in eight parts. The date of composition for the dance is in…

Lancers

Dance Discovery, a St Louis, Missouri troupe, dances all five figures at a Lincoln program given at Lovejoy Library at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville on November 25, 2007. The dance is included in Lincoln's 1861 inaugural ball.

The Afro-American Transformation of European Set Dances and Dance Suites

Scholarly article that looks at the way that European set dances such as the quadrille became changed by African Americans. The article looks in detail at the quadrille tradition in the Caribbean islands as well as on the US mainland:"It is well acknowledged that the court dances which developed in Europe from the seventeenth century onward spread…

Quadrille - J. Scott Skinner, 1905

The People’s Ball Room Guide, published by musician James Scott Skinner in 1905, is a description of 19th century ballroom dances.A website devoted to Skinner's work includes a series of videos illustrating quadrilles and Lancers set to Scottish tunes and danced in Scottish style.Skinner himself was taught to dance by William Scott; the two…