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968Re: [CalontirDance] Re: "Baddies"

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  • Catherine Dean
    Apr 22, 2008
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      A voice from Calontir past rears her ugly (cute?) head.

      (For those of you who don't know me, I got my start dancing in Calontir
      about 10 years ago, and have since moved on to Atlantia and am closely
      connected with the Cynnabar group in the Midrealm, who put on Terpsichore at
      the Tower, the event mentioned earlier. I've also edited the Letter of
      Dance for the past 6 years, although I'm about to pass the torch on to a new
      editor. I'm mostly inactive in the SCA now, but am closely involved with
      the historical dance field in general and can still be found teaching at
      Terps and at Pennsic on a more-or-less yearly basis.)

      Quoth Merry: "Okay, so these are on the list. Why? I ask because, for my
      example of
      Hole in the Wall, I didn't realize that it was mainly the dance that was
      out of period and that the music (Playford, The Dancing Master 1651-1728
      yr 1695/1697) was less the issue, though still an issue none the less.
      I thought it was the music that was the big issue but only learned now
      years later at supper after Bellewode that it was the choreography that
      was the main offender. I'd like to be able to discuss legitimate
      reasons when someone asks me why we do or don't do a particular dance
      any more. "

      Actually, it's really both. Feel free to contact me off list and I'd be
      happy to go into more detail.

      In general, though, the dances which generally cause the most controvercy
      are those that are either a) historical, but not to the SCA period (defined
      here as pre-1600) or b) modern with little to no resemblence to period
      dances. Rarely have I heard it argued that we should do dances like Road to
      the Isles, Postie's Jig, Hole in the Wall, Troika, Korobushka, etc. because
      they are a reasonable attempt at pre-17th century dance. Anyone who uses
      that type of argument could be quickly dispelled by cold hard facts (the do
      not, in fact, bear much resemblance at all to known types of pre-17th
      century dance).

      Rather, the arguments are more emotional, based on what is fun and what is
      tradition and, at the heart of it all, what the SCA is all about.
      Ultimately the two sides of this debate are arguing right straight past each
      other ("but it's fun, and we're here to have fun" or "we're an organization
      with our own history, and this is traditional for us" vs. "but it's not
      period, and we're here to reconstruct a specific period in the past")

      Catherine E. Dean
      Historically Inspired Designs
      Handmade Jewelry and Accessories for History Lovers

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