I am always interested in where or why a dance originated. Is there a site or way to learn the history of a dance? I know there is an an extra info tab but not always. It would be great if anyone with this knowledge could enter it in. It gives a lot of meaning to the dance.

asked 12 Oct '12, 00:24

Climberbri's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Finding out about the origin of dances (or the meaning of dance titles) can be challenging detective work. The original description of a dance will often state its author and the year when it was invented, and sometimes there are notes explaining more of the whys and wherefores.

As far as the SCDDB database is concerned, the volunteers and I are happy to add whatever plausible/verifiable bits of information we get, but with more than 14.000 dances catalogued it would be a Herculean task to write notes on all of them! This is one of those projects where everyone can pitch in – if you have something to add then simply submit it as a »correction/addition« through the link in the right-hand column of a dance's page in the database, and we will look at it and add it to the »Extra info« tab for that dance.

There is a book by the late George S. Emmerson, »Scotland through her Country Dances«, which does attempt to give some background on various of the (earlier) RSCDS dances. It isn't exactly scholarly and some of Emmerson's conjectures don't really hold water but it is a fun read even so. I don't know if it is still in print but maybe one of your teachers has a copy.


answered 15 Oct '12, 17:33

anselm's gravatar image

anselm ♦♦
accept rate: 50%

There is no central authority.

www.scottish-country-dancing-dictionary.com or the published paper 'original' instructions seem the best bet.

Email me if you want the longer version of this answer (including about country dances from south of the border).


answered 15 Oct '12, 16:51

emcintosh's gravatar image

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Asked: 12 Oct '12, 00:24

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Last updated: 15 Oct '12, 17:33

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