THE MORRIS BOOK, Online Version

Home Main Menu Singing & Playing Order & Order Info Support Search Voucher Codes

Share page  Visit Us On FB

Previous Contents Next
manner of Scottish dancers, though the Morris "Call" is less of a war-whoop and more of a lusty shout.
It must always be remembered that the Morris-men themselves vary the length of their dances, according to the humour of the moment, and their freshness or fatigue. A dance can always be shortened by leaving out one or more figures: the musician will know what to do by the call of the leader.
In "Blue-eyed Stranger," for instance, if the side is feeling particularly high-spirited, the whole sixteen bars of "B" music may be danced; but as a rule this will be found too long. Again, to extend "Rigs o' Marlow" (another trying dance) the music may be played four times instead of three, when Back-to-back will be danced to "A" music. "Bluff King Hal," danced to its full length as shown in the Notation, will as a general rule also be found too long. It can easily be shortened by leaving out repetitions or certain figures. In brief, once the dances are learned it is a very simple matter, and quite according to tradition, to lengthen or abbreviate them in any way desired.
This is the only one of those dances we have described that begins with the Ring. The side starts in Column. To form Ring, Nos. 3 and 4 move a little outward from the line as "A" music begins. Then all dance in Ring formation to the right (see Fig. 1) until, at the beginning of bar 4, all opposites have changed places: that is, Nos. 1 and 6 are each in the other's position, Nos. 3 and 4, 2 and 5 have also changed. In bar 4, files close in slightly, j. (i.e., form Column), and tap sticks across on half-bar of bar 4. In remaining four bars of "A" music form Ring again, and all return to position as they came (see Fig. 2). At half-bar in bar 8, all j. (forming Column), and partners tap sticks across.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III