American Square Dances of The West
& Southwest - online instruction book

With Calls, instructions, diagrams, steps & sheet music

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

Share page  Visit Us On FB

Previous Contents Next
One of the favorite trimmings in the Western Square Dance is the "Once and a Half," known in the East as a "Grand AHe-mande." It is always called out of a Grand Right and Left and is simply a continuation of that figure, using a Forearm Swing one-and-a-half times around with each person met instead of the taking of hands used in the Grand Right and Left.
As Partners meet halfway around the set in the Grand Right and Left, they take the Right Forearm hold and swing one-and-a-half times around clockwise, release holds and swing the next person met with a Left Forearm Swing, counterclockwise, one-and-a-half times around. Release holds and swing the next person one-and-a-half times around with a Right Forearm Swing, then dance a Left Forearm Swing one-and-a-half times around with the next person met; take right hands with Partners at home place, pivoting into the skating position, and Promenade once around the set with Partners to place.
In the Once and a Half, the dancers take the forearm hold with the next person as they release holds with the person they have just swung. The action should be continuous. Often the call directs the dancers to use an Elbow Swing, but the Forearm Swing should be substituted in such cases or whenever an Elbow Swing is called for between ladies and gentlemen, or between ladies. Good dancing restricts the Elbow Swing to the gentleĀ­men in the Square Dance. The call for this introduction will be found on page 108.