_THE CONNEMARA SET_


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11. The Connemara Set  (The Connemara Reel Set)  
                (as recorded in 1993 by Paul D. McGuigan)
 -danced now more in Rath Cairn and in Dublin than in Connemara
 -This is danced with a different reel step than the one used in the reel sets
  from County Clare.  
 -The reel step used is the same step that is often used for the South Galway set.
 -1ST TOPS have their backs to the music.
 -1ST SIDES are to the right of 1ST TOPS. 

  The figures are unnamed, but I have put my own names down as helpful reminders.   

1st Figure "Advance & Retire/House/Swing"
2nd Figure "Swing in the Middle"
3rd Figure "Opposites Christmas"
4th Figure "Maggie in the Woods"




1st Figure "Advance & Retire/House/Swing" {Reels - 152 bars}     
     (The Connemara Set) [fits music: Shaskeen Live]    
-Opening Position:  All four couples join hands in front and face anti-clockwise 
                    around the circle, gents on the inside.

A LEAD AROUND      All four couples dance anti-clockwise around until back in 
                   original places (6 bars).  As each couple reaches their own 
                   place, each gent turns his partner under to face back the 
                   way they came (2 bars).  All four couples then lead around 
                   clockwise back to their own places again (6 bars).  Then, 
                   the couples separate and each dancer faces his or her 
                   partner and dances a special step (2 bars).  (Using the 
                   hop back, hop back, hop back, 2, 3) 
   {16 bars}

B SWING            All four couples swing in place in ceili hold, and dance the 
                   last two bars with a special step for this figure, facing into 
                   the centre of the set.  The swing is always performed like 
                   this, throughout the set.
                                
                         (Using the R, cross L, R
                                    L, cross R, L
                                    R, cross L, R
                                    L, R) 

                   Note: another step can be substituted here.
   {8 bars} 

C FIGURE #1    (a) ADVANCE & RETIRE:  TOP COUPLES, holding hands in front advance 
                                      to the centre and retire, twice.  Right 
                                      hand in right hand, left hand in left hand, 
                                      with gent's right arm over lady's left arm.
   {8 bars}

               (b) HOUSE:  TOP COUPLES dance around the house, inside using the 
                           same hold, but with hands up and together between 
                           each TOP COUPLE (6 bars).  In each top couple, both 
                           partners face each other to dance hop back, hop back,
                           hop back, 2, 3 (2 bars).
   {8 bars}
    
               (c) SWING:  TOP COUPLES swing in place in ceili hold.
   {8 bars}

D FIGURE #1        SIDE COUPLES repeat C.
   {24 bars} 

E FIGURE #2    (a) LADIES CHAIN:  TOP LADIES dance to the centre, chain with right 
                                  hands and pass each other, give left hands to 
                                  opposite gents and dance around behind them, the 
                                  gents turning with the ladies.  The ladies then 
                                  dance straight back to their own partners and 
                                  dance the final two bars facing them.  After 
                                  chaining with the opposite lady, the top gents 
                                  dance to the corner on their left, turn 
                                  clockwise, and then dance back to meet their 
                                  partner.  In each TOP COUPLE, both partners, 
                                  facing each other, dance the final two bars.  
                                  (using the hop back, hop back, hop back, 2, 3)
   {8 bars}

               (b) SWING:  TOP COUPLES swing in place in ceili hold.
   {8 bars}

F FIGURE #2        SIDE COUPLES repeat E.
   {16 bars}

G FIGURE #1        TOP COUPLES repeat C.
   {24 bars}

H FIGURE #1        SIDE COUPLES repeat C.
                   All four couples join in the last swing.
   {24 bars}




2nd Figure "Swing in the Middle"  {Reels - 184 bars}
  (The Connemara Set)   [fits music: Shaskeen Live]      
-Opening Position:  All four couples join hands in front and face anti-clockwise 
                    around the circle, gents on the inside.

A LEAD AROUND      All four couples dance anti-clockwise around until back in 
                   original places (6 bars).  As each couple reaches their own 
                   place, each gent turns his partner under to face back the 
                   way they came (2 bars).  All four couples then lead around 
                   clockwise back to their own places again (6 bars).  Then, 
                   the couples separate and each dancer faces his or her 
                   partner and dances a special step (2 bars).  (Using the hop 
                   back, hop back, hop back, 2, 3)
   {16 bars}

B SWING            All four couples swing in place in ceili hold, and dance the 
                   last two bars with a special step for this figure, facing 
                   into the centre of the set.  The swing is always performed 
                   like this, throughout the set.  

                         (Using the R, cross L, R 
                                    L, cross R, L
                                    R, cross L, R
                                    L, R) 

                   Note: another step can be substituted here.
   {8 bars} 

C FIGURE       (a) SWING IN THE MIDDLE:  1ST TOPS GENT & 2ND TOPS LADY facing all 
                                         the time forwards from their own 
                                         locations, dance around each other, 
                                         passing first with right shoulders 
                                         (8 bars).  After 2 bars, they have just 
                                         passed each other, dancing forward.  
                                         After 4 bars, they have just passed each
                                         other, dancing sideways, each to his or 
                                         her right.  After 6 bars, they have just 
                                         passed each other again, dancing 
                                         backwards.  After 7 bars, they have just
                                         both danced to face each other, each 
                                         dancing to his or her left.  For the 
                                         final bar, each dancer turns around in a
                                         clockwise circle by himself or herself.  
                                         They finally end up facing each other in 
                                         the centre, where they swing (6 bars), 
                                         breaking out of the swing to return to 
                                         their own places (2 bars).
   {16 bars}

               (b) ADVANCE & RETIRE:  TOP COUPLES, holding hands in front, right 
                                      in right, left in left, advance to the 
                                      centre and retire, twice.
   {8 bars}

               (c) HOUSE:  TOP COUPLES dance around the house, inside using the 
                           same hold, but with hands up and together between 
                           each TOP COUPLE (6 bars).  In each top couple, both 
                           partners face each other to dance hop back, hop 
                           back, hop back, 2, 3 (2 bars).
   {8 bars}

               (d) SWING:  TOP COUPLES swing in place in ceili hold.
   {8 bars}

D FIGURE           SIDE COUPLES repeat C, with 1ST SIDES GENT & 2ND SIDES LADY 
                                          dancing the movement at (a).
   {40 bars} 

E FIGURE           TOP COUPLES repeat C, with 2ND TOPS GENT & 1ST TOPS LADY 
                                         dancing the movement at (a).
   {40 bars} 

F FIGURE           SIDE COUPLES repeat C, with 2ND SIDES GENT & 1ST SIDES LADY 
                                          dancing the movement at (a).

                   All four couples join in the last swing.  
   {40 bars} 




3rd Figure "Opposites Christmas"  {Reels - 176 bars}
  (The Connemara Set)   [fits music: Shaskeen Live]      
-Opening Position:  All dancers face to centre, joining hands in a circle.

A CIRCLE           All dancers advance and retire, twice.
   {8 bars}

B SWING            All four couples swing in place in ceili hold, and dance the 
                   last two bars with a special step for this figure, facing 
                   into the centre of the set.  The swing is always performed 
                   like this throughout the set.  

                         (Using the R, cross L, R
                                    L, cross R, L
                                    R, cross L, R
                                    L, R) 

                   Note: another step can be substituted here.
   {8 bars} 

C FIGURE       (a) ADVANCE & RETIRE:  1ST TOPS COUPLE, gent's right arm around his
                                      partner's waist and lady's left arm on her 
                                      partner's right shoulder, advances to the 
                                      centre and retires, advances again and the
                                      dancers separate, turn in a quick clockwise 
                                      circle, and dance facing each other for the 
                                      last two bars.  (Using the hop back, hop
                                      back, hop back, 2, 3)
   {8 bars} 

               (b) SWING:  1ST TOPS COUPLE swing in place in the centre in ceili 
                           hold.  During the final two bars, the 2ND TOP COUPLE 
                           dance in to join them, gent's right arm around his 
                           partner's waist and lady's left arm on her partner's 
                           right shoulder.
   {8 bars}

               (c) LITTLE CHRISTMAS:  TOP COUPLES form a tight circle in the 
                                      centre of the set and dance around 
                                      clockwise, arms joined behind each 
                                      other's backs, right arms under, left 
                                      arms over.  Right feet in and left feet
                                      back.  Each dancer holds a person's 
                                      waist with the right hand and a wrist 
                                      with the left hand.  
   {8 bars}

               (d) LADIES CHAIN:  TOP LADIES dance to the centre, chain with right
                                  hands and pass each other, give left hands to 
                                  opposite gents and dance around behind them, the 
                                  gents turning with the ladies.  The ladies then 
                                  dance straight back to their own partners and 
                                  dance the final two bars facing them.  After 
                                  chaining with the opposite lady, the top gents 
                                  dance to the corner on their left, turn 
                                  clockwise, and then dance back to meet their 
                                  partner.  In each TOP COUPLE, both partners, 
                                  facing each other, dance the final two bars.  
                                  (using the hop back, hop back, hop back, 2, 3)
   {8 bars}

               (e) SWING:  TOP COUPLES swing in place in ceili hold.
   {8 bars}
 
D FIGURE           SIDE COUPLES repeat C, with 1ST SIDES dancing the movements 
                                          at (a) and (b).
   {40 bars} 

E FIGURE           TOP COUPLES repeat C, with 2ND TOPS dancing the movements 
                                         at (a) and (b).
   {40 bars}  

F FIGURE           SIDE COUPLES repeat C, with 2ND SIDES dancing the movements 
                                          at (a) and (b).
                   All four couples join in the last swing.  
   {40 bars} 




4th Figure "Maggie in the Woods"   {Polkas - 88 bars}
  (The Connemara Set)     [fits music: Shaskeen Live]      
-Opening Position:  All dancers face to centre, joining hands in a circle.  
  (Use a the basic polka step in a scuffling manner, with no extra heel clicks.)

A CIRCLE           All dancers advance and retire, twice.
   {8 bars}

B HOME             All four couples dance at home, twice around.
   {8 bars}

C FIGURE       (a) CIRCLE & CHANGE PARTNERS:  All dancers advance and retire, twice.
                                              While the gents are retiring the 
                                              second time, each gent pulls the lady 
                                              on his left to his right to replace 
                                              the lady that has just danced on, 
                                              while being pulled over herself.  
   {8 bars}

               (b) DANCE AROUND:  Each new couple dances a quarter of the way 
                                  around the set to the next place to their 
                                  right, starting with a step to the centre 
                                  of the set.
   {8 bars}

D FIGURE           Repeat C to bring the gents around to the location opposite 
                            to their original home locations.
   {16 bars}

E FIGURE           Repeat C to bring the gents around to the locations to the 
                            left of their original home locations.
   {16 bars}

F FIGURE           Repeat C (a) to bring all the dancers back to their own 
                            partners (8 bars).  All four couples dance at 
                            home without moving on to a different location
                            (8 bars).
   {16 bars}
  
G SWING            All couples swing in place in waltz hold.
   {8 bars}

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