Jefferson’s Reel

Formation: Contra lines with 1, 3, 5 etc. active and crossed over and facing the foot of the set. Others inactive and facing the head of the set. An extra couple at the foot should also be facing the head of the set. All couples should have the ladies on the gent’s right side.
(Note: This dance can also be danced as a Proper Duple.)
Music: “Jefferson’s Reel”, LS E-18 or Grenn 15008 or any well-phrased reel with a marching feel.

Download RTF file: Jefferson’s Reel

Prompts:
Intro or
57-64   – – – -; – – Circle Left;
    1-8   – – – -; – – Circle Right;
  9-16   – – – -; – – Right-hand Star;
17-24   – – – -; – – Left-hand Star;
25-32   – – – -; Active couples down the outside;

33-40   – – – -; Come back up the outside;
41-48   – – – -; Four in line go down the set;
49-56   – – – -; Backup 4, actives arch and Ends duck thru;
57-64   – – – -; – – Circle Left;

Description:
1-8   The dance begins with the active couples facing down the hall (away from the caller) and the inactive couples facing up the hall. Each group of four facing dancers Circle to the Left for 8 steps.
9-16   Same four dancers Circle Right back to their original facing positions.
17-24   Same four dancers make a Right-hand Star and turn it for 8 beats.
25-32   Same four turn around and make a Left-hand Star and turn it for 8 beats ending in their original position facing up or down the set.

33-40   Active dancers walk down the outside of their line towards the foot of the hall for six short steps, then those dancers turn alone on beats 7 and 8.
41-48   Active dancers walk back up the outside of the set to their original position and then step into the center of the set to form a line of four with the couple below them, who turn around to face down.
49-56   The line of four walks down the set 6 short steps, then backs up 4 steps.
57-64   The Actives raise their joined hands to make an arch in the center. The dancers on the end of the line (Inactives) walk forward and around under the arch releasing handholds and then move forward to face a new couple.

Note: There are other variations of the backup and arching actions at the end. This version allows sufficient time for the action and minimizes tripping during the backup.

Progression: When a couple has no one to dance with they are neutral for one sequence. During this time they turn around as a couple (or individually if dancing as a Proper Duple) and change their role — at the top Inactives become Active, at the bottom Actives become Inactive.

Choreography by: Dud Briggs (part A from “Jefferson and Liberty”)
Source: Dancing for Busy People, page 187; CD Journal, December 2009 (proper version)
In Contras by Don Armstrong, #84. page 89; Author Unknown
Used at 2002 BDPLS in Richmond, Virginia and at 2009 BDPLS in Kansas City, Missouri.

Usage: This contra is one of the best Duple Contra options for use at a Beginner Dance Party or a Beginner Contra Dance. It is especially appropriate in cases where some couples are two dancers of the same gender. It can be danced either as a Proper Duple or as an Alternate Duple. Square dancers will find the Alternate Duple version more comfortable because it keeps the dancers in Normal Couples.

This page from dances.callerlab.org (CALLERLAB Dance Resource)


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