Longsword dance is a Yorkshire-based form of traditional dance performed by five, six or eight dancers dancing together in a circle, making a number of movements in which the dancers go over or under the swords. The middle sections of the dances rely on linked rings of dancers working as a team. The dance normally ends with the production and display of a ‘lock’ where swords are intertwined in one of a variety of shapes. The session will aim to introduce the basic figures & shapes used in Longsword dances & show pupils & teachers how these can be adapted & new figures developed & how they fit together to invent a new dance.
The workshop will include:
- Basic figures in Longsword dances – hilt & point rings, baskets, locks etc
- Add more figures – double unders, double overs, arches, etc
Extension work could include:
- Adapting existing figures
- Creating new figures
- Fitting figures together to create a new dance
- Giving the new dance a name
- Preparing for a performance
Ryburn Longsword dance is a Yorkshire-based form of traditional dance performed by five, six or eight dancers dancing together in a circle, making a number of movements in which the dancers go over or under one of the swords. The dance normally ends with the production and display of a ‘lock’ where swords are intertwined in one of a variety of v shapes.
Its origins remain obscure but it is known that many Yorkshire villages had their own dances which would often be performed as part of Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Ryburn Longsword is based in Ripponden and has been dancing together since 1994. Some of our dances are traditional and come from villages across Yorkshire; others have been created by members of the group.
We welcome dancers of all ages and abilities to our Wednesday evening practice which take place from 7.30pm to 9.00pm at 103 Oldham Rd, Ripponden. We are very lucky to be able to dance to traditional live music for our practices, which are very friendly and informal. Our ultimate aim is to dance with precision and style to public audiences, so dancers and musicians are encouraged to attend practice regularly.
If you would like to try Longsword dancing, please contact Pauline Jones on 01422 823099. You can find out more about Ryburn Three Step events and activities on our website; www.ryburn3step.org.uk