A discussion forum for history enthusiasts everywhere
 
HomeHome  Recent ActivityRecent Activity  FAQFAQ  RegisterRegister  Log inLog in  SearchSearch  

Share | 
 

 Take your partners

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Take your partners   Fri 13 Dec 2013, 15:01

for strictly historical dancing, assorted jigs, reels, hornpipes, waltzes, quadrilles and others too numerous to mention.

Offhand, I cannot think of any culture at any time which has not had dancing. Whether it is religious, social or just for the fun of it, people have always danced. It is as much a part of being human as music or storytelling. So here is thread to post about dancing.

First off, the Can-Can, which began in the back streets of Paris in the 1830s before arriving on the stage around the 1890s, the very symbol of the Belle Epoche.


Music by Offenbach, illustrations (some of them at any rate) by Toulouse-Lautrec;



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Can-can
Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Fri 13 Dec 2013, 15:15

That video is a bit static, this one's better;

Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Fri 13 Dec 2013, 15:38

Another Parisien dance which evloved around the beginning of the 20th century was the "Apache"



http://www.jazzageclub.com/dancing/the-apache/
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Fri 13 Dec 2013, 18:06

Sorry Trike but that particular Youtube of the 'La Danse Apache' was far too well choreagraphed, and too well, ... well frankly balletic .... and it was also to the wrong music!   A real 'Danse Apache' needs to be, dare I say, more violent, gritty, raw and with real sensual passion.    Shocked  

A classic, almost definitive example ... and to the usual Apache music ... is this one, from the 1935 film "Charlie Chan in Paris"..... Hell, if we’re doing domestic violence, then why not chuck in a bit of gratuitous elitism, sexism, racism and xenophobia too!?!   pale  

Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Fri 13 Dec 2013, 21:12

Another dance that was thought absolutely shocking in its day was the waltz.

Originating as a fairly staid traditional folk dance, paced in a moderately slow 3/4 time, the waltz seems to have been widespread in upper Germany, Austria, Bohemia and Moravia since at least the early eighteenth century, but by the 1780s it had been adopted by the Viennese Court and from there it rapidly spread throughout Europe. The waltz, with its intimate, close 'embraced' dancing, was initially thought shocking and scandalous when it arrived in Britain  ... but it very soon became THE fashionable, albeit slightly risqué, dance in Regency and early Victorian England.

Its heartland however remained the Viennese court with the Strausses as pre-eminent composers:



(Sorry for the cheesy-grinning Herr Rieu, but I wanted a Youtube with both the music and the dancers .... And you do get the location too: the Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna ... or the something palace in Vienna ... well it's in Vienna anyway! ..... I think).
Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 11:43

Trust me to post a tame version of the Apache. 
 
It seems strange to think of a waltz as risque, MM, what is shocking for one generation is commonplace for the next. 

....................................................................................

Fledermaus Quadrille;

Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 12:18

Ballet as we know it is supposed to have started at the court of the Sun King, who liked to prance about and show how high he could jump (just like Henry VIII, in fact). But Catherine de Medici had earlier introduced a kind of Italian ballet technique to the French court, a technique that was also evident in the masques so popular in England during Tudor times.

Being able to "trip and go" (an expression used of Anne Boleyn's dancing ability) was an extremely important accomplishment for a Court lady. I've always felt sorry for Catherine of Aragon - fat, frumpy and forty, having to watch as the superbly graceful and willowy Boleyn performed. (Catherine earlier had had to endure Bessy Blount's beautiful dancing too.)

I'd have loved to have been at the famous masque, the Assault on the Chateau Vert, which was held at York Place (Wolsey's episcopal palace at Westminster) on Shrove Tuesday, 1522. There were eight court ladies involved, each cast as one of the qualities of the perfect mistress of chivalric tradition: Beauty, Honour, Perseverance, Kindness, Constancy, Bounty, Mercy and Pity. Anne Boleyn made her debut here as Perseverance, while her sister Mary was Kindness - roles of amazing historic appropriateness. The girls were all in white satin, with their character or "reason"  picked out in yellow satin. Their headdresses were "cauls of Venetian gold set off by Milan bonnets".

Henry VIII also took part - he nearly scored a perfect 40.



Guess who's for the chop.
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 13:07

Catherine of Aragon danced very well, at least when she was younger. I thought the trouble was that few at Henry VII's court knew the intricate Spanish dances and she didn't know the English ones .... so at her marriage to prince Arthur she ended up dancing with her Spanish ladies-in-waiting. Of course Arthur's brother Henry, then only ten but already supremely self-assured, stole the show by throwing off his coat and dancing in his doublet. Show off!

And then after Arthur's death she probably had little occasion to dance other than with her ladies.
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 13:12

The Volta was considered to be a shocking dance because the intricate lifts meant that a man had to touch his partner's breast, thighs and bottom. It is thought that it is the Volta that Praetorius had in mind when he wrote: "an invention of the devil, full of shameful and obscene gestures and immodest movements."

It was one of Elizabeth I's favourite dances:





Last edited by Temperance on Sun 15 Dec 2013, 13:27; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 13:22

Then what an old hypocrite Michael Praetorius was because he too wrote quite a lot of cracking good music specifically for the Volta. His problem was that while HE wanted to be remembered for his church music .... everyone else, then as now, generally remembers him for his catchy dance tunes.

Like his voltas:



PS.  I don't think the music in that Elizabeth clip is a true Volta ... the timing is correctly in 6/8 time, if a little slow, but it does rather sound like a modern arrangement.

PPS. I remember Glenda Jackson (Liz) and Robert Hardy (Dudley) performing a Volta in the 1971 BBC production of 'Elizabeth R'... and poor old Robert looked decidedly 'tested' in having to lift her up even though Glenda Jackson wasn't big by any means. I don't think Elizabeth I was ever a particularly 'large' lady even in mature age, but still .... those Tudor courtiers must have been fit and strong to elegantly dance the Volta. But perhaps that was the whole point .... a sexy 'mating dance' to sort out the men from the boys and the lions from the pussies!
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 18:05

MM wrote:
PPS. I remember Glenda Jackson (Liz) and Robert Hardy (Dudley) performing a Volta in the 1971 BBC production of 'Elizabeth R'... and poor old Robert looked decidedly 'tested' in having to lift her up even though Glenda Jackson wasn't big by any means. I don't think Elizabeth I was ever a particularly 'large' lady even in mature age, but still .... those Tudor courtiers must have been fit and strong to elegantly dance the Volta. But perhaps that was the whole point .... a sexy 'mating dance' to sort out the men from the boys and the lions from the pussies!


Good point, MM. One of the reasons female ballet dancers have to keep their weight low is to make all the lifts easier for their partners - as well of course as maintaining the purity and elegance of line. But lifting the Tudor women effortlessly aloft must have been a challenge - especially as they all wore those heavy, very bulky court dresses! You can see poor old Dudley looking a bit puffed here - chatting and dancing with Letty, then with Liz. Just drag on the red line until you reach 43 minutes.



PS And, of course, it's a complete myth that male ballet dancers are complete "pussies". They have to be incredibly strong. Roberto Bolle here makes all those entrechats look dead easy. Incredible bit of dancing. Doing just a couple would kill the average bloke! (Scroll down page for video.) Giselle's no slouch, either.

http://toursenlair.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/between-cats-history-of-word-entrechat.html


Last edited by Temperance on Mon 16 Dec 2013, 08:48; edited 3 times in total
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 19:00

MM, this is just for you.  Smile 

Roberto Bolle - isn't he beautiful?
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 19:29

Well quite... Personally I have had experience of ballet dancers, footballers, soldiers, sailors, policemen ... and, just once, a member of the parachute regiment ...
... and I still sighs when I recalls the size of their thighs!  Rolling Eyes

OK that's quite enough of that nonsense .... you really are a bad influence on me Temp.


Last edited by Meles meles on Sun 15 Dec 2013, 19:35; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
Caro
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1108
Join date : 2012-01-09

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 19:35

This knowledge is what put me off ballet the last time we saw one live.  We were sitting very close to the stage, so I could see all the bones on the main ballerina, she was so thin.  But I knew she must be very strong to do such a performance: it seemed to me the two didn't go well together and I was bothered by her health and the worry she might collapse during the ballet.  I think they are starved AND worked extremely hard, and I don't care for that combination.

The ballet dancer in the picture is a little muscley for my liking, but perhaps men prefer them that way.
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 19:38

Honestly, MM, it's nothing to do with size of thighs - it's all about purity of line.  Smile 



Last edited by Temperance on Mon 16 Dec 2013, 03:18; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Sun 15 Dec 2013, 20:18

Here is Nijinsky in the highly controversial L'Apres-midi d'un Faune, 1912.


Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Mon 16 Dec 2013, 10:20

ID may have encountered this one. The pyrrhic dance, which is mentioned by Xenophon in the Anabasis.



and an article about the Roman pantomimus, a type of ballet, and a fairly obvious derivation of the word pantomime;

http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/secondary/SMIGRA*/Pantomimus.html
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Mon 16 Dec 2013, 20:17

No one has yet mentioned 'Pride and Prejudice' and the key role that the Netherfield ball plays in the story.

I've just watched this gem of a BBC programm made to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Jane Austin's novel - reconstructing a Regency ball: the dances, the music, the food, the clothes, etc ... I found it hugely enjoyable and fascinating.

Back to top Go down
Gilgamesh of Uruk
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1400
Join date : 2011-12-27

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Mon 16 Dec 2013, 20:44

I think this is a better "volta"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hUJGCgSk_c


Still trying to find a decent estampie or istampitta - iirc D Munrow described the estampie as the first western dance to break away from "en ronde" like the carol to a couple dance. Plenty of examples of the music, but not the dance.
Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 08:27

That's an interesting volta, Gil, though I''m not entirely convinced.... it just doesn't look elegant and the man must have suffered terrible lower lumbar pain after a few bouts of that!

It rather begs the question: for all these intricate rennaissance court dances, how do we know the actual steps? Were there printed dance guides or the written instructions of dance masters? As you say, the written music itself certainly exists, but are the interpretations of these dances: the Voltas, Gaillards, Sarabandes, Pavanes, Allamaigiens, Bransles .... based just on the descriptions of contemporary observers, paintings and lots of guesswork?

From the 18th century onwards there are numerous printed dance guides (even some printed onto fans to be used as crib sheets during the dance itself) and one can actually chart the development of the dance steps geographically and with time. For instance I see from that BBC Regency Ball reconstruction that the waltz as performed in 1813, whilst including elements of the scandalously close embraced dancing newly introduced from the continent and familiar from the waltz as performed these days, remained basically an English square dance of four couples. It only became the familiar one of individual couples circling the dance floor later into the 19th century.

But does anyone know the sources for the court dances of the 15th, 16th, 17th centuries?


Last edited by Meles meles on Tue 17 Dec 2013, 08:45; edited 1 time in total
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 08:44

Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 08:55

Ah! So yes there were detailed written instructions for dance steps ... And I would guess considerably more were written, and have survived, once printing became widespread.

EDIT : Indeed there does seems to be a lot of written info. I'm working my way through this informative summary (with video clips):

US Library of Congress - Rennaissance Dance

All good stuff, though I've also just come across this rant against all forms of dance by the Elizabethan puritan Philip Stubbes, in his 1583 book, "The Anatomie of Abuses" :

"What filthy groping and unclean handling is not practised everywhere in these dancings? It provoketh lust - and the fire of lust, once conceived bursteth forth into the open action of whoredom and fornication."

So there, you've all been warned!


Last edited by Meles meles on Tue 17 Dec 2013, 09:57; edited 3 times in total
Back to top Go down
Caro
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1108
Join date : 2012-01-09

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 09:51

Ah well, lots of short steps for waltzes, one giant leap to twerking.
Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 13:37

A gavotte from Atys by Jean-Baptiste Lully, 1676;

Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 13:47

This is another 17th century one;

Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 14:38

Quote :
No one has yet mentioned 'Pride and Prejudice' and the key role that the Netherfield ball plays in the story.


Darcy, a few chapters earlier, made his feelings about dancing quite clear in a brilliant put-down of poor Sir William Lucas.

Mr Darcy stood near them in silent indignation at such a mode of passing the evening*, to the exclusion of all conversation, and was too much engrossed by his own thoughts to perceive that Sir William Lucas was his neighbour, till Sir William thus began:

'What a charming amusement for young people this is, Mr Darcy! There is nothing like dancing after all. I consider it as one of the first refinements of polished societies.'

'Certainly, sir, and it has the advantage also of being in vogue amonst the less polished societies of the world. Every savage can dance.'




*Some of the young people are having an excellent time dancing to "Scotch (sic) and Irish airs".
Back to top Go down
Temperance
Virgo Vestalis Maxima
avatar

Posts : 5373
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : The Sceptred Isle

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 14:51

Here's the Netherfield Ball  from the famous BBC production. That superb dance - where Lizzy and Darcy's verbal sparring matches the intricacies of the dance steps - is several minutes in (around 6.03).

Mr Collins is the partner from hell, of course - "Other way, Mr Collins!" (around 3.04)

Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 16:33

Mr Collins might well be the partner from Hell, but in 1813, even knowing the vital social importance of being able to dance (and hence the necessity of having to either hire a dance master or spend hours swotting up from the published dance manuals) .... then, as now, some people, like poor Mr Collins, just cannot dance!

And actually, as I'm sure Jane Austin was well aware, these unfortunates were both rather numerous and also certainly well known to most of her readers ..... some of whom themselves also might well have suffered from having two left feet. Surely then she was just beautifully observing society as it is, rather than how we might like it to be ... and so even at a dance, sadly not everyone (savages aside) can actually dance.....



Last edited by Meles meles on Tue 17 Dec 2013, 19:26; edited 3 times in total
Back to top Go down
Gilgamesh of Uruk
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1400
Join date : 2011-12-27

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Tue 17 Dec 2013, 17:09

"The only dance that we can do is the quick step to the bar" - Adge Cutler summed up my terpsichorean tendencies perfectly.
Back to top Go down
Caro
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1108
Join date : 2012-01-09

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 04:01

Not much in the past but here is a not-very-good photo of the ballroom at Blackpool where I spent three hours just watching the dancers.  Ordinary people, not very dressed up, but lovely dancers, one specially sexy (not young) pair.  She was wearing some black trouser or leotards sort of outfit and they just melded together.  It was great to watch.  But I think I just have the link here, not the photo opened.

=127882408&filters[recent]=1&sort=1&o=0]https://illiweb.com/fa/pbucket.gif?filters[user]=127882408&filters[recent]=1&sort=1&o=0
Back to top Go down
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 14:04

[quote="Temperance"]
Quote :


*Some of the young people are having an excellent time dancing to "Scotch (sic) and Irish airs".

Witches and warlocks in a dance
Nae cotillion brand new frae France




But hornpipes, jigs,strathspeys and reels
Put life and mettle in their heels


Back to top Go down
nordmann
Nobiles Barbariæ
avatar

Posts : 5747
Join date : 2011-12-25

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 14:23

Irish reels and jigs (and therefore by extension Scottish reels and jigs) should really be called English reels and jigs. Both came into Irish music and dance via English settlers from the early Middle Ages onwards. There are quite a few Irish "trad" fundies - as well as some rabid republicans - who might well apoplex at this news, so ingrained has the belief become that they are indigenous to Ireland.

What the Irish danced beforehand is hard to know, though there is a style of dancing "Sean-Nos" which traditionally predates the present traditional forms. Nowadays it's really just Riverdance with flailing arms - the bulk of the movement being still from the knees down - but I've heard in more remote places that this is a pale shadow of what people actually got up to when the priest wasn't looking.

Here's a Sean-Nos flash mob in Shop Street in Galway earlier this year:

Back to top Go down
https://reshistorica.historyboard.net
Triceratops
Censura
avatar

Posts : 3106
Join date : 2012-01-05

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 15:59

Who remembers this?

Back to top Go down
Meles meles
Censura
avatar

Posts : 2911
Join date : 2011-12-30
Location : Pyrénées-Orientales, France

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 16:27

@nordmann wrote:
Irish reels and jigs (and therefore by extension Scottish reels and jigs) should really be called English reels and jigs.

Maybe so, but the so-called "slip jig", which is fairly unusual in that it's in 9/8 time, is I suspect a pure Irish invention or at least a purely Irish embellishment on the imported standard jig which is of course always in 6/8 time. I've never encountered a "traditional" 9/8 time jig from either Scotland or England. Indeed I think slip jigs still remain a uniquely Irish dance/music form.
Back to top Go down
Gilgamesh of Uruk
Censura
avatar

Posts : 1400
Join date : 2011-12-27

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Wed 18 Dec 2013, 22:14

What about the "Kerry slide" normally in 12/8? Is that indigenous too?
Back to top Go down
nordmann
Nobiles Barbariæ
avatar

Posts : 5747
Join date : 2011-12-25

PostSubject: Re: Take your partners   Thu 19 Dec 2013, 08:14

There are many in Ireland who would indeed support the view that any deviation from the standard jig is well beyond English capabilities. I would be hesitant myself to pursue that line of reasoning - especially in connection with the jig which is probably the most recent import of all that came from an English musical or terpsichoreal source.

The Sean-Nos tradition definitely suggests that what passes for Irish dancing now retains elements from something preceding English involvement. The problem is that no one actually knows what these might be - Sean-Nos dancing as represented in the video above owes a lot to modern interpretation of how a strict dancing style might appear when the rules are relaxed. This in itself cannot be taken as evidence that the dancers are emulating an ancient style however.
Back to top Go down
https://reshistorica.historyboard.net
 

Take your partners

View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Res Historica History Forum :: The history of expression ... :: The Arts-