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Square Dance Origins – Quadrille

April 23, 2008

Square dance is a folk dance with four couples (eight dancers) arranged in a square, with one couple on each side. The dance was first described in 17th century England but was also quite common in France and throughout Europe and bears a marked similarity to Scottish Country Dancing. It has become associated with the United States of America due to its historic development in that country.

The various square dance movements are based on the steps and figures used in traditional folk dances and social dances of the various people who migrated to the USA. Some of these traditional dances include Morris dance, English Country Dance, and the quadrille.

The quadrille dance shown in Video #2 on the right is performed by four couples complete in period costume.

The dance appears to include the following Mainstream square dance movements:

Bow to your partner and your corner too

Allemande Left

Courtesy Turn

Turn Through

Circle to the left

Pass Through

Promenade (inside the ring)

Ladies Chain

Single Circle

Up to the middle and back

Star Turn (right & left)

Sweep a Quarter (head or side couples)

Thought you may like a history lesson

Roger

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