Dances

Standard Set

Right now we have a standard set of dances that we use (with variations) at public performances:

  • Young Collins (Fieldtown, sticks, tune: Young Collins)
  • The Rose Tree (Border, small sticks, tune: The Rose Tree)
  • Fiddler’s Jig (Bampton, fiddles, tune: Flowers of Edinburgh)
  • Valentine (Fieldtown, hankies, tune: Valentine)
  • Much Wenlock Stick Dance (Border, sticks, tune: Not for Joe OR The Girl I Left Behind Me–if Not for Joe has been used in the same set)
  • Muddled (Duns Tew; hankies; tune: British Grenadiers)
  • Squirmishing (Adderbury; sticks; tune: Lillibulero)
  • Three (Four) Musketeers (Fieldtown; sticks; tune: Rambling Sailor; to be danced only if we can’t do Squirmishing for some reason)

Broader Repertoire

We’ve had a lot of different dances in our repertoire over the years. Some are from so long ago that very few of the Figs remember how they were done. The ones that we perform now are shown in bold (hopefully, most of the Figs can remember how to do these!)

Fieldtown

    • Banks of the Dee
    • Donkey Riding (The tune “Donkey Riding” is a capstan shanty popular on timberships. The term “donkey riding” refers to the process of loading logs through the timber ports in the stern of the ship. Someone (usually a ships boy) rode the log in order to guide it through the port.)
    • Balance the Straw
    • Bobby and Joan
    • The Cuckoo’s Nest (A double jig.)
    • The Idiot (Twice as long as most dances, it takes six idiots to dance it.)
    • Jockey to the Fair
    • Step Back (a.k.a. Old Molly Oxford)
    • Three Musketeers (Danced by six dancers for redundancy.)
    • Trunkles (A classic corner-challange dance.)
    • Valentine (The Ascott-under-Wychwood dance adapted to the Fieldtown tradition.)
    • Very Young Collins (Almost like “Young Collins” but slightly different. We do this dance with our very young dancers.)
    • Waltzing Matilda (To the Australian tune of the same name. Anyone that drops a stick buys a round for the team.)
    • Shepherd’s Hey (A local variation of the classic beginner's dance.)

Bampton

    • Country Gardens
    • Simon’s Fancy (Written by Jocelyn Reynolds, the directions can be found on the Lemon and Capers page. We learned this at Ale Hallow’s Eve back in 1991 from The Dead Ringers.)
    • Highland Mary (We have also danced the variant known as “Island Mary” to the tune of “Jamaica Farewell”)
    • Highland Three (This is a triple jig version of Highland Mary that we invented on the spur of the moment during a visit with our friends up in Santa Barbara, Monarch Grove Morris. It got a good response then and we’ve been dancing it ever since…)
    • Speed The Plough
    • Lumps of Plum Pudding
    • Step and Fetch Her
    • The Nutting Girl (A jig.)
    • The Fiddler’s Jig (A dance where the dancers rest and the musicians do all the work. A specialty of Jon Roussos, now with Marieke Thayer.)

Adderbury

    • Shooting (a.k.a. The Beaux of London City)
    • South Australia
    • Blue Bells of Scotland (Oh why, tell me why, do I have this purple thumb…)
    • Squirmishing (A headspinning variant on the Three Musketeers)
    • Postman’s Knock (Different from the one published by Lionel Bacon)

Duns Tew

    • Seaside Shuffle
    • Muddled (We revived the dance called Muddled by adapting it to the Duns Tew tradition.)
    • Old Gordon
    • Ducklington
    • Lollipop Man (a.k.a. Lads of the Bunch)
    • Jockey to the Fair (A triple jig. Not at all like the Fieldtown dance.)
    • Brackley
    • Maid of the Mill (Competitive wool-winding…)
    • Muddled (A dance that our former Fore, Kathy Annunziata, wrote for us. She skipped town shortly after its first public performance. She was last seen in Arizona.)
    • Old Woman with a Broom (Just like Old Woman Tossed Up In A Blanket except it’s a different tune. This is a linked hankie dance.)
    • Haste to the Wedding
    • Headington
    • Rigs O’ Marlow
    • Hunt the Squirrel (a.k.a. Hunt the Squire)

Litchfield

    • Vandals of Hammerwich (Perhaps it should be called "Vandals of Half’erwich." It’s rare that we have eight dancers for a gig and so we chopped the dance across the middle so that we could dance it with four dancers.)

Border Morris

    • Upton-on-Tijuana Stick Dance (Based loosely upon the original Upton-on-Severn dance and also related to the Chingford Stick Dance, this is reputed to have come into our hands via Australia. In any case, it’s different from either of the aformentioned dances, so we rename it periodically just to confuse people.)
    • Much Wenlock Stick Dance (Not quite the same dance that is recorded in Bacon. This was taught to us by the English group, Black Pig.)
    • Shropshire Bedlam Stick Dance (This may not be the real name of this dance, but lacking anything else to call it, this will have to suffice.)
    • Ockington (This dance, in it’s original form, apparently came from Okehampton in Devon. We picked it up from the mid-West of the USA where it’s probably been buggered up beyond recognition.)
    • Ragged Crow
    • The Rose Tree

Complete Repertoire List:

  • Balance the Straw (Fieldtown)
  • Banks of the Dee (Fieldtown)
  • Blue Bells of Scotland (Adderbury)
  • Bobby and Joan (Fieldtown)
  • Country Gardens (Bampton)
  • The Cuckoo’s Nest (Fieldtown)
  • Donkey Riding (Fieldtown)
  • The Fiddler’s Jig (Bampton)
  • The Four Musketeers (Fieldtown)
  • Haste to the Wedding (Brackley)
  • Highland Mary (Bampton)
  • Highland Three (Bampton)
  • Hunt the Squirrel (Headington)
  • The Idiot (Fieldtown)
  • Jockey to the Fair (Fieldtown)
  • Jockey to the Fair (Ducklington)
  • Lollipop Man (Ducklington)
  • Lumps of Plum Pudding (Bampton)
  • Maid of the Mill (Brackley)
  • Much Wenlock Stick Dance (Border)
  • Muddled (Duns Tew)
  • Muddled (Brackley)
  • The Nutting Girl (Bampton)
  • Ockington (Border)
  • Old Gordon (Duns Tew)
  • Old Woman with a Broom (Brackley)
  • Postman’s Knock (Adderbury)
  • Ragged Crow (Border)
  • Rigs O’ Marlow (Headington)
  • Seaside Shuffle (Duns Tew)
  • Shepherd’s Hey (Fieldtown)
  • Shooting (Adderbury)
  • Shropshire Bedlam Stick Dance (Border)
  • Simon’s Fancy (Bampton)
  • South Australia (Adderbury)
  • Speed The Plough (Bampton)
  • Squirmishing (Adderbury)
  • Step and Fetch Her (Bampton)
  • Step Back (Fieldtown)
  • The Rose Tree (Border)
  • Three Musketeers (Fieldtown)
  • Trunkles (Fieldtown)
  • Upton-on-Tijuana Stick Dance (Border)
  • Valentine (Fieldtown)
  • Vandals of Hammerwich (Litchfield)
  • Very Young Collins (Fieldtown)
  • Waltzing Matilda (Fieldtown)