Eight Hand Reel

Category: Irish Ceili/Ceilidh
Description:


The formation for the Eight Hand Reel is similar to set and square dance with four couples arranged as a square with the leading tops with their back to the music.
Leading sides are to the left of leading tops. The other two couples are opposite tops and opposite sides. The first tops and opposite sides are said to be “contrary” to each other while the opposite tops and leading sides are “contrary” to each other. This notation is used in the Back to Back portion of the body.
Tag: Ar Rince Foirne

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Figure 1 (Reel)

344 Bars + 8 bar lead-in

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1 Everyone
Lead Around, lead back Partners take inside hands and lead around counter-clockwise back to home. Release hands and turn toward each other to face clockwise. Take inside hands again and lead back to home position.
When danced for competition or show, care should be taken to keep equal distance between the couples.
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2 Extended Sides Gents side step (sevens) to the right behind their lady, ladies side step to the left in front (2b), finishing with two short threes (2b). Side step on in the same direction and end with two short threes (4b). Everyone has moved on one position.
Gents take the right hand of the lady on his right and both turn around each other once (2b). Everyone chains back to their partner (4b) and turns around each other at home (2b).
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3 Skip Across Top gents exchange places using the sidestep, facing each other and leading with right shoulder (2b), ending with two short threes (2b). Side gents change places the same way (4b).
Gents turn around the lady next to them with right hands and dance to lady on the left of their original position (4b). Turn in place with left hands (4 bars). Gents have moved on one position to the left and ladies are in their home position.
Top gents again change places to the sidestep as before, ending with two short threes (4b). Side gents follow suit (4b).
Turn ladies with left hand (4b), pass on to meet own partner, with right hand, in original position, and turn in place (4b).
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4 Return Chain From home position, give right hands to your parnet. Partners dance on and gents give left hand to lady on the right, ladies give left hand to gent on left. All continue to chain around giving right and left hand alternately until you meet your own partner again with right hand at opposite side of the circle (8b).
Turn with right hand around partner and chain back to original position, turning in place with right hands (8b).
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5 Back to Back Gents take partner´s right hand an sidestep towards the left of the contrary lady, while his partner dances towards the left of the contrary gentleman (2b).  Gents take left hand of contrary lady while partner takes left hand of contrary gentleman, the four dancers thus forming a circle, gents standing back to back an ladies facing each other. Everyone dances two short threes (2b) gents release partner´s right hand, turns around contrary lady (2b) and returns to his own partner, passing other gentleman right to right (2b). Partners take hands (ladies crossed right over left) and dance around couple opposite to contrary couple. "first" couples dance around each other, as do the "opposite" couples (8b).

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6 Tops
Advance and Retire Leading and opposite tops advance and retire twice while holding inside hands with their partners (8b).
Both couples then take hands with their partner, ladies hands crossed and dance around each other  (8b).
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7 Sides
Advance and retire Leading and opposite sides now advance and retire twice while holding inside hands with their partners (8b). Both couples then take hands with their partner, ladies hands crossed and dance a complete circle around each other  (8b).
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8 Everyone
Dance 2 to 5 Everyone repeat the body
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9 Top Couples
Ladies Chain Ladies advance and give right hands in the center, left hands to the opposite gent.  Dance around him and return to their own parter (don't give hands in the center again), dance around him with right hands.  Both couples take both hands and dance around each other, counter-clockwise, and back home.

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10 Side Couples
Ladies Chain Ladies advance and give right hands in the center, left hands to the opposite gent.  Dance around him and return to their own parter (don't give hands in the center again), dance around him with right hands.  Both couples take both hands and dance around each other, counter-clockwise, and back home.

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11 Everyone
Dance 2 to 5 Everyone repeat the body
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12 The Finish Join hands in circle, with hands held high. Advance to centre (2b), retire (2b), repeat (4b). Sidestep anticlockwise and finish with two short threes (4b). Sidestep back ending with two short threes (4b).
Advance and retire twice again (8b). Sidestep clockwise and back (8b).
Each couple takes hands (ladies crossed right over left) and swings anticlockwise around the full set to home (8b).

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Added on 2012-05-11 16:43:37.
Modified on 2016-03-26 22:36:42.
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