NEWPORT SET

Members of Newcastle Irish Set Dancers first danced the Newport Set at the Willie Clancy Summer School in July 2001. Other published instructions for this dance include Pat Murphy's "Toss the Feathers" and Tom Quinn's "Irish Dancing". Joe O'Hara has a version of this set online.

First Sides to the LeftFORMATION

Square Set of four couples, Gents on the left of their partners. 1st Top Couple have their backs to the band, with 2nd Top Couple opposite them. 1st Side Couple are on the left of 1st Top Couple (when facing into the set) and 2nd Side Couple are opposite them (to the right of 1st Tops).


FIGURE 1: JIGS (272 BARS)

Note: Swings are for 6 bars finishing dancing 1-2-123 for the last two bars

All Couples Lower promenade hold - Advance [2 bars] + Dance in place [2 bars] + Retire [2 bars] + Dance in place while turning to face anti-clockwise around the set [2 bars] 8 bars
All Couples Lead around to next position [2 bars] + Dance in place [2 bars] + Lead around to Opposite position + Dance in place, Ladies facing into the set and Gents facing out 8 bars
All Couples Waltz hold - Swing [6 bars] + Dance to face anticlockwise around the set with lower promenade hold [2 bars] 8 bars
All Couples Lower promenade hold - Lead around to next position + Dance in place + Lead around to home + Dance to face in 8 bars
1st Top Couple 1st Top Couple - Right hand in right - Advance across + Turn Lady to face Partner while 1st Top Gent joins left hands with 2nd Top Lady (who has advanced) [4 bars] + Top Ladies Advance as 1st Top Gent retires to place + Ladies turn out beside 1st Top Gent - hands joined on Ladies' outer shoulders [4 bars] 8 bars
1st Top Gent +
Top Ladies
Line of three - Advance to the centre + Dance in place [4 bars] + 1st Top Gent retires while Ladies pass left shoulder to left to face Opposite Gent 8 bars
Tops with Opposite Waltz hold - Swing in Gent's posiiton 8 bars
2nd Top Gent + 1st Top Lady Right hand in right - Advance across + Turn Lady to face and join left hands with Partner (who has advanced) + Line of three Retire to 2nd Tops place + Turn Ladies out + Advance to the centre + Dance in place + 2nd Top Gent retires while Ladies pass left shoulders to face Partner 16 bars
Top Couples Swing Partner + Dance facing into the set 8 bars
1st Side Couple Advance + Turn Partner while joining left hands with 2nd Side Lady Line of three Retire to 1st Side's place + Turn Ladies out + Line of three Advance + Dance in place + 1st Side Gent retire while Ladies cross to Opposite 16 bars
Sides with Opposite Swing + Dance facing into set 8 bars
2nd Side Gent + 1st Side Lady Advance across + Turn Lady while joining left hands with Partner + Line of three Retire to 2nd Sides' place + Turn Ladies out + Line of three Advance + Dance in place + 2nd Side Gent retires while Ladies cross to Partner 16 bars
Side Couples Swing + Dance facing into set 8 bars
Top Couples Lower promenade hold - Advance to right to form diagonal across the set (Gents left shoulder to left) + Dance in place + Retire + Dance in place + Advance to left (Ladies right shoulder to right) + Dance in place + 1st Top Gent and 2nd Top Lady dance to meet in the centre as Partners retire + All dance in place 16 bars
1st Top Gent + 2nd Top Lady Swing + Retire to place 8 bars
Top Couples Advance into diagonal line as before + Dance in place, retire, advance to other diagonal + 2nd Top Gent and 1st Top Lady meet in the centre as Partners retire + Swing + Retire 24 bars
Sides repeat Sides Advance to diagonal line + Dance in place, etc. + 1st Side Gent and 2nd Side Lady meet, Swing and Retire first + 2nd Side Gent and 1st Side Lady meet and Swing next 48 bars
Top Couples Ladies chain halfway - Join right arms in the centre (1 complete turn) + Join left arms and turn with Opposite Gent dancing across to left side of Gent + Ladies turn anticlockwise to face centre 8 bars
Top Couples Little Christmas [6 bars] + Retire to place 8 bars
Side Couples Ladies Chain halfway with full centre turn + Little Christmas + Retire 16 bars
All Couples Lower promenade hold - Advance + Dance in place + Retire + Dance in place 8 bars

FIGURE 2: HORNPIPES (184 BARS)

All Couples Lower promenade hold - Advance + Dance in place + Retire + Dance in place 8 bars
All Couples Ladies dance around to the left side of their Partner while Gents turn in place - finish with all facing clockwise in a circle around the set, Ladies in front of Gents [2 bars] + Lady raises right hand which Gent takes in his right - Lady turns under anticlockwise [2 bars] + Dance on one place (Lady in front of Gent) [2 bars] + Lady raises left hand (taken by Gents with their left) - Lady turns under clockwise + Dance on one place [2 bars] + Repeat: Right hand turn under + Dance on + Left hand turn under while Gents crosses to place inside the set 16 bars
Top Couples Diamond right: Lower promenade hold - Advance to the Couple on the right [2 bars] + Dance in place [2 bars] + Reverse back into Opposite Place + Dance in place + Dance forward to other Side Coupe + Dance in place + Reverse back into own place + Dance in place 16 bars
Side Couples Diamond right 16 bars
All Couples Ladies dance forward into the set to face Partner while Gent dances in place [2 bars] + Crossed hand hold - Dance anticlockwise in place - Finish in place [6 bars] 8 bars
All Couples Gents dance forward to face Partner + Crossed hand hold - Dance clockwise in place - Finish in place 8 bars
Tops Couples Ladies Chain (full turn in centre): Dance to centre [2 bars] + Right arms in centre - Dance one full turn [2 bars] + Dance out to Opposite Gent [2 bars] + Left arms - dance one full turn [2 bars] + Repeat to place 16 bars
Side Couples Ladies Chain (full turn in centre) 16 bars
Top Couples Gates: Dance into the centre to form a line (1st Top Couple in Centre / 2nd Top Couple split) [2 bars] + Join left hand with Opposite - Turn half way to face back to place + Dance out to place + Turn to face in 8 bars
Top Couples Gates: Dance in (2nd Tops in centre / 1st Tops split) + Turn + Dance out + Turn 8 bars
Side Couples Gates: Dance in (1st Sides in centre) + Turn, dance out, turn + Dance in (2nd Sides in centre) + Turn, dance out, turn - Finish with everyone facing Corner 16 bars
All Couples Grand chain: Dance forward to meet Corner + Right arms - Dance one full turn + Dance forward to meet next person + Left arms - Dance one full turn + Repeat until meeting Partner + Lady turns under Partner's left arm while Gent dances around inside the set into place 32 bars
All Couples Lower promenade hold - Advance + Dance in place + Retire + Dance in place 8 bars

FIGURE 3: POLKAS (240 BARS)

In this figure Ladies progress on to each gent in turn. Top Couples refers to the Couples in Top positions / Side Couples those in Side positions.

All Couples Circle - Advance and retire twice + House the set 16 bars
Top Couples Log polka: Waltz hold - Sevens across the set (Gents back to back) curving across to Ladies' side + Sevens back to place (Ladies back to back) 8 bars
Top Couples House around each other 8 bars
Side Couples Long Polka - across and back + House around 16 bars
All Couples Circle - Advance and retire twice + Ladies dance on to Gent on right on last 2 bars 8 bars
New Partners House around 8 bars
Top Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
Side Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
All Couples Circle - Advance and retire (Ladies move on) + House around 16 bars
Top Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
Side Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
All Couples Circle - Advance and retire (Ladies move on) + House around 16 bars
Top Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
Side Couples Long polka + House around 16 bars
All Couples Circle - Advance and retire (Ladies to own Partner) + House around 16 bars
All Couples Right hand in right - Advance and retire [4 bars] + Chain around to place [12 bars] + Waltz hold - Swing 24 bars

STEPS

The Jig travelling step uses 123 123 footwork. The Jig dance-in-place step uses 1-2-123 footwork. Ladies start the sequence on the right foot / Gents on the left...

Lady: Forward = RLR  LRL  R-L-RLR  / Back = LRL  RLR  L-R-LRL
Gent: Forward = LRL  RLR  L-R-LRL  / Back = RLR  LRL  R-L-RLR

The Hornpipe step is danced primarily on the balls of the feet - hop-1 hop-2 hop-123. Lady starts with a hop on the left stepping onto the right / Gent hop on the right and step onto the left.

Lady: LHop-R  RHop-L  LHop-RLR  / RHop-L  LHop-R  RHop-LRL
Gent: RHop-L  LHop-R  RHop-LRL  / LHop-R  RHop-L  LHop-RLR

Sevens (Polka figure) - Waltz hold with Partner - Dance side steps with weight on the leading foot [1234567 1234567]...

REFERENCES

Murphy, Pat (1995). Toss the Feathers. Cork: Mercier Press. 172-174.

Quinn, Tom (1977). Irish Dancing. Glasgow: Harper Collins. 337-342.


Created: 5 July 2002 / Updated: 29 May 2008