The Canadian Barn Dance Steps

The Canadian Barn Dance is a very popular couples ceilidh dance. It can either be danced in the same couples or be made progressive – either way, it is great fun!

The dance begins with couples standing side by side facing anti-clockwise with their nearer hands joined. Traditionally the lady stands on the man’s right. If you are standing on the inside of the circle place your right arm around the waist of your partner on the outside of the circle. Alternatively, if you are standing on the outside of the circle you should place your left hand on your partner’s right shoulder.

For bars 1-4, starting with the outside foot, walk forward three steps, hop (or kick) and then walks backwards for three steps and hop.

For bars 5-6, standing shoulder to shoulder with your partner skip sideways away from your partner for two steps (four beats) and clap. The person on the inside of the circle should have moved in towards the centre of the room and the person on the outside out to the edge of the room.

During bars 7-8  join back together with your partner in a waltz hold (for the count of four beats). For bars 9-10 skip left for two steps and back for two steps. Finally for bars 13-16, polka anti-clockwise around the room with your partner.

This is then repeated for the duration of the music!

Canadian Barn Dance – progressive element

If the Canadian Barn dance is made progressive the same steps are followed until bar 6. However, after stepping away from your partner and clapping, the person on the outside of the circle moves forward to the next person standing on the inside of the circle. They then skip left for two steps and back for two before polkaing around the room and starting again at bar 1. This ‘progression’ is repeated until the music finishes with the person on the outside of each couple continuing to move around the inside circle of partners. 

 

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You can find links to the Dashing White Sergeant here and the Cumberland Square Eight here

If you are looking for a great fitness programme based on ceilidh dancing then check out Kelta Fit