A Mind Less Ordinary

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Ceilidh Dance: Strip the Willow Square

Set type:
Square set
Tune type:
48-bar jig/polka


A18Head couples in ballroom hold. Gallop across set, men passing backs. Return, women passing backs.
A28Side couples do the same.
B16Head men strip the square (next time side men, then head women, then side women)
C18Circle left, circle right
C28Balance and swing your partner


Stripping the square can be extremely confusing, and so people will need a lot of guidance. Walk them through it fairly slowly.

The two people doing it meet in the middle for a left-hand turn, then go three-quarters of the way around and right-hand turn the person of the opposite gender that they are facing and return to the centre. This means the first person they turn was standing in the couple their left in the square; it then progresses round one person to the left.

For example: number 1 man will end up with ladies 4, 3, and 2, followed by his own. At the same time, number 3 man will end up with ladies 2, 1, 4, then his own.

Another variation: instead of just two people in the centre at any one time, all four of either gender can be in the centre at once. In this case, they will dance a left-handed star three-quarters of the way around; the rest is the same.

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