The Birl hold
is an informal, two-handed Hold
used as a more controlled version of the Turn
with Elbow grip
to make a Quick turn
) in Quick tempo
dances; it is commonly used when the Scottish Country Dancers wish to adopt a more informal style by adding an extra Turn
where only one Slow turn
is prescribed as, for example, in bars 37-40 of The White Heather Jig
When Turning By the right, the right hand should be cupped round the other dancer's elbow, as in Elbow grip, with the left hands held securely at chest height Above the right forearms. Note that this hand Position is the opposite of that in the Promenade hold, where the right hands are Above the lefts to facilitate the transition to Allemande hold.
When Turning By the left, these Hand positions should be reversed.
For example, here are some Scottish Country Dances in which the term, Birl Hold
, is used in either the MiniCrib or the MaxiCrib Dance instructions
or both -
Circassian Big Circle
Wavre adieu à la saltarelle
White Heather Jig
Dance Video Clip Which Demonstrates Birl
Birl Video Clip
Links To Pages Related To 'Holds'
Back to the top of this Scottish Country Dancing 'Birl Hold' page