Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Lady Mary Hay's Scot's Measure

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

Lady Mary Hay's Scot's Measure 4x32 bar Reel for 4 Couples Rod Downey They Stole My Wife From Me last Night Collection
A 4 Couple Reel in a longwise set.
Third and fourth couples begin on opposite sides.
The active couples are the first and fourth.

1-4 First man and fourth man facing on the diagonal advance and retire.
5-8 First man and fourth man set to each other, first and casts off into second place, and fourth man casts up into third place. Second man steps up and third down.
meanwhile First woman and fourth woman facing on the diagonal advance and retire.
9-12 First and fourth man turn one and a half times with the right hand.
meanwhile First and fourth lady set, first lady casts off into second place and fourth lady sets to third man and casts up into third place. Second lady steps up and third lady steps down.
13-16 First man casts down around fourth place (that is, around the third man) to finish facing the third lady in the center between the third couple, and likewise fourth man casts up to finish in the centre facing the second lady.
meanwhile First and fourth ladies turn by the LEFT hand one an a half times. The ladies should be careful not to rush here, because of what comes next, the movement is quite steady.
17-20 First man dances a half a reel of three across with the third couple giving left shoulder to the third lady to begin. Similarly the fourth man with the second couple.
meanwhile First lady casts down around the fourth position, finishing behind her partner ready to continue the reel in tandem behind her partner. Similarly the fourth lady casts up.
21-24 In tandem (following with no swapping), the first couple dance half a reel with the third couple. Similarly the fourth couple with the second.
25-28 While first and forth men turn right hand, the first and fourth ladies continue the reel with the third and second couples respectively. First man finishes in third place on the "ladies" side (that is, the original third man's place), fourth man in second place on the "man's" side (that is, the original second man's place).
29-32 First and fourth women turn with the left hands to finish opposite their partners. Third and second couples stand. Note that they will be on "wrong" sides.
Finishing order: 2,4,1,3 with second and first couples on "opposite" sides, third and fourth on normal sides.
Repeat from new positions, this time with the lady in first man's place and the lady in fourth "woman's" place beginning. That is the new first lady and fourth lady. Next time it will be two ladies and the last time two men. It is always the person in the traditional first man's and fourth ladies place who begin. Each person has a turn as beginning person after four time through. At the end of the dance, all will be in original positions.

Repeat from new places.

(Dance crib compiled by the deviser Rod Downey, Johnsonville SCD Club Tutor)

Dance Notes

To teach this dance I recommend walking all people through the 1M, 4M position first without involving the corners.

Then get them to dance the whole thing with the corners doing their 3 half reels in succession.

After that do the 1W,4W places separately.

Then put it all together.

The key is that the 1W and 4W places don't turn too fast.

(Dance notes by the deviser, Rod Downey)

Dance Information

Also see the dance Lady Mary Hay's Reel also by Rod Downey.

Recommended music is "Lady Mary Hay's Scot's Measure" played AABB or ABAB at reel tempo. This tune is by Nathaniel Gow. It can be found in tune 2 of "The Mantua Makers" in the recording of "Scottish Dance Masters" by Ron Gonella and George MacIlwham.

Otherwise, use a reel with strong four bar phrases, and preferably a measure. This dance was inspired by this tune used in a medley set on track 5 of the CD "Glenelg" by Elke Baker.

Published in They Stole My Wife From Me Last Night Collection.
Dance information from They Stole My Wife From Me Last Night Collection Of Scottish Country Dances, reproduced here with the kind permission of the deviser, Rod Downey.

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