Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary


Scottish Country Dance Instruction

Portsonachan 32 bar Jig for 3 couples in a four couple set Rod Downey The Tuatara Collection
A three couple 32 bar jig in a four couple set.

1-8 First couple dance a figure of eight on the sides, first woman in front of the second, and behind the third; first man similarly. Hands should be given where possible.
9-16 First couple dances a figure of eight across the dance around the second couple.
17-24 First and second couples dance four hands across and back, finishing in the centre ready for a poussette.
25-32 First and second couples dance a poussette.

Repeat, having passed a couple.

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

Dance Information

This dance, Portsonachan, was devised 16th March 2013 and is a teaching dance for our influx of beginners who were having difficulty with figures of eight across/on the sides, plus I had just taught poussette.

Portsonachan means "port of peace", and is a Hotel on Loch Awe where Kristin and I stayed during Easter 2012. The setting is quite lovely, and we had a great time, while experiencing a rather surreal (but friendly) hotel experience involving lost bookings, cold water, delightfully eccentric Spanish waiter, remarkable furniture and many other adventures.

The recommended tune is "Jockey's Dance" (traditional) played AABB, and a suitable recording is to be found on "A Fife Fairing" with Ron Gonella's recording of "St Andrew's Fair". A similar recording on a the LP "Eight Scottish Country Dances" also by Ron Gonella. A suitable alternative tune would be "Fair Jenny's Jig" by Peter Barnes as recorded by Fiddlesticks and Ivory.

Portsonachan Hotel
Portsonachan Hotel On Loch Awe

Published in The Tuatara Collection.
Dance information from The Tuatara Collection Of Scottish Country Dances, reproduced here with the kind permission of the deviser, Rod Downey.
Image copyright Ian Taylor under this Creative Commons Licence 2.0.

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