Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Spoke

The Figure, The spoke is so-named because it represents the spokes of a wheel in bars 25-32 of Johnnie's Welcome Hame (appropriate to the dedicatee who was a cycle dealer and repairer).

The spoke is a succession of Balance in line Figures in a Longwise set, starting on the First corners' Diagonal and, on the left foot step of Pas-de-basque, moving anticlockwise to the Second corners' Diagonal and then on to Partner's Diagonals in turn; it takes 2 bars of Pas-de-basque for each Diagonal and so 8 bars in all in the full form.

Since the basic Figure is Balance in line, The spoke cannot be danced with the Strathspey setting step and so it is suitable for Quick tempo dances only.

The Figure usually arises after the standard Progression in an Active set of 3 Couples has moved 2nd Couple into 1st Couple's position. 1st Couple, with Left hands joined, must already be in Balance Position with their First corners, as shown in Diagram 50, at the end of the previous Figure.

Then:

Bar 1
on the right foot step of Pas-de-basque, Second corners Set Facing each other While 1st Couple Dance the right foot step of Balance in line with First corners, Finishing by releasing hands with First corners;

Bar 2
on the left foot step of Pas-de-basque, 1st Couple Turn by the left one quarter and Finish by Taking hands with Second corners ready for Balance in line with them While First corners Set, Pulling right shoulder back to Finish Facing each other on the Diagonal While Second corners Set, Pulling left shoulder back to Finish ready for Balance in line with 1st Couple;

Bars 3-4
all repeat bars 1-2 from their new Positions, 1st Couple Balancing in line with Second corners, First corners Setting Facing each other on the Diagonal;

Bars 5-6
all repeat bars 1-2 from their new Positions, 1st Couple Balancing in line with Partner's First corners, Second corners Setting Facing each other on the Diagonal;

Bar 7
all repeat bar 1 from their new Positions, 1st Couple Balancing in line with Partner's Second corners, First corners Setting Facing each other on the Diagonal.

Bar 8
all Dance the left foot step of Pas-de-basque, adapted so that they Finish as required by the subsequent Figure.

The Figure is sometimes started from a different Diagonal and sometimes does not involve all four Diagonals.


For example, here are some other Scottish Country Dances in which the term, The Spoke, is used in either the MiniCrib or the MaxiCrib Dance instructions or both -
Dancers' Wedding
Reel Of The Gordon Highlanders
Silver Sands Of Islay

Dance Video Clip Which Demonstrates The Spoke

The Spoke Video Clip

Links To Pages Related To 'Spoke'

Complex Figures

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