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Resources and Equipment

BOOKS

Barnes, Peter, ed. Barnes, "Book of English County Dance Tunes", Greenfield, MA: Canis Publishing, revised edition 1996.

Dommett, Roy, "Morris Notes; Volume 3: Garland Dances", Country Dance and Song Society of America, 1986. Out of print.

Fennessy, Marjorie, "Pat Shaw Collection, Book 1: The Dances", Country Dance and Song Society, 116 Pleasant St. Suite 345, Easthampton, MA 01027-2759, 413-203-5467"

Hamilton, Bruce, "Notes On Teaching Country Dance”, Haydenville, MA: The Country Dance and Song Society, 2005.

Hume, Colin, "New Dances for Old", 1992. 28 new Playford-style dances to tunes on the EFDSS Playford recordings. http://www.colinhume.com/cbooks.htm.

Jewitt, Diana Campbell, "Dancing Round The Maypole: Maypole And Country Dance Instruction Manual", EFDSS, ISBN 978 0 85418 189 6; revised edition 2004. English Folk Dance and Song Society, Cecil Sharp House, 2 Regent’s Park Road, London NW1 7AY, http://www.efdss.org/.

Keller, Kate Van Winkle and Shimer, Genevieve, The Playford Ball: 103 Early Country Dances 1651-1820 As Interpreted By Cecil Sharp And His Followers, A Cappella Books (August 1990), 978-1556520914., Northampton, MA, second edition 1994. Country Dance and Song Society

Wild Rose Garland Dancers, "Dancing Flowers" is available for $29 and mailing costs from the Country and Dance Song Society bookstore at 116 Pleasant St., Suite 345, Easthampton, MA 01027-2759, 413-203-5467 or contact Wild Rose Garland Dancers.

ORGANIZATIONS

Country Dance and Song Society An online store for books and CDs, a library to answer questions, and many resources for the US dance community.

English Folk Dance and Song Society, Based at the Cecil Sharp House in London, and including the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library.

Wild Rose Garland Dancers, Information about our group, including our performance schedule and contact information.

WEBSITES

The Round, website of the Cambridge University English Country Dance Club. Contains a wealth of information on English country dances.

The digital Video Research Archive of Morris, Sword and Clog Dancing at Boston University: English and American Performances 1912-present. A video library of dance collected over decades and now maintained by Boston University.

www.youtube.com. Dance groups from around the world have posted their performances on YouTube. A great place to find new dances, or to see several versions of the same dance. Also a good resource for views of kit and equipment.

Constructing A Maypole

The maypole consists of a wreath mounted at the top of a pole and a stand to hold the pole. Ribbons are tied to the wreath and extend downward.

The ribbons measure 5 yards each, and we use 34. Be careful not to use too many ribbons or the people have trouble fitting around in a ring.

Wreath -- The easiest way is to get a grapevine wreath, or metal green covered wreath form from a local craft store and tie the desired amount of ribbons into the weave with a double knot. Take 8 ribbons and tie them on the inside of the wreath crossing over each other. I found a little basket to weave those top ribbons through to give more strength This center can then be nailed or balanced to the top of a pole.

Our team has progressed to using a metal top connected with wires (or ribbons) to a metal ring and then to a larger ring. The outer ring is a diameter of 15" and inner is 10.5". With metal straps it is bolted to a metal ring where the pole sits.

Pole -- The usual pole is a tool handle for a push broom or similar tool, commonly available at a hardware store. Start with the longest one available. We have two different length poles so that we can assemble a shorter pole for indoor use. We use a pole that comes apart in the middle with a metal “sleeve” so the poles can go together. Thus, we can take it apart and place in a car for transport.

The sleeve-joint:

Something to consider -- as the wood of the Maypole ages it will probably shrink just a bit. So it's OK for the tube to be a very snug fit over the Maypole. At least the part the screw goes into. This end will (hopefully) never be separated from the Maypole. Whatever your other end is, the one that goes into the other half of the sleeve (tube), it can start out snug. Through use it will wear some and become easier to use.

We also have a very large birch branch that we have used with the wreath sitting on top. This one we place in a heavy iron Christmas tree stand so it can accommodate the width of the branch at the bottom.

Stand -- We use a heavy, cast iron stand intended for use as a Summer umbrella stand, which is very inexpensive. Two dancers must hold the pole with one foot on the stand for stability. Another idea is to place heavy weights on the stand and put them in a rolling suitcase for easy transport. One can also hammer 4 large wedges to a pole, but it is hard to transport.

In the book, "Dancing Around the Maypole", detailed instructions are included for constructing a wooden/metal one found on pp. 87-95.

-Janet Trygstad

The bobbins used to make the jinglers are antique items that may be difficult to locate. We have occasionally found them for sale on internet sites. A typical search phase is "wooden textile mill bobbins". They are sometimes offered on Ebay.com or Etsy.com. One such source is Milling Around, LLC, Nobleboro, ME.