On Tue, 29 Sep 1998 17:24:55 +0300
ωμε ξο <[log in to unmask]> asked:
>Is there a place to learn about the old dances from 18th and even
>before, what dances they have and what tunes and in what keys?
I think the best source of info about the older Irish dancing is
from the writing of Brenda/in Breathnach. He wrote the book, FOLK MUSIC
AND DANCES OF IRELAND, and several articles about Irish dance which
appeared in the Clare journal DAL gCAIS. The articles were reprinted
in 1983 by DAL gCAIS in a booklet called DANCING IN IRELAND (or
something like that, it's at home). I think the book is still available
it has been reprinted.
Another source is Pat Murphy's book, TOSS THE FEATHERS. This
book gives a good general history of dancing in this century and the
last, and has some information about dancing before that.
Unfortunately not much is known about dancing in Ireland in the
18th century and especially earlier. There were many English visitors
to Ireland who wrote of how the Irish were addicted to dancing but they
don't describe the dances. Names and phrases like "trotting the hey"
and Trenchmore (= rince mor) just don't tell us very much. It is likely
that many dances done in Ireland were like the dances done in England written
down by (what's-his-name, Langford?, my mind is going) in the 17th
century but there are no specific observations. If anyone else knows of
any other primary information or even early secondary comments, I'd love
to find out about it also.
Hope this helps a little.