3/20/23: This is a work in progress. I dumped our list of “Known Knowns” favorite dances in the second table (about 160+ of dances at least someone at TNFD knows/used to know) and I’ll work on entering them into the fancy table with tags and links with priority given to dances being taught and those that new people are interested in. There are also “Known Unknowns” (dances we know we have forgotten), which I haven’t yet captured in a format easily ported to a table. Someday, I’ll either pay a yearly fee to get filtering for the table or code my own hack to generate filter terms you can copy into the search bar.David Poulson, TNFD Coordinator
Here is a partial list of the folk dances we at TNFD know, used to know, are learning, or should learn. In the history of recreational international folk dancing in USA and throughout the world, there is a plethora of folk dances and plenty of websites with dance notes, history, and videos/links (check the Links page of this site). If there is a dedicated page on this site for a particular dance, as indicated by the icon in § column of the table, what you will find there are some interesting tidbits about the dance and additional links to sources for more information and videos. If there is not a dedicated page, there will be, eventually, in the info column, links to my top favorites for an information site and a demonstration video , and if I can find them, the music and a teaching video .
How to Use This Table
If you want to go right to a dance and you know the name, you can find it alphabetically in the Dance column, or you can type the name in full or in part in the search bar. You can perform a “free-version” filtering of this table by adding as many key words to the search box as you want. Use the codes from the key tables below or use terms, such as the country. For example, if you wanted to find easy dances from Israel, enter S1 israel into the search bar (the search is not case sensitive). If you want to list only the well-know dances, enter F1. The default search is Boolean AND (all terms must be found). You can use OR (capital OR) for searches like F1 OR F2 to return dances that are either Well-Know OR Mostly-Know favorites. Make sure you are on page 1, if the table spans multiple pages, otherwise, only the current page will be searched/filtered.
Keys to the TNFD Dances Table
|K2||OK w/ Leader|
|TS||Teaching Status||T1||Recently Taught|
|T3||Needed for Group|
|T4||Needed for New|
|HH||Hand Hold||W||Held w/ arms up|
|V||Held w/ arms down|
Dance Programmer’s Notes:
- FL: Favorite Level (F1..F4) is a measure of how much TNFD loves to do the dance.
- GK: Group Knowledge (K1..K4) is a measure of TNFD as a group’s familiarity with a dance. Several less-familiar dances can be done if a strong leader is present. Review or Teach indicate that attention is required before attempting the dance, lest only a few will enjoy the dance.
- SL: Skill Level (S1..S4) is a measure of the folk dancer’s ability required to learn and execute the dance.
- EI: Energy Intensity is a measure of how much effort it takes to execute the dance. Look for a Gentle dance after a Lively dance, so dancer can recover.
- §: Only dances with a icon in the § column have a dedicated page on this site. Click the icon to go to that page.
- Info column contains various links to external websites for information and videos. Just click an icon. These links are my preferences, although there are usually many other choices available on the web.
- Choreographer name in (parenthesis) indicates that the dance was introduced by that person to recreational international folk dancing.
- Fm: Formation indicates if the physical dance arrangement. Note that the most common form of folk dance is an open circle where the is a leader and the group holds hands in an unconnected circle, although some will refer to that as a “line dance.” On this site, line dance is reserved for the individual block formation of dancers most familiar as “Country Line Dancing.”
- HH: Hand Hold is a general guideline for hand position and whether or not they are held in the line. If hands are held, they can be raised (W), held low (V), or held in a cross basket hold (X) or a reverse basket hold (+).
- TS: Teaching Status (T1..T4) indicates if a dance was recently taught, will soon to be taught, or needs to be taught for the entire group or for new dancers. This helps keep track of less familiar dances so they can be worked into the dance program for practice.
- Taught indicates the last time a dance was taught at TNFD.
- Teacher indicates who taught the dance the latest time at TNFD.