Ray Smith - Between Those Ladies (clip)

Title

Ray Smith - Between Those Ladies (clip)

Subject

Transitional/Western 1950s

Description

This 1953 clip features Texas caller Raymond Smith introducing the seeds of modern Western square dance style at Camp Becket in Massachusetts. He's calling "Between Those Ladies" by Toby Allen, a variation of the traditional figure "Right Lady High, Left Lady Low."

The form of square dancing that became MWSD started in the 1940s when callers began "hashing" traditional figures, first by having each couple do a different figure, then by writing new figures (such as the one here) that incorporated elements of older ones. The next step was to break the figures down into their essential elements, called "basics," and combine those basics in any possible order that allowed for reasonably smooth flow. This required training dancers to memorize the basics and respond to them instantly in any context. By the late 1950s most of the traditional figures, and even many of the first generation of new figures, had disappeared from the MWSD repertoire.

Creator

Raymond Smith

Source

Square Dance Foundation of New England (SDFNE)

Date Created

1953

Contributor

Square Dance Foundation of New England (SDFNE)

Spatial Coverage

USA, Massachusetts, Becket

Temporal Coverage

1950s

Item Relations

Item: Raymond Smith - photo is related to This Item