Night Sail

By Rick Mohr; April 2006

Contra, Becket Caller's Box

Level: Easy/Intermediate


Ladies chain (8)

Circle right (8)


(With next couple) Circle left (8)

Dosido that new neighbor (8)

(Join hands in a wave of four--neighbors join right; ladies join left)


Balance the wave (4)

3/4 Hey (neighbors pull by with right hands to start) (12)


Gypsy partner (8)

Swing partner (8)

Nightingale plays a galvinizing contra arrangement of the Québecois song Nous Allons à une Fête, with Keith Murphy singing once the pesky caller quiets down. It has a killer steady drive building through the A's culminating in a full stop, which is wildly rewarding when matched with a balance on the B1 as the music zings back in. After an unsuccessful search for the perfect companion dance I wrote this one, and the combination is rather thrilling. Of course one isn't always so fortunate to have Nightingale playing, but the dance can be a decent thrill on its own.

Encourage the ladies to step out strongly and lead the transition from courtesy turn to circle right in the A1. Then encourage the gents to keep eye contact with their partners as (without breaking stride) everyone turns to circle left with new neighbors in the A2. This three-figure sequence is stolen from Gene Hubert's dance "Mama Lou's Reel", though it feels fairly different here.

Dedicated to Keith, Becky, and Jeremiah in honor of many stellar, sailing nights of dance music. You can hear Keith sing the song on his fine album Bound for Canaan.

Thanks to Lisa Sieverts for pointing out that this dance works great for beginners.

Video: Diane Silver & Mean Lids at a 2012 Scout House contra, Concord MA (posted by Frank Hsieh):