Category Archives: In Popular Culture

Square Dance Ballet by George Balanchine

I am not sure what the connection with square dancing is, but the dancing is lovely!

Square Dancing on Call the Midwife

A very short scene of square dancing happens in “Call the Midwife”, season 4, episode 6. The title of the episode is Do Si Doh.

The dancing looks like square dancing, but the calls don’t match what the people are doing. I will give this one a “nice try”. It’s certainly better than a lot of other shows that don’t get it quite right.

You can read a recap of the episode here.

Square Dancing on Happy Days / Laverne and Shirley

The latest in the collection of square dancing appearing in popular culture. As usual, square dance is not portrayed in a very nice light. In this instance, Laverne and Shirley have to square dance with six other girls to win the right to marry the Fonz and Richie Cunningham (because the boys have managed to get themselves engaged to some cowgirls by accident). The square dance turns into a fighting contest. The protagonists end up winning, but square dancing loses. Why does this always end up happening?

Master Chief Dances in Honour of Square Dance Day (November 29)

Sorry, this is being added to the not quite right pile. Actually, it is full-on not right at all. Not only is there only one dancer (where are the other seven?), but the outdated plinky plonky music and weird dance moves turn into “Turn Down for What” and twerking halfway through. Try harder next year, Master Chief. Find seven good friends and some awesome music to celebrate Square Dance Day 2015, please!

Movie: Square Dance Story (2011)

Square Dance Story is a short fictional movie (14 minutes) that features square dancing. It was made in Canada (specifically in British Columbia) in 2011. There is no dialogue in this movie, and the only speech that is understandable is the square dance calls.


An outsider enters a strange bar hoping to connect with people and instead finds a curious square dance troupe in the back. In the troupe, he pursues a mysterious square dancer only to be chastised [by her] and the square dance caller steps in order to save the troupe from fragmenting.

Source: IMDB

The square dancing seems legitimate (although the calls and what the dancers are doing in the shots do not always match), so this instance of square dancing appearing in popular culture will not be given the ignominious label of “not quite right“, unlike the vast majority of other instances.

Square Dancing in That 70s Show

In our collection of square dance appearing in popular culture, there are very few examples where square dancing is portrayed properly and lots where it is not quite right. In That 70s Show, they have a caller, and he is calling actual calls that exist, but the calls don’t match what the dancers are doing. Also, they seem to be doing “old tyme” (or “traditional”) square dancing, but that may have been more popular in the 70s, so that could be historically accurate. If they had just matched the calls with the dancing, they could have avoided being relegated to the “not quite right” category. Try harder media people!