Documentary: Do-Si-Do in the Sky

I have heard of square dancing tractors, but I didn’t realize there were also square dancing helicopters! I’m going to have to make a whole new category for this!

Trailer for Do-Si-Do in the Sky

Here is the movie’s website.
http://www.dosidomovie.com/

You can rent or buy the video through Vimeo.

More information about the project to get this movie made on Indigogo:
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/do-si-do-in-the-sky-the-u-s-army-helicopter-square-dance-team#/story

There is also a book about this phenomenon:
Dancing Rotors by Jr Gilliand

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Book: Dancing for Busy People by Calvin Campbell

“Dancing for Busy People” is a collection of over 400 dances using easy to teach dance movements. Most dances use only walking movements based on commonly used square dance terminology. Only 25 basics are used. The same basics are used for contra dances, trios, quadrilles, Sicilian circles, mescolanzas and many of the round dance mixers. Some special description of footwork is necessary for the no-partner dances.

You can contact Calvin to purchase the book at this link:
http://d4bp.com/wp/the-book-d4bp

Anachronistic Costumes

Longer dresses were more common in earlier times, so why don’t we wear them? And bonnets, too? Of course, the answer is that the times changed, and so did the dress. But then, somehow, our idea of what to wear got frozen in time. Is it time to reconsider our anachronistic costumes?

old-time-hoedown-499x369

Photo: (source)

Figurative Use: Volkswagen Golf Referred to as “Champion Square Dancer”

What are people thinking about when “square dancing” pops into their heads? Do the words have a positive image, or a negative image? In general, it seems that non-dancers often use the term in a negative way. However, sometimes the term is just used for style. In the case of the following use, I think (but I am not really sure) that square dancer is being used to refer to the fact that this car is “boxy”. My gut feeling is that they are making fun of the car, but then they use the word “champion”, so it’s a bit confusing!

volkswagen

You can see the full review here.

2015 Volkswagen Golf R
http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2015-volkswagen-golf-r-test-review
May 2015

Figurative Use: Square Dancing in Title of Article about Geometry

I have started a new category on figurative use of the term “square dance” in popular culture. I have noticed that the term is often used in a pejorative sense to indicate something “ridiculous” or “unnecessarily complicated with no real difference at the outcome”. The following article demonstrates a different kind of use. In this case, the article is about geometry, and squares (the shape, not the dance) make an appearance, so the author has chosen to use the term “square dancing” purely for style. I am happy that it is not pejorative, but I am sad that the article doesn’t actually mention square dancing. (It mentions “dancing squares”, but that is not really the same thing at all.)

Square Dancing
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/03/14/square-dancing/
March 14, 2010
(pdf)

“Town Square” Dancing vs. Square Dancing

“Synchronized dancing in the town square” is not the same as square dancing. Apparently China is clamping down on noisy “square dancers” and this has been in the news lately, but many people, including the author of this article are confusing “dancing in the town square” with what has historically been known as “square dancing” in the West. They are quite different, and the only reason they are being confused is because of lazy translating.

The following article equates what the ladies in China are doing with square dancing that the royal family of Great Britain have done on visits to the US and Canada in the past. While I would LOVE to see the Queen and Prince Charles doing synchronized dancing in the town square, this is not what they were doing.

Sloppy reporting based on sloppy translating:

Square dancing unruly? Don’t tell the Queen
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/culturenews/11491388/Square-dancing-unruly-Dont-tell-the-Queen.html

Various resources about the art and sport of square dancing