THE BRIDGE OF ATHLONE

 

            A Long Dance in Double Jig time for any numbers of couples. Formation as in „Rince Fada.“

A.        Rising Step, Advance and Retire

            Each line of dancers hold hands and all dance „Rising Step“ twice, beginning on right foot (4 bars). The lines of dancers now advance and retire once, with Promenade Step (4 bars). All again dance „Rising Step“ twice (4 bars), then release hands, advance and pass through, by partners´ right, to opposite side, and turn right to face back (4 bars).16 bars.

            Repeat all above, crossing back to places, and finishing in original positions. 16 bars

 

B.        Down the Centre

            First couple (sometimes the first three or five couples if the line is a long one) také right hands and dance Sidestep down the centre between the teo lines, finishing with two short „threes“ (4 bars); sidestep back to places, finishing as before (4 bars). While they are dancing this, all the other dancers in the line stand in places.                                           8 bars

 

C.        Cast Off

            Leading couple (or couples) now část off, followed byl all the dancers in the line, the ladies promenading outside their line, and dancing down towards the opposite end of the line, the gents dancing in a similar manner on their side. (Nowadays at Céilithe, this, and the following movements are generally walked, to march-time music).               8 bars

 

D.        The Bridge

            When the couple (or couples) who have done movement B reach the end of the line, they turn in to meet, dance a little way up, with inside hands joined, and then form  an arch by      joining both hands and holding them in a raised position. The dancers following them pass underneath the arch and return to the top of the set, forming into two lines as at the beginning of the dance. When they reach their places they form a „bridge“ by joining bot hand with partner (uncrossed) and holding them in a raised position.

            The leading couple (or couples) now release hands and dance to the top of the set, the lady passing under the „bridge“, the gent passing outside. When they reach the top they dance back again, the gent this time passing under the „bridge,“ while the lady passes outside it.

            On reaching the bottom of the set they form up at the ends of the lines, and the other dancers release partners´ hands.

            The Dance is repeated, the couple (or couples) now at the top of the set leading.