THE TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR FOLK DANCERS
I didn't write this one. It is by long-time Chicago leader, Jack Goldberg. I love it and had to include it in this collection.
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thou art but a newly won convert to the art of Terpsichore, break not into the
midst of thy predecessors, but rather add thy number to the farthest end of
- Nay, but when a dance is being taught, then art thou
welcome at any place in the line and at any time.
- If thou knowest not the dance, the name of which hath
been trumpeted to the four corners of the room, seek thou a place behind one
of thy fellows who doth indeed know thereof, and follow thou him in his footsteps.
Thus wilt thou, in good time, learn as did all dancers before thee.
- Thy leader speaketh from ancient wisdom. Therefore, when
he shall say of a dance, lo this dance is difficult, attempt it not except thou
dance behind the line; ask not to whom he speaketh, for his words are a message
- If thou desirest not to dance, but would instead
talk with thy friend, hesitate not to do as thou wilt, yet remember the privacy
of they conversation to raise not thy voice above the voice of thy leader, who
struggeleth to convey instruction.
- To every beginning there is an end. If thou does
enter in upon a dance, banish from thy thoughts, "I will drop out when
the dance waxeth fast." Thus wilt thou avoid the displeasure of thy comrades
to thy right and to thy left.
- If thou are experienced and knoweth the dance, be yet
gracious unto those who know not of it. Wert thou not also once a newcomer?
- When thy teacher leadeth a dance which thou knowest, but in a manner
different from they experience of yore, learn thou the new version and rebel
not. Thus is they stock increased.
- Be not backward of thy requests, that thy leader
may satisfy thy heart's desire. Thus dost thou help prepare a program for all.
- Give thou honor to the Golden Rule in the observance
thereof, but not in the breach thereof