Sadler's Wells

Sadler's Wells is an English Country Dance. It was published by Playford (John Young) (website) in 1728 in The Dancing Master, Vol. the second, 4th ed.. It was interpreted by Douglas & Helen Kennedy in 1929 and published in Country Dance Book, New Series. Found in The Playford Assembly. It is a proper Duple Minor dance. The minor set lasts 32 bars. It is in the key: D minor.

Playford writes:

Note: Each Strain is to be Play'd twice over.
The 1st cu. back to back with the 2. cu. and back to back with their own Partners 1st cu turn the 2d. cu. and thur their own Partners Meet and sett, all four turn single and clap hands, all four go quite round The 1st cu. go the Figure thro' the 2d. cu. and cross over, and turn their own Partners

The primary tune was published with the dance, Fried de Metz Herman added an alternate tune, Pease Strae composed by Niel Gow. It was performed by Bare Necessities (Earl Gaddis, Mary Lea, Peter Barnes, and Jacqueline Schwab) on the album Favorites of the Boston Centre. The music is used with permission from the Country Dance Society, Boston Centre, Inc.

The animation plays at 111 counts per minute normally, but the first time through the set the dance is slowed down so people can learn the moves more readily (no music plays during this slow set). Men are drawn as rectangles, women as ellipses. Each couple is drawn in its own color, however the border of each dancer indicates what role they currently play so the border color may change each time through the minor set.

The dance contains the following figures: hand turn (allemande), set, turn single, circle, lead, figure eight (and probably others).

If you find what you believe to be a mistake in this animation, please leave a comment on youtube explaining what you believe to be wrong. If I agree with you I shall do my best to fix it.

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The dance itself is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. The interpretation is copyright © 1929 by Douglas & Helen Kennedy. My visualization of this dance is copyright © 2020 by George W. Williams V and is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website is copyright © 2021,2022 by George W. Williams V
Creative Commons License My work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Most of the dances have more restrictive licensing, see my notes on copyright, the individual dance pages should mention when some rights are waived.