Virginia Reel ~ Hillgrove

Virginia Reel ~ Hillgrove Virginia Reel

Virginia Reel ~ Hillgrove is an American Country Dance. It was devised by Wilson in 1816. It was interpreted by Thomas Hillgrove in 1857 and published in The Scholar's Companion and Ball-Room Vade-Mecum. Originally a 5 Couple Longways this version is a proper Longways as many as will dance. In this dance the couples are permuted by: 51234. The minor set lasts 102 bars.

This evolved out of the English dance Sir Roger de Coverly. Thomas Hillgrove (a dancing instructor from New York) in The Scholar's Companion & Ball-Room Vade-Mecum is the first (that I've found) to call it The Virginia Reel.

Hillgrove's dance is almost the same as the original in the behavior of long first and second corners (Hillgrove starts with 2nd corners, Wilson with 1st), but diverges once the 1s act together as a couple.

The dance is a longways set for a variable number of couples, usually between 4 and 8.

The animation plays at 120 counts per minute normally, but the first time through the set the dance is slowed down so people can learn the moves more readily. 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.

An online description of the dance may be found here.

1-4Long 2nd corners advance, honour, retreat
5-8Long 1st corners advance, honour, retreat
9-12Long 2nd corners advance, right hand turn, retreat
13-16Long 1st corners advance, right hand turn, retreat
17-202nd corners left hand turn
21-241st corners left hand turn
25-282nd corners two hand turn
29-321st corners two hand turn
33-362nd corners dos-à-dos
37-401st corners dos-à-dos
41-441s right hand turn partner once and a half
45-481s left hand turn 2s once
49-521s right hand turn partner once
53-561s left hand turn 3s once
57-601s right hand turn partner once
61-641s left hand turn 4s once
65-681s right hand turn partner once
69-721s left hand turn 5s once
73-741s right hand turn partner half (to proper)
75-801s join hands sashay up the set
81-881s cast to bottom, other couples follow
89-961s lead to top, other couples follow
97-1021s sashay down to the bottom
103-104Honor partner

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.

< Prev Top Next >

The dance itself is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. The interpretation is out of copyright, and is in the public domain. My visualization of this dance is copyright © 2019 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.