Script For an Intro Night

Type Document Author Allan Hurst (allanhurst at gmail dot com) Date 2023-09-30 Links Intro Night PDF Description When Allan Hurst was faced with the prospect of doing an Intro night for his club, he induced Andy Shore to let him record one of his intro sessions. Allan then transcribed it – pretty much word for … Read more

A Few Helpful Tips & Ideas from EDSARDA

Type Idea Submitter Eastern District Square & Round Dance Association (EDSARDA) Date 2023-02-24 Links EDSARDA Tips and Ideas Description These ideas and tips were published on a private Facebook group for Eastern District Square & Round Dance Association, U.S., formed to exchange practical tips and ideas on promoting and advertising our activity. The material includes … Read more

Mental Image Calling Materials

Mental Image is a calling technique that allows the caller to mentally track dancers and successfully resolve without visually checking the square. Of course, callers must observe the square to ensure proper timing and successful execution, but the advantage of mental image calling is that successful resolution does not depend on error-free execution by pilot squares. This collection lists a number of items containing information about mental image calling. The vast majority of this information was created by Don Beck who is perhaps the foremost authority on mental image calling.

Square Dancing And Its Relation To Mathematics

Ever wondered how a couple of theoretical physicists might go about communicating their love of square dancing to their colleagues? Well, by explaining some of the underlying mathematical structures of MWSD of course! But even if you’re not a math virtuoso you’ll enjoy this enthusiastic and entertaining 1-1/2 hour presentation by Karin Rabe and Greg Moore.

QR Codes

Claudia Littlefair provided this useful information about using QR codes on posters and websites. It describes what a QR code is and how you can generate them for free. This article was published in edition 2022-6 of Claudia Littlefair’s Alberta Chatter Newsletter.

Ray Owens established the website to help callers and clubs put together websites, marketing materials, and videos that look professional and use the latest technologies. He provides website design and maintenance services, creation of promotional videos, and online payment processing services.

Introduction to Social Media

The internet provides myriad opportunities to promote dances, clubs, and our square dance activity in general. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube are some of the more popular ones. But how do you launch yourself into this world? It seems so complicated. The documents linked above provide an introduction. The first, “What Is Social Media?” by Brian Elmer provides an overview of some of the platforms and explains how they can be used. The second, “Facebook Primer” by Scott and Erin Byers goes into more detail about Facebook in particular. The third describes how clubs in Williams Lake, BC use social media both to promote their groups.

Round Dance Cueing For Callers

Type Presentation Event Narrated Slideset Date 2022-06-11 Presenters Daryl Clendenin ( Links Cueing For Callers (Narrated Slide Set) (View Online)   (Download) Description Daryl Clendenin is well known caller and Accredited Caller Coach who has taught countless caller schools. In this narrated PowerPoint presentation Daryl provides a brief course for square dance callers in cueing … Read more

Live Recordings of Legends Calling

This is a collection of nearly 300 evenings of modern square dancing, recorded live at the events. Most of the files come from the 1950s through the 1980s. The collection includes many well-known New England callers (e.g., Al Brundage) as well as others from elsewhere in the U.S. (e.g., Pancho Baird, Les Gotcher). This is a good representation of the traveling callers from the first 50 years of MWSD.

Caller School In a Box

Type Presentation Event Narrated Slideset Date 2022-03-27 Presenters Daryl Clendenin ( Links Download:   For The Newbie Caller (Narrated Slide Set) View/Download:   For The Newbie Caller (PDF) Download:   Mental Image For The Girls (Narrated Slideset) Description Daryl Clendenin is well known caller and Accredited Caller Coach who has taught countless caller schools. Many newer callers find … Read more

TV Video Promoting Square Dancing

This six minute video was broadcast on an Ottawa community service channel to promote a new dance series being presented by Wendy VanderMeulen. While done in an interview format, it also includes some great clips of young people dancing. Wendy does an outstanding job of explaining what square dancing is about, how it works, and what its benefits are.

British Columbia Library of Promotional Materials

This page includes a large collection of promotional materials gathered or created for the BC Square & Round Dance Federation. It includes posters, brochures, videos, music and instructional materials, and more. It also includes 2 complete lesson plans and guides to help newer callers teach SSD, one in the normal 12 week format, the second in a longer 21 week format.

Breaking Bread and Building Connections

As square dancers, we know that food unites. Breaking bread together is one of the oldest forms of community interaction. It provides a valuable time and place to socially connect and bond through conversation and laughter. In this Alberta Chatter article, editor Claudia Littlefair documents some Winning Ways stories showing how you can use the power of food to make your club more successful.

Ideas For Club Activities From Social Connections Contest #1

In late 2021 the Social Connections Committee ran a contest to solicit ideas to promote social connections and bonding in the square dance activity. The responses often included many valuable thoughts and ideas covering a range of topics. This document contains ideas for club activities that foster sociability and social bonding.

Ideas For Group/Club Interaction From Social Connections Contest #1

In late 2021 the Social Connections Committee ran a contest to solicit ideas to promote social connections and bonding in the square dance activity. The responses often included many valuable thoughts and ideas covering a range of topics. This document contains ideas for interactions between club members that foster sociability and social bonding.

Ideas For Dances From Social Connections Contest #1

In late 2021 the Social Connections Committee ran a contest to solicit ideas to promote social connections and bonding in the square dance activity. The responses often included many valuable thoughts and ideas covering a range of topics. This document contains ideas for things that can be done at dances to foster sociability and social bonding.

Ideas From Social Connections Contest #1

In late 2021 the Social Connections Committee ran a contest to solicit ideas to promote social connections and bonding in the square dance activity. The responses often included many valuable thoughts and ideas covering a range of topics. This “omnibus document” contains all the ideas submitted during the contest.

Long Distance Calling

Tom Kaiser tells the story of his summer in rural Michigan where he wound up teaching beginners for two different clubs in the area. When it was time for him to return home to California one of them asked if he could continue calling for them remotely. This story describes how it all came about and how it worked. Zoom dancing during the pandemic has demonstrated that remote calling is technically feasible. In the future we can expect that groups that have no callers near them might be interested in using a “remote” caller. If you would like to see what is involved, this article is for you.

It’s Not Square To Dance

This 10 minute video produced by Andrea Long provides an entertaining synopsis of the square dance activity. A little bit of history, some of the square dance culture, and video snippets from around the world, as told through interviews with square dancers and callers. If you’ve been trying to explain square dancing to your friends, you could show them this.

Tim Marriner’s Caller Education Materials

Tim Marriner was a CALLERLAB Accredited Caller Coach who created and published a large quantity of caller educational material over the years. Tim generously made this wealth of informative articles available for free download in PDF format. Sadly, Tim died suddenly in 2016, depriving square dancing of one of its most knowledgeable and articulate advocates.

Tony Parkes On The History of Square Dancing

Type Presentation Event Newbie Callers Zoom Presentation Date 2021-09-18 Presenters Tony Parkes Links Video Handout Description During the pandemic Dan Lyke and Don Beck hosted weekly presentations and discussions aimed at serving newer and beginning callers. This presentation on square dance history is one of them. Here is Dan’s description of the content: Tony Parkes … Read more

Square Dance Foundation of New England

Type Resource Owner Square Dance Foundation of New England, Inc. (SDFNE) Links Website Description The Square Dance Foundation of New England (SDFNE) was founded in 1973 by caller and editor of The New England Square Dance Caller Magazine, Charlie Baldwin and his wife Bertha. It has a membership of individuals, clubs, and organizations who continue … Read more

Promotional Materials

This collection contains pointers to a variety of ready-made promotional materials, such as posters, flyers, and brochures. Some are generic, some are more specific to a club or dance. Some are in an editable form, others are PDF or image. All can be mined for ideas.

Education Recordings About Singing Calls

The following education session recordings from past CALLERLAB conventions deal with Singing Calls. Topics such as musical presentation, singing with others, and singing call choreography, etc. The selections included here focus on one or more of these singing call areas as their primary topic. Related and overlapping topics such as Showmanship and Voice have collections of their own.

Cal Campbell’s Square Dance Potpourri Page

Cal Campbell has an archive page where he has been posting a large collection of square dance documents and materials. Items include various Sets In Order Yearbooks, articles and books he has written over the years, collections of modules and singing call figures, party dance material, and more. Some of the documents and books have been long out of print. An extremely valuable archive page.

Social Square Dance (SSD), an Introduction and Overview by Barry Johnson

In this one hour video presentation Barry Johnson provides a comprehensive introduction and overview of the Social Square Dance (SSD) program. He draws on his own personal experience, the observed experiences of other groups in his area, and stories from around the US. He discusses not only the benefits of using the program but also the obstacles that may have to be hurdled and strategies for dealing with them. The presentation provides a practical guide to using SSD successfully.

Sounding Like A Caller

Daryl Clendenin is well known caller and Accredited Caller Coach who has taught countless caller schools. Daryl has long felt that more emphasis should be placed on the skill of patter calling with the music. That is what is commonly referred to as “sounding like a caller”, or sometimes “chanting”. Daryl has created some recordings that new callers can use to learn how to practice making that sound. The main recordings can be downloaded at the link above. Below is a sample clip to give you an idea what they sound like.

Teaching Beginners on Zoom

Have you wondered if it might be possible teach beginner dancers via Zoom? Ray Brendzy has been doing just that during the pandemic. He has made video recordings of his lessons available online. Using these recordings you can brush up on your own dancing, or lead non-dancer friends through the lessons. The videos show a group of 4 dancers doing the calls.

CALLERLAB Certified Square Dance Teacher (CSDT) Program

The CALLERLAB Certified Square Dance Teacher (CSDT) Program has been created to provide a credential to callers who are square dance teachers. The program evaluates education, experience, knowledge, and skill pertaining to square dance teaching. The program is designed to give the well-qualified square dance teacher an actual credential that could be recognized not only by the square dance community but educational and recreational institutions as well. The CSDT program is meant to be voluntary, challenging, credible, and fair.

Square Dance Hall Of Fame

This website honors the 34 nominees to the Sets in Order American Square Dance Society Hall of Fame. Dorothy Shaw was the first person named, in January 1961, and successive nominations took place through 1983. The site includes the Gene Anthony portrait of each inductee, along with biographical information, audio files, links to interviews and awards, and additional photographs.

Hookup Chart for Zoom Calling

Lorne Smith from Calgary, Alberta is one of the most prolific Zoom callers. He has supplied a cabling diagram describing how the various sound and computer components need to be cabled together for calling over Zoom. He shows two options: the first shows running Zoom and your music player on the same computer; the second shows running Zoom on one computer and the music player on another.

Newbie Callers Zoom Discussions

During the COVID-19 pandemic all callers suddenly found themselves with lots of time on their hands. Jeremy Butler and Ted Lizotte decided to use some of that time productively and provide a series of online lectures to further caller education. A wide variety of topics and speakers were covered.

Planning To Implement SSD

During the pandemic a long series of online seminars called the Corona Learning Assistance Seminar Series (C.L.A.S.S) was presented. One of them, delivered by Jeremy Butler, explained the planning and process they went through to introduce the Social Square Dance (SSD) system to their club.

History Of Computer Choreography Programs

During the pandemic a number of Zoom discussion groups emerged dealing with a variety of square dance topics. One was aimed at new callers and was hosted by Don Beck and Dan Lyke. On October 31, 2020 their guest speaker was Clark Baker who delivered a fascinating presentation on the history of computer programs designed to assist callers in creating choreography. As a person who developed one of the first – if not the actual first – such programs, Clark brings a unique, well informed insight to this piece of square dance history.

SSD FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Those who are considering use of the Social Square Dance (SSD) system usually have many questions about how it works, the best way to implement it, and the issues they may have to address along the way. The Social Square Dance Committee has published the SSD FAQ document to address these questions.

The How & Why of New Basics

This paper by Paul Hartman appeared in American Square Dance magazine in 1974. It describes how square dancing evolved to become what we now call Modern Western Square Dancing during the period from just after World War II to the early seventies. This period was marked by changes in the style and philosophy of square dancing and the influx of many new calls. These new calls were called new “basics”, hence the title of the paper. The paper describes how the process of introducing these new calls shaped the dance we know and culminated in the formation of CALLERLAB with the explicit mission to provide some management and control of the process.

Caller Tutorial and Discussion Sessions

During the COVID-19 pandemic a number of Zoom caller groups emerged. These sessions typically provide tutorials and/or discussion on topics of interest to callers. The Orange County Callers Association website is hosting a collection of recordings of such sessions. A wide variety of topics and speakers are covered.

Two-Person (Minimal Phantoms) Square Dancing

Bob & Dorothy Simpson and Darby Love, in Nanaimo, BC created a whole series of videos they titled “Dancing In The Garage”. They are aimed at people who can’t assemble an entire square – or maybe not even another couple. This story explains how they went about creating the series and designing their choreography to provide a dance experience for one couple – or even individual people. Their objective was to minimize the use of phantoms, which differs somewhat from many other offerings that assume at least 4 real people.

Welcoming Dance Environment Documentation

Square Dancing is an overwhelmingly social activity. Therefore, it is essential that square dance groups create a social environment that feels welcoming, engaging, and safe. Events in recent years have caused shifts in social norms that raise questions about what “welcoming, engaging, and safe” actually means. CALLERLAB has acted to provide guidance in this area. The result is two documents, one providing an overview of objectives and a handbook of procedures, and a second containing a template process that clubs could adapt for handling instances of inappropriate behavior.