Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ceili of the Week: The Three Tunes

Before we get to into all the ceili fun, please don't forget to comment on the previous post {click here} to vote for On My Toes in the Top Dance Blog 2013 Contest! Thanks! Now, onto the fun stuff... 

As the new year begins, the dance classes at the studio where I teach are beginning to learn their dances for the spring recital. Recital dances, as they're called, are really looked forward to by all the dancers. My beloved "Ceili Club" will be performing The Three Tunes this year, and the dancers are SO excited!

The 1996 Minor Ceili World Champions
Dancing The Three Tunes {1st dance of this video}

Weren't those dancers phenomenal?! Their energy, precision, and lines are definately qualities all ceili dancers should strive for... which is probably while I'll have the Ceili Club watch this video too! 

The Three Tunes is ...
-- An eight-hand Figure dance, from County Armagh
-- Danced to three tunes: Haste to the Wedding (jig), Leslie's Hornpipe, The German Beau (reel)

Movements of the Dance
Formation: Eight dancers in ring, holding hands
          {a} Sides (jig)
          {b} Rings (jig)
          {c} Lead Around (reel)
          {d} Stamp and Clap (reel)
          {e} See-Saw (hornpipe)
          {f} Roly-Poly (hornpipe)
          {g} Hook and Chain (jig)
          {h} Rings (jig)
          {i} Sides under Arms (reel)
          {j} Stamp and Clap (reel)
          {k} Thread the Needle (hornpipe)
          {i} Roly-Poly (hornpipe)

Why do I {love} this Ceili? 

Originally, the Ceili Club & I debated between performing the Sweets of May vs. The Three Tunes in the recital this year. After watching both dances on video, we decided that The Three Tunes was more appealing to an audience, because of the music changes and lack of repetition throughout the dance! We love that this figure dance doesn't have a body that repeats between figures, so the dance remains exciting to watch.  Plus, this dance has lots of stamping, clapping, roly-polies {is that the plural of roly-poly?!}, and even threatening fist shaking! Yes, Ar Rince Foirne actually says to shake fist "in a threatening manner." Only in Irish dance...

Have you danced The Three Tunes, or even competed in a feis with this dance? What do you like about The Three Tunes? 

Keep Dancing,


  1. Three Tunes is my favorite ceili. There is a special place for it in my heart and I can't really explain why!

  2. We've learned it quite recently with my friends just for the fun of roly-polies and fist shaking :)


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