Square Dance Tutorial

GDP Plus Calls

Table of Contents
Single Circle to a Wave
Diamond Circulate
Cut the Diamond
Ping Pong Circulate
Track 2
Load the Boat
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The call Load the Boat usually starts in facing lines. There is one series of actions for the ends of the lines, and a different set of actions for the centers. Because the ends and centers are operating independently, it is easier to understand this call by looking at these actions separately.

The action for the ends consists of four parts: (1) start walking around the outside of the square passing another end dancer, (2) keep walking past another end dancer, (3) keep walking until they pass another end dancer (who will be the same person that they passed the first time), and (4) then immediately Face In (turn 1/4 toward the center of the square). This may sound complicated, but in practice it is really very simple. Basically the end dancers are all just walking around the outside of the square, passing right shoulders as necessary and counting the passes "1 ... 2 ... 3", and then facing in.

Meanwhile, the centers are also doing four things: (1) Pass Thru (with the other center that they are facing), (2) Face Out (turn 1/4 away from the center of the square), (3) Partner Trade (their partner at this point being the same person with whom they originally did the Pass Thru), and (4) Pass Thru (with the other centers). This sounds even more complicated -- and it is. But with practice most people don't find it difficult.

Again, an important aspect of this call is that the ends and centers are moving independently of each other. The ends should concentrate on walking around the outside, counting only other ends as they pass, and paying basically no attention to what the centers are doing. Similarly, the centers should concentrate on what they are doing with the other centers, and not allow themselves to be distracted by the ends.

The overall result, when the dancers all start in facing lines, is the formation known as "eight chain".