[SCA-Dance] The Ulm 1503 Ball

Mary Railing mrailing2 at yahoo.com
Sat Apr 18 04:30:51 EDT 2015

I suspect that this sort of ball, like the Caroso ball, works better in a setting where people are likely to know the same repertoire, rather than at an event where people from very different places are attending. I must admit that I was caught flatfooted by a playlist that included almost nothing that I knew. The Ulm ball that Judith was inspired by is just another example of what seems to be a common practice of taking turns choosing a dance. Because this seems to be a common practice, I see no reason not to experiment with different ways to decide who chooses next, or different ways of setting up the playlist. Drackenwald dances mostly 15th century dances, so the Ulm setting works for them. At Terpsichore, where the cool thing is late Italian, the Caroso theme works.

 The only thing I did not like about the Ulm ball was the need to sort people by precedent. However authentic it may be, it was time consuming and awkward. However, this is another thing that would have worked better in period when people were always aware of rank, and which would work better in an SCA setting in which more people know each other than at a Known World event.


> On Apr 17, 2015, at 11:57 PM, Tim McDaniel <tmcd at panix.com> wrote:
> Interesting ball at KWDS: the Ulm Ball of 1503.  The people were
> sorted by sex on each side of the room, then sorted in order of
> precedence.  The top people were paired and chose a dance, which
> everyone who willed could dance, then the next pair, und so weiter.
> Extra factor: the only dances were those that could have been known in
> 1503, so 15th C Italian, Gresley, basse dance, and a few others.
> A comment I heard from someone in the peer section is that they would
> have been willing to try a few Gresleys with someone who knew of them,
> but their paired one didn't know them; their paired one knew Italians,
> but tihey didn't.  And by then, the most popular dances had been done
> -- yes, you could choose a repeat, but ...  I lucked out with Petit
> Rose: I was able to cram a bit for it, and people around dragged me
> thru it. (No, of course it's not hard -- I simply had done it only a
> couple of times and only at the most recent Terp.)
> I'm wondering about ways it might be improved.  I've not been to a
> Caroso ball, so I don't know what if anything is done there that might
> apply here.
> - a limited set of dances (like say 10), and maybe of couples to
>   choose from them?
> - include ECD?
> - a ball class?  On the list was, for example, Armynn, but we hadn't
>   been able to get to learning that.
> - pairing well in advance, so we could locate each other and work out
>   a dance?  Only after did I think of Casuelle Nouvelle, which I
>   haven't done in years but might have been able to prep for.
>   (Nobody did a basse dance.)
> - the next high-ranking person might not be stuck with just one
>   possible partner?
> - Calling / quick teaching reminder?  One brave soul induced
>   Newcastle, but despite doing it well in the street during the fire
>   alarm, I and those nearby fumbled too badly after the start to do
>   it.
> Danielis de Lindo
> -- 
> Tim McDaniel, tmcd at panix.com
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