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JUNE and JULY 2021: John and band presented a series of workshops for the Monaro Folk Society previewing all the material we planned to present at their 2021 Colonial Ball. Due to Covid the ball never went ahead. Below is the ball promotion and program that we published on this page before it was cancelled. We  covered the whole program fully in the 3  live music workshops at All Saints Church Hall, Ainslie, and partly in the first weeks of the 2nd semester 2021 ANU Dancing through the Ages classes at the the ANU.

Colonial Ball 2021. 

Folk Dance Canberra Hall 114 Maitland St. Hackett, A.C.T.

7:00 to 11:30pm SATURDAY 25 September 2021

Tickets now available a


Music will be offered by the Earthly Delights players—with Sally Taylor on piano, Peter Taylor on guitar, Ian Bull on mandolin, guitar and banjo, Sarah Bull on clarinet and saxophone and John Gardiner-Garden on Irish flute and whistle, English Bagpipes and hurdy-gurdy. Main caller will be John Gardiner-Garden and guest caller on some dances Katherine Tammaro.


Dress theme: flowers, fans and bows. To rise to the theme women might want to include a flower or bow motif in their dress or accoutrements and hang a fan by a ribbon from their wrist, and men might add a flower to their lapel and wear a bow tie—or simply be prepared to ‘bow’ when asking ladies for a dance.


Dance and music theme: dances and tunes that were known to have been enjoyed in 19th century Australia. While some of the tunes and dances are drawn from notations and descriptions in Australia notebooks and diaries, some of the music is from scores published and known to have been played in Australia and most of the dances are drawn from dance manuals that were published in Australia, be it by the Wivells in Adelaide, Roberts in Melbourne, Read in Sydney, Christison in Maitland or Lovenberry in Brisbane.


Below is the draft ball program with the quadrilles in capitals and with titles as they appear (along with full descriptions, facsimiles of sources and reconstruction notes) in Vol. VI to X (books 17 to 31) of John’s Dancing through the Ages (= DTTA). Notes on some of the dances ball-goers will see displayed in breaks can also be found in John’s Dance Delights (=DD) and Lost Dances of Earthly Delights (=LD)If you want to get any of these books so as to read up more about dances listed (perhaps have your musicians play the music and you dance friends practice the dances) follow links on Earthly Delights’ books&CDs webpage ( If you are local to Canberra and want to practice all the dances listed join John’s ANU Sport’s Saturday 2:30-5:30pm 10-weeks ‘Dancing through the Ages’ course that start on 31 July ( If you aren’t local to Canberra and don’t want to get the books but want to practise something in order to make the most of this 19th-century-theme program, we suggest you practice a basic polka, schottische, polka mazurka and varsovienna taking a nice round ballroom hold, keeping yourself upright, dancing on the balls of your feet and gliding instead of rocking or stomping. You’ll feel great! But importantly don’t worry if you have no opportunity to practice dances and don’t know any of the dances here listed! A fun time is guaranteed if you simply listen to the caller, move to the music, try and pickup on patterns and take leads when offered. The MC will be encouraging participants to be social and spread their dance invitations around so experience might be shared and ball pleasure enhanced.


The program of 20 participatory dances will be punctuated by four short displays of couples dance variants and a mid-evening bring-your own supper break on the veranda.




Cotillon with mixing ('The meeting', 'The exchange', 'The Pursuit', 'The Serpent', 'The Circles', 'The Winding Alley'); Cotillon medley with circles and columns ('The Reunion', 'The Labyrinth', 'The Bridge', 'The Zig-zag', 'The Endless chain') in Roberts Melb. 1876 (all in DTTA X) all to d’Albert’s ‘Queen of the Ball’, ending in formation for QUADRILLE FRANCAIS (2e) (DTTA IX) to d'Albert's ‘Pasha Quadrille’, published in Sydney in 1851 ‘as performed by Winterbottom’s unrivalled band’, and known to be performed in both Sydney and Melbourne (my copy has a handwritten ‘Toowoomba’ on it).


Circassian (2)-Pollock no.3 (DTTA VIII) set to 'National Waltz’ and 'Highland Laddie' in Laing ms from early 19th century Tasmania.


Display of a Grand Polka medley (based on 19th-century style variants described in John’s LD and DD) to music from John’s LD, followed by an everyone-in free Polka Piquee and Polka Russe (1) & (2) (DTTA X) to Henry Marsh’s ‘Picnic polka’, Sydney, 1857. Dance survives in Australia as 'Princess Polka'.


PRINCE IMPERIAL QUADRILLE (IX) as in virtually all extant 19th century Australian dance manuals, set to namesake score. (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).

Circassian Circle (4) (DTTA X) ‘No.6’ Lovenberry’s Brisbane 1884 manual, set to Scottish tune 'Keel row'


Display of a Varsovienna medley (based on 19th century-style variants described in John’s LD and DD) to Abadie's 'Mexico' Paris 1854, followed by an everyone-in free Varsovienna (DTTA IX) as in Read 1876, Christison 1882, Lovenberry 1884 to the same score.


LANCERS FOR 16 (2) and (3) to ‘Pirates of Penzance Lancers (DTTA IX and X). Dance under ‘Sixteen Lancers' in Wivell Junior Adel. 1891 to dance score derived from Gilbert and Sullivan opera.


Country Bumpkin (1) (VI) to ‘Campbell's jig’ and 'Highland Laddie.  Annabella Boswell writes in her diary of enjoying the dance at an after-dinner party at Lake Innes House (near Port Macquarie) in 1843. Guest caller Katherine Tammaro.




Display of the New Iolanthe Schottische medley (based on 19th century-style Schottische variants described in John’s LD and DD) to Royle's Iola suite (DD), followed by an everyone-in free Schottische, Highland Schottische (DTTA IX) and/or Military Schottische / Pas de Quatre / Barn Dance (DTTA X), three dances described in most early Australian manuals, all to the same Iola score.


LES VARIETES PARISIENNES (DTTA IX) to namesake score. This Quadrille is presented as ‘Varieties Parisienne' in Roberts Melb. 1875 and 'La Parisienne' in Lovenberry Brisb. 1884.


Cotillon l’Eventail (DTTA X), a dance unique to Lovenberry’s Brisbane 1884 manual, set to JGG's ‘Whirl of Memories’ waltzes (LD Court 16).


Display of the Australian Polka Mazurka, 19th century Polka mazurka and Polka Redowa variants arranged by John’s to fit the namesake suite by Armand Roeckel, Sydney 1863 (DTTA IX/DD), followed by a free Polka Mazurka to Daphne’s Sydney 1890s ‘Waratah Polka Mazurka’ (DTTA X/DD), the basic dance being in most 19th cent. Australian manuals.


Circassian Circle (4) (DTTA X) ‘No.9’ in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884 manual set to the ‘Blind Cupid’ waltz set (LD Village 10).


QUADRILLE DES DAMES (DTTA IX), described in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884,

to Paris published sheet music.


Nine-pin Quadrille (DTTA IX), versions of which have been collected in Australia, set to John’s ‘Ashby’s Jig’ set (LD Spring 2). Guest caller Katherine Tammaro.


Free ‘cut-in’ Jig (DTTA VI)a dance alluded to in many Australian sources, set to Jane Austen music collection tune Perigordine


QUADRILLE DE JEAN GILLES (DTTA X), a dance by Christison and in his Manual of dancing…, Maitland, 1882, set to to d'Albert's ‘Sydney Exhibition Quadrille’ suite, published in London but 'dedicated to Ladies of NSW'.


Cotillon medley with scarves (1) (including the 'flying handkerchieves', a dance in Roberts Melb. 1875, set to ‘Sweet Bunch of Daisies’, ‘Come where my love lies dreaming’ and ‘Only a Pansy Blossom’ from ‘The Kalgoorlie suite’ in The Australian Music Book no.3, Melb., Syd. and Adelaide, c.1892.


Sir Roger de Coverley (DTTA VII), dance in most 19th century Australian manuals, set to John’s ‘Northern Stars Southern Skies’ slip-jig set (LD Town 16).  


JAFA (John & Aylwen's Fun Adventure) Sat.17 & Sun.18 April 2021 
The 19th century dance and costume weekend 
at the historic Yarralumla Woolshed in Canberra, where there will be free parking for everyone.
Every April for more than a decade we've enjoyed a JAFA event at a wonderful Canberra venues. 
We have been able to reschedule the grand event planned for 3rd weekend of April 2020 to the 3rd weekend of April 2021- and add in a pre-event treat on the afternoon of Friday 16 April! See new poster below.
 To offer us the perfect venue to focus in April 2021 on dance and music with 19th-century Australian links (elegant Australian colonial-era dance) while still being able to sport Regency or Victorian costume, and to make tickets 1/2 of the price of our Albert Hall events, we are setting the weekend at very special heritage venue, Canberra' Yarralumla Woolshed. If the Duchess of Richmond could hold her famous ball on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo in a stable, we can hold our famous mid-April event in this beautiful venue.  

As in years past, starting straight after a morning tea each day, expect dance workshops to build the confidence of first-timers as well as expanding the horizons of connoisseurs.  

On Saturday the dance workshops will continue after a provided lunch, then stop 4pm or soon after for all to check out stalls, rest, get dinner and finalise dress for the Grand ball that will start at 7pm, will go through to midnight and will feature a wonderfull well-researched program of music and dance with links to early Australia (see program below).   

On Sunday after the provided morning tea, dancing or board games, there will be a costume parade, bring-your-own picnic lunch and provided outdoor period games on lawns near the Woolshed... and then another full-band dance in the hall - with a theme of 19th-century dance games (see program below) .. and afternoon-tea will be provide. 

NB. The pre-event Friday 16 April gathering that was last year planned for 7-9pm at Yarralumla, is now planned for 1:45-5:00pm at the Douro estate on the Canberra side of Yass. 

Please see email notices to participants at the bottom of the

Here is the poster with latest information to share with family and friends and further below are programs for the two balls:



FRIDAY at the Douro estate, Yass.

1:45-3:00pm viewing of and talk on 19th century Australian dance materials at

John & Aylwen’s new home at 6 Glover Drive

3:00-5:00pm tour of and talk on the Old Douro homestead offered by owners

Dr Rick Williams & Ms Judy Brooker at 5 Glover Drive.


SATURDAY at the Yarralumla Woolshed, Canberra.

(9:30-10:30am costume hire at venue)

10:30am morning tea

11am-1pm dance class

1-2pm roast-roll lunch

2-4pm dance class

4-6:30pm free time to find dinner and dress

7-till-midnight  GRAND BALL  (see program over)


SUNDAY at the Yarralumla Woolshed, Canberra.

10am morning tea,

10:30-12:30 dance class

12:30-2pm costume parade, period games, & bring-your-own picnic

2-6pm AFTERNOON TEA DANCE (see program over)

(6-7pm pack-up and costume return)


MUSIC on both days offered by Sally Taylor (piano), Peter Taylor (guitar), Sarah Bull (clarinet and penny whistle), Ian Bull (mandolin, guitar and banjo), Cathleen Hutchinson (violin) and John Gardiner-Garden (flute, pipes and hurdy gurdy).

An * denotes dances the four dances on the weekend that are just for those who have prepared. All the other dances are called or lead - with guest caller named in bracket at end of dance entry, and when not named the dance leader is John Gardiner-Garden, who is also the MC.

For full information on the dances and music in the programs below see my relevant books. In brackets after the dance title is a reference to the book in which I present the dance- Roman numerals refer to the volume of my Dancing through the Ages published late 2020, letters DD refer to my Dance Delights published 2020, LD refer to my Lost Dances of Earthly Delights published 2005. 


The Australian sources cited are:

E.J. [Edward James] Wivell, The ballroom companion, Adelaide, c.1873

Roberts, Manual of fashionable dances, Melbourne, 1875 (and later editions),

Mrs Charles Read, Australian ballroom guide, Sydney, 1876 (and later editions),

J.H. Christison, A manual of dancing and etiquette, Maitland, 1882,

 R. Lovenberry, The Australian M.C. or dancers enquire within, Brisbane, 1884,

E.J. [Edmund Jerome] Wivell, Six Square Dances, Adelaide, 1891, and Seven Square Dances, Adelaide, c.1892.


SATURDAY BALL  17th April 2021 7pm to midnight.



*Uncalled Menuet de la Cour (VI), Gardel’s dance to Grétry’s tune.

Version of dance is in Read Sydney 1876 and Lovenberry 1884.

Circassian circle (3) to 'My love she’s but a Lassie yet' (IX).

A progressive form of the 1st figure of the 'Caledonians', a quadrille in all extant Australian sources.

The MOSCOVIAN (VII) to suite in Chivers 1822 Modern Dancing master.

A cognate 'Moscovian Waltz Quadrilles' is in Lovenberry, Bris. 1884.

Irish Washerwoman (VI) to namesake tune.

Music in Laing ms, from early 19th century Tasmania (Guest caller David Wanless).



Galopade (3)-Pollocks original (VIII) to 'William Tell' overture.

The Galopade is in most Australian manuals, this figured one is from England c.1830, music from Europe.

Circassian (2)-Pollock no.3 (VIII).

Set to 'National Waltz’ and 'Highland Laddie' in Laing ms from early 19th century Tasmania.

 QUADRILLE FRANCAIS (2c) to Mundy's First Set (VIII).

Dance in most Australian manuals to music composed in Tasmania in 1840s. (Caller David Wanless).

Galopade Country Dance (3) to 'Come dance along with me…' song (IX).

The tune is as in ‘The Pasha Quadrille’ published and played in Sydney by Winterbottom's band.



*Display of a Grand Polka medley to LD Country 7 tune played x2, x3, x3 then 1st x1 again (DD).

Basic dance described in all early Australian manuals. These are variants by JGG set to music by JGG.

The Winifred- the Baden Berlin Bohemian to Milbourne's New Kreuz Polka Winifred (DD).

Elements in most Australian manuals. Music published in Adelaide c.1894.


Dance in virtually all extant 19th century Australian dance manuals. (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).

Soldiers Joy to namesake tune (VIII)

Music in Laing ms, Tasmania



*Display of a Varsovienna medley to Abadie's 'Mexico' (Mexico Varsovienna medley in DD) (IX).

Basic dance in Read 1876, Christison 1882, Lovenberry 1884, variations by JGG, music Paris 1854.

Polka Mazurka - to Roeckel's 'Australian Polka Mazurka' (IX).

Dance in all Australian sources, music published in Sydney c.1863 (Uncalled).

LANCERS FOR 16 (2) and (3) to ‘Pirates of Penzance Lancers (IX and X).

The Sixteen Lancers' in Wivell Junior Adel. 1891.

Highland Reel to 'The Highland Laddie' (IX)

Dance in Roberts's Melb. 1875 and Lovenberry Brisbane 1884. (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).



Polka Piquee and Polka Russe (1) & (2) to ‘Picnic polka’ (X).

Survives in Australia as 'Princess Polka', offered music composed & published in Sydney in 1857.

The Triumph to namesake tune (VII).

Dance in Wivell Sen., Adel. 1874-82 and on program in Christison's Maitland 1882. (Caller Ceri Teather).

QUADRILLE FRANCAIS (2e) to Rose Bay Quadrille (IX).

The dance found in all Australian sources, musical suite composed & published in Sydney in 1857.

Circassian Circle (4) Lovenberry’s No.6 to 'Keelrow' (X).

Dance in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884.



*Display of the New Iolanthe Schottische medley to Royle's Iola suite (DD).

The basic schottische was in most Australian manuals, these variants are by JGG to music from London.

Schottische and Highland Schottische to Iolanthe music (IX).

Dance described in most early Australian manuals. (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).

LES VARIETES PARISIENNES (IX) to namesake score.

Varieties Parisienne' in Roberts Melb. 1875 and 'La Parisienne' in Lovenberry Brisb. 1884.

Sir Roger de Coverley (VII) to JGG's Northern Stars Southern Skies (Town 16) set.  

Dance in most 19th century Australian manuals, music slip jigs by JGG.


SUNDAY AFTERNOON TEA DANC  18th April 2021  2:00 to 6:00pm

(wishing a happy birthday to JAFA organiser Aylwen!)



Perigordine (VI), a ‘cut-in’ jig to Jane Austen music collection tune.

There are many early Australia references free couples jigs like this one, music in Jane Austen's hand.

Circassian Circle (4) Lovenberry’s No.9  to the ‘Blind Cupid’ waltz set (LD Village 10) (X).  

Dance in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884.

QUADRILLE FRANCAIS (2e) (IX) to d'Albert's Pasha Quadrille.

Dance found in all Australian sources, music published in Sydney in 1851.

Country Bumpkin (1) (VI) to ‘Campbell's jig’ and 'Highland Laddie.

Annabella Boswell writes in her diary of enjoying the dance at an after-dinner party at Lake Innes House (near Newcastle) in 1843. (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).



Galop (4) /Rhein Galop / Danish Waltz / Manchester to characteristic tune (X).

Dance in most 19th century Australian manuals, music as still played today for Bush dancing.

Cotillon l’Eventail to JGG's ‘Whirl of Memories’ set (Court 16) (X).

Dance in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884, music waltzes by JGG.

QUADRILLE DES DAMES to Paris published sheet music (IX)

Dance in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884.

Nine-pin Quadrille to JGG's Ashby’s Jig set (LD Spring 2) (IX).

Versions of dance collected in Australia, set to a JGG tune set (Guest caller Katherine Tammaro).



Military Schottische / Pas de Quatre / Barn Dance (X).

Became the Barn dance that was ubiquitous in 20th cent. Australia.

The Spanish Waltz to 'Sweet bunch of Daisies' in the Kalgoolie suiteDance in most 19th century Australian manuals, music popular song from the Australia c.1892 published Kalgoolie suite.

THE ALBERT's (2) to 'Kendall's The Kalgoorlie' suite (X). Dance in Christison Maitland 1882, Lovenberry Brisbane 1884 and Wivell Junior Adel. 1891and music published in Australia in 1892.

Dance de Florence / Dashing White Sergeant (X) to 'The Dashing White Sergeant'.

The 'Dance d Florence' published in Dundee 1890 may represent early version of 20th century Bush & Schottisch 'Dashing White Sergeant' (Guest caller David Wanless).



Waratah Polka Mazurka (X/DD) to Daphne's namesake suite.

  Basic dance is in most 19th cent. Australian manuals, the music was published in Sydney in the 1890s.

QUADRILLE DE JEAN GILLES (X) to d'Albert's ‘Sydney Exhibition Quadrille’ suite.   

Dance in Lovenberry Brisbane 1884, music published in London but 'dedicated to Ladies of NSW'.

Congo Minuet (VI) to ‘De’il among the Tailors’.

Dance appears in ‘T.B.’ manuscript found in NZ and tune in Laing manuscript found in Tasmania.



All these dance games have entries for all in DTTA Volume X and most of the chosen figures appear in Roberts Melb. 1876—Cotillon with mixing  ('The meeting', 'The exchange', 'The Pursuit', 'The Serpent', 'The Circles', 'The Winding Alley'); Cotillon medley with circles and columns ('The Reunion', 'The Labyrinth', 'The Bridge', 'The Zig-zag', 'The Endless chain'); The Cushion Dance(3) / Der Polstertanz; Cotillon medley with fans (‘The Fan / The Kangaroo' to reprise of Picnic Polka set); Cotillon medley with choice (‘Basket, Ring, Flower’, ’Flower and Animals’ ‘Blind Choice’); Cotillon medley with cardsCotillon medley with scarves (2) ('The snake' and 'The Lasso', set to music by JGG in LD Country 8 that was dedicated to Aylwen 19 years ago, with guest caller Katarina Hall); Cotillon medley with scarves (1) (including the 'flying handkerchieves')Cotillon medley with blindfolds (‘Le Colin-Maillard, ‘Blindman’s buff’, ‘The Weak leading the Blind’);



Charge of the Light Brigade (X) to Godfrey's 'The Wind Up Galop'.

Dance is American version of French Les Bras Enlacé, music from London—and finally no direct Australian link!