February 18, 2011

The Fairy Waltz: A dance for that nameless time between the Regency Era and the Victorian Era.

"If there be room enough, the gentleman only holds his partner  the tips of the fingers.  Certainly the dance in question is danced in a far different way among the inferior orders of society, as they hold each other tight by the middle, and thus in each other's embrace go round like whirligigs. But this is no argument to condemn a dance, which I think is decent, harmless, and elegant.—The only objection I could ever see in the Waltz was, that the dancers were liable to get exceedingly dizzy, by repeated turning; but the dance is by no means indecent, as danced by the better sort of people, and it has the most brilliant effect.   
'No Puritan.' " -Sporting Magazine 1812

  When the Waltz first became popular in England and the U.S., it met with mixed reviews. Many people disliked dances in general, thinking that they were places rife with sin. There were many discourses on the evils of dancing but the Waltz was by far the most scandalous, popular dance of the time. Most dances were danced with many partners and therefore "social." Waltzes were really the first almost exclusive dances. The intimate nature of the dance had chaperons and parents watching like hawks.

The Fairy Waltz was published in 1825 as part of treatise on the dances of London. The accompanying dance is pretty easy and I hope to chart it sometime in the future.  The song that goes with the dance is very cheery. This would make a very good piece for a young lady to play while her friend's danced. I put the song into a MIDI file. The MIDI is very fast and I think it would best be played almost at half the speed of the MIDI file. 


  1. Wow! that was fast! it's a pretty song though and isn't one i've heard before. they normally play the same six songs or so at balls. It can get kinda boring sometimes.

  2. You know, I've always wanted to learn how to do the waltz. One of these days, one of these days. Cool blog! Thanks for following me; I'm returning the gesture. =D Can't wait to read more!

  3. I enjoyed reading your blog and thank you for commenting over at mine. I love history too! I have named my two guest bedrooms the "Austen Room" and the "Longfellow Room."

  4. Thanks, Julie. That's cute! We've never had a guest room in our house but I am determined to have one when I am older. I think it's nice to have people over. :D


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