How to dance the Virginia reel

The Virginia reel is a dance for 5 couples in a set. Dancers stand facing their partner across the set.

Bars 1-4: Holding hands along the lines (men hold hands, and ladies hold hands). Walk forward for 4 and back for 4
Bars 5-8: Repeat – forward for 4 and back for 4
Bars 9-12: Drop hands. Turn you partner by the right hand, and go back to your place
Bars 13-16: Turn you partner by the left hand, and go back to your place
Bars 17-20: Turn you partner with both hands, and go back to your place
Bars 21-24: Do-si-do you partner (cross your arms, and pass your partner’s right shoulder, back to back, then return to your place)
Bars 25-32: Top couple join hands across the set and gallop down the middle of the set for 8 and back
Bars 33-36: Top couple cast off, grand Old Duke of York style, and everyone follows them. (The top man leads the men down the back of the mens’ line, and the top lady leads the ladies down the back of the ladies’ line)
Bars 37-48: Top couple make an arch at the bottom of the set. All the other couples join hands to walk through the arch. Swing your partner before the dance starts again with a new top couple

Download printable instructions for the Virginia reel