Paysanne (La)

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PAYSANNE, LA (The Peasant). French, English; Jig. D Major (‘A’ and ‘B’ parts), D Minor (‘C’ part). ABCAB. The first tune (of six) in "Paine's First Set of Quadrilles," "as danced at Almack's." There were other "First Sets," with the original "First Set of Quadrilles" being the work of Jean-Baptiste Hullin, a successful choreographer and ballet dancer, who originated them in 1797. They were hugely popular. Paine was a London dancing master, either James Paine or Edward Payne, both contemporaries in London in the first decades of the 19th century, when the French dance took hold in England. However, it was James Paine's quadrilles that also became known as "the first set of quadrilles publicly danced at Almacks." The melody appears as the first tune in a quadrille set in the music manuscript copybook of fiddler John Burk, dated 1821. Unfortunately, nothing is known of Burk, although he may have been from the north of England.

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