Hylta Dance

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HYLTA DANCE. Shetland, Dance Tune (4/4 time). Shetland, Fetlar. A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). One part. Anderson & Georgeson (1970) identify this tune as a 'trowie', or fairy, tune supposedly over 350 years old. The story goes that it was learned by a man coming home via a short cut one night just before dawn, when he stumbled upon a circle of trows dancing with a fiddler and his wife in the middle. They were obviously caught up in the dance and oblivious to their peril, for, just as the sun's first rays struck they turned to stone. The man, who had been hiding lest the trows spy him, thus only was able to learn half the tune. There is a ring of stones on Fetlar, with two standing in the middle, which can be seen today. Anderson & Georgeson say a similar tale is told about a stone ring in the Faroe islands, involving trolls performing a round dance with the caller and his partner in the middle.

Source for notated version: the singing of J.J. Laurenson via Pat Shuldham-Shaw.

Printed sources: Anderson & Georgeson (Da Mirrie Dancers), 1970; p. 15.

Recorded sources:




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