The Sunday Class
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Taught/practised on: 2013 June 30 th
THE KANDAHAR REEL  (R5x32)  Capt. Andy + Lt. Rob Colquhoun  1- 8 1s set & ½ turn 2H, 1s set & turn 2s RH  9-11 1s dance ½ Snowball Grand Chain for 4 couples:-  9 1s change places with 2s RH on sides 10 1s change places with 3s LH as 2s cross LH 11 1s change places with 4s RH as 2s+3s change places RH on sides 3(2)4(1) 12 2s & 1s dance in to take Tulloch turn holds (LSh to LSh & RH behind backs) 13-16 2s & 1s dance anticlockwise Tulloch turns  3(2)4(1) 17-24 3s+2s also 4s+1s dance RH across 1½ times, 3s+1s dance LH across 1½ times  2(1)3(4) 25-32 2s+1s also 3s+4s dance RH across 1½ times, 1s+2s+4s+3s set then 2s & 3s cross up RH as 1s & 4s cast 1 place  2 1 3 4 1s dance down to bottom as new 1 st  couple start Bars 17-28 represent the helicopters: 17-20 The Insertion Chinook 21-24 The Black Hawk 25-28 The Extraction Chinook As the new 1 st  couple begin, the original dancing couple dance down the middle as the other couples step up, representing the soldiers running off the Chinook after a successful operation.
The Kandahar reel was written by two officers (cousins) of The Black Watch, 3 rd  Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland to mark the Battalion's operational tour in Afghanistan. Soldiers of The Black Watch made frequent use of Chinook helicopters with their signature double rotor blades and the American Army Black Hawk helicopters with a single rotor were used to take out casualties. The dance reproduces the use of these workhorses of the sky upon which the Army relies in Afghanistan. The rotors go 1½ times round, to symbolize the "150% commitment" expected. The reel was first danced as a demonstration set during a ball at the Black Watch Officers’ Mess in December 2009 to mark the Battalion’s homecoming and then again for the Duke of Rothesay when he handed out campaign medals in January 2010. The devisers hope that this energetic reel will be danced widely in recognition of the efforts of the Black Watch during summer 2009, in support of those soldiers who returned with life changing injuries, and in memory of those soldiers who did not return. This is the version adapted by the RSCDS. It is hoped that there will be a ‘mass dancing’ of The Kandahar Reel on St. Andrew’s Day, Saturday 30 th  November, 2013. The recommended tune is The Helmand Highlanders by Jamie Forrester. To enjoy a ‘traditional’ all-male version, by the Calpe Volunteers in February 2011, click here - actual dancing starts at 3.40.