Teddy Bears’ Picnic

We can usually find a Scottish Country Dancing connection with anything that’s going on!

To help us through the COVID-19 lockdown, there’s a Great New Zealand Bear Hunt underway to keep us connected and bring fun and joy to kids. As we go out for our local walks, search for Teddy Bears looking out for you from the windows of homes you pass along the way!

There’s also a number of Scottish Country Dances set to the Teddy Bears’ Picnic tune for us to dance (or play, sing or clap) along to.

Take a look at these examples:

Teddybear’s Picnic (J32, 4/4L) – Leyffer

This one has a video with everyone wearing teddy bear ears including Liz Douglas from Whanganui for those who know her.

The Teddy Bears’ Picnic (J32, 4/4L) – Collin: Ardbrae 50 Years

This one has a dancemaetion video.

The Fete Champetre (J128, 4S) – Priddey: Golden Oriole

Club member Loralee Hyde (in green top dancing hands across) and former club member Philippa Pointon at the right of the set, dancing The Fete Champetre as a ceilidh item at the 2001-2002 Summer School in Napier. Note the Teddy Bear bonnets – very tricky dancing the Schiehallion reels with those on! Musicians John Smith on the fiddle and Peter Elmes on the accordian are at the far right.

The Great Teddy Bear Hunt (J32, 4/4L) – Downey: The Golden Bear Collection

The music

The tune Teddy Bears’ Picnic was composed by John W Bratton in 1907.

For musicians who might like to play along to the dance videos, download a copy of Peter Elmes‘ sheet music for the tune that he arranged for the dance The Fete Champetre.

The dance The Highland Light Infantry also uses this tune.

Other examples of the tune

Watch club member Pat Reesby’s  video where dancers are carrying teddy bears while dancing Shiftin’ Bobbins

Hear an Irish fiddler playing the tune

Listen to a sung version

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