Laltria Fia Guielmina - DDb
* Part I (Quadernaria):
* Part II (Bassa danza):
* Part III (Bassa danza):
* Part IV (Quadernaria)
* Part V (Piva):
This is another of the balli from Domenico's text, it is the second of two dances called "Fia Guielmina". It is a very different dance to Pizochara, as you will see. It is a set dance for two people, a man and a lady, who begin the dance standing side by side.
Part I (Quadernaria):
SL SR SL CnR CnL Stepping very quickly
2 SR SL SR CnL CnR Stepping quickly again
3 SL SR Man moving forwards, lady turning MvL
4 RpL Riprese "in gallone", with the hip forwards
5 SR SL SR Done turning to the right, back into place. The man finishes with a MvR
6 - 9 As for 1 - 4 above.
10 SR SL SR Done turning to the right, back into place. The man finishes with a VtR, to end up facing the lady.
Part II (Bassa danza):
SL SR Turn around each other, so the man faces the back and the lady faces the front.
12 RvL Riverenza on the left foot.
Part III (Bassa danza):
SL SR The dancers are now facing opposite directions, moving away from each other.
14 - 15 DL DR Two doubles walking apart.
16 RpL MvL Riprese, then turn to face each other.
17 RpR MvR Riprese, then turn away from each other.
18 DL Another double, walking apart.
19 DR MvR Finish moving away from each other, then turn to face.
20 RvL Riverenza, facing each other. The dancers will now be some distance apart.
Part IV (Quadernaria)
DL Lady only, moving back forwards towards the man.
22 DL Man only, moving forwards towards the lady.
23 DL Lady only
24 SL Man only
SL Lady only
25 VtL Man does a full turn in three single steps, finishing with a small jump (saltetto).
Part V (Piva):
26 - 28
VtL Lady does a slower and larger turn, doing three piva steps (PvL PvR PvL), to finish facing the man. When she does so, the man does another small jump.
29 PvR Both moving towards each other
30 SL slower single.
31 M The lady makes a "movimento".
32 PvR PvL Circling to each others right hand side.
33 SR Single right, then resume place to start the dance again.
The dance can stop after one repetition, or can be repeated from the start.
Fia Guielmina (second or B version), by Domenico. One couple. Difficulty = Level 4 - by J&J
Steps: Sempio (in 4 and 6), Doppio (in 4 and 6), Saltarello (in 4), Saltarello
Tedesco, Piva (in 6), Ripresa Portugalesa (in 4), Mezavolta, Voltatonda,
Movimento, Reverenza, Ripresa (in 6)
Start: Couple side by side, facing up the hall, holding hands, Man on the left.
Section I (5 bars in 4/4, played twice)
[Two-bar introduction on accompanying tape]
1-2 Saltarello Tedesco Left, Saltarello Tedesco Right, and drop
hands, Woman ending with a Mezavolta Right.
(Man is facing up the hall, Woman down.)
3 Sempio Left, Sempio Right.
4 Ripresa Portugalesa Left, moving forward.
(Both dancers are on a diagonal, such that they can
look at each other.) Bars 3-4
5 Woman Doppio Right, turning to face up the hall,
as Man Doppio Right, ending in Mezavolta Right. Take hands.
(Man and Woman are side by side again, Man on the left, facing up the hall.)
1-4 (2nd time) Repeat.
5 (2nd time) Doppio Right to meet. Take right hands.
(They are facing each other, a little to each others' left, on a diagonal to their original
Bar 5 (1st time) Bar 5 (2nd time) Bar 6 Bars 8-11
(Not including the
Section II (2 bars in 6/4)
6 Sempio Left, Sempio Right, changing places, rotating about a
(Man is now facing down the hall, Woman up, approximately
side by side, and to each others' right.)
7 Reverenza Left. Drop hands.
Section III (8 bars in 6/4)
8-10 Sempio Left, Sempio Right, Doppio Left, Doppio Right, ending Mezavolta of Bar 11,
with a Mezavolta Right. The steps should be a little smaller than and Bar 12
(They are now facing, and about 14 steps apart.
11 Ripresa Left, facing each other, ending with a Mezavolta Left.
(They are now facing away again, Man down the hall and Woman up.)
12 Ripresa Right, back to back.
13-14 Doppio Left, Doppio Right ending with a Mezavolta Right.
The steps should be a little smaller than usual.
(Dancers are now facing each other, a little to each others'
right, about 24 steps apart.)
15 Reverenza Left.
Section IV (5 bars in 4/4)
16 Woman Doppio Left with a Movimento on the last beat, ending
with feet together and her weight on both.
17 Man Doppio Left ending with a Movimento on the last beat.
18 Woman Doppio Left ending with a Movimento on the last beat.
19 Man Sempio Left with a Movimento on the last beat, then Bars 13-15
Woman the same.
(They are now 13 steps apart.)
20 Man Voltatonda (Saltarello Left, clockwise.)
Section V (10 bars in 6/8)
21-24 Woman Voltatonda (4 Pive starting Left, clockwise).
25-26 Piva Left, Piva Right, together.
(They are now about 1 step apart, slightly to each others' right,
Man facing up the hall and Woman down.)
27-30 4 Pive, starting Left, taking right hands and circling clockwise
around each other, Woman ending with a Mezavolta Right.
(End side by side, facing up the hall, Man on left, as at the Bars 21-24 and Bars 25-26
In order to make sure that the steps taken apart, in Section III, are kept moderately
small, while the ones returning, in Section IV and V, are larger, it may help to say
the dancers should act like they don't want to separate, and really want to get back
The reconstruction for Section V given above is quite simple, but may not match the
music very well. If the dancers are finding it difficult to follow the music, the alternate Section V, given in the
notes below, may be easier for them.
Bel Danzare has two versions:
· "Figlia gulielmina": Tambourine introduction. Quite fast, especially Sections II and III. Works
with this reconstruction. Played twice.
· "Laltra fia guielmina": Tambourine introduction. Works with this reconstruction.
Danzare has two versions:
· "Figlia Guielmina (1st version, once)": No introduction. Works with this reconstruction.
· "Figlia Guielmina (2nd version, twice)": No introduction. Section V is quite slow. Works with this
reconstruction. Played twice.
Forse - Introduction of two twiddly phrases with pauses after. Section I ends differently the second time, and runs
into Section II, which is also different than our reconstruction. The easiest solution is to dance Section I as usual,
the second time, and then drop the reverenza of Bar 7. Section V is slow and a bit short; the last piva can be
turned into a sempio. Repeats.
Mesura - Two-bar drum introduction. Section V is a bit short; the last piva can be turned into a sempio. Repeats.
The song that follows, "A Florence la joyose cite/Helas la fille guillemin", can also be used for the dance. There
is no introduction. Section I is short one beat, so the ripresa of Bar 4 should be done with only three beats of
music instead of four. On the second playing, it is short another beat, so the last doppio should be done with only
three beats. Section V is quite slow.
Music Leonardo - One long held note for an introduction. Section I is only 19 beats, so the last doppio should just
have three steps, without a pause on the fourth beat. Section II is three instead of two bars, so the reverenza in
Bar 7 can be done for two bars. Section IV is also missing one beat, so the man can finish his voltatonda of Bar
20 as the woman starts hers. Repeats Section I (twice), only, at end.
Musica XV ("A Florence/Helas la fille/en ma chambre") - No introduction. Section I is only 19 beats; dropping
the last beat of the ripresa in Bar 4 works best. Section II is different and a bit shorter; doing the sempii and
reverenza of Bars 6 and 7 faster works, as Section III is also quite fast. Section V is only nine pive, but there is a
pause afterwards, so the tenth piva of our reconstruction will fit in the pause. The dance is played three times, the
first and third being sung.
Ren ("La Fille Guillemin") - No introduction. Section I is short two beats, so do both the ripresa and last doppio,
of Bars 4 and 5, with only three steps and without a pause on the last beat. Section II is still in 4/4 and is short one
beat. Section III is quite fast. Section V is quite slow, and only has nine bars, but the last piva can be done
afterwards, as there is no repeat.
Sonare - Two and a half bars of introduction (i.e. ten beats). Quite easy to follow. Section V is nine bars long, so
the last, circling, figure of Bars 27-30 is done with three, instead of four, pive. Repeats, ending with a long note..
This is the second of the two dances called Fia Guielmina, the first one being danced to the same music but
needing two couples. This one can also be danced by two couples, but the second couple starts beside the first
couple and then does exactly what they do.
One of the main problems with interpreting the instructions for Fia Guielmina is that the separation in Section III
is apparently greater than the return journey that takes place in Sections IV and V. The outward journey (ignoring
any sideways movement from the riprese) is accomplished with two sempii and four doppii, done by each partner,
which is a total separation of 28 steps (one step to a sempio and three to a doppio.) For the return journey,
Section IV (presuming the movimenti and voltatonda are not moving the dancers forward at all) only has three
doppii and two sempii, (done in total by the two dancers), and Section V adds two pive done by each (PnD even
shortens this to a piva and a sempio.) If a piva is treated as being three steps long, the return journey is only 23
steps (19 if the last piva becomes a sempio, as in PnD.) We decided that this difference could be taken care of by
adjusting the size of the steps, but it may actually indicate a problem with the reconstruction.
Section I: In this reconstruction the dance is treated as being mostly bi-directional;
the dancers separate, come together, and face up the hall so they can repeat the same
steps in the same orientation. Another solution is that in Bar 5 they do not turn to align
themselves exactly with the hall, remaining at about a 45-degree angle to their original
direction. After doing Section I again they would be about 90 degrees out of alignment
with the hall. This would mean that they would be in their original positions, Man on Alternate Bar 5
the left side of the hall, and Woman on the right, but facing each other. Section II
would then have them rotate a full half turn.
This may seem a rather minor difference, but it raises the question of how rigorous
the fifteenth-century choreographers were about staying on a strict perpendicular
grid. Very likely they were not, and it is perfectly possible that the entire dance
was done on different axes. Although we mostly kept the dance bi-directional, we Alternate Bar 5 (2nd time)
did use angles when they were much easier, as at the end of Bar 5 (2nd time). (See
Bars 1-2: PnD describes the movements of each of these bars as being three sempii and two continenze, while
RVat has a doppio and two fast continenze, and Sc and MOe have a doppio and three continenze. Since this is
close to what we are using for a saltarello tedesco we decided to use that step. However, as the term "saltarello
tedesco" is not used in the sources, it is quite possible that the required movements were considered distinct
enough that they needed to be described.
Bar 3: No mezavolta is specified for the woman in PnD, which only says that she 'torna indriedo' (returns to the
rear) with the same steps as the man. It is possible that she backs away from him, which means her ripresa
portugalesa would also move to the left side of the hall, resulting in a much less dynamic version.
Bar 5 (2nd time): We decided to have the dancers end still at an angle to their original orientation, instead of
returning to their original positions (but with the man facing down the hall). The other placement is possible, but
makes it awkward to take right hands for the next section. This is a similar problem as is faced in the dance
Prexonera. (See Prexonera, Bar 12, and also Leading in the Introduction.)
In PnD the man ends this section with a voltatonda (presumably replacing the mezavolta). We decided that this
was a pivot turn on the last beat, which is dramatic and makes the section look like it is being repeated, identically,
until the last moment. As it is potentially dangerous (Vivian's knees can attest to this) and does not change the
man's positioning at all, we decided to leave it out. A dancer who is willing to take the risks can add it back in.
However, if the dancers were meant to return to their original position, rather than ending at an angle, this
voltatonda might be a 3/4 spin, to enable the man to end facing the right side of the hall, so his right hand, at least,
is closer to the woman's.
Section III: All the mezevolte are presumed to take no time, as PnD explicitly states that there are eight tempi of
bassadanza, and there are eight tempi worth of steps without the mezevolte.
Section IV: In Bar 17 no foot is given for the man's doppio in PnD and Rvat, but the other two sources say it is
on the left. The next step that the man takes is also on the left in all but Rvat. It is tempting to put the man's
doppio on the right, instead, so that he alternates feet, but because he ends his doppio with a movimento (which in
our reconstruction ends with weight on equal feet), and then waits while the woman moves, the usual alteration is
not necessary. The same decision was reached regarding the second doppio that the woman performs, in Bar 18.
Bar 19: The sempii with movimenti used here are from Sc and MOe, and were chosen as matching the previous
doppii. Rvat merely has sempii, while PnD describes them as "passo sempio comenzando col pe sinistro
retirandose apresso el drito".
Bar 20: The voltatonda is described in PnD as three sempii with a salteto. The sempii are presumed to be one
beat each, the same as in Bars 1-2, making the entire sequence equivalent to a saltarello. The direction of turn is
not given, but because the woman is slightly to his right, a clockwise turn seems more appropriate so that he is
turning toward, rather than away from, her.
Section V: The easier version of this section, found in Sc and MOe, is followed, and has even been simplified, as
there is a "saltarello in tempo" (probably a one-beat hop) called for at the end of Bar 24 and Bar 26. The version
from PnD, which matches the pattern of the music better, is included below for those that prefer the more
Bars 21-24: As in Bar 20, the direction of turn for the voltatonda is not given.
Bar 30: The woman's mezavolta is not specified, but we presumed that she should end facing up the hall, as she
started. As our reconstruction does not repeat, this is not actually too important.
68 Joy and Jealousy
Alternate Section V: This is how the section appears in PnD.
21-23 Woman Voltatonda (Piva Left, Right, Left, clockwise).
24 Half-bar rest, then Man half-bar Hop on Left
25-26 Piva Right, Sempio Left, half-bar rest, moving toward each other.
(They are now about 1 step apart, slightly to each others' right.)
27 Woman Movimento
28-30 Piva Right, Piva Left, Sempio Right, rotating clockwise around each other, back to starting place.
Bar 24: No rest is specified. The hop is described as a salteto, and no foot is given.
Bar 26: The sempio is again done, as in Bar 19, "retirandose apresso el drito".