Frequent Dance Lists

These lists have been compiled from a database of dance programmes that are submitted by contributors from all over the world. Campbell has been recording programmes from events held since 1 January 2008 and there are now 1500 programmes on the database. There are 313 from Scotland itself, 429 from the rest of the UK, 221 from the USA, 146 from Australia, 152 from Europe, 83 from New Zealand, 91 from Canada, 15 from Japan, and 50 from South Africa.

The programmes are classified by country, province (or state, county or whatever is appropriate to the country) and town. The date of the event, which club or branch organised it and the approximate number of dancers is also recorded. Each dance can have the following information recorded on it (although this work is still in progress) – its category (reel, strathspey, jig, medley, hornpipe, other), its type (number of bars, repetitions, couples, shape), the devisor, and in which collection it is published.

For each event the dances that were featured on the programme are recorded, as well as which one was First, which one was Last, which was Before a break (if a break is indicated), which was After a break and finally which were down as Extras.

Campbell would like to thank those people around the world who have provided the programmes that make up this database. Campbell has now received programmes from 401 (up from 356 last time) clubs and branches world-wide since he started collecting programmes in 2008.

2037 (up from 1887) dances have featured in these 1500 programmes, of which 810 appear only once, 923 more than twice. The most frequent dance (Montgomeries Rant) appears on every fifth programme.

Please feel free to write to Campbell to suggest additions, to ask questions, to point out errors, to provide programmes, or just to say hello. His email address is and he lives in Cape Town, South Africa. He has been a member of the International Branch for seven years now.

(As at 21 December 2014, when he had captured 1500 programmes. The next update will be 30 June 2015)

To view the complete lists, please visit the RSCDS International Branch website.

Created by Campbell Tyler, a member of the International Branch. Thank you for your contribution!

1. The 500 Most Frequent Dances in all the Programmes Recorded

- (Note that where the dances have the same frequency, then they are listed alphabetically, apart from the first 100 where, if there is an equal number of frequencies then the dance that reached that frequency first is listed first). This is a pretty stable list these days, with the top 6 dances way out on their own. Diamond Jubilee and Saltire Society Reel have dropped out of the top 100 and been replaced by Kendall’s Hornpipe and Garry Strathspey. Scott Meikle, A Capital Jig and Best Set in the Hall seem to be the dances making the most progress up the chart.

2. The Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from Scotland

- (The note above does not apply to this or any other lists, where alphabetical order is used to split tied entries)

3. The 200 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from Great Britain (excluding Scotland)

4. The 100 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from the USA

5. The 100 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from Australia

6. The 85 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from Europe

7. The 30 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from Canada

8. The 40 Most Frequent Dances in Programmes from New Zealand

9. The 150 Most Frequent Reels in Programmes

10. The 150 Most Frequent Jigs in Programmes

11. The 150 Most Frequent Strathspeys in Programmes


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