From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Sur les chemins - Nuit du trad de Sent Guirons (01).jpg
Sur les chemins ball during Saint-Girons Nuit du Trad in 2018
EtymologyNamed after Chapelle-des-Bois
GenreFolk Dance
InventorAlick-Maud Pledge

The Chapelloise is a traditional folk dance with change of partners (a so-called Mixer), belonging to the standard repertoire of a Bal Folk. Its most common name in France and the French-influenced European Bal Folk scene is Chapelloise, but the dance has many other names too (see below).

History of the dance[edit]

The French name “La Chapelloise” is derived from a village in eastern France, Chapelle-des-Bois: Legend says that André Dufresne was teaching the dance there in the 1970s, and since participants did not remember its original name, the dance got famous by the name of the village where the workshop took place.[1]

The dance was introduced in France in the 1930s by Alick-Maud Pledge.[2][3] It is often claimed that the dance is of Swedish origin and that its original name is “Aleman's marsj” (Guilcher 1998,[4] Oosterveen 2002,[5] Largeaud 2011[6] and countless websites). However, the spelling “marsj” is not Swedish (it looks rather Norwegian[7]) and the choreography bears no similarity with Swedish folk dances.[8] Instead, this dance is known in Scandinavian dance collections (Swedish,[9] Danish[10] and Norwegian[11]) as “All American Promenade”. This, together with its dissimilarity to Swedish folk dances and its similarity to other mixer dances in Britain and America, pinpoint rather to a non-Swedish origin of the dance. The Norwegian dance collector Hulda Garborg (1862-1934) is reported to have learnt the dance in the USA and brought it to Norway, but its description in a Scandinavian language was published much later.[12] The association of the dance with Sweden stems perhaps from the fact that in Denmark, the All American Promenade is most often danced to a Swedish tune: Gärdeby Gånglåt,[13] attributed to the Swedish fiddler Hjort Anders Olsson [sv] (1865-1952).

In Belgium, the dance is called “Jig”/“Gigue” after the music most commonly played to the dance[14] or “Aapje” (an acronym for “All American Promenade”, AAP).

Sometimes it is claimed that the “All American Promenade” was choreographed in the 1960s by Jim Arkness;[15][16] but a description of this dance was published already in 1953[17] and the dance is probably derived from the British "Gay Gordons": The “Gay Gordons” dance was mentioned already in 1907,[18] and was a popular 'old time' dance in Britain in the 1940s and 1950s,[19] along with "The Military Two Step" (by James Finnigan) and the "Dashing White Sergeant". The "Gay Gordons" was known to all Aberdeen folk dancers in 1950.[20] Its first eight measures are identical to the Chapelloise/AAP, but the “Gay Gordons” lacks the change of partners which is typical for the Chapelloise/AAP.


  1. ^ "Fiches de danse folk : Chapelloise (Aleman's marsj) - Cancoillottefolk". Archived from the original on 2012-08-22. Retrieved 2012-11-03.
  2. ^ "Histoire du folk épisode 6". Archived from the original on 2014-11-02. Retrieved 2012-11-03.
  3. ^ 13. Miss PLEDGE (1893-1949) par Yves GUILCHER
  4. ^ Yvon Guilcher (1998): La danse traditionnelle en France d'une ancienne civilisation paysanne à un loisir revivaliste, Librairie de la Danse, FAMDT, Courlay.
  5. ^ Corinna Oosterveen (2002): La Chapelloise oder der Aleman's Marsj und seine 13 Namen. in: Marianne Bröcker (ed.): Die Dimension der Bewegung in traditioneller Musik. Tagungsband 11 des International Council for Traditional Music, UNESCO 16./17. Februar 2001. Universität Bamberg
  6. ^ Jacques Largeaud (2011): Manuel du professeur de danses. Books on Demand GmbH, Nordestedt.
  7. ^ no:Marsj[circular reference]
  8. ^ Svenska ungdomsringen för bygdekultur (1981): Svenska folkdanser. Stockholm. The 2001 edition is available online at
  9. ^ All American promenade
  10. ^ Source: Hanna Rasmussen & Rickey Holden (1979): Kom og dans. Edition Egtved. Seite 9
  11. ^ HSH | DANSEGLEDE - Liv Ingrid Grov
  12. ^ Klara Semb (1991) Norske folkedansar. Turdansar. Norges boklag/Det norske samlaget, Oslo.
  13. ^ Dance description, Gärdeby gånglåt, Denmark
  14. ^ Waarom dansen wij het Aapje op een jig ?
  15. ^ Rolf Groeneveld (2006): Dansen van het bal folk (8): de jig. in: New Folk Sounds 103, febr/maart 2006. Available online at
  16. ^ Dance Step Description
  17. ^ The Physical Educator, Phi Epsilon Kappa Fraternity, 1953: page 57–60
  18. ^ Christine Martin (2002): Traditional Scottish Fiddling. Taigh na Teud Music Publishers, 13 Upper Breakish, Isle Of Skye.
  19. ^ Thompson, Sydney (1956). Old Time Dance Book. London. pp. 85–86.
  20. ^ The Scots Magazine. A Monthly Miscellany of Scottish Life and Letters. Saint Andrew Society, Glasgow, Strathclyde. 1950, p.464.

External links to dance descriptions[edit]