The Territorial Two-Step



The Territorial Two-Step is an easy two-step sequence dance composed by Arthur Morris in 1908.

It won first prize at the competition of New Dances at the Conference of the United Kingdom Alliance of Teachers of Dancing on the Isle of Man that year.

The Position

Facing partner, holding two hands.

The Dance

Part I - Long Three-Slide Rollaway (8 bars): Three-slide galop along LOD, disengaging leading hands and turning outward on the third step (1-and-2-and-3), then point free foot along LOD (4), back to back with partner. Repeat the three-slide galop and point against LOD, still back to back (5-and-6-and-7, 8). Then, still back to back, take other hands (pointing against LOD), and three-slide galop against LOD, turning to face partner at the end and pointing against LOD (1-and-2-and-3, 4). Then, facing partner, three-slide galop against LOD and point along LOD (5-and-6-and-7, 8).

Part II - Chassé (8 bars): "Chassé eight bars, holding partner as in the waltz." This could be interpreted in many different ways. It could simply be a sixteen-slide galop (non-turning), but that's not very satisfying. Or it could be two eight-slide galops (one full turn), four four-slide galops (two full turns), or eight two-steps (four full turns). A creative possibility would be to do one full Esmeralda: four-slide galop (half turn), two two-steps (full turn), four-slide galop (half turn), two two-steps (full turn). Doing three turns in the second half would thematically mirror the threes in the first half.

Repeat from the beginning.

The Music

"The Territorial Two-Step" by Arthur Morris is the specified tune, but it doesn't appear to have been recorded, so any square, early 20th century two-step in 6/8 time will do.


© 2018 Nick Enge

For more dance descriptions, see our three books on dancing:
The Book of Mixers: 100 Easy-Teach Dances for Getting Acquainted (2022) by Richard Powers and Nick & Melissa Enge,
Cross-Step Waltz: A Dancer's Guide (2019) by Richard Powers and Nick & Melissa Enge, and
Waltzing: A Manual for Dancing and Living (2013) by Richard Powers and Nick Enge.

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