Many might say that we only dance one tradition; "Ebor"; but this would be doing a dis-service to the effort we put into trying to make the traditions seem different. Most dances are performed with enthusiasm once we get started. What we lack in precision we make up in effort!
As the side is composed of a mix of younger and older members we have dropped some of the more vigorous Longborough dances we used to do as the younger members couldn't take the pace. Remaining in the repertoire are dances from Adderbury, Ascot Under Whychwood, Bampton In The Bush, Brackley, Bledington, Oddington, Ducklington, Horsham and Lichfield. To encourage audience participation we have a version of Shepherd's Hey which can only be described as a fusion of Bucknell, Ascot, Aldbury and Ebor; performed in a large circle and very popular on Monday night sessions in King's Square during the summer evenings.
Longsword is a tradition of the area and we perform a couple of dances. One is from 5 miles down the road, namely the Escrick dance. We added a modification to this dance which gets a mention in Ivor Allsop's book on sword dancing. The addition is an unashamed copy and adaptation of part of the Lange Wapper sword dance from Belgium where a man is lifted into the air on top of the swords. (Our version is better as only six men do the lift as opposed to twelve in the Belgian dance). Recently, the Poppleton Longsword dance has been added as the second sword dance we perform and are in the process of putting some polish onto it. Poppleton is just up river from York.
There is a series of books by Cecil Sharpe on sword dance called The Sword Dances Of Northern England. For a broader view on longsword dance Ivor Allsop's book on sword dance will give you a good introduction to what sword dance is all about. But like most scholarly works on dancing be prepared to make your own interpretation and try it out for yourself.