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trot v horse stealing

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  • trot v horse stealing

    trot/horse stealing what are the differences are they danced different

  • #2
    I'm going to go out on a limb here.

    The present day nudahonga (leader) of the Ponca hethuska, dances the trot dance as a "wounded warrior" dance. On the accent of the song, one leg/foot is lifted highly, stepping forward, and on the unaccented beat, the other leg is brought up to it in a lower, diminished fashion. This gives the appearance of a warrior returning home, lame, after battle. I think that this has been talked about a little on other straight dance threads. Apparently, the dance was originally designed as a wounded warrior dance, even though, to my knowledge, the words in the songs don't necessarily mention this aspect of being wounded.

    This halting style may be quite old, but it hasn't seemed to have caught on recently, as most dancers simply trot, giving equal emphasis to both feet. More needs to be known.

    There is another aspect to the trot songs, called "no stahpe" (spelling?). These are like trot songs and sung with the trot dance grouping, but Sylvester Warrior translated "no stahpe" as "tiptoe." Perhaps these are danced differently than the trot, but I'm not sure. Is this where the straight dance 'glide' came from?

    In Western Oklahoma, the horse stealing songs have a similar beat to the Northern Oklahoma trots, but I was told by a supposedly knowledgeable dancer, part Kiowa, that when you dance, "You're supposed to be showing off a horse that you stole." Corresponding legs/feet get equal stress.

    I would like to hear additions and corrections.
    Last edited by Gledanh Zhinga; 12-12-2010, 09:48 PM.

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    • #3
      Via a quick Google search, I stumbled across the following extensive post on another message board (www.American-Tribes.com - Songs of the Ponca Hethuska) entitled

      Songs of the Ponca Hethuska
      Post by hintamaheca on May 3, 2009, 1:32pm

      I've included an excerpt (and, no, I didn't originally post or author this):

      Following the Committee Songs and other honoring songs are a group of songs called Trot Songs traditionally sung on the third night. Although they sound similar, these songs should not be confused with so-called Horse Stealing Songs popular at some of today’s Southern Plains Pow-Wows, especially among the Kiowa. The Trot Dance is primarily associated with only the Ponca and Osage tribes in Oklahoma. As a matter of fact, concerning the Osage Trot Dance tradition, Alice Callahan writes,

      “The trot songs originally came from an old Osage ceremony of mourning which is no longer performed”...“In this celebration of death the Osages, dressed in their traditional dress, each with a horse and standing four abreast, would dance in place as they sang the trot songs.”
      (Callahan, 1991, p. 90)

      Among the Ponca, the Trot Songs are said to have been composed in honor of Ponca warriors wounded or killed in battle and refers to the bravery of the warrior and his companions. In his article titled “Trot Dance Songs,” which appeared in the 1970 issue of the St. Charles Pow-Wow Brochure G.J. Gondeck writes,

      “It has been said that the Trot Dance Songs were sung in unison by the battle-weary warriors as they returned to their original encampment; that, as they approached the camp area, the horses and riders were brought into alignment; and that the prancing of the horses, along with the rhythm of the Songs presented a sight to behold. According to the knowledge on hand, only four of the Trot Dance Songs have been preserved, and these are sung in a certain sequence. The style of the accompanying Dance can best be described as being similar to the trotting action of the horse or of a runner.”
      (Gondeck, 1970)

      The songs which immediately follow the Trot Songs are referred to as the Tip-Toe or the NoN-sta-pi-waN Songs. These songs are slower in tempo, but with a similar rhythm as the Trot Songs. The Tip-Toe Songs are all vocable songs in contrast to the Trot Songs which are all word songs. NoN-sta-pi-waN, the Ponca word for “tip-toe” or “to walk softly,” refers to the action of Ponca warriors approaching an enemy or enemy encampment, being as silent and stealthy as possible to avoid detection. According to Sylvester Warrior when speaking of this group of songs he stated,

      “...and then we have another dance which a man dances on their toes, on their tip toes.”
      (Warrior, 1967, p. 11)

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      • #4
        Hintamaheca aka Historian aka white man with skinny hair.
        Wanjica Infinity No One

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        • #5
          Originally posted by wanjica_the_one View Post
          Hintamaheca aka Historian aka white man with skinny hair.
          G.J. Gondeck, Indian trader and tour bus driver, Santa Fe.
          Last edited by Gledanh Zhinga; 01-08-2011, 11:16 AM.

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