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It is the task of the caller to let the dancers move. For this, calls are being called. This can be done in the form of patter calls or singing calls. Patter calls are usually not thought up on beforehand and are only spoken while music is played on the background. Singing calls are usually thought up before the dance, and woven into the music and the songtext. With patter calls the emphasis is on improvisation, with singing calls the emphasis is on the music. A good caller is able to improvise during singing calls, for instance to correct errors from dancers.

Let us assume you are a caller. The squares start in a starting position. Couple number one is standing with their backs to you (if not otherwise agreed).

static square

After a few calls, the dancers have reached the formation below.

square dance 1

What now? If you are a caller, you will know, the dancers can't stand still. If you want to become a caller, then take a look with the definitions from  Callerlab. The dancers will be patient, especially when they are only on the screen.


After the call "Chain down the Line" we get the formation below.

square dance 2

"Double pass thru" will give:

square dance 3

"Cloverleaf" gives:

square dance 4

"Square thru 2":

square dance 5

"Outfacers: Partner trade" "Backout":

square dance 6

And this looks almost good. Only the sides are not quite correct.

"Sides: Half Sashay":

square dance 7

We did it! Of course this can be done much better. If you have a better solution and if you are not a caller, you can send your solution to the webmaster of this site. It will be published on this site.

In the past, and for some callers still today, a turn table was used with variable speed etcetera. Nowadays laptops are used more and more.

turn table

Do you want to know more about callers? Come by on a club night and talk to one of our callers.