The big ship sailed (1957)

Description

English

This footage was filmed in London in 1957. To play, children join hands and raise them in the air to create a number of arches. The child at one end of the line then places their hand against a wall. The children then begin to weave through this arch, twisting and turning until a circle is created. The song is not thought to have a particularly long history. Sutton-Smith suggests that the earliest reference to the song is found in Nelson, New Zealand, in 1870. However, the songs actions are thought to possess a more impressive history. The Opies wrote that the ‘threading and twisting round’ dance found in the game was discovered by Cecil Sharp amongst ‘hillbilly dancers’ in the Southern Appalachian Mountains in 1917 who danced longstanding dances such as ‘Wind up the Ball Yarn’ or ‘Killoecrankie’, ‘The Grapevine Twist’ and ‘Winding Up the Maple Leaf’.

Transcript

Transcript

All: [Singing]

The captain said it will never, never do,
Never, never do, never, never do,
the captain said it will never, never do
on the last day of September.

The big ship sails on the alley-alley-oo,
The alley-alley-oo, the alley-alley-oo,
The big ship sails on the alley-alley-oo
On the last day of September

The captain said it will never, never do,
Never, never do, never, never do,
The captain said it will never, never do
On the last day of September.

Choo, bang, bam!

Title:
The big ship sailed (1957)
Date:
1957
Duration:
1:18
Format:
Video
Language:
English
Copyright:
© British Film Institute
Usage terms

Held by
British Film Institute

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