This is probably the most wonderful site I’ve ever come across in the very specialised world of music for dance: a page of links to the the content of Polish Dances, the complete written works of Raymond Cwieka. Hundreds and hundreds of pages of detailed research on the mazurka and polonaise. I can pretty much promise you that you will never, ever find another resource so large and comprehensive and informative on the topic.
The route by which I found it is interesting. I don’t know how long it’s been up there, but I’m shocked at myself for not having discovered it before, considering that I spend a lot of my life researching this subject. I found it because I was trying to find a the original German version of Paul Nettl’s The Story of Dance Music, given that the translation is poor in parts. I searched for <“the story of dance music” german title>, and one of the links that appeared was Cwieka’s book on the polonaise (all 410 pages of it) linked to by Jason Chuang. There’s a moral here: if you want to find good resources on the net, it helps if you put in another good source as your search term, because a well-researched page will have references. If you don’t know about a subject, then it stands to reason that you’re not going to know the kinds of terms that will bring up the best sources. References are a good place to start.
The generosity of Cwieka is overwhelming. It’s all up there for you and me to read and enjoy and learn from. I’m oscillating between joy and despair, though – it’s such a great resource, but it just shows that I don’t know shit about the polonaise really, and I know just how many hundreds of pages I am away from being well-informed.
Update, January 2017
Further to all this, here’s a nice comment left by Raymond Cwieka on my site:
CALLING ALL DANCERS INTERESTED IN BALLROOM / VICTORIAN / FOLK / POLISH DANCE!
YOU MAY VIEW OUR WORD VIDEO ESSAYS AND WRITTEN ESSAYS AT:
FOR THE VIDEOS:
Go to the internet; type-in “Raymond Cwieka – Academia.edu”.
FOR THE WRITTEN ESSAYS / SOURCES. / ANAYLYSIS:
Go to the internet; type-in “Raymond Cwieka| Papers – Academia.edu”.
THESE ARE NOT ARRANGED IN ANY ORDER!
(to open www.academia.edu, you may need an account with
them/have a google/facebook account)