Friday, November 27, 2009

Lesson on Waltz

Waltz technique, frame, and heel turns.
Each partner is responsible for the frame's topline on their left side. I had always heard before that the man needs to keep his right elbow high enough to make topline look right. The man's left arm and the lady's left arm should make a straight horizontal line across the top. The man's right arm cannot participate in that line, it needs to go down a bit so that the man can place his hand on the lady's back. The instructor stated that the lady keeps her own elbow high enough to make the line, and the man lifts his right elbow as necessary and appropriate to provide the points of contact for the lead. He also talked about the motion of the head. When the lady moves between promenade and closed position, her head should "go over the moon", i.e., the nose describes an upward arc, to prevent the chin from going down. To a lesser extent, this applies to the man as well, the main point being that the chin should stay up.
Heel turns
First, we talked about leading the lady into a heel turn, in the context of a double reverse spin. This pattern calls for a rise at the end of the first step. In particular, the instructor emphasized that the man should rise and wait until the lady's feet come together before moving into the next step. When the man is executing a heel turn, as he draws his trailing foot in, both legs should straighten, providing the rise for this step.The rise is also late in the step, as a result, as too early a rise will prevent the lady from getting past the man with her step.
The instructor emphasized that the settling on step 3 should occur at the end of the step, and should smoothly go into the next step. He demonstrated by lowering right on 3, which looked sort of like just plopping down on the step. The contrast was changing the count to 3&, where he would be up on 3, and not lower until the &.

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