Monday, October 29, 2007

Spanish Waltz

This is not an original dance. This is a well-known traditional dance in an improper circle formation (dances like these are called Spanish Circle dances)

Double Circle dance--improper formation. Set up with gents on the inside of the circle, facing their ladies on the outside. Call a hands four. The first gent should switch with his partner so that the gents' left arms are both inside the minor set. (Thus ladies' rights to the inside) When you assume ballroom position your arms will point inside the set and the direction you will travel.)

Measures: Three counts per measure of course!
1-2: Balance with your partner holding right hands (six counts)
3-4: Right hand turn your partner (lady under the gent's arm) Turn to face your friend (six counts)
5-6: Balance with your friend (holding right hands) (six counts)
7-8: Right hand turn your friend. Turn to face your partner (six counts)
9-10: Balance your partner (right hands) six counts)
11-12: Right hand turn your partner. Face your friend (six counts)
13-14: Balance your friend. (six counts)
15-16: Right hand turn your friend (six counts)

You should be back where you started from here

17-20: Star right with set (putting right hands into the center travel clockwise) (12 counts)
21-24: Star left (putting left hands in the center travel counter-clockwise) (12 counts)

Once again, you should have returned to your starting position

25-32: Waltz to the next set past the other couple in the set. Inside lady and partner dance inside around the other couple and outside lady and partner dance outside the other couple to progress. (the gents backs ought to be to each other, this ensures that, if there is a collision, the gents will be the ones to get hurt)-- (8 measures, 24 counts)

The dance begins again with everybody in their new sets.

The terms used in the dance with counting adjusted for three/four time are below.

Balance (your partner or friend) -- partner/friend move--6 counts--2 measures-- The couple faces each other with right hands joined, steps toward your partner with your right foot, on the second beat bringing left foot beside your right foot and lift your heels off the floor slightly (stand on the balls of your feet). On the third beat lower your heels. Repeat this backwards: step back on your right foot, bring your left foot beside your right, lift your heels slightly, and come back down on the third beat.

Right Hand Turn -- partner/friend move--6 counts--2 measures-- The couple holds right hands, and walk towards each other. The gent raises his arm and the lady passes under their joined hands to face back into the set.

Stars--A minor set move-- 12 counts--4 measures- Stars are turns for four people. In your minor set, you reach into the center with one arm (a right arm for a right star, a left arm for a left star) and hold hands, then walk in the direction you're facing. In general people use a sort of up-down step as in the balance earlier in the dance. There are many ways to hold hands in the center. Our favorite way is to have each person hold the wrist of the person ahead of them-- this is often called a Wagon Wheel hold. Another way is simply to "stack" all the hands in the center. A third way is to have the gents hold hands, and ladies hold hands on top of them.

For further terms, consult our dance terms page.

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