Written by Kaye Anderson
In learning to Round Dance, people generally by learning the “basics” for the two-step rhythm or the waltz rhythm. The basics include actions and movements which pertain to all rhythms, basic conventions used in round dancing, positions, and some general terminology. Additionally basics include a number of figures which pertain to the rhythm the new dancers are learning.
Actions are motions made with the free foot but no weight is transferred to it. The opposite foot retains the weight of the body. Therefore an action leaves the same foot free or ready to take the next step because it does not carry the weight of the body (some people call these touch steps). Actions are also motions of other body parts which do not exchange the weight of the body to another foot.
Movements are motions where a step is taken — usually with the free foot — and the weight of the body is transferred to this foot. Therefore, a movement leaves the opposite foot free or ready to take the next step because it does not carry the weight of the body (some people call these “close” [CLOZ] steps).
Figures are established combinations of actions and movements which as a group have been given a name so that it is easier to remember and respond to them when cued. Figures can be analyzed and “defined” beat by beat by stating the movements and actions which comprise them.
Roundalab, the organization of round dance teachers, has groups the actions, movements, and figures into phases or levels of
difficulty. Generally, those elements in phase I are learned prior to those in phase II, which are learned prior to those in phase III, although many dancers have successfully learned to master these elements regardless of the order in which they were taught.
This book is designed to help dancers learn their basic waltz figures or to improve their dancing technique even when they have been dancing for many years. This book is part of a series of books called the Fancy Dancing series.
Fancy Figures: Easy Level Waltz (Phase I, II, and III) describes and diagrams the basic figures used in the easy and easy intermediate levels of waltz. Numerous variations of the basic figures are also included (152 figures and variations are defined and there are 122 diagrams). For some figures there are two versions for the figures (beginning and advanced) so that dancers have access, if and when they are ready, to techniques to polish their dancing style in accordance with that used by more advanced dancers.
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