Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Hoisted from Comments 2

Gamecat said:

“Personally I love giros as I think they are a perfect microcosm of tango. It's like holding a miniature globe in your hand and knowing that it's real.”

That's just so gorgeous and poetic that I had to put it up.

It's worth reading all the comments on that post. As often happens, they're far more interesting than the post itself, which is a routine whinge about common problems with classes. First there's some stuff which clarifies what I was talking about, then Gamecat and Ghost work up a beautiful model of tango speciation, starting with the natural selection process described by Christine Denniston in her talk, but under quite different conditions. Then there's some thoughtful and practical stuff about leading and following turns, and how people do it, and why.

7 comments:

Arlene said...

Giros are all fine and dandy if one knows how to execute them. The problem being that there are those who think that using just your arms to move the lady around is enough. I know what they want, but I don't do anything if it isn't lead properly. And why are there men that think it is ok to do three in a row!

msHedgehog said...

That's a funny thing, I'd forgotten about that but I get dizzy really easily. Sometimes I have to unwind myself at the end of dance.

Game Cat said...

Arlene - Please keep doing that. And tell fellow followers to do that. Don't stop. Have you any idea what a follower is like to lead a giros after she's danced with three straight leaders that evening who lead only with the arms? The horror, the horror...sob.

Ms H - That's funny, but it also made me think. Do leaders in London tend to lead giros in a single favoured direction (e.g. clockwise)? How do you feel about this? (Arlene, appreciate your experience here too). Do you have a bias too?

msHedgehog said...

Gamecat - Yes, I think most individuals have a favoured direction and I think that it's mostly, errrrmmm .... with the first step towards the open side of the embrace. Most people don't seem equally comfortable in both directions.

It could be that it's easier to lead and follow that way. Most would need to open it out a bit to go the other way. (But now I think about it, don't most people start an ocho cortado towards the closed side? And it's exactly the same thing. But then, they often don't change weight properly into the sidestep.)

But I've sometimes wondered if left-handed men find the other way more natural, so tend to master both ways more quickly.

I have no personal preference as a follower, IF the leader is comfortable with both. For those who like to do a lot, I really appreciate it if they can mix them up - it gives my inner ear a chance to sort itself out.

Limerick Tango said...

People are more comfortable turning one way than the other. Police forces world wide use this when chasing down criminals.

Game Cat said...

Ms H - Thanks for your thoughts.

By "open side" I presume you are referring to the follower's RIGHT, regardless of whether the first step is forward, side or back? If so, then that is interesting as I've heard that leading to follower's RIGHT is more difficult for the leader, hence less common.

The exception is when the leader tends to lead with his arms, in which case it could be easier as it's easier to "push" the follower's left side with his arm than "pull" (ugh).

Distance between bodies in giros is interesting. I've been taught as a general rule to keep it practical: e.g. close embrace for medio giros in contrast to open when doing a sacada-enrosque-lapis.

I think you're right about the ocho cortado btw. I've never done/seen done on the leader's left (open side). The leader's left arm + follower's right arm can be akward at that angle.

LT - Fascinating comment! In case I get chased down like a common criminal the next time, how SHOULD I turn to throw off the coppers? :)

Arlene said...

Ms H - I get dizzy too, which is why I stopped going to Salsa!

GC - In my experience, the Giros are lead mainly anti-clockwise. Though I had a lovely dance with a professional who led me both ways!
In any event, it doesn't matter the move, if they don't lead it correctly I don't do it, and when they ask me about it, I say either that is how I read it or I didn't feel it. :-)