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Archive for the ‘sacadas’ Category

The 26th

It seems I have to learn some things the hard way, by evolving more elegant and/or efficient ways to do things, and then realizing that I am only doing things I was told to do, say, a year ago. III of V with S. resolving questions — still not working consistently for me — like resolving a molineta into a lady’s cross in close, and again visiting close embrace sacadas. Truism: Gancho in close – aiming for the weight bearing leg. Sacada in close – free leg. Simple and profound. Also revisiting the “piece of pie” in close embrace ocho cortado. I am guilty at times of cheating on this. Resolving the molineta into a lady’s cross comes from a follow that pays attention to the lead’s torso, and from a lead that pays attention to his torso as well.

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Improvements on Close Embrace

A private session with S. and P, who irregularly stands in as class partner for me tonight. An improvement to my close embrace turns: Strong signal with the torso, then execute. Also less complicated foot work — I have been doing backsteps with turns, which are fine with lots of room, but they take up God’s half acre compared to simply stepping in place, which is “ok” in close.

Also a few attempts at close embrace sacadas – remember to weight change.

Afterwards, a trip to the Milonga at Devinos. A shout-out and a “thank you” to that friendly Foreign Policy specialist who shows such promise as a dancer.

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In combinations in close that start with a volcada, the embrace needs to “slide”. Practice walks out of a volcada into walking to the follow’s (l).

If the balance is falling apart in a close embrace combination, it is probably because yopu have not adjusted the embrace appropriately as the combination evolved.

One should not use the “lawn mower” opening (i.e. starting the mower) when opening the chest . Proper posture and openings are so simple yet make figures so much cleaner.

Practice with back sacadas out of the “American” position into both side and back steps, and review of back sacadas out of forward ochos. Again, like a magician pulling rabbits out of a hat, the instructor had me radially stepping after the back sacada for forward boleos and back ganchoes. Awesome. If only I can remember this stuff.

Siempre: Give her time to move and shift her weight in these figures.

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Day II

The potential practice partner I thought to be “Russian” based on an email misunderstanding turns out to be a Brazilian, albeit still with a communications barrier. However I have a tango companion at the guesthouse, a Russian who lives in the states. He is passing through on the way to a scientific endeavor in Misiones province; and we have enjoyed conversation about a variety of topics.

Session II

The “sash” exercise is repeated. The point is not so much to keep the sash the same length but that keeping the line between a and b taut along the same line.

In ochos.. make the micro-second pause, allow her to respond to the lead before coming along.

Exercises with sacadas: Boleo/sacada combinations, and boleo/sacada-sacada-step over. More work on this tomorrow. Work with sacadas to my right instead of just my left. Exercises and practice with a weight change-whole body rotation with secadas.

Postura: I have over-exaggerted an ocho lead in the states, even “helping” with the movement of my head; this is to be stopped.

Milonga: More practice with the corrida. Variants: In one, two, one-two-three tiempo, letting the first step outside; or alternatively the second, begin the corrida. A triaspe variant: (L) side step –> (r) with the right going “outside” into cross system before returning to collect. There are all kinds of varations possible, here; the trick is to go with the tiempo and mix it up. Keep that left hand “back” or even “down” rather than “forward.”

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The BsAs experience would not be complete without being packed into the tren with every other Porteno in the world going about their business. Close embrace, indeed..

Session I with the maestra, sans partner: A “check” dance, one each vals, milonga, tango. She was pleased with my progress since last visit; but then the work began….

Embrace: An unusual method: the maestra ties a sash around herself and extends the end of it to her right hand — by way of demonstrating that the line between point A and point B (the frame) needs to be kept the same length. This little exercise was changing my posture immediately and showing up in the dance. Harder than it sounds to keep the sash “straight” while doing boleos, sacadas, etc. but it demonstrates again how posture and walking are fundamental.

Secadas: Simple exercises, again, with the pendulum by way of prepping me for more work with secadas. They need to be “found” with the chest, not looked for with the feet. A cool secada/barrida that has eluded me before but which is really simple in fact.

The Pendulum: An exercise that my last trip ended with, and I can see how my posture still can be refined. More on this tomorrow. Right and left forward to both right and left movements + weight changes .. ahhh.

Milonga: Practice with traspie steps, and the posture. I see now that I have gone “down” a bit in my back steps, and it changes everything to stay “up” and “forward” with the chest. Practice with a corrida, as well; I am not there yet. Ssssslide those feet.

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Juice it up..

A private lesson with G. and S. two nights ago was one of those that was highly profitable yet hard to recall the specifics of; the mind was glazing over. One must hope that one is absorbing things at the intuitive level. However I will note this “low cost” addition to simple secadas: At the end of a basic figure, go into something like “la caida” with the right behind your left as your follow crosses; bring your follow out of the cross to your right, then do your first sacada forward with that right, etc. Low cost glamour.

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