[Callers] Star Promenade - communicate the feeling of a good one?

Alan Winston - SSRL Central Computing winston at slac.stanford.edu
Mon Feb 6 18:07:57 PST 2012

Gang --

I think star promenade with a butterfly whirl has the potential to be a
satisfying, connected figure, but in my experience it rarely is.  

What I want to have happen is that the inside people (usually men) retain
their allemande hold including the satisfying allemande amount of weight on
that arm, the women the men have an arm around are pulling away with enough
weight to feel connected, you get round in time, and the inside people push off
from the joined hand to launch a spin for the whirl.   When that's happened for
me as a dancer, I've really enjoyed it, but it's really rare.  Even the last
time I danced at the Scout House I got maybe two out of 15 possible on-time
pushoffs, and in California I'm lucky if I get one in a whole dance.  

I presume this doesn't happen because pretty much all four people have to want
to make it happen and know how.  At the contra I called last night, calling Amy
Cann's "Sweet Music" (*great* dance), I tried just hinting at the connected
part: "Men allemande left once a half.  Keeping that same feeling of
connection, scoop up your partner and star promenade.  Butterfly whirl and the
women use their momentum to start a hey for four ..."

Well, they got the sequence fine, but I was watching the floor and there was a
fair amount of men not even keeping a hand-hold with each other, much less a
connected one.  And of course if you don't have that counterbalance on the
other end of your arm you can't get around as fast.

All that's a long build-up to:  Anybody got hints for briefly and effectively
teaching a *good* star promenade?  (Not just the geography - that's easy enough
- but the dynamics that make it satisfying.)


-- Alan

 Disclaimer: I speak only for myself, not SLAC or SSRL   Phone:  650/926-3056
 Paper mail to: SSRL -- SLAC BIN 99, 2575 Sand Hill Rd, Menlo Park CA   94025

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