Bill Baxter asks about the Tournee, offering two rather different
descriptions for what happens on bar 4. I believe his number 1 is close to
a correct description while number 2 is definitely not. The key is in bars
2-4 of the manual's description:
>2-4 Both couples dance half way round counter-clockwise, the two men > turning their partners ACROSS IN FRONT OF THEM on the last step
Both couples begin with the same movement (the man drawing the lady across
in front of him as he moves to the outside), but the individuals in the top
couple (couple 2) must add an extra 180-degree pivot to the left to end up
facing the right way. In practice second couple's "draw the lady across and
pivot left" should be one continuous movement. Also, you don't need to be
too hasty about releasing the left hand--there is a point near the end of
the pivoting left where it will happen naturally (the instructions don't
say when to release the hand that is not used during the butterfly turns
for either couple--this is something you can work out for yourself).
I don't know what you mean by "There is a tendency for the 2nd man to find
himself backing into place" because I most definitely don't find myself
backing up. I also don't understand "2nd man changes direction twice: at
the beginning of bar 4 and again at the end of bar 4." You may be doing an
over-stylized version with extra elements that are not required. I would
suggest more economy of movement. At the beginning of bar 4 I am facing the
men's side; as I draw the lady across in front of me, I turn my body
slightly toward the top of the dance to facilitate crossing my left foot
over the right to dance up; from that point to the end of bar 4, both the
lady's and my movement are smooth, fluid left face turnings. This is
something that works well for me. This level of detail far exceeds the
description in the manual and as a consequence is neither correct nor
incorrect; it is how I and my body produce a pleasing interpolation for
details that are not specified. It might works well for you too. I think
2nd couple's movement is a lot of fun!
I think it is too bad that there are not more dances with the Tournee. It
is a lovely formation that is generally done poorly because it doesn't get
much floor time--folks forget how to do it from one time to the next.
Also, I think the descriptions in the manual are interesting for what they
say and for what they don't say. They generally don't describe every minute
detail of the movements--such detail is neither necessary nor desirable.
There must be room for the wide variations in individual styles, skills,
shapes and sizes that appear in our classes and ballrooms.
Cheers, Oberdan Otto.
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