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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Walking fast and smooth under load


Danny

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For an upcoming show I have to carry a young women by the armpits while she is sort of frozen in a grand jete, I believe she calls it stradled. My teacher wants me to walk fast and smooth so my partner's legs don't sway. I can't seem to do fast and smooth at the same time. Any suggestions?

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Start slow. What you should be doing is the pas marché, the formal classical walk of the dancer, except that it's fast, and so pas couru. You have to run from the tip of the toe, through the toes, through the metatarsal, through the arch, through the ankle, and that's just one step. HOWEVER, your partner has an equal responsibility in this to not jiggle and wiggle about while she's being lifted. Your arms must be fully extended through this whole maneuver.

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You also want to continue lifting her as you walk - that is do not let her weight settle on your arms - use your abs through shoulders through arms to keep pressing her upward. This will let your legs move more freely and provide her with active support to hold herself against as Mel stated above. Mel is right to start slowly and make the walk faster as time goes by.

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Thanks for the advice! I must say, this forum is phenomenol. It's hard to explain but I don't feel so alone anymore. I've always been the only guy in class and teachers and partners can only tell what they want and not how to do it. I wish I knew about this site sooner. Thanks again.

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