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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Pique en dehors


ami1436

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I've done a search and found a helpful thread in the teachers topic but could still use some additional advice/suggestions.

 

As someone who considers herself not to be a natural turner - far from it - I've been working really hard on all sorts of turns for the past 2 years or so. I'd say that I'm not making amazingly fast progress but decent enough and I'm starting not to feel the 'oh no it's a turn' fear factor.

 

And then there are the pique en dehors... My 'go to' teacher is away for a few weeks and this has been bothering me for months, as I feel like my technique with them is actually going backwards.

 

The main problem I'm having is either with a series of them at a faster tempo or doing multiple rotations. I have been able to pull off a few nice doubles or so, but then I'm not sure what I'm doing differently when they happen or when they don't.

 

I'm tombe-ing to fourth, usually efface. I was taught that the pique-ing leg than does a full rond-de-jambe to croise devant and then pique. I know that when it is faster, I sometimes have the tendancy to leave my second arm behind or start turning a bit too early - am working on it and that is getting better. When the tempi is faster, I also don't feel like I have time to use the full rond de jambe or pique. I do try to make my tombes smaller as well. I spot (or attempt to spot!) in the direction of travel.

 

Sorry this is rambling. When the tempi picks up, are the teachers here in favour of just doing a rond de jambe to second and then essentially a coupe to the retire position? Do you tombe to fourth or...? Second? Ecarte? Just coupe? Any ways that I should approach these differently when en pointe?

 

I've seen professional dancers pull of the most amazing sets of fast double pique en dehors, either just not tombe-ing forward and essentially coupe on the way into fondue and then back into retire, or just 'coming down' from the turn to a high demi pointe and coupe to retire. They look amazing when done well, but I don't even dare try, or pretend that I'll ever get there. But there's gotta be a happy level (or few levels) of progression in between there...

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ami, the faster they get the more you shorten the tombé and also the rond de jambe. And be careful not to over cross the piqué! Try thinking of that as being directly in front of you in. If the second arm is lagging, your body weight is probably a bit too far back.

 

Technically, in theory, all piqué actions should come from a plié, (in this case a tombé), and that is the way they should be taught and practiced. However, in reality, when the pros are doing a fast coda, you will not see anything that resembles a tombé!

 

I teach them using the tombé to 4th, with the body in effacé, however, thare are other methods used. My theory is that turns en diagonal are a forward moving step, and that the body and the head should be facing where one is going. I'm not fond of moving sideways in turns. However, I would say about 99% of students who come to our school or audition for us seem to think they are a side moving step, and the same with piqué en dedans. :o

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Thanks Ms. Leigh. I might be over-crossing the pique as I try to start the turn too soon.

 

ami, the faster they get the more you shorten the tombé and also the rond de jambe.

 

This is what I'm not quite sure on. I understand shortening the tombe, but what do you mean by shortening the rond de jambe? Do you me by just taking it to second (and then doing a coupe to retire)? I don't understand how one can technically or in terms of geometry 'shorten' the rond de jambe, if that makes sense?

 

Technically, in theory, all piqué actions should come from a plié, (in this case a tombé), and that is the way they should be taught and practiced. However, in reality, when the pros are doing a fast coda, you will not see anything that resembles a tombé!

 

So how would you go about coaching someone up to that fast coda? What changes would you recommend?

 

Many thanks!

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Like Ms. Leigh, I teach all pique tours with the body facing the direction of travel. For the pique tour en dehors, they tombe to the fourth efface, but I only have them rond de jambe to second and coupe up to retire as you mentioned instead of bringing the leg all the way around to the front (body is still facing the direction of travel though).

 

I have seen dancers in times of need for speed not do a complete tombe (heel down on the floor in plie). Instead they are stepping to the demi-point.

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Yes, that is what happens when it gets REALLY fast. No demi plié, just a demi pointe, and the turns are very compact. The piqués are tight and close together, not stepping out so much.

 

By shortening the rond de jambe, basically I meant just go side and front. It is not really a coupé because you still step out somewhat, not directly under yourself.

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Thanks Ms. Leigh - for some reason side to front did not occur to me (insert doofus symbol here), just back to side... It makes so much sense especially if they are supposed to *travel*. Duh.

 

I think that as I 'get' them and then try to increase tempi I'll first try the coupe that tothepointe mentions below, and then the demi-pointe (eventually)... It'll probably be a while.

 

I'll work on them... I have a feeling that I'll still be inconsistent on the multiple turns, but.... we'll see what happens. babysteps.

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Ami, the ones to demi pointe are really only for professionals, and then only when doing an extremely fast sequence. I do not allow students to do that in class until they arrive at the level where they are ready to do grand pas de deux.

 

For double piqué en dehors it helps to not step out so far in front, and keep the turn more compact. It is really just like a double en dehors pirouette except that you get into it with a piqué instead of a relevé. :thumbsup:

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A LOT of people tend to overcross the leg at the end of the ronde de jambe, and end up sitting into the hip and unable to turn. It's something to watch out for. So many people do this...

 

This is not one of my favorite steps :thumbsup:

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