"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #138, Thursday, March 13, 2003
Paso Doble in 1 Hour
Here in America at the least, Paso Doble is rarely played for a dance evening. With the same token, we tend to teach almost any dance that ever has been danced anywhere in the world. So, I was assigned to teach a class in Paso Doble for an hour. What do you do with Paso in 1 hour? You can do a lot and it is exciting.
The Rhythm and the Music: It is very invigorating and easy to understand. 2/4 Timing, 2 beats to a bar and count as 1 to 8 as one phrase.
Sur Place: Men! let us start facing wall. We will start the class by simply doing Sur Place. RLRLRLRL, 1-8, Man starting with RF and Lady with LF. They will say "you mean, it is that simple". The answer is, "yes, it is that simple". A little bit of technique; ?how to. I always like how Tatyana used to teach us like it is a "shovel" action with the balls of your feet digging in to the floor like a shovel.
Basic Movement: It is simply sur place steps but move in any direction, forward, back, curve to right or left.
Appel: For the beginners, "just stomp the RF hard to the Floor and you have done an Appel, usually in preparation to do the next figure.
Chasses to left: Appel on 1 and then start Chasses to left, Man (1-8)
Twist Turn: This is not the Twists of the Gold Syllabus but a simple Twist Turn. RF Appel on 1, then LF to side in PP. RF forward and across in PP on 3, LF to side on 4 and then hook RF behind LF on 5 and untwist on 6.7.8 making a whole turn around facing wall again. Lady simply follows and goes around you.
Another Appel and Sur Place and then repeat the whole thing again and again.
This much Choreography and Basics is enough for 1 hour and really you are moving along the LOD. Music starts to make sense and everybody is having fun. It is amazing how quickly they will start to dance and make up their own picture lines (borrow from Jazz) and it is a wonderful introduction to this most exotic Latin Dance.
Try it, you will like it. With best wishes Max.