I'm thinking about new Waltz choreography for an intermediate class in the New Year, and am intending to feature a series of Natural Pivots.
Can I ask for some suggestions for 'favourite' follows? I've some thoughts of my own, of course, but it is always good to look through someone else's eyes at common figures. My only real criterion is that the level of difficulty should be within the range of intermediate dancers.
Double Natural The natural version of the Double Reverse Spin, also counted 12&3. Man steps RF forward, LF side & sl back around lady, brush RF closed and toe pivot on LF. The main difference between this and the Double Reverse is that the lady's 4th step isn't a cross, but a small forward step O.P. right side. Figure ends with man facing D.C., so can be followed by a Forward Lock, Chasse, Double Cross, Basic Weave started RF fwd O.P., etc.
Back Whisk Depending on whether your pivots and with man's LF or RF free, this can either be a straight 1,2,3 or a syncopated 1&2,3. This is not a Fallaway Whisk but a regular Back Whisk ending to Pivots. Works best in a corner to end in PP moving toward DC on the following figure. Fun to follow with a forward, close action, then Right Lunge back at the corner.
LF Check to Reverse Pivot Similar to a Spin Turn to Reverse Pivot, but taken after a series of consecutive pivots, typically rising on the LF "check" and then lowering on the Reverse Pivot. Many variations of timing are possible, but as an introduction to intermediate-level dancers, I suggest using Canter timing (i.e. LF on 1, then continue to rise & twist slightly rightward through 2, then Rev. Pivot on 3).
RF Check to Left Whisk/Hinge On any RF step of the pivot sequence, check both the progression and the rotation early to end with a strong R. side positive. Soften into R. knee, swaying to L. and twisting slightly to R. Then shift weight to LF to continue with either a Left Whisk or Hinge. Again, many variations of timing possible. Easiest if RF step is on 1 would be 1 (2,3,1), then Whisk for 2,3.
I think that probably the most common exit or follow from the Natural Pivots is the second half (4-6) of a Spin turn, overturned and then something like a turning lock to promenade position.
The back whisk would be very difficult to do if you have lot's of speed and movement, which is important for pivots but it depends on your styling and what you are trying to show.
You can also do a drop ronde where the man does a ronde with his left leg forward and the lady back with her right leg on count 1. That is usually pretty cool but make sure you do it in the corner so you don't get killed by other couples:). Then probably follow that with a run-around.
Those are probably the two things I would opt for although I really love Double Natural's as well.
I agree that this is a very common combination (and easy to dance), but the necessary number of steps, and resulting continued rotation, will make most inexperienced dancers very dizzy. I tend to prefer a shorter sequence (and the Reverse Pivot into a Reverse figure is very useful to 'unwind').
I saw this thread and was wondering if anyone could tell me how many variations of timing there are for natural pivots in waltz? For example: 123 1&2&3 1 2&3 1&2 &3. Do all these work? Any advice would be helpful.
For most smooth and standard dancers of average to above average skill level, the most pivots that can be reasonably squeezed into a single measure of Waltz is 4. Two pivots (presumably canter timing) are going to die a slow death at Waltz tempo, and so we are left simply with two choices: 3 or 4 pivots per measure.
3 pivots in a measure would in all but very rare circumstances be counted straight: 1,2,3.
As for 4, here's where you have options. The most popular timing is "1 and 2, 3", since it results in a very Waltzy lilt at the appropriate time, counts 2-3. However, there are times you may wish to modify that timing slightly, based on a number of factors such as what you're dancing before or after the pivots. With a single syncopation, we can presume that 3 of the steps will be taken directly on the beats, which leaves us with the choice of which "and" count to attach that extra step. In total, you have 3 "ands" in each measure, so take your pick and see what kind of timing it leaves you with, e.g.:
"1 and 2, 3" "1, 2 and 3" "1, 2, 3 and"
Technically, there's a fourth option if you use the "and" count from the previous measure, e.g. "and 1, 2, 3".
Someone will probably come along and say it's possible to double-syncopate a measure of pivots, i.e. take a total of 5 steps, two of which would fall on "and" counts. Of course, just because something is possible doesn't mean I'd necessarily recommend it. Nonetheless, if you really want to give it a try: (1) Good luck, (2) Use the same method above and simply choose two "ands" to attach the two extra steps, (2) It's probably better to put as much space between those "ands" as possible, such as "and 1, 2, 3, and".
It was odd to see this topic pop up again. But by one of those strange coincidences, I was thinking, again, about Natural Pivots, just the other day.
I found a YouTube clip of an amalgamation of Overturned Natural Spin Turn (as though to be followed by a Turning Lock to R), but followed by 'Syncopated Natural Pivots' timed 1&23 and then the Turning Lock. It's a relatively easy amalgamation, and well worth using, but the pedant in me baulked: surely we don't have a Spin Turn, here, because man must pivot again on step 6, so that he can follow RF fwd (rather than RF back) into a pivoting action. We actually have 1-5 of a Natural Spin Turn, followed by Pivots timed 31&, 5-6 of Natural Spin Turn (23) and a Turning Lock (1&23).