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 Post subject: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 4:26 am 
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Joined: Sat May 26, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 39
I've been having problems with the pas de chats we do in class- I demi, bring my other foot into retire (I'm using the terms I know, I could be very wrong) then pull the body up and bring the other foot into retire, and then land on the opposi leg in demi and the leg in retire. First off, I have no idea if the terms I just used are correct, so if what I'm describing sounds bizarre and incorrect- it probably is.<P>Secondly, the actual problem with pas de chats. When I do it, I feel as though I'm only switching the retire legs and the demi, and not actually jumping. And when I do jump, I always throw my weight forward, which loses my balance. Help!


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 4:39 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Magdelena - you explained it well - I understood it.<P>Generally speaking, though there is a grand pas de chat, this is not really a high jump. What you are trying to do is to spend a second in the air with both legs for a split second in retiré. It's a jump that not only goes up - it also moves in the direction of the first retiré leg.<P>Being forward is a good idea - however, you might try leaning slightly - not too much - toward the direction in which you are going. That should put your weight where it needs to be. Don't lean away from it.<P>This particular step can have two different qualities - depending on the enchainment in which it occurs and the tempo. It can be grand - or it can be small and quick. In either case the dancer is trying to show off both legs in retiré.<P>So keep your body lifted, forward and leaning toward the direction you are going. I hope this helps.<BR>


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 4:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
Unless your teacher wants you to do a different arm - the usual arm position for this - which will help your placement - is the arm you are moving away from is in second position. The arm toward which you are moving is folded across in front of you, and you are looking out over that elbow.<P>Be sure not to allow the arm in second position to get behind you - keep it in second position - but in front of your body. If it gets behind you - it will drag you back.


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 4:44 am 
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Joined: Sat May 26, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 39
Thanks for the suggestions. About the arms- she has us put our hands on our waists juist so we can get the footwork and basic technique down. So what are the arm positions?


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 10:40 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 17, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 1278
Location: Basking Ridge, New Jersey, USA
Magdalena, I understood you, too. If your teacher wants you to keep hands on hips for now, that's fine. I do think that the subtle tilt of the body and the arm position, as Basheva described it, will help you with your jump once you have the coordination down pat.<P>I don't know if your teacher is having you do these pas de chat slowly (a count for the first retire, a count for jumping and the second retire, a count for landing, for example). If you are doing them slowly, it is very difficult to achieve any height, or to get your feet to "kiss each other" (as I tell my students) in the air. If you are doing them on one count, then you may wish to experiment with taking the jump part a little bit sooner, like as the first foot is on its way up to the retire, rather than waiting until it has achieved its full height. Then the lift of the first leg helps to pull you up into the air.


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2001 1:17 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
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Location: San Diego, California, USA
Magdelena - Nancy is giving you very good advice about how to time your feet.<P>As for the arm positions they are whatever your teacher or the choreographer wants. And if your teacher wants them on your hips - that's where you put them.<P>However, the arms can also go over the head. I think the most common arm position is the one I described - the arm you are moving away from is in second, and the arm you are moving toward is folded across the front of your body, but not, however, going past your center line.<P>The hands on hips is a good way, too. <p>[This message has been edited by Basheva (edited June 10, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2001 8:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 241
Location: the Netherlands
My teacher always tells us it's important not to move your arms in pas de chat (only if asked for). The jump is pas de chat, but your arm is NOT a cat-tale....... LOL Image

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The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything...<P>


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 Post subject: Re: Pas de Chat
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2001 8:38 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
LOL - Anastasia - very cute - and your teacher is right.


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