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Phase VI Figures continued

by Roy & Phyllis Stier
January, 1991

SAME FOOT LUNGE: This figure accounts for three steps with the transition on counts 2 & 3 not so distinct. The starting position is a modified CP with the man facing COH or wall (normally) and the lady diagonally to him with the man's left and the lady's right shoulders apart forming a flat V. To get into the Same Foot Lunge, the preceding figure is usually called the "Preparation." The most common precedes is an Outside Check (like a Curved Feather Check) to a back, side, close for the man and a forward, side, touch for the lady, to blend to a modified CP. The precedes that is easier to do but a little harder to get proper alignment is a Maneuver; then turn, side, close (again, ladies end with a touch).

After the "Preparation" the man lowers onto his L while extending his R to the side and slightly forward using a left sway while looking strongly to the left. The lady toes in slightly to facilitate a better body position while lowering onto her L while extending the R backward with a right sway and looking to the right. Men transfer weight to their R by sliding the inside edge of the R about 3 to 4 inches, still holding the left sway but now looking less to the left. Ladies transfer weight to the R foot with a slight LF turn (toeing in) and still holding the right sway. As they hold their body position, the sway is changed to the right for the man as he looks at the lady while flexing the R knee and extending the L leg with a veering-in action. Ladies change their sway to the left with more movement than the man as they look strongly to the left but not falling back on their R heel. If the man retains a straight line with his body and keeps his shoulders well back, it will give the desired wide separation that is characteristic of this figure.

For the more adventuresome dancer, we would like to add a few extra notes as follows: Lower deeply into the supporting leg. While in the lunge position, care should be taken to keep the right hip and right shoulder over the man's R foot -- do not drop the right elbow or push the lady into the lunge with the left hand or forearm. It is the pelvic region that is carried into the lunge and which affords a supportive section for the lady. The lady uses up to 50% more sway than the man on count 3, so care must be taken that the bodies do not pull apart or that the man does not allow himself to change body position. Although the lady has a bent R knee, her body should be light and buoyant to avoid dropping heavily onto the R foot. Nearly all ladies only allow the R heel to touch the floor lightly; however, more professional dancers put some weight on it to allow for a more colorful exit.

When used in foxtrot the timing is QQS. Sometimes in waltz, more than one beat of music is used in order to get an appropriate pose effect.

SPIN & TWIST: This is a two-measure figure, which uses the beginning and ending of a regular Spin Turn. We will describe it as we would on a cue sheet using the step cues but in much more detail, starting from CP, man facing RLOD.

Bk L LOD pivoting RF approx 1/2, fwd R turning RF with a heel lead and using the right hip to lead the lady into the spin part of the figure (strong body rise), step sd L around lady on the toes to face DRW (so far like an overturned spin); On the "and" count, step lightly X RIB of L continuing to turn RF/lower to the heel of L and ball of R for a RF pivot, continuing the RF pivot with body rise, transfer weight to the R (still turning up to 1/8) and hover on a long count placing L to the side and slightly back to end facing DLW; Lady fwd R between the man's feet pivot 1/2 RF, bk L still turning, cl R to L with heel turn; continue turn fwd L outside partner/around R, L to CP, brush R to L and place R to the side and slightly forward;

The count would be 123; &4&56; The first "&" belongs to the man as he crosses R behind L (lady has closed R to L to face COH). The second "&" belongs to the lady as she steps quickly L outside the man in preparation for the man's hip lead to the hovering action. Experienced dancers use a long count on 5 (note the underlining) to get the display effect. The twist part has somewhat of a spiraling-upward look, but it will look overdone if too much lowering is taken beforehand.

X-LINE: This is not listed in a phase rating but should be described along with the Phase VI figures as a one-step posing line. It gets its name from the configuration of the partners' bodies that form an X when viewed from the front or rear where the X crosses at the hip level.

In order for the X-Line to be effective, it should be preceded by something in CP or compact SCP; however, it can be done from a Throwaway or as an ending to a RF Runaround, etc. The man flexes his R knee and turns his body a little RF with a swiveling action on the ball of the R while shaping to the left (lifting the right hip). The L leg is extended as far as is comfortable, and one should feel a strong pull on the muscles of the calf and thigh. This motion will force the lady to open to the right and into a right sway. For the lady, her R leg is extended to match the man's L so that they form a 180-degree opening from the lead hips. Both partners lean back with the upper body but keep contact at the hip line while looking away from each other. The man's R and lady's L knees are strongly flexed with his weight on the ball of the foot and hers on both ball and heel. Note: Some ladies like to ronde their R leg but it is not correct to do so. In any event it makes a better line to extend from the supporting foot.

The X-Line often ends a dance routine, but if it occurs somewhere in the body of the choreography it usually leads to something that requires a closed position (man closes L to R and lady R to L) where no sway is maintained and the lady turns more than the man.

Next Time: Natural Twist Turn

This column comes from a series published in Cue Sheet Magazine between 1987 and 1992, and is reprinted with permission. The full series is collected in an 86-pg booklet, available for $30.00 plus postage. E-mail Fran Kropf at This article was published in the Dixie Round Dance Council (DRDC)  Newsletter, February 2012.


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