RIFF STUDY; PART FIVE TURNING

Here’s the last installment of the RIFF STUDY!  If the first four parts made your head spin, go ahead and spot and try these!

FOUTTE RIFF TURN

&a1    3 SOUND RIFF R (BR, SCUFF, HEEL DROP)

&2     BALL CHANGE  RL

REPEAT

3 SOUND RIFF, SPANK, BALL CHANGE

&a1    3 SOUND RIFF R (BR, SCUFF, HEEL DROP)

&        SPANK R

a2     BALL CHANGE  RL

REPEAT

LIKE CHAINE

&a1       3 SOUND RIFF R

&2       STEP R, HEEL DROP R

REVERSE

That’s all for the Riffs for now…..will be back soon with something new!  If you want to see something special…let me know!

 

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RIFF STUDY; PART FOUR WALKING RIFFS

Now let’s get moving with the Walking Riffs!  Make sure you get the basics from Riff Study Parts One, Two and Three.

4 SOUND WALKING RIFF

a   Brush R

1   Scuff R

&   Heel Stand R

2    Toe Drop R

This Riff Walk is part of the flat footed family of Riff Walks and traditionally all four sounds should be done in one count like “e&a1”.

 

5 SOUND WALKING RIFF

a   Brush R

1   Scuff R

&   Heel Drop L

a    Heel Stand R

2    Toe Drop R

 

6 SOUND WALKING RIFF

a   Brush R

1    Scuff R

e   Heel Drop L

&   Heel Stand R

a    Toe Drop R

2    Heel Drop R

 

7 SOUND WALKING RIFF

&   Brush R

a    Scuff R

1     Heel Drop L

e     Heel Stand R

&    Toe Drop R

a     Heel Drop L

2     Heel Drop R

Come back later for the final installment of the Riff Study!  Let me know if you like this kind of thing…. and if there is anything else you would like to see me cover.

RIFF STUDY; PART THREE

Here is my third installment of the Riff Study!  Check out Parts One and Two to make sure you have the basics.  Enjoy!

OPEN THIRD

&  Brush R

a   Scuff R

1   Brush R

(Front Riff + Brush)

 

CLOSED THIRD (Riffle)

&   Brush R

a   Scuff R

1   Spank R

(Front Riff + Spank)

Put the OPEN THIRD and the CLOSED THIRD (Riffle) together to make a SIX SOUND SHUFFLE pattern!

 

3 SOUND RIFF

BRUSH + SCUFF + HEEL DROP

Front Riff with a Heel Drop on the base leg

 

RIFF STUDY; PART TWO

Here’s Part Two of the Riff Study!  Make sure you check out the basics in Part One!

4 SOUND SHUFFLE

FRONT RIFF + BACK RIFF

a1    Brush R, Scuff R

a2    Heel R, Spank R

Faster tempo – e&a1

Substitute for any regular Shuffle to spice things up!

 

Now….add a Heel Drop on the base leg to make a PENDULUM RIFF!

PENDULUM RIFF

&a    Brush R, Scuff R

1       Heel Drop L

&a    Heel R, Spank R

2   Heel Drop L

Can also replace any regular Shuffle!

RIFF STUDY; PART ONE

This is the start of a five part series on the Riff!

Let’s start with the Basics:

FRONT RIFF

a   Brush R

1    Scuff R

(Use one continuous movement)

 

BACK RIFF

a   Heel Dig R

1   Spank R

(heel dig is a continuos movement more like a spank with the heel surface)

 

RIFFLE

&  Brush R

a   Scuff R

1   Spank R

(Front Riff with a Spank)

Use the Riffle to replace any regular Shuffle to add one more sound!

CRAMPROLL SERIES; THE JACK STANLEY TURN

Now for the last of my CRAMPROLL SERIES!  I’m gonna share a step that I learned many years ago in my tap class at Broadway Dance Center from the fabulous Judy Ann Bassing.

The JACK STANLEY TURN

Jack Stanley, Judy Ann’s teacher (as well as literally thousands more including Ron Daniels) is credited for naming the Drawback!  He was an iconic master tap and jazz teacher in his studio on Broadway in New York City.  He was know for his gruff, detailed and expert training.  He knew the value of hard work and dedicated study as well as the value of jazz and ballet training for the success of the professional dancer.

This turn is an advanced Alternating Cramproll Turn

THE JACK STANLEY TURN

&a Shuffle R

1 Ball Drop L

&a Step R, Heel Drop R in the direction you are traveling (LOD)

2 Scuff L  in the direction you are traveling (LOD)

3 Leap onto L facing back

& Step onto R facing back

a Heel Drop the Right and continue to spiral the torso to the Right continuing the turn

4 Heel Drop the Left and finish the turn facing front  AST release the R foot

Repeat

 

 

For a challenge:

Add an Alternating Pick up after the Scuff from the R to the L!

or

Change the Step R, Heel Drop R (&a)  to a Flap R, Heel Drop R (e&a) or a Shuffle Step R, Heel Drop R (ie&a) to make the step double or triple!

I hope you have enjoyed my CRAMPROLL SERIES!  Leave a message if you need help or would like to see information in the STEP OF THE MONTH on anything else.

CRAMPROLL STUDY; NOW LET’S TURN!

Now…let’s apply some of our new Cramprolls to make a few CRAMPROLL TURNS!

You should also know that there are basically two types of turns; those done in a line like Chaine’s called “In Line” turns. (or Line of Direction Turns) and those that stay in place like Pirouettes and turn IN one spot called “On Spot” turns.

The Regular Cramproll will allow your students to place sounds under their chaine’s and is an In Line turn.

Remember that the order of the Regular Cramproll is RLRL (or LRLR).

To do the REGULAR CRAMPROLL TURN:

1 Step the Right foot in the Line of Direction (LOD),

& Step the Left foot toward the back of the room

a Heel Drop the Right and begin to spiral the torso to the Right continuing the turn

2 Heel Drop the Left and finish the turn facing front  AST release the R foot

Repeat

(can also be counted 1,2,3,4 ,  1&2&,   e&a1 or any other 4 sound rhythm pattern)

 

 

Now the STAMP ALTERNATING CRAMPROLL TURN:

(Remember that the order of the Alternating Cramproll is RLLR or LRRL)

1 STAMP (or Step) the Right foot in the Line of Direction (LOD)

2 LEAP onto the Left foot facing the back

& Step onto the Right foot facing the back

a Heel Drop the Right and continue to spiral the torso to the Right continuing the turn

3 Heel Drop the Left and finish the turn facing front  AST release the R foot

Repeat

(can also be counted 1,2e&a or any other 5 sound rhythm pattern)

 

How about the STAMP SCUFF ALTERNATING CRAMPROLL TURN:

& STAMP (or Step) the Right foot in the Line of Direction (LOD)

1 Scuff the Left foot in the Line of Direction

2 LEAP onto the Left foot facing the back

& Step onto the Right foot facing the back

a Heel Drop the Right and continue to spiral the torso to the Right continuing the turn

3 Heel Drop the Left and finish the turn facing front  AST release the R foot

Repeat

(can also be counted &a1&a2 or any other 6 sound rhythm pattern)

Choreographer’s note:  if you finish the cramproll turn with a Lunge or a Stamp you can immediately reverse the Cramproll and go the other direction.

Have every other students use a different start leg to go in and out of a column or to have lines cross through each other.

put video here:

Make sure that your students are spotting the all of these Cramproll Turns.

They can be spotted in the direction that the student is traveling (LOD) or can be spotted to the front.  It is your choice as the choreographer and is often decided by what is following your turn.

Give them the count or the corresponding foot sound on which you want their head to turn.  “A group that Spots together, turns together!”

Arms usually use the technique employed for the Chaine’ turn in Ballet.  More advanced students can employ a variety of arm shapes but arms should always help and compliment the turn.

Of course, all Cramproll Turns must have clear, nicely spaced sounds.  Pick one sound of the the turn as the accent sound to help students with clarity.

Try connecting these Cramproll Turns for combinations across the floor.

CRAMPROLL STUDY: PART ONE

CRAMPROLL STUDY:  PART ONE

I LOVE CRAMPROLLS!

They are great teaching tools for helping students to develop clean separate sounds as well as working both the right and left foot.

Cramprolls are generally grouped according to the foot pattern used so we will start with that in this first of a series of our CRAMPROLL STUDY!

The REGULAR CRAMPROLL (REG CRRL) pattern is  RIGHT-LEFT-RIGHT-LEFT  or LEFT -RIGHT-LEFT-RIGHT!

You can either use the words “Leap” or “Step” when describing the first movement of the Cramproll (CRRL) .  I generally use the word “Step” because I employ a lot of single, double and triple variables that mentally work better with the word “Step” (the single sound)

REGULAR CRAMPROLL PATTERN:

STEP R  (or Leap)

STEP L

HEEL DROP R

HEEL DROP L

or Reverse

This can be done at all levels depending upon the rhythm pattern you choose.  Here are the most common rhythm patterns used for most Cramprolls

1 STEP R  (or Leap)

2 STEP L

3 HEEL DROP R

4 HEEL DROP L

or

1 STEP R  (or Leap)

& STEP L

2 HEEL DROP R

& HEEL DROP L

or

1 STEP R  (or Leap)

& STEP L

a HEEL DROP R

2 HEEL DROP L

or

e STEP R  (or Leap)

& STEP L

a HEEL DROP R

1 HEEL DROP L

 

PROGRESSIVE CRAMPROLLS have a different pattern.  You finish one foot and then progress on to the other.

PROGRESSIVE CRAMPROLL

1 STEP R (or leap)

& HEEL DROP R

a STEP L  (or leap)

2 HEEL DROP L

(or you can choose any of the four common CRRL rhythms shown for the REG CRRL)

ALTERNATING CRAMPROLLS

These are used to allow the dancer to change feet and are often used for turns.

You begin with the Regular patter of Right – Left, then alternate the pattern in the Heel Drops to Left-Right.

1 STEP R (or leap)

& STEP L

a HEEL DROP L

2 HEEL DROP R

Use these types of CRAMPROLLS in combos to challenge the clarity and speed of your dancers:

COMBO ONE:

REGULAR CRRL  (RLRL)

PROGRESSIVE CRRL  (RRLL)

REGULAR CRRL  (RLRL)

ALTERNATING CRRL  (RLLR)

REVERSE

COMBO TWO:

REGULAR CRRL  (RLRL)

ALTERNATING CRRL  (RLLR)

REGULAR CRRL  (RLRL)

PROGRESSIVE  (RRLL)

REVERSE

 

Come back soon for lots of great CRAMPROLL variations based on these patterns and remember that my FLASH TAP product line has a deck of CRAMPROLL CARDS with more than 50 different Cramprolls notated for use in your classes.  Go to the Teaching Tools tab at the top of the page for more information on our entire line of products for your dance classroom.

WHAT’S BETTER THAN MORE SENSATIONAL SHUFFLES

We have had a look at the following Shuffle replacements in previous STEP OF THE MONTH posts:

SHUFFLE  =  BRUSH + SPANK

SCUFFLE   =  FRONT SCUFF + SPANK

RIFFLE  =  FRONT RIFF + SPANK

Now let’s talk about a few Shuffles that will help your students combine sounds with more proficiency.

First, the DIGFLE (I’ve also seen this spelled Dig-fle and Digffle)

DIGFLE = HEEL DIG + SPANK

Why bother with this term?  Why not just call it Dig Spank?

Well as with the Shuffle…..when you have done enough Shuffles, you no longer think about it in it’s two parts (brush + spank).  It becomes one word that evokes two connected movements.

When I type my name, I no longer think D- I – A – N – E —  G – U – D – A – T!  I just think my name and my fingers type it smoothly as one complete thought.

Thinking about Digfle will help you students connect the Heel Dig and the Spank into one more fluid movement.

I usually refer to the movements as Heel Dig, Spank when they are in quarter note or eighth note time (1,2,3,4 or 1&2&3&4).  If I want the sounds closer together, as in eighth note triplets, triplets with a rest or sixteenth notes, I will use the term Digfle. (&a1&a2&a3&a4, a1a2a3a4 or 1e&a2e&a3e&a4e&a)

Replace the Shuffle in any combination with the Digfle and make your students pay attention to the work on a whole new level.

The same is true with the term STOMPFLE (I’ve also seen Stomp-fle and Stompffle)

STOMPFLE = STOMP + SPANK

This step is traditionally known by some as a BUCK and can be found at the beginning of the BUCK SERIES  of Time Steps.  Replacing other Shuffles with the Stompfle will give you yet another variable for keeping your student’s heads in the game and mixing things up a bit.  Again…one name for two movements allows the mind to process it a bit more quickly.

Have fun with the IRISH by replacing the Shuffle with a Digfle:

Now, replace the Shuffle in the basic IRISH with a Stompfle:

Do two of each:

Shuffle Irish (Shuffle Hop Step)

Scuffle Irish (Scuff + Spank, Hop, Step)

Riffle Irish (Front Riff + Spank, Hop, Step)

Diglfe Irish (Heel Dig + Spank, Hop, Step)

Stompfle Irish  (Stomp + Spank, Hop, Step)

There are a even more to share….keep checking back for the next installment of SENSATIONAL SHUFFLES!

MORE SENSATIONAL SHUFFLES IDEAS!

In my last STEP OF THE MONTH blog (which was just last week…but I missed a lot over the summer) we discussed a few new ideas about the SHUFFLE and some of its replacement.

Let’s go a little farther into the world of VARIABLE TECHNIQUES and look at a few more   SHUFFLE REPLACEMENTS that will change the way you think about SHUFFLES and give you a few more options in the classroom and with your choreography.

We know that a SHUFFLE = BRUSH + SPANK and I gave you fresh definitions for those terms in the last blog, so……..if you haven’t looked at the last blog…..go there first and make sure that you have that back ground info.

We also know that SCUFFLE = SCUFF + SPANK and we used it in SCUFFLE, STEP and then built the SCUFFLE IRISH!

Take all the steps you know that have SHUFFLES in them, replace them with SCUFFLES and enjoy what happens when your students tune back in!

Now, let’s try another one:

FRONT RIFF + SPANK = RIFFLE    (3 SOUNDS – &A1)

The FRONT RIFF is a BRUSH that connects with a SCUFF in one movement producing 2 sounds. (a1)

BRUSH + SCUFF = FRONT RIFF

 

 

Now combine it with the SPANK and you’ve got a RIFFLE!

BRUSH + SCUFF + SPANK = RIFFLE

 

 

My advice is to relax the ankle and do the “sloppiest” SHUFFLE you can.  Just allow the heel to hit.  Use the drop and lift Shuffle technique that I talked about in the last blog.  If you swing it from the knee down it is very stiff and a bit awkward.

Now try RIFFLE, STEP!

 

 

How about a RIFFLE IRISH?

 

 

STAY TUNED….there are more SHUFFLE REPLACEMENTS coming in future STEP OF THE MONTH blogs.  Give these a try and let me know how it’s going!   I love to hear back from you!

There are lots of ideas on how you can change things up in your classroom in my book; VARIABLES FOR TEACHING TAP.   You can find out about all of my tap education books and products in the the TAP TOOLS tab on the bar at the top of the page.