Tango Argentino > Possible "moves" after the Follower's Cross

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by tangomonkey, Oct 1, 2010.

  1. tangomonkey

    tangomonkey Active Member

    To help remove/reduce the "basic 8" from my brain, something I've been working on are the possibilities for movement after the followers's cross. I've tried leading a forward ocho or a CCW giro, which seem to work OK. Just wondering what possibilities the (very helpful!) forum members here might have for me.

  2. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    Great exercises for transferring follower's weight.
    Since you can enter cross in normal or crossed way be careful how you will do your weight transfer and how the follower feels it.

    Cross is kind of lock, so you can lock/unlock i.e. transfer weight, and play with it unlocked one (with no transferring weight)

    while transferring the weight on left you unlock the right leg.
    Visualize follower as puppet of three parts (shoulders, hips, legs),
    so the way you turn she should move.
    So you can go: to her right, your back, her to your right side.
    - change weight and enter parada, but be careful and weight follower do dissociation and enter parada

    when transfer weight does not occur you can:
    - after stop go from her left side
  3. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Umm.... anything?

    At the end of a "standard" cross, the follower's simply on her left foot, with her right foot hooked behind her. So any movement is possible - although admittedly some are nicer than others.

    I guess one nice option is to take advantage of this "hook" - for example, it's easier to take the follower off her axis into a volcada, or to create a planeo / exaggerated ocho movement.

    But I'd suggest simply trying all standard movements from the cross position - side, back, left, pivot.
  4. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Re: salidas

    hi tm, the follower has 2 feet in the cross: the front, and the rear one. But they are differently weighted. And the weight shift is part of YOUR lead ! So if you lead a wheight change, the rear one is free, if not, the front one is still free for the next move.

    In which direction this movement will go, is only up to you, so let´s say there are 4 directions at either possibility, will make 8 ways out of the cross.
  5. v22TTC

    v22TTC New Member

    I'm sure you're aware of this already, but for the record; I'd say the main thing to be mindful of is to not go into the forward ocho too often, since this can also be a pretty standard thing to do, the way TA is often taught... you don't want to exchange one mental trap (8CB) for another one (cross goes into forward ocho... which a lot of followers auto-do round here, unless you really hold the pause after the cross...).
  6. ant

    ant Member

    I have been trying to master these two. As I am getting more proficient more things become possible.
    I have found that if you can lead to the cross without allowing your follower to change weight then this opens up a whole new avenue of possibilities and the folllowers find it a surprise but I am finding it difficult with some followers.

    I would also practise the two main ways of getting into the cross either from a side walk (as in the 8CB) or from a linear walk and then try both from both parralell and cross system walking.

    I am trying to master the above techniques and allow the music to decide what I do next rather than practising sequences as such.
  7. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    Basically, any move that can be led when the follower has her weight on her left foot (say like in walking), can be led from the cross. Some might be a little trickier (because she'll need to uncross), but pretty much any step can be led from any other step.
  8. nucat78

    nucat78 Active Member

    Try a slow Viennese Waltz left turn.
  9. UKDancer

    UKDancer Well-Known Member

    I might try that - more specifically, I might try the first three steps, and then untwist to the right (enrosque?) leading a giro/grapevine movement for the follower.
  10. v22TTC

    v22TTC New Member

    What would that consist of?
  11. UKDancer

    UKDancer Well-Known Member

    Leader would step LF forward, turning L, RF to side, coming around the front of the follower, and then cross the LF in front of the RF, with the aim of ending completely in front of the follower, wt on LF. Follower would go RF back, LF to side, and then close RF to LF. In VW, there would be a wt change on the follower's third step, but if the leader didn't lead the change, but instead brought her RF forward to pivot to the side, and then back, we have the leader untwisting to R and the follower dancing a giro around.

    I think that could work. Anyone?
  12. v22TTC

    v22TTC New Member

    Thanks for the explanation.:)

    I like your suggestion, by the way, follower allowing (I'd not cross my LF in front with some who need a more clear space to step into - but there're plenty of variations possible within that theme).
  13. Ampster

    Ampster Active Member

    Here's what I do on occasion (depending on the mood and music) when I lead my follow to a cross:

    Shift her weight to the front leg (a must). From here you can lead the following:
    • Front Ochos
    • Giro to the left
    • Giro to the right, by starting one front ocho then leading it into a giro
    • Parada
    • Walk straight forward in alignment
    • Walk straight forward, half step, and get into a 3 track walk (Parallel system... Is this what it's called? I forgot the term)
    • Do an enrosque to the right, using her as the pivot of the enrosque
    • etc, etc, etc... I'll add more when I remember
  14. UKDancer

    UKDancer Well-Known Member

    At the risk of 'corrupting' a tango thread, it is the man's cross that makes it a VW reverse (left) turn. Given the normal amount of rotation, it isn't possible to get around the partner in one step, and the cross allows the body to continue to move around the partner. Substituting a 'close' means that that's the end of the lateral movement of the body. That would be a problem half way through the turn (it has six steps), but if you were going to reverse the direction of turn, and untwist to the R, it wouldn't matter. But I would expect plenty of space, between the feet, to make the cross. A waltzer wouldn't struggle, and the feet would be much closer?

    It would be very interesting to see whether you could take a follower from a normal AT movement to the cross into all six steps of a reverse turn, becasue in steps 456, it is the lady who now dances the man's 123 movement (ie she crosses on 6) - that would mean that she moves to the cross backwards, and then forwards, ending, once again in the same position (having made one complete turn). I'm not advocating making it look like a bit of VW, but it could make quite a nice movement, danced with AT character.

    I'm going to a class in a minute, I might try both variants in the practica, if I get a chance.
  15. UKDancer

    UKDancer Well-Known Member

    Opinion seems divided on this. I was taught that the follower should (and would) always transfer wt immediately she is placed in the cross, and it had never occured to me that there was an alternative. My first teacher used the Basic Eight as a foundation movement, so I guess that is reasonable in that context, but doesn't this get almost hard-wired in followers' minds. I don't think I would have the skill to give the contrary signal not to change. What would it be?
  16. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    check 10th and 28th seconds.

    It leading into a cross and then take a mild step back with left unchanging weight, go on right foot with slight body rotation and go forward.
    Very nice and not so easy at it seems
    It was intermediate class but he can try it without dynamics.
    That is beginners class practice to feel changing the weight.
    I described it already.
  17. Ampster

    Ampster Active Member

    IMHO- Every move/weight change in AT comes from a lead. It should not be automatic. That stifles improvisation and creativity. To keep her from changing weight you hold her (lead her) in place and stop her from shifting to the crossed foot if you are going to lead something that necessitates her keeping her weight on the back foot.

    Leading is a practiced skill and it takes awhile to learn to read your follow. Be patient.

    The beauty of AT is its opportunity for improvisation while dancing stuck to each other (I dance exclusively in close embrace), wherein at any point in any movement, you can lead something else, something new, but you have to lead it, and make it seamlessly flow.
  18. v22TTC

    v22TTC New Member

    It's a hoary ol' subject, but I've found that the cross being taught the way it usually is (round here) is the work of the Devil - in theory, it's all led, but in reality (usually), followers will only recognise the cross lead if it's preceded by the 8CB steps (however well led), will auto-change weight and will then be confused if you don't step with your LF, or lead a forward ocho (if they're at a higher level)... nightmare!

    In honesty, I've resigned myself to only leading them the 8CB way, or not at all (except for with good followers, taught differently, out of town)... though extending the pause can be enough to stop them anticipating once there (after the auto-weight change:().

    Some see it as cheating, but I'll take what I can when dancing with such (mis-taught) followers - you can take a deep breath and slightly lift your chest as you lead the cross (communicating lightness), then breathe out and sink your weight a tad to indicate the weight change invitation (or don't, if you don't want her to). Shouldn't need to, but that's not my fault....

    EDIT: To clarify, she 'should' change weight in response to your step/weight change only - a normal, definite step/weight change should be all you need; and if you don't want her to weight change, but you want to yourself, then you should be able to do so without her feeling it, and thus responding. Again, in theory....
  19. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    Yes, some ladies are perfect followers and you can be sure that you led sth and can realize what you led. They are dream followers.
    I know a lady that she moves her hand as much as you do.
    Dancing with her is like game of puppeteer and a puppet.

    And there are others who do some things automatically.
    You accept that and adjust to her to have pleasant dance.

    But everything must be led, especially wight change.
    I exclude adornos that doesn't influence followers balance.
  20. tangomonkey

    tangomonkey Active Member


    That's been my experience too.



    Never thought about trying to keep her weight on the back foot after the cross. The cross is a collecting movement and weight should not transfer to the crossed foot unless that is led. Seems blatantly obvious now! Thanks. Will work on this and all the possibilities this "revelation" opens up.

    My goal was "To help remove/reduce the "basic 8" from my brain". This will do it - at least the cross leading to the so called "close" or "resolution" part.

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