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Thread: German Dance Tutorials

  1. #11
    Senior Member Friedrich's Avatar
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    Notes on sequence 3 from Tutorial 1: The 12-hitter.

    Repeat the first six moves from the nine-hitter (clapping hits around the raised left leg):

    It begins at move seven, where the left leg comes down and the right leg goes up:

    7. right leg up and right hand leg slap (keep right leg raised)
    8. left had slap on left leg
    9. right hand slap on right leg
    10. left hand slap on right leg
    11. right leg side kick (outside kick, sole faces right) and right hand slap on right sole
    12. feet down and left hand slap on left leg

    The final sequence:
    1. repeat first six steps of 9-hitter
    2. both feet down and arms raised (starting position)
    3. jump with both feet and raised arms! (The final stomp, well for one repetition anyway.)

    The complete repetition at a moderately slow tempo:
    1.The stomping
    2. The 9-hitter, while counting as in the clip:
    One
    two three
    Four
    five six
    Seven
    eight nine
    3 The 12-hitter:
    One
    two three
    Four
    five six
    Seven eight nine ten
    eleven twelve
    (counting break optional, can also be counted as one line in 12-hitter from 7 i.e. 7 8 9 10 11 12)
    4. Final sequence (6 steps of 9-hitter and stomp).

    The challenge now is to perfect the moves a bit, since the clip only shows the hits and their figures, and not much on returning moves, or the moves between them. I like to get into the both feet on the ground with raised arms position for one beat between each sequence, and the initial stomp already introduces and ends with that figure.
    The main thing, I think, is to keep the arms (or unused arm) up whenever possible, not only to get a windmill-like visual effect (especially on about two occasions where the hand hits the opposite leg: steps 8 in the 9-hitter, and 10 in the 12-hitter), but also to get loud "hammer-like" claps.
    I've been practicing in socks, and tonight I tried it with proper shoes on, and boy does it clap!

    Well, that's my advice on the "Haushammer".
    After the nine-hitter it's a cinch to practice, and just to dazzle visually one can obviously do more sequences, or stretch it out a bit.
    In that case I'd decide before the performance how many repetitions to do of each sequence and rehearse it a bit, since the viewer will notice inconsistencies, and it's hard to get back into the flow with this dance if you stuff up.

    Of course the main thing is to be familiar with the tune and the steady beat, and to watch the tutorial on Youtube, and my notes are supplementary.
    However, I think that knowing the sequence (even if my performance is far from perfect or consistent), I could return in months and remember it by glancing at these notes.

  2. #12
    Senior Member Friedrich's Avatar
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    Perhaps lastly on this dance, I'd advise dancers not to get discouraged if the sequences don't fit exactly to a musical version of the Haushammer.
    The music comes in different variations, lengths and tempos, and unfortunately the exact music is not given in Tutorial 1 (unlike the more difficult Holzhacker tutorial).

    For solo dance there's room for improvisation using these sequences.
    They don't all have to be squeezed into one continuous repetition, as they are practiced.
    There's room for standing, stomping or proudly and gracefully moving about with the hands on the chest posture before the next burst of movement.
    Just do count when starting a sequence until they seem totally second nature (9 or 12).

    Here the tutor, Mr. Hauptmann, performs a more improvisational version, showing nicely how one can move about between sequences.
    This also makes the sequences seem more striking and dramatic.

    Haushammer-Improvisation

  3. #13
    Senior Member Friedrich's Avatar
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    After the very successful results of Tutorial 1, and the great introduction to the Schuhplattler, a view of a few accomplished dances may be useful for the next level, or dance (which will be the Holzhacker).

    The first mixes cow-bells into an up-tempo dance, thus stressing traditional symbolism with a fun-filled and notable performance:

    Kuhschellen Plattler


    The next dance introduces the ladies, and is a group-dance for both genders:

    Chiemgauerish - Gruppenplatteln


    There are many dances and clips, and not all get positive commentary from the "homelands" of the dance. I find that a bit silly occasionally, because clearly globally it's about identity rather than technical perfection. There's certainly a space for criticism and standards, but not everybody had the privilege to learn these dances from a young age.
    Criticism and comments should be helpful, rather than demeaning or exclusionist.
    Perhaps that's a debate for a later stage.
    Here is another example of some of the best:

    Top Schuhplattler.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Friedrich's Avatar
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    Die Enzian Buam - Skilled dancing mixed with hijinks, comedy and entertainment.

    Die Enzian Buam im Zillertal


    Then there's the "dance around the bench", which can be a virtual dramatic and athletic feat. Definitely not for amateurs.

    Bankerltanz - Tirol

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    The last clip is especially striking, because the kicks involved in the actual dance are very similar to martial art kicking.

    While searching for further online German dance lessons, I came across a somewhat strange clip that promises how to do a 19th century German "Rope Dance".
    This requires a kind of plug-in, but what I gather so far from this dance is that it's some kind of parlor game by the nobility playing with a skipping rope.
    I may be quite mistaken, since knowing dances was very much part of the social milieu back then.
    Unfortunately the Youtube clip is very short.

    German Rope Dance.


    Then, as I've become more fluid with the Haushammer I've realized that it does fit to the music. However it's not a matter of repeating the sequences as given for me.
    The Haushammer has two basic tunes, and the nine-hitter fits the first, while the twelve-hitter fits the second. I think that's quite important to remember.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Friedrich's Avatar
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    An amazing Schuplattler performance from Austria: "Mitternachtseinlage beim Ball der Oberösterreicher im Austria Center Wien, 2011."

    Here the ladies take part as "Schuplattlerinnen".

    I think one can learn much just by observing.

    Schuplattler

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