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Bolero

Note! These are notes for Bolero from prior to 2004. They are archived here for occasional reference.


Tempo

Bolero music has 4/4 timing, with a tempo of 96 beats per minute, or 24 bars per minute.

Notes and Tips:
  • Timing is SQQ. Normal dance position is body to body contact from knee to ribcage, offset, head facing left. If we're not in body contact, we're both going to need very good frames.
  • Steve kept telling us to double the length of our slow steps. Lots of contra-body position.
  • It's not a simple rock step. On Slow, lower body, slide big step. First Quick, short step. Second Quick, lower body, slide foot.
  1. Basic

    Variation of: Basic: Intro
    S. LF free. Compress, sliding left inside ball to left with straight leg, don't change weight until I've extended left leg as far as I want it to go, and then rise up onto the left leg.
    Q, RF back slightly, beginning compression into sit line.
    Q, Compress into right leg, extend straight left leg forward, and then change weight, maintaining compression.
    S, extend right leg right, sliding along inside ball, then change weight and rise up on right leg.
    Q, LF forward slightly, start compressing.
    Q, extend right leg back, using compression, and then change weight to right leg.
    On the slows, the impression of a tree swaying in the breeze is given.
  2. Turning Basic

    Variation of: Basic: Intro
    LF free
    S, slide LF way left, and when it's out there, push off RF, bring RF to left, without touching feet. Lower, slide across, come back up in CBMP
    Q, RF short step side, QT left, CBMP
    Q, slide LF forward, lowering
    S, thrust RF way right, keeping weight on LF until RF is out there, then push off LF, bring LF close to right, body goes down and up
    Q, LF short step forward
    Q, Lower body, slide RF back
  3. Rocking Basic

    Variation of: Basic: Intro
    On slow step, leave the trailing foot in place, on the quicks the hips do a figure eight, leading hip toward the rear, then on the next slow, gather up the feet again like in a normal basic.
    LF free
    S. slide LF way left, and when it's out there, push off RF, bring RF to left, without touching feet, Lower, slide across, come back up, use CBMP
    Q. RF short step side, QT left, CBMP
    Q. slide LF forward, Lowering
    S. thrust RF way right, keeping weight on LF until RF is out there, then push off LF, leave LF in place, Down and up, Sway, so that hips lead, followed by shoulder
    Q. CW LF, Sway left, hips leading, followed by shoulder, left hip sways back to front
    Q. CW RF, Sway right, hips leading, followed by shoulders, right hip sways back to front
    Swaying moving is like a flexible pole getting swayed from side to side from the bottom. Can also do it from the forward half basic, or do a couple in a row.
  4. Left Side Pass

    Variation of: Side Pass: Intro
    S. RF side, Open break
    Q. LF short step forward
    Q. slide RF back, Lead her forward, Lower body
    S. LF hooks behind RF, keep facing partner, A little like cross body lead
    Q. RF back, Lead her past on left, Left QT
    Q. CW LF, Lower body, Left QT
    S. RF side
    Q. LF forward
    Q. slide RF back, Lead her into me, Lower body
    S. LF left, Resume closed hold, Drawing her in with RF back, then cutting her off with LF side
  5. Right Side Pass

    Variation of: Side Pass: Intro
    On LF slow, step back diag, Q RF crosses left in front, while I lead her into inside turn, Q LF comes around, so that I am facing opposite direction that I started. Inside turn should have some snap to it, and should happen between the quicks as I allow her to go by.
    S. RF side, Open break
    Q. LF short step forward
    Q. slide RF back, Lead her forward, Lower body
    S. LF diagonal back, After leading her to step forward, I can wind her up a little, by taking her RH to my left a little, causing her to shape. keep facing partner
    Q. RF hook step, Lead her past on right, Right QT, Snap an inside turn between this step and the next
    Q. slide LF forward, Lower, right QT
    S. RF side
    Q. LF forward
    Q. slide RF back, Lead her into me, Lower
    S. LF left, Resume closed hold, Drawing her in with RF back, then cutting her off with LF side
  6. Sit Break

    Variation of: Open Break: Intro
    Instead of stepping forward w/ LF on QQ, settle down on RF, extending LF to side and slightly back, while turning upper body to the right.
    S. RF side, draw LF to RF, Open Break
    Q. Point LF side and slightly back, extend RH right and up, sit, CBMP
    Q. draw LF in, if link to close, leave LF out there
  7. Cross Over Break

    Variation of: Cross-Over Break: Intro
    Just like in Cha Cha, only easier, since the dance is slower.
    S. LF side, closed hold, down and up, CBMP
    Q. RF short side, QT left
    Q. slide LF forward, lower
    S. RF right, open break, down and up
    Q. LF forward, RH up and out, LH leads her into crossover, QT right
    Q. slide RF back, lower
    S. LF long side, Take her LH in my RH, body goes down and up, QT left, face partner
    Q. RF forward, release her RH, lead LH throughQT left
    Q. slide LF back
    S. RF side, take her RH in my LH, QT right
    Can end with under arm turn, walk around turn, arch turn
  8. Under Arm Turn

    Variation of: Open Break: Intro
    Can go from this directly into closed position
  9. Walk Around Turn

    Variation of: Open Break: Intro
    Should end up in open position. Use link to close to return to closed position
  10. Arch Turn

    Variation of: Open Break: Intro
    Use link to close to return to closed position
  11. Fifth Position Break

    Variation of: Fifth Position Break: Intro
    S. RF glide right
    Q. Release LH, turn body 45deg left, LF fifth position. Should make right angle with follower
    Q. Change weight to RF
    S. LF side, can either take her RH with my LH, and lead it back the way we came, or put left arm around her back, as we move into
    Q. RF fifth position
    Q. change weight to LF
    QQS. Repeat fifth position break on right side
    S. To end this pattern, LF in front of her, so that my body is facing hers, put LH out for her to take it, continue with turning basic
  12. Crossed hands fifth position break

    Variation of: Fifth Position Break: Intro
    after fifth position break to left
    S. RF right, bring my RH forward to take her RH. May want to guide her RH to my RH using my LH
    do fifth position break with crossed hands once to right, once to left, again to right, then:
    S. LF left, comb hair with RH, to bring her RH to my neck
    continue with normal fifth position break
  13. Leg Climb

    Variation of: Basic: Intro
    On rocking basic to right
    S. RF right, keep LF in place
    Q. weight to LF, swaying hips
    Q. weight to RF, swaying hips, lowering weight a bit on right leg
    S. weight to LF, straightening left leg, so I rise up, pointing RF out.
    Back to basic
  14. Link to Close

    Variation of: Open Break: Intro
    From Open Position. Q LF small forward. Q. RF back, drawing her with me, so that she is coming toward me. S. LF side, this cuts her off, puts her into offset postion for closed hold.
  15. Contra Check to Leg Climb

    Variation of: Basic: Intermediate
    2000.9.13
    On right half basic, Q, lower body, left leg slides forward and across, pushing her right leg back, CBMP. & Release RH a little, allow her to lean back. Q Straighten back up. S. LF left, CBMP, this draws her in for leg climb. Continue with rest of turning basic.
    S. Starting with weight on LF, RF side, down to up
    Q. LF diag right, pushing her RF back, don't put weight on it yet, sit, stay upright, becomes CBMP
    &. place weight on LF, release RH a little, allowing her to lean back, still low
    Q. change weight to RF, start to close up the hold again
    S. LF left, maintain frame as body turns, CBMP, turn body to right, she's got nowhere else to go, so small leg climb is easy option, her leg going up my right leg
    Q. change weight to RF, turn left to begin turning basic
  16. Hand Switch to Opposition Check

    Variation of: Side Pass: Intermediate
    2000.9.13
    Start like Left Side Pass. After she has passed me, on S, feet together, swivel around for half turn left, passing her RH to my RH and then my LH again. Q. push back on LH, small LF forward. Q. RF back, bring her forward, leading LH across me. S. use LH to lead her into clockwise turn (opposition check), LF small left. Q. RF small back. Q. LF forward. S. RF long side, use link to close to finish.
    S. starting with weight on LF, RF right, release closed hold
    Q. LF side, no weight, sit
    Q. stay low
    S. LF fifth position, start leading her past on my left, rise up, keep facing partner
    Q. RF slightly back, keep leading her past, lower, turn to face partner as she goes by
    Q. LF step toward partner, still low, quarter turn left, to face partner
    S. RF feet together, half turn left in place, as I turn, switch her RH to my RH, and then back to my LH. When I finish turn, I should be able to push back on her hand. This means I have to be close to her. half turn left
    Q. LF small forward, push back with LH, so that she steps back
    Q. RF back, lead her across me
    S. LF small left, lead her into clockwise turn, releasing LH
    Q. RF short back
    Q. LF forward
    S. RF right, Take her RH in my LH
    Continue with Link to Close
  17. Left Side Pass with Lady's Double Turn

    Variation of: Side Pass: Intermediate
    On left side pass, as lady goes by, I lead her through an inside turn and a half on the quicks.
  18. Half Moon Loop and Hand Change

    Variation of: Cross-Over Basic: Intermediate
    Start with cross-over break. Change hands.
    S. RF right, release closed hold
    Q. LF cross over right, place on same track, lead into cross-over, QT right
    Q. WC to RF
    S. , Take her RH in my RH, QT left, face partner
    Q. RF short step back, lead her to continue past me, QT left
    Q. LF forward, she ends up to my left, and we face the samedirection
    S. RF forward
    Q. LF small forward
    Q. RF back, lead her so that she turns to walk past me on my right
    S. LF left, lead her just as if we were doing cross-overs, QT left
    Q. RF small back, lead her forward, QT left
    Q. LF Forward, lead her to turn left to face away from me, QT left
    S. RF forward
    Q. LF forward, change hands, take her RH in my LH
    Continue with Cross-Over Basic ending
  19. Checked Peek-a-Boo

    Variation of: Open Break: Intermediate
    Starting from Open Break. Can repeat a couple of times.
    S. LF lunge forward, Lead her into inside turn, check her movement with RH on back.
    QQ. Stay in place, Lead her to come around in front of me.
    S. RF side
  20. Checked Peek-a-Boo with Man's Spiral

    Variation of: Open Break: Intermediate
    After Peek-a-boo, instead of stepping side on slow with RF, step forward, pivoting on RF to turn 360deg left, let left leg drag behind so it ends up crossing in front of right, and let her RH drape around my neck as I go around. Then gather her up and back into basic.
  21. Checked Peek-a-Boo with Lady's Swivel and Aida

    After peekaboo. Her swivels: she brings feet together and pivots on foot she stepped with. In leading the swivels, I don't want to just turn her hand. To turn her to right, lead hand in a backward 'C'. Lead swivels with a sideways figure 8 motion of the hands.
    S. RF short side, Turn her hand clockwise to have palm up. This leads her toturn away from me., We should be leaning away from each other throughoutthe swivels, with a solid connection through the hands
    S. LF back, turn her RH counterclockwise, this leads her to turn back and face me, turned slightly to my left.
    S. RF back, turn her RH clockwise again, to get her to swivel to my right
    Q. LF back, turn her RH counterclockwise, get her to swivel left
    Q. RF back, turn her RH clockwise, get her to swivel right
    S. LF left, lead her to step side for Aida
    Q. RF across left in front
    Q. LF side
    S. RF across left in back, forearm to forearm between us, should be angled away from her
    QQ. CW LF, then RF
    S. swivel left on LF, so we face each other, RF pointed
    QQ. walk around turn
  22. Back Spot Turn and Hip Twist

    Variation of: Open Break: Intermediate
    S. RF right
    QQ.Sit Break
    S. LF forward and left, linking to close, QT right
    Q. RF hook behind LF, QT right
    Q. LF side
    S. RF feet together, or slightly in front of left
    Q. LF small forward, Lead her to open up as she steps back on RF
    Q. RF back, lead her so that we are parallel, with her outside on my right, and turn her with my frame so she is facing opposite me
    S. LF back, lead her to swivel to face at right angle to me
    Q. RF small back, Lead her to QT right and pass in front of me
    Q. LF forward
    S. RF right, Open it up and use link to close to finish
  23. Curl to Fifth Position

    Variation of: Cross Over Break: Intermediate
    Start with Cross Over Break to Right
    SQQ. LF left, Lead her into UAT
    S. RF right, Take her free hand, Firm frame with hands, otherwise she will want to break forward instead of back.
    Q. LF forward, crossing over RF, Extend her hands out to side, QT right
    Q. RF side, QT left
    S. LF back, crossing over RF, QT left
    QQS. Lead her to turn left, holding both hands, so we end up in cuddle. This will be a half-turn for her. Shaping: lean over to my right, this helps lead her to turn
    Q. Place weight on RF
    Q. LF forward, Release RH, QT right
    S. RF fifth position, extend LH along way we came, QT right
    Q. CW to LF, Sway forward
    Q. CW to RF, Sway back
    S. Pivot on LF, extend RF side, keep weight on LF. Bring right leg straight through, instead of sweeping it around. Stop w/RH, QT left
    QQS. Walk around turn to left
  24. Checked Right Side Pass

    Variation of: Open Break: Intermediate
    Like waist catch in Salsa. Pull her straight back with hand on hip on second quick. On slow that brings me in front of her, slowly pivot on RF, dragging LF around
  25. Paseo

    S. LF side
    Q. RF across left, continuing down same line, QT left
    Q. LF forward, continuing down same line, QT right
    S. RF back, continuing down same line, Hold her RH along direction we came from, QT right
    Q. LF back, down same line, Stop her LH with my RH, QT left
    Q. CW RF
    S. Can go into walk around turn here.
  26. Back Spot Turn to Inside Turn/Three Turns

    Variation of: : Advanced
    Back spot turn.
    Inside turn, but don't bring her to closed, leave it open.
    QQS. Using a J-lead to start it, lead her into a traveling outside turn around me, and stop her on slow with my RH to her LH.
    Lead another inside turn.
    Back spot to hip twist.
  27. Right Side Pass to Swivels

    Variation of: : Advanced
    Right Side Pass. As she goes past, as hand is coming down, turn it clockwise to turn her away from me on slow. And have it to her right. Don't want to put her in a hammerlock. Want to find balance between yanking back too hard, and letting her continue forward. QQ, lead her to swivel right and left. S, lead her into outside turn. I change weight in place while she swivels.
  28. Forward Spot Turn

    Variation of: : Advanced
    Lead turning basic, and on S to right, go around her, leading her to hook her LF.
    Continue in tight circle ccw, stepping side-cross-side, while she steps side-hook-side.
    On S with RF, compress, and step straight out to the side, to complete the pattern with a basic.
  29. Half Moon Loop with Double Turn to Cuddle Crossover

    Variation of: : Advanced
    SQQ. RF side, then cross over with LF, and do a face loop, to end facing away from lady.
    Do a couple of half-moons.
    On second part of a half moon, lead lady to step with Q&Q&S timing through a full inside turn, draping her right arm over my shoulder, and placing my left hand around her back. This is the cuddle position for the cross-over
    QQS. cross-over break step, and then release, turn to face her on slow, and place the right arm around her back for the cross-over to the other side.
    After a cross-over to my right, let left hand slide down her arm, and lead her into an underarm turn.
  30. Shadow Rocks /Shadow Walks to Spiral

    Outside turn, while stepping around her to my left. At end of turn, lead her to keep turning, releasing my LH, catching her waist with my RH. LH to LH. QQ, rock forward, leading her to rock back, then RF back, she goes forward. S, lead her across me. QQ, inside turn. S, back to shadow. Repeat once. Then, on slow as I lead her across, as she is placing her weight, lead her into outside spiral turn. For shadow walks, after second shadow rock, instead of LF forward on Q, LF back, then walk forward for two measures, and as I am stepping S on LF, lead her into spiral turn.
    S. LF left, lead outside turn
    Q. hook RF
    Q. LF side (I am going around her)
    S. lead her to continue to turn, release LH, and catch her waist with RH. Don't leave right shoulder close enough for her to get back into closed position. We are now in shadow position
    Q. rock forward w/ LF, lead her to rock back
    Q. CW RF, lead her to CW forward
    S. LF side, LH lead her to step across me
    Q. RF 2nd position, Lead her into tight inside turn
    Q. CW LF, complete turn
    S. RF side, back into shadow position
    QQSQQS. repeat above two measures (shadow rock)
    Q. LF short forward
    Q. CW RF
    S. LF feet together, As she is placing her weight on her RF going forward, lead her into outside turn in place (spiral), catching her back at the end
    QQS. Into left turning basic
  31. Lariat

    Variation of: : Advanced
    Lead her into Back Spot Turn, end up with feet together. Q, LF side, turning frame so she opens up and starts moving backwards in circle. Q, RF step through under my left arm. S, LF back. Go right into back spot turn on next QQ, and then into Hip Twists to finish. If I want to make her dizzy, I can go immediately into Rope Turn instead.
  32. Rope Turn

    Variation of: : Advanced
    After Back Spot Turn, end up with feet together on slow, QQ, lead her into outside turn, keeping RH on her back, with 2nd position break. S, LF feet together, lead her behind my back like in Around the World in Two Step. QQS, end up with feet together placing RF. Lead her into Back Spot Turn with Hip Twist.
  33. Syncopated Backspot Turn

    Variation of: : Advanced
    Instead of usual timing on backspot turn, goes Q&QS, give the turn enough momentum to make her do it as well, and stop rotation on the slow, second Q has feet together. Then do bolero basic to the right.
  34. Promenade Run to Inside Turn

    2002.2.25
    Taught by Jim Morton
    Open Break to Outside Turn
    End outside turn with RH on lady's back, release LH, and turn to promenade position.
    QQS, 3 steps forward in promenade, end by taking lady's RH, and shaping back to the right.
    QQS, lady's traveling inside turn back down the line.
  35. Outside overturn to lady's syncopated free spin

    2002.2.25
    Taught by Jim Morton
    Lady's Outside Turn, leading her to overturn by bringing her RH down and through, so she turns 1 1/4, and we face down line. I stop her by taking her LH with my RH.
    I face down the line, but I can enhance my shaping by lifting the left hip.
    Lead lady into left traveling free spin back down the line. My steps go Q&QS to get my feet matched with hers.
  36. Jim Morton Bolero routine

    Peekaboo to close
    Rocking Basic
    Promenade Run to Inside Turn
    Crossover break to ouside overturn and lady's syncopated free spin.
  37. 5th position to spiral and aida, outside turn to grapevines with rondes, curl variation to inside turn, promenade walk to pivots and inside turn.

    Open break to Outside Turn
    catch both hands, and remain shaped to right.
    QQ, shaping lady to match, RF cross, LF side.
    S. RF hook, and ronde with the left foot.
    Repeat, going the other way.
    QQS, grapevine back to the right, but check on slow.
    Q. Turn lady into cuddle.
    Q. Step past, RF, keeping her in place, releasing RH.
    S. LF forward, turning to face her in a sit break.
    QQ. Step forward past her on RF, while leading her into traveling inside turn with timing Q&Q&S
    S. Extend right with RF.
    Outside turn to promenade position.
    QQS. walk forward in promenade, and on S. cut her off stepping with LF.
    QQ. Do a couple of pivots.
    S. Lunge forward with RF, leading her to do a ronde.
    QQ. Lead inside turn.
  38. Umbrella.

    Start with forward spot turn.
    When I am stepping slow on RF, lead her to continue stepping around, while I ronde with the LF.
    QQS. Turn left under my arm, keeping my feet in place, just pivoting, end up doing more than a full turn to face her.
    QQS. Turn back right under my arm, again just pivoting on stationary feet, and stop her progress on S with the back of my RH.
    QQ. Lead her to do a develope with her RF, by just compressing.
    S. LF back, lead her to step forward on her RF.
    QQS. RF forward, LF cross, RF side, as I lead her to walk around behind me, like a lariat.
    Go into open cuban walks.

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