|(Illustration from: Charlie Dancey's Compendium of Club Juggling, p. 90, "Golden Rules of Club Passing", by kind permission of the author.)|
This time we present the basic pattern of left-right passing: the 3-count. In this pattern, every third throw is a pass, followed by two selfs. The passes come from the left and right hand alternately. Passing with both hands is a lot of fun, and can help you to improve your posture and your juggling in general.
This is a relatively simple pattern that leaves lots of scope for variations.
There are enough self-throws to allow you to incorporate solo tricks, and enough
passes for both partners to practise passing tricks.
2 jugglers throw 6 clubs, A and B both throw straight. Every third club is passed: Pass, Self, Self, Pass, Self, Self... Look at the illustration. The white part in the middle represents the repeating pattern.
A holds 2 clubs in the right hand, 1 club in the left
B holds 2 clubs in the right, 1 club in the left
Both A and B start at the same time with a right-hand pass
(Grafik Muster 7)
Passing with the left hand will feel strange to start with, but don't worry, you'll soon get used to it. Even so, for most people it takes time and practice before they're able to pass as accurately with their left hand as they do with their right. At the beginning it helps to make a conscious effort to pass from the inside to the outside.
441 variations are all based on a pattern that you're probably familiar with
from solo juggling: after throwing 2 doubles (D), you hand (or "feed")
one across (F). Try it out. Notice that the pattern alternates from side to
side: the first cycle starts with the right hand, the second with the left,
Start for P8 to P11:
As in P7 or
straight out of an ongoing 3-count
In the following descriptions the "normal" passing beat is underlined. That should make it easier to get into the following patterns, starting from the basic P7.
Two basic principles that apply to all throws:
Singles (S) are thrown to the other hand, i.e. from right to left or from left to right. Doubles (D) go to the same hand, i.e. from right to right or from left to left.
Single passes (SP) are thrown straight, from right to left or from left to right. Double passes (DP) go diagonally, from right to right or from left to left.
That might sound trivial, but it's an important point - regardless of whether you're throwing a self or a pass: singles go to the other hand, doubles to the same hand.
Underneath the incoming pass you throw a double, followed by a diagonal double
pass to your partner, then hand the remaining club across, the "feed"
(F). Now you can either repeat the same pattern on the other side or go back
to the normal 3-count pattern. A quote from Charley Dancey on the feed (p. 21):
"...this produced a causal arrow moving one beat to the left. It seems
illogical but it actually means: to place a club into the hand you had to empty
(Grafik Muster 8)
A throws the double self not underneath the incoming pass but at the same time
as B throws her pass. Just before that, A has thrown a double pass to B. The
double self is followed by the feed. At the beginning you'll probably find it
quite difficult to keep P8 and P9 apart - especially when you're trying to juggle
(Grafik Muster 9)
With this variation the 4 4 1 combination is divided between the two jugglers.
Juggler A passes a double instead of the usual single. B could now simply hold
on to one club for a moment (H) and throw a self with the other hand, but of
course that would be a dead boring thing to do. Instead, she can throw a double
and feed a club across. It's great fun: you have to really watch for the moment
when your partner throws the double pass and then immediately throw the double
and do the feed.
(Grafik Muster 10)
A and B should take it turns to practise P8 - P10. If both of you try to throw these patterns simultaneously, the clubs are likely to collide. If you throw P8 - P10 solid, i.e. without reverting to the normal pattern in between cycles, you can also throw the passes as high singles. The selfs stay as normal singles and doubles. (See the Theory section in Part 1 of this workshop series.)
Try P8 to P11 in permanent alternation:
P8.1: <4 4p 1 3 3 3p | 3 3 3p 4 4p 1 > P9.1: <4p 4 1 3 3p 3 | 3 3p 3 4p 4 1 >
P10.1: <4p 3 3 3p 4 1 | 3p 4 1 4p 3 3> P11.1: <4p 3 1 3 4p 3| 3 4p 3 4p 3 1
Here's a mean trick to round off this series: A throws a double pass, as in
P9. However, B does not respond in the "normal" way, i.e. with a single
pass, but instead goes straight into P10 and throws a double pass too. A can
now throw a single rather than a double, followed by a feed, and the pattern
is rescued. Alternatively, A could pause for 2 beats, holding onto his clubs.
(Grafik Muster 11)
We've chosen a really smart pattern to finish with: the 5-count with 7 clubs.
This is likely to make life slightly difficult even for experienced passers.
A: 2 clubs in the right hand, 2 in the left
B: 2 clubs in the right hand, 1 in the left
(Grafik Muster 12)
As with the 3-count, the second cycle starts with a throw from the other hand. The difficult thing about this pattern is not so much the passes, although at the beginning you'll probably tend to throw them too high. No, it's the double selfs that cause the real headaches. Make sure that you're throwing the doubles to roughly the same height as your partner, otherwise you'll lose the rhythm. And don't throw the doubles too low or you'll get more mid-air collisions.
Here are a few more variations on the 7 Club 5-Count (roughly in increasing
order of difficulty):
<6p 3 3 3 3|3 3 3 5p 3> <3p 3 3 4 4|4 4 4p 3 3> <4p 3 5p 3 3|3 4p 3 3 4p>
<4p 3 4p 3 3p|3 4p 3 4p 4p> <4p 4p 4p 4p 3 | 3 3p 3p 3p 4p >
And if you still haven't had enough, you can try to throw all of these variations in succession without a break in between.
Don't be put off by the amount of text that follows. This section contains more patterns than the whole of the rest of this workshop article - you just have to piece them together for yourselfs.
Causal Diagrams were developed in the early 90s by Martin Frost. In the summer
1994 issue of Jugglers World he wrote:
"Each arrow represents a throw. This causal notation not only displays the sequence of throws that each juggler has to execute in a pattern, but it shows which clubs force other clubs to be thrown."
Our thanks to Martin for having this idea and allowing us to use it in this workshop.
Causal Diagrams make it easy to write down and read juggling patterns.
The pattern is read from left to right. Each throw is represented by an arrow.
The hands always throw alternately, starting with the right (for now!)
The length of the arrow tells us how long a club is in the air, and also how many times the club spins - under normal circumstances. The spin is indicated by a letter: S = single, D = double, H = hold. (There's nothing to stop you putting lots of wrist into a single to make it a triple. But please warn your partner before you try it.)
First, take another look at the diagrams in the first part of this workshop.
Now, here comes the puzzle which you can use to build simple passing patterns
for 2 jugglers and 6 clubs. The basic pattern (grey background) consists of
two jugglers each throwing singles on their own. In other words, both of them
are juggling a cascade.
If you now lay the jigsaw pieces onto the base plan, you automatically get a passing pattern.
How about a 6-club 5-count, i.e. a 6 club pattern with cycles that are 5 throws
long? Or a 3-count in which one of you passes only doubles and the other only
singles? Oh yes, and don't forget to actually juggle the patterns you've made!
I hope you enjoy playing with this.
Don't throw the plan away - you're going to need it again later on.