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Hobo Zwiefacher

Author: Johannes Waldmann
Credits: Kaskade 61

You know the polka, you know the waltz - now it's time to learn the Zwiefacher. The Zwiefacher is a dance in which three-four time alternates with four-four. Let's just listen in to what Erlenmeyer and Keulenheier have to say on the subject…

Erlenmeyer: Wanna pass?
Keulenheier: Sure thing. Which pattern?
Erlenmeyer: Let's start with ordinary passing.
Keulenheier: You mean the waltz!
(Editor's Note: The waltz is the basic 3-count pattern - self-self-pass. See part 2 of the passing workshop series in Kaskade 57.)
Erlenmeyer: Well actually I'd rather just do right-handed passing.
Keulenheier: Shame on you! But I've got just the pattern for us: you can do your boring old 4-count and I can do the waltz.
Erlenmeyer: At the same time? But then three of your throws have to take the same amount of time as my four, otherwise the passes would arrive at the wrong time.
Keulenheier (KH): Exactly. And your passes have to alternate between straight and across because I'm passing left and right, so I expect your passes to come in left and right too.
Erlenmeyer (EM): But you always pass to my left hand, even though your rhythm is the waltz. So you also throw alternately straight and across, straight with the right and across with the left. (See fig. 1)


Grafik 1: slow fast 34.ps

EM: OK, you've had your rest now. It's my turn to do the slow side of the pattern.
KH: But I want to carry on doing my waltz!
EM: And I want to carry on catching left and passing right... Hey, it IS possible! You carry on doing your waltz, but now I'm going to switch to a 2-count: every right-hand throw is a pass, every left throw is a self. Otherwise it's the same as before - I alternate between straight passes and cross passes to you. Great, now I can relax. (Fig. 2)


Grafik 2: slow fast 23.ps

KH: OK, I've had enough of that! From now on I'm doing a 1-count. Every throw is a pass. You carry on with your 2-count if you want.
EM: But then I have to juggle twice as fast, you lazy sod! (Fig. 3)


Grafik 3: slow fast 12.pass

EM: Phew, this is getting a bit strenuous. Let's go back to 3- and 4-count. Let me try your side of the pattern for a change.
KH: Go ahead. But just to make it interesting, lets swap roles after every pass: On the first beat you do the waltz and I do the 4-count, then on the next beat you do the 4-count and I do the waltz.
EM: That sounds reasonable. So where should I throw to? Before, when I was doing the 4-count, I had to keep changing my target, throwing straight to the left hand, then across to the right…
KH: …and I always had to aim at your left shoulder while I was doing the waltz. That was alternating straight and across too, because I was constantly switching my passing hand.
EM: So now it goes like this: I do (straight pass, self, self, cross pass, self, self, self)…
KH: …and I do (straight pass, self, self, self, cross pass, self, self) (Fig. 4)


Grafik 4: slow fast fast slow 34.ps

EM: This is getting complicated. I pass with the right hand, the left hand, across and straight - everything combined with everything else.
KH: Yes, and the change of pace each time also makes it very - er - instructive, don't you agree?
EM: You're not kidding. "Instructive", eh? I suppose that's one way of putting it. What you really mean is that we aren't going to be able to keep it up for very long.
KH: Hmm. Let's cheat a bit. The main thing is to make sure that the pass after the waltz doesn't arrive too early, otherwise the one who's doing the 4-count has to hurry too much.
EM: Exactly! So why don't we throw the pass after the waltz as a double so that it stays in the air for longer.
KH: That's just what I was thinking. But then the thrower of the double-spin pass has to insert a short pause, otherwise he'll find himself waiting for a pass that doesn't come.
EM: So let's recap. I have to go: (straight pass, self, self, double cross pass, wait, self, self, self)…
KH: …and I have to go: (wait, self, self, self, cross pass, self, self, double straight pass).
EM: OK, that might even work. But how do we start?
KH: Let's think. Your last throw on the first beat is a double cross pass.
EM: That looks exactly the same as an early double in the normal 4-count.
KH: Right, so let's both start with a 4-count, and at some point you can throw an early double, to which I respond by throwing a single cross pass. (Fig. 5)


Grafik 5: 3443

KH: So this pattern not only includes both right and left passes that go either straight or across; it also includes singles and doubles. That's why my mates call it the "Leipzig Allsorts", after a special kind of vegetable stew that's supposed to be popular in our home town.
EM: I say, have you noticed that we always throw the double pass with the same club. It's always up high - from me across to you, from you straight to me, then from me across again to your other hand, then from you straight back to me.
KH: That's why you could look at this pattern as a preliminary exercise on the way to doing the waltz with seven clubs. In the 7-club waltz, three of the clubs are doing precisely that.
EM: Seven minus three ... so where are the other four, then?
KH: Two stay with me as selfs, and the two others stay with you. (Fig. 6)


Grafik 6: walz7.ps


EM: But let's get back to 6 clubs. We were doing waltz versus 2-count a while ago.
KH: You can also turn that into an Allsorts-type pattern. You go: (straight pass, self, double cross pass, wait, self, self) and I go (wait, self, self, cross pass, self, double straight pass) (Fig. 7)


Grafik 7: allerlei 2332.ps

KH: Now we're both doing the low pass always with the same club.
EM: Wait a minute, here in the causal diagram the arrows are pointing in different directions!
KH: But the arrows are not the paths of the clubs. If you draw those, you get a ladder diagram.
EM: So why don't we do that?
KH: Because there aren't so many arrows in the causal diagram, and it's easier to interpret them.
EM: I bet a One-count/Two-count Allsorts is also possible.
KH: Of course. You do (straight pass, double cross pass, wait, self) and I do (wait, self, cross pass, double straight pass)
EM: And we can start into that like we did before, with an early double pass out of a simple 2-count. (Fig. 8)

Grafik 8: allerlei 1221.ps


KH: That's pretty heavy stuff!
EM: Now that I look at it, this is a Pass-Pass-Self.
KH: Which is why it can also be used as a way of practising for the 7-club PPS. (Fig. 9)


Grafik 9: pps7.ps

EM: Oh look, here comes old Stürenburg from the National Convention Date Coordination Authority. I bet he'd like to hear about our new patterns after a hard day's work.
KH: Not only that, he'd probably like to try them out.
Stürenburg: Good day, gentlemen. Yes indeed, I could do with a bit of a waltz right now...
KH: ... and you'd probably like me to do a 4-count. All right. But it would be a shame if Mr. Erlenmeyer had to stand around doing nothing. Perhaps I could have you both doing the same pattern.
EM: Good grief, but that means that you'd be feeding, so you'd have to do a 2-count instead of a 4-count.
KH: Quite right. I pass first to Mr Erlenmeyer's right shoulder, then to Stürenburg's right, then Erlenmeyer's left, then Stürenburg's left.
Stürenburg: Whereas we always waltz-pass to your left shoulder.
KH: Could I ask you both to keep the pace fairly slow - otherwise it'll be hard for me to juggle fast enough. (Fig. 10)


Grafik 10: slow fast feed 323.ps

Stürenburg: I think you've earned a rest, Mr Keulenheier. We should swap sides now.
EM: Not sides, but numbers! If we both do 4-count and Mr Keulenheier does a 3-count…
KH: Well, it is possible. But instead of doing a proper waltz, like you were doing just now, I think I'd rather do a Pass-Pass-Self. If you would be so kind, would you please aim your 4-count passes alternately to my left and right shoulders. (Fig. 11)


Grafik 11: slow fast 4pps4.ps

EM: That was fun. But it's time for bed now. Before we next get together, perhaps you could try and think of a way to do a three-person Leipzig Allsorts.
Stürenburg (exits, mumbling to himself): I must try that out at the business lunch tomorrow with the ladies and gentlemen of the Passing-Pattern-Naming-and-Administration Authority…