Magazine article Pointe

Go Fish

Magazine article Pointe

Go Fish

Article excerpt

This lift makes a fine finish for more advanced dancers.

Daredevil tricks such as overhead lifts that end in a fish dive are not for the faint of heart. (It's called a fish because the line of the woman's body is curved as in a pas de poisson.) While it requires a well-tuned coordination of effort, a fish dive is not a difficult lift to accomplish and is well worth the effort.

"There is something that is very exciting about it," says ENe Lazar, former director of the Jeffrey Ensemble Dancers. "It really shows a very high caliber of partnership between the man and the woman."

Because a fish is most often done to the left, to begin, "The man takes the woman to piqué arabesque [on the right leg], placing his right arm under her waist, closer to her hips," says Lazar. "His left arm is under her arabesque leg. Still standing, the man then just lifts her off the ground so that he feels her close to his chest."

At this point, the woman maintains a square first arabesque line and simply brings the right foot up to passé.

Once the man has lifted the woman to his chest, he begins to bend forward while maneuvering his weight toward his left leg. As he does this, he moves the woman's weight from over his right leg to his left leg, shifting into his left hip. He must place her center of balance as high as he can on his left hip. The woman maintains the position of her legs, curving the right arm in front of her waist and resisting the downward motion by holding the arch in her back.

"[The man is] leaning forward with the chest but at the same time pulling back into his left hip, so he can counterbalance her weight going forward," says Lazar. …

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