3 feathers uses

tangotime

Well-Known Member
#2
i just learned about a step called 3 feathers. does anyone know why you would use this step or is just another step in the technique book.

Originally called the " Prince of Wales ".

Why would one use this ?.. because it is challenging and has taken a basic foundation step to another level .One of my faves .
 

ballroomdancertoo

Well-Known Member
#3
interesting. wonder why its called that name. im just wondering about its maneuverability capacity, whether it was meant to move a certain way to complement or change direction.
 

tangotime

Well-Known Member
#5
Three feathers:


Looks to me like a move that is useful when approaching a corner to start again down a new line.
back when, it was often commenced LOD curving to DW against LOD then backing DC overturned to DC, with an open Rev turn . It has other options .
 

ballroomdancertoo

Well-Known Member
#7
4 feathers? I think my instructor said the wrong step name. it was more like the 4 feathers rather than 3 feathers! thanks Dr. Dance, really enlightening.
 

snapdancer

Well-Known Member
#10
I believe that these are amalgamations of other figures.

"Three Figures" is Feather, 3-Step, Curved Feather to Back Feather

"Four Feathers" is Feather, Fallaway and Weave (with Feather Finish).

I've identified the 3 feathers in the "Three Feathers". But only 2 feathers in the other one. Mystified as to why it's called that.
 

Dr Dance

Well-Known Member
#11
I had that same reaction when I first saw the video, "That's just a fall away to feather finish." It sure did LOOK like a fall away. But when I watched her more closely, I discovered that she is NOT in fall away position. He instead turns her like an open box. His "drifting" was a wonderful lead to prevent her from dancing a heel turn. If this was a fall away, she would have hooked behind on the 4th step after the initial feather. His body turn masterfully allowed her to turn as well without falling away. And thus the four feathers in the video are defined:

Feather.
Left side feather.
Back feather.
Feather finish.

If I had instead wanted to lead a fall away, I would have turned myself on step four without affecting her trajectory. I think that "four feathers" is a better name than "faux fall away." I'm sure that many of the fancier steps' names have an interesting history.
 

snapdancer

Well-Known Member
#12
I listened to the entire video and that's the description given by the narrator.

However, this doesn't agree with my understanding of what a feather is. I thought a feather was called that because the man's path curves as he transitions between closed position and outside partner, while the lady's path is straight. With that definition, a feather finish is not a feather, it's just the finish.

Given that definition, I only see 2 feathers since the man didn't really curve when he led what looked sort of like a fallaway. He did curve during the normal feather step and also during what looks like a weave but he calls a back feather. I would not consider the last one a feather, just a feather finish since the man's path didn't curve. What I consider to be not-feathers I consider to be changes of direction because the lady's path changes.
 

tangotime

Well-Known Member
#13
I believe that these are amalgamations of other figures.

"Three Figures" is Feather, 3-Step, Curved Feather to Back Feather

"Four Feathers" is Feather, Fallaway and Weave (with Feather Finish).

I've identified the 3 feathers in the "Three Feathers". But only 2 feathers in the other one. Mystified as to why it's called that.
The directions I listed are the original ones. As per norm.variations have emerged .
 

Larinda McRaven

Site Moderator
Staff member
#14
this doesn't agree with my understanding of what a feather is. I thought a feather was called that because the man's path curves as he transitions between closed position and outside partner, while the lady's path is straight.
The name feather can apply to all sorts of patterns, curving, straight, fwd, back, whatever. What it means is they all end with the man's foot in OP. Hover feather, feather, feather ending, feather finish, back feather, curved feather...
 

Dr Dance

Well-Known Member
#17
The name feather can apply to all sorts of patterns, curving, straight, fwd, back, whatever. What it means is they all end with the man's foot in OP. Hover feather, feather, feather ending, feather finish, back feather, curved feather...
Yes. But by that definition, couldn't a hair pin also be included into the "feather family?"

My group instructor Ron Bennett taught a different move that he also calls "four feathers" because it encompasses all four feather positions: left OP forward and backward, and right OP forward and backward. To set this up, dance any (fox trot) combination that concludes with an open impetus followed by a waltz wing (S Q Q) to face DC. She is now left outside partner to start Ron's "Four Feathers." Start S Q Q toward DC with her left outside partner. Between steps 3 and 4, turn left "open box style" to dance two quicks against LoD with her right side outside partner. Now dance a slow to change tracks with her to put her back into left outside partner against LoD: S. Continue against LoD for two quicks left OP to set up the two quicks of a feather finish. Turn her DW for the last two quicks of the figure.

S Q Q Q Q S Q Q Q Q. (Sorry, I wish I had a video to show for this.)
 

tangotime

Well-Known Member
#18
Yes. But by that definition, couldn't a hair pin also be included into the "feather family?"

My group instructor Ron Bennett taught a different move that he also calls "four feathers" because it encompasses all four feather positions: left OP forward and backward, and right OP forward and backward. To set this up, dance any (fox trot) combination that concludes with an open impetus followed by a waltz wing (S Q Q) to face DC. She is now left outside partner to start Ron's "Four Feathers." Start S Q Q toward DC with her left outside partner. Between steps 3 and 4, turn left "open box style" to dance two quicks against LoD with her right side outside partner. Now dance a slow to change tracks with her to put her back into left outside partner against LoD: S. Continue against LoD for two quicks left OP to set up the two quicks of a feather finish. Turn her DW for the last two quicks of the figure.

S Q Q Q Q S Q Q Q Q. (Sorry, I wish I had a video to show for this.)
So, you are in DC ?
 

Dr Dance

Well-Known Member
#20
Yes it could. But it doesn't HAVE to be. Anything called a feather will end OP. Not everything ending OP will be a feather. Like bourbon and whiskey.
So feathers are merely a subset of all moves where I end up stepping OP. Well shoot... that takes all of the fun out of conjuring up a long litany of moves that end with the man stepping OP that aren't feather related. As for the hair pin specifically, I've heard instructors refer to this as a "hair pin turn" or even a "hair pin feather." Even if hair pin is not technically a type of feather, I do consider it to be of the "feather family" because of the common traits that different feathers share. My favorite hair pin variation starts in promenade position like a feather ending. Her second step is much like a feather ending even though I will curve our unit to the right. And the third step strongly resembles that of a curving three. Just don't get me started with the syncopated hair pin. Can you say, "Wall of text?" :)

(Yes Tangotime, I'm from the Baltimore/ Washington area.)
 

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