|March 19th, 2012|
|contra, outdoor_contra, calling|
The tradeoff between caller audibility and vocal strain has been a constant challenge with the outdoor contras.  Elevating the caller helps some as does using megaphones (though they block your view) but the best solution I have is redundant volunteer calling. Until now: echo calling.
When I visited Occupy Boston back in October I got all excited about adapting the "people's mic" to calling: pick a dance you can do with only two beat calls and make each call twice "ladies chain (ladies chain)". The first 'ladies chain' only the caller says but the second one is repeated by everyone who could hear the first. This is what The Nice Combination looks like called this way:
| / / / Neighbor Balance (Neighbor Balance) A1 | / / / | / / / | / / / Down the Hall (Down the Hall) A2 | / / / Turn as Couples (Turn as Couples) | / / / Circle Left (Circle Left) B1 | / / / Partner Swing (Partner Swing) | / / / Ladies Chain (Ladies Chain) B2 | / / / Star Left (Star Left) | / / / New Neighbors (New Neighbors)
Not sure if it's going to work? Come find out: we're having a dance in Davis Square on Wednesday (the 21st) at 7pm. We'll be in the spot marked 'B':
 Amplification is one solution, but I really like the unamplified dynamic because I think it makes people much more willing to try it. (I feel this way much more strongly for the musicians, though)
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