Hi! Mixer

(Firefly, Glowworm)

{1970s}



Introduction

The Hi! Mixer is an easy mixer described by Cal Campbell.

It features a very simple choreography combined with a very interesting concept.

A very similar dance, which differs only in the direction of the change (progressing left vs. progressing right), and dates back to at least the 1970s, is called Firefly (or Glowworm).

Alma Heaton's original 1959 version of Fun with Swing is also very similar.



The Position

Couples in a circle facing LOD, holding inside hands.


The Dance

Part I - Promenade (4 counts): Walk four steps forward along LOD (1, 2, 3, 4).

Part II - Back Away from Partner (4 counts): Face partner and back four steps away from them (5, 6, 7, 8).

Part III - Approach Next Partner (4 counts): Face person to your right, and walk four steps diagonally forward to meet them (1, 2, 3, 4).

Part IV - Turn by the Right (4 counts): Link right elbows with new partner and walk forward 3/4 of a turn clockwise around each other (5, 6, 7, 8).

Repeat from the beginning.

At first, this may seem like the easiest (and least interesting) mixer in the world, which it is*, until Cal adds this gem at the end of the description: "Who ends up on the inside position and on the outside position is not really important."

This means that in addition to changing partners each time, you also have the opportunity to change roles each time, by doing an extra half turn in Part IV. Either person (current Lead or current Follow) can initiate this by adding additional power to the turn. In general, if both people dance normally, there won't be a change, but if one or both people add additional power, there will be a change.

Given that the dance is foot-ambivalent, and otherwise symmetrical (i.e., both "roles" change by going to their own right), it's a great vehicle for a chaotic role reversal mixer.

* Okay, Jerry Helt's "Blue Stars and Stripes Mixer" is actually even easier: Promenade 8 steps, Back Away 4 steps, and Approach Next Partner 4 steps.


The Music

Any walking-tempo tune with continual eight counts will work.


Sources


© 2019 Nick Enge


For more, including descriptions of 25 different waltzes and hundreds of variations thereof, see Waltzing: A Manual for Dancing and Living a book by Richard Powers and Nick Enge.


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