Waltz Galop


Contemporary Description

The Position

Waltz position throughout.

The Footwork

1: The Lead leaps back 90° clockwise around the Follow with his left foot while she leaps with her right foot forward between his feet, as in the Leap Waltz.

"&"*: The Lead steps side right along LOD, as the Follow steps side left along LOD.

* Note on Timing: The "&" used to describe this timing is different from the "and" used to describe Polka time. It's closer to the dotted ("swung") triple used in Lindy Hop.

2: The Lead closes left to right with weight, as the Follow closes right to left with weight.

3 &4: The Lead does exactly what the Follow did, and vice-versa.

* Note on Style: All of the steps feel like little leaps, light and airy, up on the balls of the feet. When it works, it almost feels like flying, as if your feet are never touching the floor.

All together, it goes: "back, side-close / front, side-close," turning 360° in four counts.

Like most 19th century waltz variations, the Waltz Galop can be reversed.

Lopp 1903 describes a different variation called Le Valse Galop, but it's unclear exactly what it looks like.

The Music

Galop or Schottische music.

Related Dances

The Newport is similar to a Waltz Galop, but in three counts instead of two ("back, side-close, side-close, repeat opposite").

The Ripple Galop is similar to a Waltz Galop, but in four counts instead of two ("back, side-close, side-close, side-close, repeat opposite").

The Jersey is a combination of the Waltz Galop and Ripple Galop.

The Bronco Schottische and the Puritan Waltz are sequences that incorporate the Waltz Galop.

© 2015 Nick Enge

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Historical Descriptions

Waltz Galop (Gilbert, 1890):

The name indicates the dance Waltz step, Galop time.

[Note that this refers to Gilbert's description of the Waltz, which is different from the mid-19th century Valse à Trois Temps. Gilbert describes "The Waltz" as: Jeté, Glissé, Coupé.]

La Valse Galop (Lopp, 1903):

Tempo 3/4. Métronome (noire) 192.

Cette danse n'est autre chose qu'un galop dansé sur las musique de valse.

For more dance descriptions, see our three books on dancing:
The Book of Mixers: 100 Easy-Teach Dances for Getting Acquainted (2022) by Richard Powers and Nick & Melissa Enge,
Cross-Step Waltz: A Dancer's Guide (2019) by Richard Powers and Nick & Melissa Enge, and
Waltzing: A Manual for Dancing and Living (2013) by Richard Powers and Nick Enge.

For full-length teaching videos, visit: University of Dance.

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