Video transcript
@The Arts Unit Art Bites – Jazz performance – 02. Blackbird in the style of Bob Fosse

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[music playing]

[jazz music]

KIRA NELSON: Hi, guys. My name's Kira Nelson. And, I'm here today to take you through our musical theatre/ jazz inspired tutorial. But, before we get started, we do need to warm up. Make sure you've got a water bottle nice and close. Make sure you've got a nice clear dance space, and there's nothing you're going to hit.

And, make sure you've got appropriate shoes on. I'm just wearing joggers. If you'd like to wear jazz shoes, or you can even wear bare feet - totally fine. Probably wouldn't suggest socks. Let's get started into this warm-up.

[music - 'The Lady is a Tramp']

OK, guys. Nice and fast. We're going to get that cardio started. Running on the spot. Jog it out. Take your knees up. That's it. Nice and high. And, kick your bottom. Let's hope you're feeling really nice and warm. Drop it down to a little jog again. That's it. Keep those arms moving.

Head down and up. Head and up. Look to the side. Tilt. Half a head roll down. Other way. Shoulders nice and slow. Really get them all the way up. Hold. Nice. Take that arm across and behind.

That's it. Other side. Arm across. Take it behind. That's it. Nice big stretch to the side. Other way. Here we go, flat back. Lean forward. Hold it there. Moving forward. Bend and stretch for 2.

Keep your head in line. Stretch down. Stretch. Bend and roll up. Very nice.

Let's take it to the side. Flat. Hold it there, bend. Stretch. Very nice. Down. Middle. Roll up. Here we go. Other side. That's it, bend. Stretch. Bend. Stretch. Down. Very nice. Roll down, roll up. And, do the quad stretch. Other side. Awesome, guys. Well done.

Now that we're feeling nice and warm, it's time to get straight into our routine. So, today's routine is inspired by Bob Fosse. So, I need you to grab a hat. Any type of hat will do. Place it on your head. And, we're just going to talk through one hand position before we start.

What I want you to do is, I want you to think you've got your jeans on backwards. So, you're going to slide your hands against your body into those pockets, in there, nice and straight. Then you're going to glue your elbows to your side. That's the position we want to work from today.

We're going to start here. We're going to pop our right leg. And, then you're going to drop your head. Then you're going to lift it back up, so you can see. [laughs] But it does start down.

Our feet are nice and easy. We go right tap, left tap, right tap, left kick, cross. As we do that, we're going to take our hips in a circle starting on the right. And, we'll finish on the left. So, they'll go circle around as we tap. ready?

On 5, 6, 7, and a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, flick, cross. As we cross, right hand comes up. Really sink that left hip to the side. We do cross, click, click, hip, hip, click, click. Turn around. Hand behind the head. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Back to your pocket. Click 6. Look at it. Click 7. Look at it. Shimmy up, 8. Hands in pockets.

That's our intro. Let's try from the top. 5, 6, 5, 6, 7, and a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, flick, cross, click, click, hip, hip, click, click, turn around, 2, 3, 4, 5, click, click, shimmy up. Awesome. We walk forward nice and chilled. Walk, tap, walk, tap. Cha, cha, we go. Step, circle.

Awesome. We'll take it back a second before we turn around. So, you're just going to take walk forwards. 1, 2, cha, cha. We go front, back, step, scoop, halt. You're going to turn around using your right leg and right arm - right shoulder - to sit into this position here. So, right leg parallel. Left leg to the side. Head looking left. Bend.

From here, you're going to snatch everything up to this position. Click, click, click. Click, click, click. So, this is across the line. Cross that leg. Click. Click, click. Swap. Click, click, click. She says Blackbird. You take it on up down. Through the wrist. And, then you're going to do this little side-to-side head 7 and 8.

Awesome. Let's take that back to the top, adding that all together. 5, 6, 5, 6, 7, and a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, click, cross. Click, click, hip, hip, click, click, turn around, 2, 3, 4, 5. Click, click, shimmy up. Step tap, step, tap, cha, cha.

We go step, scoop around. Turn to the front 6, 7. This is right, click, click, click, swap. Click, click, click, blackbird. Head up and down. Awesome. Let's try all that with music.

[music - 'Blackbird']

6, 7, and ... tap, cha, cha. Scoop. Turn. Up. Click, click, click, swap. click, click, click. Very nice.

Great job. Continuing on from there, we're going to walk in a box step. So, we're going to go right. Left goes across. Right goes behind. Left goes back. Then we go step left, right, left, right. And, that's just peeling through our legs as we do that.

Arms are pretty easy. From here, you're going to slap 1, 2. 1, 2. So, whichever leg you step on first is the arm that you slap. Then, we're going to go 5, 6, 7, and 1, and 2, 3, and 4, 5, and 6, 7, and 8. Step click. Step click. Step head, head, head.

All right? Try that one more time from here. 5, 6, 7, and 1, and 2, 3, and 4, 5, and 6, 7, and 8. Step click, step click, step head, head, head. Next thing you're going to do is a scoot. So, your arms are going to come forward and back. And, you're just going to have little tiny, really soft eggs with those hands. So, don't fist. Just soft eggs.

You're going to go - right through. Left through. Right through. Left through - to end up facing to your left. So, depending how much space you've got, you can really travel it out. If you don't have much space, you can just cut the corner like I did.

So, we just finished here. We went step click, step click, step, head, head, 4 of these. 1, 2, 3, 4. Good. From here, left hand to hat. Make sure you've got fingers. Flick your fingers. Your hips are just going to push backwards. Back, back, back, back. That's it. Nice and subtle.

Second time, you're going to lift your hat. So, the first one is back and back, pop the hat, bring it down, and make sure you get that straight back on your head, because you're going to release the next step. Here we go. Going from 'Blackbird.'

'Blackbird' - up and down. We go step, step, slap, step, step, slap, step, step, slap, step, step, slap, down click, down , click step, head, head, head. Scoot, scoot, scoot. Last one. Hips, hips, pop the hat. Bring it down. From here, you're going to step on the diagonal. And, you're going to flick backwards. Flick 2, 3, 4. Up on the second time.

From there, right hand goes to hat. Left hand is going to push through. And, then do some Fosse runs. So, you just want to go nice and smooth through the floor. Smooth, smooth, smooth, smooth. That's the one. So, every time your right foot steps, your left arm goes. Nice and smooth.

One more time, just the runs. 6, 7, and a 1, 2, 3, 4. Good. From there, you're going to step and face the back. Right, left. Left leg is popped. Right leg is bent. Hat goes up. This happens on the word 'Black -bird'. There's 2 beats. 1 bring it in. 2 head goes over the left shoulder - ready for our dance break. Awesome. So, close to the end. Let's see if we can run it from the top and add some music.

Here we go. 5, 6, a 5, 6, 7, and a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, click cross. Click, click. Hip, hip. Click, click. Turn around 2, 3, 4, 5. Click, click. Shimmy up. Step, tap, step, tap, cha cha. Step scoop hold. Turn and hold 6, 7. And an up. Click, click, click, swap. Click, click, click. Blackbird, a choo-choo-choo-choo-choo.

We go 1 and 2, 3 and 4, 5 and 6, 7 and 8. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, scoot. 1, 2, 3, 4. Hips. Take your hat up 6, 7, and a flick. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and smooth. 2, 3, 4, step up. Boom, boom. Great job. Let's try it with music.

[music - 'Blackbird']

5, 6, 7, and 1, 2 - click, click. Hip, hip. Turn around. Step, cha-cha. Scoop. Turn. Up. Slaps. Click. Head. Scoot. Hips. Up. Take it back. Smooth run. Hat. Great job.

You guys are doing such an awesome job. We are so close to the end. We've just got our last little dance break. I'm going to move on. But, if you need to go back, you can always rewind and do it again with the music. We're going on from here. You're going to take your right leg out to the side. Shoot that hat up. 1, 2, 3, 4.

Take us out 5. Push it all the way. See if you can get a nice forced arch in that front foot. 5, run this 6, 7, shoulder, shoulder, and 8. Left, right. Let's just do that from here. 5, 6, 7, and push in 2, 3, and 4. Push 5, 6, 7, and a 8.

You're going to step to the back - facing the back - and take your hips. Your hips are going to go step hip, step, hip. That's it. Your hat will just stay in front of you. You really want to isolate those hips. So, we're going to 1, 2, 3, 4. We'll change and 5. Right, left, hat up, and 5. Bring it in 6, facing the side. Scoop this in 7, 8.

And, you're going to want to pull that all the way down on your head nice and tight because you're going to let go on 1. So, you want to make sure it's there, nice and tight. Let's try all that from the beginning of the dance break. Face the back.

5, 6, 7. We have a 1, 2, 3, in 4. Back 5, 6, 7, and a 8. Step hip 2, 3, 4, all change, in, scoop, head. That's it.

From there, at 1. You're going to turn. Right hand on the hat. Left hand back in that pocket. Turning around to your left. 1, 2, 3, 4. It shoots out. So, you're going to do just over a single turn. So, you want to have your body facing the side. 1, 2, 3, 4. Hold 5. Arms go out 6. You're going to roll your shoulders back 7, 8.

So, we did just that last 8 out of the 1. 6, 7, 8. Out 1, 2, 3, 4. Hold. Hands. Roll it back. We naturally lift your head on the end of those shoulders. 7 and 8. Oh my goodness, we're so close. Let's go.

You're going to transfer your weight on to your right, and do a little tuck jump left, right. So, you've got to make sure you're pushing off your back leg. All this does - sunshine down. That's it. Really lift that chest up. That's 2. You bring this in, 3, 4, 5. 6, 7, hold 8. So, you have ages for that turn. But, take it nice and slow.

So we finish - this was 4. Hold 5, 6, 7, and 8. Jump 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, hold 8. How are your brains? You've got one more lot of 8. Let's go. Flick, cross. So, the hands circle to the hat. Right foot goes kick cross. That's a 1, 2. You're going to turn around and face the back. 3, 4, 5.

Now, this position is right hand in the pocket. Left hand is still in your hat. You're going to bend your knees this way, facing the back. You wait 5, 6 - you're going to twist your hips - and 7, bringing it 8. That part we're facing the back.

So, we just did jump, turn, in 6, 7, 8. Flick 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7, 8. To finish, all you're going to do is grab your hands, take them up, and flutter them like a bird, facing the back. And, that's it. Awesome work, guys.

We are going to take just from the dance break. So, we've done our Blackbird to the back. We went in head, taking it around the right foot, shoot that hat to the sky. Ready? 5, 6, 7, and this is 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. 1, 2, 3, 4, ball change in, scoop, leg go. 1, turn, 3, 4, hold, head, shoulder, shoulder, back. Jump, down, turn, 6, 7, and flick 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, 8, - Bird.

How'd you go? If you need to, rewind and do it again. But, we're going to do just that second half with the music from the dance break. When you're ready, face the back. Hands in.

[music - 'Blackbird']

Ready? Here we go. In head, out. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. 1, 2, 3, 4, ball change. And out, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, shoulders and jump. 6, 7. Circle 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, 8.

Great job, guys. Again, if you need to, rewind and go through it. Otherwise, we're going to take it straight from the top. Get yourselves ready because here we go.

[music - 'Blackbird']

5, 6, 7, and - turn. That's it. Turn. Very nice. Slaps. Very nice.

Flick it out. Nice and smooth. That's the one. Get ready. In, head. Let's go. Oh! Uh! 6. Smooth.

Fantastic work, guys. Give yourselves a round of applause. Well done. Awesome. So nice to have you guys joining me for this musical theatre tutorial.

Love doing a little bit of Bob Fosse. If you don't know who he is, I highly suggest you go watch some of his stuff on YouTube, because he was an absolute pioneer in the jazz musical theatre world. So, if you don't know, check him out. Even if you do, go have a watch of his awesome stuff. But again, thank you guys for joining me. And, hopefully I'll see you soon.

End of transcript