Tom Fromm writes:
19. RIGHT AND LEFT THRU: Starting formation -facing couples. Dancers step forward, join right hands with the dancer directly ahead and pull by. Each couple then does a courtesy turn to face the other couple.
STYLING: Each dancer takes regular handshake hold (right hands) with opposite as they move by each other. They release hands immediately as they pull by. For courtesy turn styling, refer to Basic #15.
TIMING: SS, heads or sides across the set, 8 steps; Box (couples standing close together), 6; OW (within an ocean wave -a formation that appears in Basic #34 ), 6 steps.
Once again, I introduce this as a move that we already know how to do, but we need to see how to put it together. I also tell them that this is going to feel like something we have been doing. (I use pass thru, then courtesy turn, as soon as I have them doing courtesy turn.) This is also a good time to use a call that doesn't exist. We call "pull by" a lot, but it isn't on the list. I will have the heads go forward and stop. Now I will have them stick out a right hand like they are going to do a R & L Grand. I will have them pull by, and then stop. I will have them release hand holds, as soon as their bodies get side by side. Now I will have them do a courtesy turn. I will tell them that when we put them two segments together, it is called a Right & Left Thru, and read them the definition.
If I have someone that is trying to turn the wrong way after the pull by, I give them this hint: As soon as you do the pull by, the lady will throw her hand up like she is going to hit the guy in the face. This will get you ladies going the right way, and the guys will grab your hand real fast to start the courtesy turn.
I will use it from a variety of set-ups, and make sure I follow it with a variety of moves. I also like to take this opportunity to use 1/2 sashay. It will flow well after the courtesy turn, getting them to change the hand hold quickly. It also gives me a chance to use a "gimmick" to add variety. I will have them in facing lines, and do the following:
R & L Thru,
Ask who are the 4 dancers in the center? Centers only R & L Thru; centers only 1/2 Sashay. If I have the men in sequence, I can have the men star left, pick up their partner for a star promenade, promenade home. It is a lot smoother,if the girls are in sequence, but I go out of my way to do it both ways to keep them listening.
Another way to get them "normal again is to have them all join hands and circle left. Now I say only the boy that has a girl on his right hand, Roll her Away. I like to have it set up to an allemande left after the roll away. It kind of gives them a surprise. I will wait some time, before I show it from an ocean wave. I sort of saved that for a separate lesson when things are smoothing out well. I also used square thru from an OW at the same time.
Dan Koft writes:
I have tried to get away from using "Pull By" in my descriptions to avoid rough dancing by people who do not know their strength.
Before they have had Right & Left Thru my dancers have had Square Thru 1-5 and as such I will have them dance "Square Thru 1 hand, Courtesy Turn" for a couple weeks prior to getting Right & Left Thru. Since I started doing this I have had minimal mix ups between Right & Left Thru and Square Thru.
William Kellicker writes:
I teach this almost the same way Dan does, but I add a little to it. I tell them after the "Pass Thru & Courtesy Turn" exercise to "Pull By". Here I add a little story how "Right & Left Thru" was named, it's a "Right" Pull By with the Opposite and offer the "Left" to your partner for the Courtesy Turn. Don't know if it's a true story, but it works and they almost always remember it.