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Dance glossary - P



Par Terre
Steps performed on the floor. It is the opposite of en l'air.

Pas de Deux
A dance for two, usually a woman and a man. In its traditional form, it begins with an entree and adagio, followed by solo variations for each dancer, and a coda.

A kick.

A grave, processional court dance popular in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

In ballet, leaning forward.

Physical connection
A dance connection by means of physical contact. Types of physical connection are body contact, compression, leverage.

Pinched shoulder
Pinched shoulder is the position seen when promenade position is danced with an outward rotation of the upper bodies, rather than a rotational stretch in each body. It is characterized by one or both partner's having their trailing elbow behind the line of their shoulders, with a resulting break in the arm line at the trailing shoulder.

A basic step in ballet; a smooth, graceful bending of the knees. A plie can be either demi or grand.

A position on the tip of the toes. Demi-point: a position on the balls of the feet.

The tip of the toe. Women, and infrequently men, dance sur les pointes (on point) in blocked shoes. This is often referred to as "full point." "Half point" and "three quarter point" are used when the dancer stands with the toes spread flat on the floor and the rest of the foot raised from the metatarsal joint.

Promenade position
The promenade position is described differently in various dance categories. In ballroom dances their common trait is that the dance couple moves (or intends to move) essentially sidewise to the leader's left while partners nearly face each other, with the leader's right side of the body and the follower's left side of the body are closer than the respective opposite sides. Steps of both partners are basically sidewise or diagonally forward with respect to their bodies. Normally the dancers look in the direction of the intended movement.In square dances it is a close side-by-side position in various handholds with the general intention to move together forward, "in promenade".