Kaleidoscope exercises

These exercises are drawn from Gordon Lucas’s book Kaleidoscope Ringing. The organization of the book and some typesetting errors make it a bit difficult to follow, perhaps particularly for less-than-advanced ringers;  these notes are collated from what Lucas says in various places in the book, with gaps filled in by reasonable assumptions.  The book covers more material than is summarized here, and in more detail.

In sequence the exercises help a learner advance his/her ringing skills from ringing in rounds toward the level needed to ring Plain Hunt and methods.  In addition, the figures shown here appear as sections of methods, as for example Long Places as Long 5ths in Plain Bob Doubles, Places as Making 2nds in Plain Bob on any number of bells and in leading and ringing at the back in Plain Hunt and most methods, and Dodges in Plain Bob and virtually every method.

Each exercise typically proceeds as follows:

  1. The conductor talks through what will happen, before the ringers pull off;
  2. The exercise begins two strokes after the command “Next handstroke” for “right” exercises (those that begin at a handstroke) or “Next backstroke” for “wrong” exercises (those that begin at a backstroke) (page 17), and finally
  3. The exercise ends two strokes after the command “That’s all“.

(Once the band is used to the exercises, and knows which start at a handstroke and which at a backstroke, we find they can be called “4 and 5, Go Long Places Wrong” or “Go Dodges 2 3”, for example, analogous to the “Go” calls for methods.  This allows the band to ring several exercises in sequence without standing.)

“Counting the compass”, or simply “Counting”

This is Lucas’s term for counting places in time with the bells striking (page 19).  The counting should be done evenly, and count when each bell sounds (or should sound, even if that bell sounds is early or late).  The counts do not mark when that ringer pulls, which is half a second or so before the bell sounds.  Lucas recommends that learners begin to do this as soon as they begin ringing in rounds, and develop the habit until it becomes automatic.

Here, for four bells each ringer would presumably count “1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 uh” for each full pull, with the first “1 2 3 4” for the handstrokes, the second “1 2 3 4” for the backstrokes, and the “uh” (or “5”, or whatever works for that ringer) for the handstroke pause.  Each count occurs when the bell in that place sounds or should sound.

(We sometimes also count “Hand hand hand hand back back back back pause hand hand hand hand back back back back pause” when ringers are working on the handstroke pause.)

Look away after the blow is committed

Lucas recommends that a learner be taught to look away from the bell they are following as soon as his/her blow is committed (page 6, point 2).

Long Places Right in 2-3

Long Places

Two ringers exchange places for two pulls (four blows), then back to their original places for two more full pulls, and so on until “That’s all” is called.

Long Places Wrong in 2-3

The exchanges occur between a backstroke and a handstroke for long places right, and between a handstroke and a backstroke for long places wrong.

The ringers should not count the four blows, if possible, as that will interfere with counting the compass, but instead “feel” the first pull then the second pull before exchanging places again.

(Short) Places Right in 2-3

Places (or Short Places)

Two ringers exchange places for one pull (two blows), then back to their original places for another pull, and so on until “That’s all” is called.

(Short) Places Wrong in 2-3

The exchanges occur between a backstroke and a handstroke for places right, and between a handstroke and a backstroke for places wrong.

Dodges

Dodging in 2-3

Two ringers exchange places at each stroke until “That’s all” is called.

While dodges can begin right (between a backstroke and the next handstroke) or wrong (between a handstroke and the next backstroke), the skills involved are the same in both cases and Lucas does not distinguish them.

“A dodge” is an exchange of places then an exchange back to the original places;  a “double dodge” is four exchanges, as in the figure if the bells stop dodging after the bottom row;  and a “triple dodge” is six exchanges.

Some compound figures.  Halfway starting points, where present, are shown by heavy dots

Advanced figures

Lucas briefly presents examples of more-advanced compound figures made of sequences of Long Places, Places, and Dodges, a few of which are sketched in the figure at right.

For many of these (but not all, for example the Yorkshire figure), the heavy line rung by one bell is the same as the light line rung by the other, except as if each bell is starting halfway through the other bell’s pattern.

He recommends that instructors invent their own compound figures to serve the specific needs of the ringers they are working with, lists a number of possibilities beyond the four shown here, and discusses one in detail.

± when what is meant is (em dash)
Σ when what is meant is (bullet)
when what is meant is (left double quote)
when what is meant is (right double quote)
Errata for the book

The copy of the book the tower owns has several consistent typesetting errors, listed in the table at right.

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Kaleidoscope exercises

  1. Pingback: Service ringing | miamibells

  2. Pingback: Practice · 2012Mar27Tu | miamibells

  3. Pingback: Practice · 2012Apr24Tu | miamibells

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s