The Clapping Series
Like the preceding exercise, this is easier done than said. Sitting on the floor, in a circle, all the participants start to beat out a clapping rhythm with their hands on their legs. Everyone must try to listen to the rhythms they hear and develop a single, simple rhythm. Once this has been achieved, one person (A) raises her hands and, in rhythm, sends a single clap towards the person on her right (B) who claps with her at the same time; B then turns to the person on her right (C) and claps with her – and so on. So we have AB clap, BC clap, CD clap, going in an anti-clockwise direction, and in time with the background rhythm the rest of the group are beating out on their knees. Then we add in a single clap on the knees of the recipient before she passes it on. So it goes AB clap together, B claps on her knees, BC clap together, C claps on her knees, and so on. Still in a rhythm which works with the background rhythm. Once the group is well in tune (and well practised) you can increase the clapping speed, keeping the same rhythm. Then, from outside the circle, the Joker can say from time to time ‘Left’ or ‘Right’ and the claps, instead of following the natural flow, must go back either to the left or the right (according to the instruction). The next step is for the Joker to instruct the first person to send out not one but several claps, at short intervals; several claps will be on the go at the same time. Finally the Joker says ‘Go’ and the claps must be sent all over the place, anywhere except to the left or the right, so that everybody has to watch everybody else around the circle, to know where the claps are directed.