Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2347:
Body Language, Jazz Hands and Powerball

Within the context of performance dance, "Jazz Hands" are a configuration of palms directed towards the audience with fingers splayed. This deliberate gesture in performance may also be referred to as "Jazz Fingers" or "Spirit Fingers" are more commonly seen with Jazz dance, revue, cheerleading, show choir and musicals. 

In the video above (during 2:00 - 2:02) and captured below in an image, the translator for Pedro Quezada shows us the off-stage, real world (and performed subconsciously or at the edge-of-consciousness) version of jazz hands. Mr. Quezada, a hard working husband and father of five, who owns and works at a deli in New Jersey, won the 338 million Powerball jackpot this past week.

In stage performances, Jazz hands & fingers are associated with exuberance and melodrama. They may also imply a level of campiness. In the everyday they indicate these same emotions in an effort to recreate a truly excited - or sarcastically (falsely) excited retelling of a story or event. They are often associated with a coexisting arm movement of rapid shaking. In body language parlance they are a variety of an "illustrator". Straight men tend to have their elbows further from their body when using this nonverbal, while women and gay men most often display jazz hands with their elbows much closer to their abdomen. To differentiate between the two emotional extremes of jazz hands (sincere vs. insincere) - one must look elsewhere in the "nonverbal sentence" aka the body language cluster.

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2052:  Dialing Up Empathy and Sincerity -  Mitt Romney's & Barack Obama's Response to  Aurora, Colorado "Batman Shooting"

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2150:  Body Language Advice for  President Obama and Governor Romney in Tonight's Debate

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1915: Mitt Romney's Response to Supreme Court's Decision on "Obamacare"