Words have meaning and names have power. ~Author Unknown
Today's dances have similar names but different meanings, tempos and choreographies. One thing they have in common is that both are from the folklore region of Dobrudja.
These dances have stampy steps which are characteristic of this region of Bulgaria. The first, Dobrujanska Pandela, is in the time signature of 2/4. "Pandela" translates to "ribbon" in English.
The second dance, Pandelaš, (pronounced pandelash) means "fleeting thought or idea." (Funny how that little diacritical mark under the "s" changes not just the meaning, but the pronunciation.
Pandelaš is a rachenitsa, a dance very popular in Bulgaria. The tempo is either 7/8 or 7/16 depending on the speed; this particular dance is in 7/8. The beats are accented like this: apple-apple-pineapple.
The rachenitsa is the national dance of Bulgaria, and in different regions it takes on different characteristics. For example: the Shopska Rachenitsa is fast, with small steps, and the Thracian Rachenitsa is slower and smoother). The Dobrudjanska Rachenitsa is relatively slow, punctuated with stamps and often accented with strong arm movements.
Click the links to see two more examples of rachenitsa from Dobrudja: Sej Sej Bop and Povlekana.
If you enjoyed this you may also like:
The Flavors of Bulgarian Rachenitsa, Part One and Part Two
Stamping It Out: Dances From the Bulgarian Folklore Region of Dobrudja
Two Variations on the Bulgarian Folk Dance Rachenitsa Na Horo (two dances with the same name, different music and choreography)
Looking for some thing fun to read this summer? Check out my new blog Light and Shadow. It has been online since January. It will make you think, and may even make you laugh.
The Alien Diaries will be taking a break for the next two weeks. See you later this summer!
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