The reason that you dance and sing is to make the audience feel like they're dancing and singing. As long as you're having fun with it and giving it 100 percent, they're gonna feel that.
Horo means "dance" in Bulgarian, and as you will see in video #1, there was a large crowd dancing Pravo, Daichovo and Devetorka at the 50th anniversary party.
Video #2 shows a close-up of the musicians and their instruments: three accordions, a small kaval (shepherd's flute), a keyboard, tupan (double headed drum) and a vocalist. (The voice is also a musical instrument.)
Some people consider accordions instruments of torture and use them for that purpose. I am the only one who likes accordion music at my house. My husband would rather hear the smoke detector go off than listen to the accordion. Says it gives him a headache.
The accordion, which was invented in a German-speaking country, was originally not part of the traditional Bulgarian folk ensemble. Boris Karlov, who arranged many folk dances for accordion, was partly responsible for its popularity in Bulgaria.
The song, Tri Vecheri Na Dunava, translates into English as Three Evenings on The Danube, which explains why there is so much blue in the video :) The rhythm for this song is rachenitsa, (apple-apple-pineapple). It is the national dance of Bulgaria and the time signature for it is 7/8 or 7/16 depending on the speed. The larger the number on the bottom of the time signature, the faster the music.
The city of Ruse is situated on the banks of the Danube, River of Many Names, and for over fifty years had the only bridge that connected Bulgaria and Romania until the Vidin-Calafat bridge was completed in 2013.
Video #3 is the song, Moma Draganka, (girl named Draganka) also in rachenitsa rhythm. Notice the dancers in elaborate embroidered costumes, eye candy for those who love Bulgarian folklore. If you look closely, you can see a small red cloth on the tupan. I own a cloth similar to the one in the video. Mine has an evil eye pattern in several colors, but mostly red. Red is a lucky color in Bulgaria. The evil eye keeps the bad forces away from the person who wears it.
Next is Shirokata, with more eye candy :) The rhythm is 9/16 (devetorka).
Stari Dedo (Old Grandpa) is a folk song in 11/16 (kopanitsa) rhythm. Another dance from Northern Bulgaria, Gankino Horo, has the same rhythm. There are many tunes associated with Gankino Horo, the most famous being the version played by accordionist Boris Karlov.
If anyone out there can locate an English translation for the songs posted here this week, it would be very much appreciated!
If you enjoyed this you may also like
Folk Ensembles Named Horo
The Accordion in Bulgarian Folk Music
The "Flavors" of Bulgarian Rachenitsa Part One and Part Two
The Colors of Bulgarian Folk Songs
Crossing the River Part Four: Celebrating a New Bridge
The Legacy of Boris Karlov, Bulgarian Folk Accordionist
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