Saturday, January 21, 2012

Today's Pop Quiz: Test Your Knowledge of Bulgarian Folklore

This is a test! This is only a test!

Now that I have your attention, it's time for a quiz on Bulgarian folklore. This is how it works: you watch seven videos and then name the folklore region in Bulgaria which best fits the video. At the bottom of this page is a list of the regions; your job is to match the region with the video. It's all in fun and not to be taken too seriously :)

The answers will be in the next installment of The Alien Diaries. Please feel free to post your answers in the "comments" section. Good luck!

1. This singer recently celebrated her 70th birthday. Her name is Valya Balkanska and this song, Izlel e Delyu Haidutin, was launched into Outer Space on the Project Voyager back in 1977 as a musical message to extraterrestrials (a.k.a. aliens). Her region is known for its gaida (bagpipe music).

2. Dances from this area of Bulgaria include lots of stamping and strong arm movements (which may have to do with the natives letting off steam). Some dances from this region include Opas, Tropanka, and Sborenka. Name the folklore region.

3. Diko Iliev lived in this region of Bulgaria, known for its brass band music. His most famous piece is about a river which flows along the border of Bulgaria and Romania. You'll see a hint in this video, (which has nothing to do with folk dancing) but there's lots of action in it and lots of explosives. No people were harmed in the making of it :) Name the folklore region.

4. This region is known for music played on an instrument called the tambura and singing done in unusual vocal harmonies, which you will see and hear in the next video. The area is mountainous and the old houses there were built in a distinct style (see link below)

What part of Bulgaria is this song from?

5. The most popular dance from this area of Bulgaria is the Pravo Horo, seen below. This region shares its name with regions in Greece and Turkey.

6. Dances from this region are very fast, with small steps. The dance shown, Petronino Horo, is typical of this area. The natives pride themselves on their sense of humor.

7. This area of Bulgaria is famous for people who dance on hot coals to the accompaniment of a bagpipe and drum. It is a ritual which honors the feast day of Saints Constantine and Helen (which is different from the date on the video). Name the region.

Your choices are from this list:

Shope region (šopluk)

It's OK to take wild guesses and if you're a regular reader of this blog this quiz will be a piece of cake. Have fun!

(Speaking of cake, you will see people dancing with one in an upcoming post. Look for it in about a week).

If you liked this you may also enjoy the finale of Nadigrame, Season Two from BNT World. Nadigrame is a dance competition show featuring amateur dance groups from different folklore regions of Bulgaria. Although it's nearly two hours and has no subtitles, it's worth the watch if you love Bulgarian folk dancing. The previous episodes which led to the final are also archived on this site.

If you don't have two hours to spare, here are the Ten Reasons Why You Should Read My Blog (an exercise in shameless self promotion :)

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