Thursday, March 21, 2013

Two Variations on a Bulgarian Folk Dance: Opas

Today's featured dance will be Opas, from the region of Dobrudja in northeast Bulgaria. Like last week's Romanian dance, Hora de Mina, it has different "flavors" with different music and choreography. Opas is the Dobrudjan variation of the dance Pravo Trakiisko Horo, shown here:

This link goes to Eliznik's Web Page a very informative source on folk dances from Eastern Europe.
If you scroll down and read the last paragraph, it explains the regional differences of Pravo Horo, the most popular dance in Bulgaria.

The version of Opas done in Bulgaria is a relatively easy dance, although the front basket-hold raises the challenge level a little, especially for beginner folk dancers. I happen to like this video because it's part of a series for learning Bulgarian folk dances, and the people wear elaborate embroidered costumes from the different folklore regions.

If you're a regular reader of The Alien Diaries the people in the next video will be familiar to you. The Dunav group from Jerusalem in Israel has a new series of videos featuring dances from the Balkans. I happened upon this when I was doing a search for the version of Opas that's done by recreational folk dance groups here in the States. This one rates 9.5 on a difficulty scale from 1-10; the belt hold makes it especially challenging. An especially difficult element of the dance is the deep knee bends, this is definitely off-limits if you have arthritis :)

If you enjoyed this you may also like:

Two Variations on a Romanian Folk Dance, Hora de Mina

Dancing Across Bulgaria: The Pravo and Regional Folk Dance Styles:

More dances from the Bulgarian folklore region of Dobrudja:

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