Monday, August 10, 2015

Fun and Fast Kolos from Serbia

If you think of exercise as a 60-minute commitment 3 times a week at the gym, you're missing the point completely. If you think that going on a diet has something to do with nutrition, you don't see the forest through the trees. It is a lifestyle. I know it sounds cliche, but you have to find things you love to do.
Brett Hoeble

Today's post features some Serbian dances that I've done at one time or another.  They are fun and fast and get the heart rate going.  Who needs aerobics when there's kolo?

The first one is a bouncy little number that is often played early in the evening because it's a relatively easy dance to follow: Divčibarsko Kolo. It has something called "ethnic symmetry", which means the same footwork in both directions.

Rokoko Kolo is a hybrid dance from Vojvodina.  It's a Serbian dance that sounds Croatian because of the  tamburitza music.  The accordion is the national instrument of Serbia, but in Vojvodina they are more into tamburitza.  The heel clicks are common to Hungarian dances because a sizable Hungarian minority lives in this part of Serbia. Political borders in the Balkans don't always align with cultural ones.

Polomka is a medley of several Vlach dances with lots of stamping.  Except for the last figure this dance is fairly easy to follow.

Brass music is popular in Serbia, too.  Every year in August there is a festival called Guca where bands all from all over Serbia (and some from outside the country, like Zlatne Uste), compete. This year it was from August 3 to August 9.  If you missed it there's always next year.

Here's Polomka as it's done in the "village" of Maribor, in Slovenia:

If you enjoyed this you may also like:

Serbian Folk Dance Around the World

The "Flavors" of Serbian Kolo

If you like tamburitza music, there is plenty of it in The River of Many Names, Part 6: The Danube in Croatian Folk Songs.  The earworms in this post will take up residence in your head, guaranteed.

If you're bored with your usual workout, try some Ethnic Dance and Exercise.

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