Thursday, February 4, 2016

Fun and Easy Folk Dances from Albania

They were always Albanians. You know what that means. Some Catholics, some Orthodox. And some, in time, were Muslims, too. But the first religion of the Albanian, as they say, is Albania.
Jason Goodwin

If the first religion of the Albanians is Albania, the second one is dance. Today's post features some easy and fun dances from that country.

Video #1 is Sa Gjijile.  It is similar in structure to čoček and has a very catchy tune.  For some reason many tunes from the Balkans are earworms and can take up residence in your head for hours, even days.

Albania used to be one of the most isolated countries in the world during communist rule, which lasted from 1944-1990. Travel and tourism were very rigidly controlled, and few Westerners were allowed to visit.   Although the current  government promotes tourism, it is still seen as an out of the way and exotic country that doesn't attract too many travelers from the Western Hemisphere.

From what I've read about Albania it sounds like a place I'd like to visit.

More Albanians live outside Albania than in it. Many left after the fall of communism to find economic opportunities in Europe and North America. They keep their traditions alive at folk festivals.

Video #2 is Koritsa, an Albanian dance with a Greek name. It translates to girl in English. The music is more modern than traditional and very mellow.

If you enjoyed this you may also like:.

Fun and Easy Folk Dances from Serbia

Fun and Easy Folk Dances from Romania

Fun and Easy Folk Dances from Bulgaria

Fun and Easy Folk Dances from Macedonia

You can read about a local Albanian dance group here.

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