Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Balkan Dances That Are Often Confused (Part Two)

I had nothing to offer anybody except for my own confusion.
Jack Kerouac

A few months ago I wrote a post about confusion regarding Balkan dances with similar names.  This is the sequel, otherwise the first one would have been too long.

Video #1 is the very popular Jove Malaj Mome from Bulgaria. It has traveled around the world and has gone as far as China.  The lyrics describe a girl named Jova, who prefers the city guys from Sofia, and won't even look at the men from her village. She is way too good for them.

If you are a frequent reader of this blog, you've seen the "Bonding Folkdance Class." They have a large repertoire of dances and a high energy teacher.

The dance is in a compound rhythm 7/16 +11/16.  Many folk dance people happen to be good at math (but I'm not one of them).

Video #2 is a dance from Macedonia, Edno Maloj Mome (One Little Girl).  Many Macedonian and Bulgarian songs are in the 7/8 rhythm (pineapple-apple-apple). The dance usually done to this rhythm is lesnoto, but as you will see this one is a bit more complicated.

Before you can run, you have to learn to walk. Video #3 is a "plain vanilla" lesnoto. There are many variations of lesnoto;  this one is the easiest. It's basically walking in 7/8 rhythm while alternately lifting each foot. It is how Macedonians learned to walk when they were babies. This rhythm is ingrained in them in the womb.

The group dances to a medley of four songs: Oj ti pile, Zalna majka, Bitola moy roden krai, and Makedonsko Devojce.

Video #4 is of another dance from Macedonia, Lesnoto OroIt is a dressed up version of lesnoto.  Are you confused yet?

Lesnoto Oro starts slowly then speeds up, typical of Macedonian dances.

If you enjoyed this you may also like:

Balkan Dances that are Often Confused, Part One

Dancing in Sevens, Part One (Bulgaria) and Part Two (Macedonia)

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