Oxford International folk dance group
Traditional dances from Europe and beyond...
Since we cannot meet to dance on Wednesday evenings, we have instigated a mitigation strategy, which comes in two parts:
We have a Zoom session at 7.30pm every Wednesday lasting approximately our hour. Please email for details.
On joining Zoom, you will probably be muted. Feel free to unmute yourself (bottom left on PC's) to have chat or if you need to ask questions, but please ensure that you are muted during the dances.
Although we try to start with gentle dances, we cannot be held responsible for any damage you may cause to yourself or to your surroundings during the dancing. It it up to you to ensure that you are warm enough and physically capable of taking part in any dance that we suggest.
We are suggesting that people join in with a "virtual" dance with us. Each week we will suggest a dance to learn or recall and give links to videos that we think are worthwhile watching. The dance will be listed here afterwards.
For some dances there is more information than would comfortably sit here and for those, the name of the dance links to a subpage (also in the index to the left).
Dances so far:
- Alunelul (Romania)
- Clear teaching also explains the lyrics at the end (actually on a different occasion and the dance comes again afterwards with better lighting). They hold their hands low (V) whereas we have ours in "W" hold.
- Lively dancing. They use the same recording that we do. They use shoulder hold, which I have never encountered in England.
- Children's stage performance
- Nigun Atik (Israel)
- Poseyala Baba (Ukraine)
- Dramskoto (Bulgaria)
- Michanicos (Greece)
- Joiku (Finland/Sami)
Taught to us by Corry Herheijen at Hursley in September 2018
There is nothing on the web, so we have created our own videos
- Mavilim (Turkey)
Taught to us by Karin Bellaart at Eastbourne in May 2019
- Ahmet Luleci teaches this thoroughly.
- Belasičko (Macedonia)
- This Chinese teacher is clear although rather flat-footed and puts an extra hop at the beginning of the third figure.
- This group is more our style but the photography is poorer.
- This comprehensive analysis contains written instructions and other information. Beware the second video link (Paul Mulders) and avoid the Israeli teaching one
- Lalica (Bulgaria)
Not a lot on the web for this one
- Raca Plava (Croatia)
We learnt this from Jan Knoppers in Eastbourne 2007. As it was part of a suite of three dances, he only taught the basic dance.
- Sulam Ya'akov - Jacob's ladder (Israel)
- Meliniško (Bulgaria)
Another one from Karin Bellaart at Eastbourne 2019. There are a number of different versions, notably the one that Yves Moreau teaches, but little on this one.
- Makazice (Serbia)
- Žensko za Râka (Macedonia)
There are two reasonable vidoes of our version of this (others put in step-touch, rather than step-lift/bounce):
- Rumunjsko Kolo (Serbia)
The SIFD calls this Romansko Kolo and says it is a Romanian dance (which just the meaning of the name).
- Esmer (Turkey)
We appear to do this in a different phase to the music than others. We travel in the instrumental and stay on the spot during the vocals
- Hora Veche (Romania)
There is another (less common) dance of the same name. This one is sometimes known as "Hora Veche 2" as a consequence.
- Dancing on Water (Israel)
- American group is the complete dance but they put in extra hops that we were no taught
- Italian dancers is our version but stops after two turns - the third time has the first phrase repeated. They are a little stiff in their sways
- Ice-breaking version is a different choerography, so just watch the scenery!
- Tsadik Katamar [yifrach] (Israel)
"The righteous [shall flourish] like a palm tree" Psalm 92
- Kirčo na Čardak Sedeše (Bulgaria)
- Dobrudjanska Pandala (Bulgaria)
- Staro Poloskho Oro (Macedonia)
Another one introduced to us by Corry Verheijen. There is nothing on the web, so here are two of ours
- Kruchmarsko (Bulgaria)
This is the pub dance - the name means "pub"!
- La mușată armânâ (Romania)
"The beautiful Aromanian girl". A song in Aromanian
- Corlu Aromân (Romania)
Another song that is probably in Aromanian.
- To Milo (Greece)
(The apple) We learnt this dance from Cristina in Eastbourne 2009.
- Lǎmîiţǎ (Romania)
Taught by Silviu. Name means both the Mock Orange (Philadelphus coronarius) or Lemon Verbena.
There is nothing on the internet, so we have created our own
- Hora Chassidit (Israel)
There is only one video of this on the internet, but it is well taught (in Hebrew) and danced
The book he refers to is "Israeli Dances for Beginners part 2" which has a footnote to the dance:
"Rivka Sturman [the choreographer] once taught this dance moving to CW [i.e. left]. As a result, endless confusion has resulted."
Some people start left foot, others right independent of the direction they set off in! We will stick with the original as taught here.
- Karamfil (Bulgaria)
Created by Japp Leegwater. The name means Carnation
- Orijent (Serbia)
One of the earliest dances to be introduced to the west. The style has changed over the years
- Geamparele (Bulgaria)
This is type of dance rather than one specific, but nothing on the web anything close to our version (from David Mowat)
- Cobancat (Albania)
Choerographed by Lee Otterholt this century to a lovely Albanian song "The shepherdesses". The original has hands V all the way through and ends feet together. No-one appears to do this elsewhere!
- Hora Miresii (Romania)
Choreographed around 1990, with a mutation appearing fairly soon afterwards
- Kuma Eche (Israel)
- Promoroaca (Romania)
There are a remarkably large number of variations of this.
- Hora de la Risipiţi (Romania)
There are many minor variations of this and nothing on the internet is the same as our version. These are the closest
- Ksipna Perdikomata (Greece)
We learnt this dance from Joe Graziosi at the 2020 Texa-Kolo festival. It is the (more sedate and less improvised) women's version of the dance. The Greek spelling of this song's name is Ξύπνα περδικομάτα μου
- Drjanovska Racenica (Romania)
A dance from Yves Moreau in 1998 to the song "Izgrjala e mesečinka" (the moon has risen) sung by Trio Bulgarka.
There is another (later) dance of the same name.
There are only two videos showing our version:
- Ahi Vahi (Greece)
Although we had a dance to this tune a long time ago, we have little memory, so are doing the one that Joe Graziosi taught at the Texa-Kolo festival in November
The dance can travel to the left, right or alternately (which makes a slightly more interesting dance)
- Ayumar Behar Hamor (Israel)
Taught by Anne Leach in 2007
There is little on the internet, so we created our own, and then we discovered a good one as well.
- Alunelul (Romania)