Friday, March 1, 2024

Dance Conserving Heritage & Tradition Alive

Circle dancing, sees dancers connecting, typically by way of hand holding, in a circle, semicircle, or curved line. They transfer to the rhythm of singing or devices.

The fantastic thing about circle dance is its inclusivity. Accompanied by the related musical types, it flexes by way of catering for a full span of ages, skills and health ranges – creating a spread of assorted dance types.

Circle dances range from historical, conventional codecs to fashionable modern. The tempo is something from sluggish and meditative to energetic and upbeat. You discover some carried out inside venues and others typically exterior and extra related with nature.

At DanceBibles, we like to discover the totally different dances from around the world and circle dancing is not any exception. On this article we’ll dive into this fascinating dance, discover out what makes it particular, the place it comes from and how one can get began.

Circle dance article. image of “Hora haiducilor” depicts traditional Moldavian folk circle dance Hora originating in the Balkans Sculptor Nicolae Vieru
Picture by Maria Lupan  on Unsplash

Find out how to Circle Dance

·      Usually the music will begin quietly and can permit folks to get into the temper

·      Usually one individual begins the circle dance and others will comply with as snug

·      Typically we are going to be a part of arms with our neighbours. Usually dancers current the left hand open palm rotated backwards to ‘give’. The appropriate hand is introduced with an open palm ‘to obtain’

·      There are a variety of widespread steps relying on the dance. Take a look at this glossary

Circle dance of Females in Slovakia in full regalia, with musical accompaniment behind them
Picture of circle dancers by Jan Hrasko from Pixabay taken in Hriňová Slovakia

Typical Facets of Circle Dancing


No matter your age and skill, there’s a circle dance to go well with. No accomplice wanted, easy steps and a welcoming environment. This dance really has group at its coronary heart. Not like most different dance types, circle dance is non-competitive. With this in thoughts, the style may be very understanding and forgiving. ‘Circle Dancing for All’ say ‘There aren’t any errors, merely variations!’.



The circle is not any coincidence. For a lot of the circle has symbolism to all the pieces of circularity. This could possibly be life & dying, the altering of seasons, or perhaps a connection to the earth, giving unity and wholeness.

Persons are additionally bodily related within the dance by way of their contact, vitality, inventive expression and motion as they transfer in unison. This has historical traditions in social and cultural event. The result’s a shared feeling of group spirit.

At it’s most simple stage circle dancing is a extremely social type of dance. You possibly can come and not using a accomplice, meet new folks and make associates. Circle dance is a chance to immerse your self into a brand new group of typically likeminded folks.

Image of Shiva statue
Shiva creating the world by dancing. Picture by sabinevanerp on pixlebay


For a lot of traditionally and at the moment, Circle dance has had a component of reflection to it, with a few of the slower paced dances having a meditative factor of psychological quietness woven in. That is more and more making circle dance a go-to instrument for remedy instrument in varied settings.

The reflections, relying on the event, whether or not that be self-reflection, can have a religious or non secular layer to them additionally.

Some types of circle dance could have a centre piece in the midst of the circle. This serves a sensible objective of retaining the circle in a gradual form but in addition has another that means for some. This will embody being lit with candles or round a hearth, with all of the symbolism gentle can convey.


For all of the potential symbolism, ritual and deeper that means we might discover in some kinds of circle dance, one widespread thread you discover throughout just about all of those is an method which is light-hearted and enjoyable.


Musical Kinds and Dances

Circle dancing incorporates varied musical types to mirror the broad nature of its participation. These might be loosely grouped into:

·      Self-made rhythm – Parts similar to sticks, bones and handmade sounds have been current throughout early circle dances for percussion.

·      People Tune – People songs and dance have had the biggest  presence in circle dancing

·      Classical & Modern Music – Circle dance repertoire has expanded to incorporate classical and modern music. This brings a brand new dimension circle dancing, permitting for it to enchantment to new audiences and with totally different ranges of ability and physicality. Many choreographers now create dances to well-known classical items which might be lovely to behold.

·      Meditative – The mentally refreshing and wellness properties of circle dance are compelling. These are intricately related to the selection of enjoyable, rhythmical track guiding the dance.

Historical past of Circle Dancing

Circle dancing is believed to be the oldest type of dance. A few of the highlights embody:

·      3000BC, Historical Egyptian – rock petroglyphs (carved photos) of women circle dancing

·      tenth Century, Germany – dance of Reigen originates from early Christian festivals

·      twelfth Century, Bosnia – tombstones within the depict dancers in a series holding arms

·      14th Century, Macedonia – chronicles and monastery descriptions in present males dancing with linked arms.  Giovanni Boccaccio describes women and men circle dancing to their very own singing or accompanied by musician

·      1588, Constantinople – German Reinhold Lubenau, experiences on circle dancing a Greek wedding ceremony on his travels

And circle dancing has continued to today, preserving lots of the tales, customs and traditions by way of the generations. Many of those are sometimes not written down, however have been handed era to era throughout the centuries.

Male and female dancers hold hands in a traditional circle dance
Picture by ctvgs from Pixabay

Checklist of instance of circle dances around the globe:

There are such a lot of cultural variations of circle dance that its past the scope of this put up to seize all of them right here however right here we listing a number of examples:

·      An Dro – from Brittany, France – linking little fingers and swinging arms because the group is lead in a spiral of dance patterns.

·      Chain Dance – From the Faro Islands.

·      Danke – For instance the Lawweeh, danced in a semi-circle at household celebrations in Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Israel, Jordan and Turkey.

·      Deuda – a part of the cultural heritage of the Karnali Province, Nepal. Holding arms in a circle. The primary group sings a query, while a second group then solutions this.

·      Dhan Nach – (Usually additionally recognized by the identify ‘Yalang’, ‘Chalakma’ or‘Yalakma’ relying on native language) A people dance from the Limbu area of Nepal, accompanied by a track referred to as ‘Palam’. It’s roots traceable to scaring the birds away and celebrating the harvest.

·      English people dance; you could find directions and music for dances with names as wild as ‘Brawl’ and ‘The yellow cats jig’ on Colin Hume’s web page

·      Farandole and Bourrée – are examples of French dances with distinct regional influences.

·      Fugdi – Carried out by girls across the Go area in India, typically throughout Hindu non secular competition. The identify ‘Fugdi’ truly comes from there being no percussion to the dance, the dancers create a rhythm by blowing air in a sound of ‘Foo’.

·      Govend – A conventional Kurdish dance.

·      Hora – a extremely energetic circle dance, discovered within the Balkans, Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria and Israel at weddings and celebrations.

·      Kalamatianos  & Syrtos – carried out at weddings in Greece & Cyprus, two variants with totally different tempo and ritual. Usually handkerchiefs and used as a part of the dances.

·      Khigga  – Assyrian circle dances, typically carried out at weddings, in both a line or a circle. It makes use of handkerchiefs embodied with beads and bells, in addition to a ceremonial embellished cain.

·      Khorovod – Russian dances, historically carried out throughout village gatherings and festive events. Every dance tells tales of native folklore and historical past, with Pagan origins and symbolism of shifting across the solar.

·      Kolo – people dance from Bosnia and Serbia holding arms or waists, with a stiff higher posture held all through.

·      Kochari  – An Armenian people dance, danced with arms throughout every others shoulders, in a closed circle.

·      Mayim Mayim dance; which celebrates the discovering of water throughout 40 years of wandering within the desert.

·      Native American circle dances; serving varied functions like therapeutic and preparation for conflict.

·      Nati & Harul– A energetic Indian people dance hottest in Himachal Pradesh and Himalaya area. In 2016,  9892 girls danced Nati of their colourful Kulluvi gown, which is a world report.

·      Sacred Circle Dance – With a small centrepiece of flowers and dance, by way of the Findhorn Basis, by Bernhard Wosien, beginning in Scotland.

·      Sardana – A well-liked dance from Catalonia.

·      Sakela – a standard Nepalese and Indian competition dance, related to prayer for a superb harvest and safety from pure catastrophe.

·      Syabru – a standard Nepalese Himalayan people dance, from throughout the Sherpa, Tamang and Yolmo communities at festivals and gatherings.

·      Tamzara  – An Anatolian people dance with related little fingers.


Last ideas

While circle dancing won’t have the identical particular person expertise components on the stage of different dance types like Ballet, circle dance is about connectedness with the group. A real pleasure to look at or be a part of. It’s magnificence is in it’s intertwined hyperlinks with wealthy track, customs and tales. Circle dances protect historical past and tradition to the purpose many are listed within the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage lists (that are undoubtedly price testing).

Give it a attempt to tell us the way it goes. Completely satisfied circle dancing!

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