Perinita – A Romanian Party/Wedding Dance

Perinița or Pernița  (peh-ree-NEE-tsah) is a traditional Romanian party dance, popular as an icebreaker, and also at weddings.  See Romanian Wedding Dances:

Originally from Muntenia (Wallachia) region , Perinița is now pan-Romanian.   The name of the dance comes from the Romanian word for pillow – “pernă” (from South Slavic “perina”) pillow – Perinița being the diminutive “little” form.  Maybe the item used to be a pillow, but it’s now usually a handkerchief or scarf on which a young man places his knee when kneeling before a girl he chooses.

Music dictates whether the footwork should be a simple Hora Mare (medium 2/4) or a Sârba (fast 6/8), but the YouTubes show footwork to be be any way of moving the circle along.  The dancers circle around a person (or persons) waving a handkerchief or scarf. He/she chooses a person of the opposite sex by placing the handkerchief/scarf around his/her neck. Originally, the chosen couple  kneel, then they kiss on the cheek, the first person rejoins the circle, while the second chooses another partner, etc.  Nowadays couples sometimes dance first before kneeling, sometimes dispense with the kneeling, but not the kiss.

There’s a melody particular to the dance.  Often simply playing the melody is enough to signal the start of the game.  For sheet music, see

There are lyrics which are sometimes sung, but usually the music is instrumental only.

Below appears to be a club.

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