Bregovsko Horo (1*), Бреговско хоро – Bulgaria

*1st Generation dance. A dance that developed in a traditional way – not ‘taught’ by a teacher or choreographer, but ‘learned’ by observing and imitating others in your “village”, where the village’s few dances were the only dances anyone knew. It usually is ‘generic’ – the dance pattern is fairly simple and not tied to any particular piece of music. The dance phrase may or may not match any musical phrase, but the music’s rhythm must be suitable for performing the footwork. This dance may have many variations, but they’re performed at the whim or inspiration of the leader or (sometimes) any other dancer so long as it doesn’t interfere with the flow of neighboring dancers. For more, click here, here, and here.

Bregovsko Horo BREH-gohf-skoh hoh-ROH. Bregovo is a small Bulgarian town (2009 pop. 2,592) near the Serbian/Romanian/Bulgarian border, on the Timok river, in the province of Vidin. Breg means “shore”, ovo indicates a location; Bregovo means “on or at the shore”. Bregovo’s location would lead one to guess that dances from there would have Serbian and/or Romanian influences, and in this case one’s guess would be bang on.

Here’s the dance goup “Kalina” performing a basic Bregovsko with belt hold. Basket and “V” holds are also OK.
Now notice the popular Serbian Čačak. Same footwork in terms of structurre – 10 measures, and weight changes – R,L,R,L,R,Rhop,L,Lhop, R,Rhop,L,R,L,Lhop, R,Rhop,L,R,L,Lhop. The major difference between Čačak and Bregovsko is that in Bregovsko [during the 1st L,Lhop sequence], the R foot crosses over the L instead of staying in place. Also the last step in Bregovsko is an unweighted stamp on the R instead of a hop on the L.

For more on Čačak, click

Yves Moreau introduced Bregovsko Horo to North American dancers in 1974. The dance has remained remarkably consistent both among recreational folk dancers and in Bulgaria, where, though I haven’t found any Living “village” examples, it is a popular performance dance. The performers, however, have added several variations on the basic sequence.

A clear demonstration of Bregovsko Horo at Appleton, Wisconsin.

Bregovsko Horo Variations

This group has the standard footwork, but a unique combination of arm swings.
The Chipnitsa folk group – double the first figure, then add other variations!
Bregovsko starts at 4:05. Many variations, but always within the 10-measure format.
The wall-climbing variation. Very difficult!
Capricornia Dance Exchange from Australia using Moreau’s music but not his footwork.

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: