Nestinarsko – Bulgaria

See also Fire-Walkers – Greece & Bulgaria under CULTURE>Special Occasions

See also Anastenaria under DANCE>3b.1st GENERATION DANCES

Dances are associated with the Nestinarstvo fire-walking festival commonly held on the feast of Saints Constantine and Helena, May 21 (Western calendar ) or June 3 (Orthodox calendar.)  The Nestinarstvo seen in today’s Bulgaria is a recreation for tourists – missing much of the mystical fervour of the original.

Although dance is only a small part of the ritual, there are 3 separate melodies, each with its own footwork.  Various instructors have released notes on parts of the ceremony – usually the first processional dance that takes participants from the chapel containing icons to and around the ritual fire.  The best-known Nestinari dance among recreational folk dancers is probably Yves Moreau’s

Nestinarsko - Yves

Here’s another, based on Phillip Thorton’s observations from the 1930’sNestinarstvo - Thornton

And Martin Koenig, 1983, Stockton.

Nestinarsko (Koenig, 83)


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