DANCING AT A ROMANIAN WEDDING PARTY
Although a modern Romanian wedding (“Nunta”) looks more and more like a wedding in the West, many if not most Romanian wedding parties still feature traditional dances. After the wedding feast, musicians strike up a snappy medium tempo, and the bride leads (or people just start dancing)
A simple Hora mare (Big Hora). STEP-STEP-STEP-TOUCH, then the same in the opposite direction, sawtooth-style. Though it’s the pattern most widely known in Romania, there are many regional variations.
Some weddings include a Hora Miresei (Bride’s Hora). It’s pretty much the same footwork as Hora Mare, except a couple of large lit candles are involved, and the footwork tends towards side-to-side instead of in-and-out.
In Southern Romania immediately following the hora the musicians speed up the tempo and kick into a melody in triplets. The resulting dance is a Sârba (Sirba during the Communist era).
The footwork for Sârba, STEP-STEP-STEP-KICK-STEP-KICK, is that 6-count pattern familiar everywhere. I call it the Taproot Dance.
Actually, in Sârba the STEP-KICKS come first, so the pattern is STEP-KICK-STEP-KICK-STEP-STEP. This particular Taproot is so fast it looks more like SLOW-SLOW-QUICK-QUICK. But occasionally you can see the kicks, or at least lifts or pauses. When young bucks dance, Sarba can be pretty energetic.
Often, couples dance inside the Hora or Sârba circle.
In Dobrogea (see https://folkdancefootnotes.org/culture/ethnicity-history-geography/dobrudja-dobrogea/) dances have a decidedly Bulgarian flavour. This wedding features Cadâneasca. (see https://folkdancefootnotes.org/dance/a-real-folk-dance-what-is-it/about/cadaneasca-romania/).
How about the folk who can’t afford a big wedding? Dance local to canned music!
Or hire a Roma band.
Here the Taproot Dance works for both Hora Miresei and Sârba.
Another dance – well, game – popular at weddings is Perinitsa
For more examples of Perinitsa, see https://folkdancefootnotes.org/dance/a-real-folk-dance-what-is-it/about/perinita-another-romanian-wedding-dance/
If you have any comments, or would like an expanded list of You Tube examples, email me at email@example.com.