Biala Roza (S*)- Bulgaria

*S is for Song. So? A song with a life independent of whatever dance it may be attached to. Why that’s important is explained here.

Biala Roza is a popular Bulgarian song, written by Thracian Slavka Kalcheva, first recorded in 2000, that is often danced to the pan-Balkan pattern known to RFD-ers as Devetorka.  See also Devetorka. Most Bulgarians call the 9/8 dance pattern associated with this song Gankino horo.

When one interviewer asked Slavka Kalcheva what her song meant, she replied – “I’ve received so many good ideas about what it means. Well, I wrote the text and the music, but even I’m not sure what it really means.”
Isn’t that the mark of an exceptional writer – one whose work can mean so many different things to different readers?

Caption: “Dancing Protesters at Massive Protest in Sofia 24.02.2013” A dance line surrounds and traps a police van during a massive 2013 street protest in Sofia, with police whistles and sirens adding to the drama. Note the dance is Gankino and the song is Biala Roza. Sympathetic Bulgarian officials in that van would not disrupt that dance.
A heavy metal version, 2019.

Many thanks to Steve Ayala, Petaluma California, for valuable background information, and the splendid downloadable lyrics sheet.

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