How to gypsy dance

ROMANI (Gypsy) MUSIC & DANCE – Folkdance Footnotes

Roma are a very diverse people, due both to their diverse origins (see Roma or Gypsy – why 2 names & where do they come from?) and to the influence of the many places they settled.  Speaking of Romani music or dance is like speaking of Eurasian music or dance.  The excellent film Latcho Drom, which chronicles Romani music and dance from India to Spain, is a prime showcase of this diversity.  Here are some excerpts:

French Roma

Romanian Roma

Egyptian Roma

Spanish Roma

Rajasthani (India) Roma

Hungarian Roma

It has been said the Roma have no music of their own.   What they have is an amazing ability to absorb the music around them, infuse it with the Roma’s intense emotions and passion for life, and expand its possibilities through outstanding virtuosity.  Gadje (non-Roma) come to prefer Roma musicians’ interpretation of gadje music.  Roma also have their impenetrable-to-gadje language, so when they add Romani lyrics to a gadje-style melody, it becomes a Romani song.

DANCE –  If Romani music is a heightened form of gadje music, why doesn’t Romani dance follow the same path?  Why don’t you see Romani line dances, for instance?  Perhaps an explanation can be partly found in the Romani concept of marime.  VERY simply, marime is ritual pollution – whether something or someone or some action is pure or impure.  Roma spend much of their time and energy trying to maintain ritual cleanliness, and avoiding being polluted, and their ideas of cleanliness are very different from us gadje‘s (whom they consider very unclean).   [See Roma (Gypsy) Culture’s Central Value – Marime –  under CULTURE, Ethnicity, etc for more details].

Though Roma is usually considered a male-dominated society, women have awesome ritual power, and men must take great care not to become marime by them.  Women from the waist up are wuzho (pure) – thus there is little shame in exposing the breasts – they’re for feeding children (a pure act), not sex objects.  Women from the waist down are marime – thus long skirts are always worn to hide legs (knees are considered ugly) and to protect legs from touching (defiling) others.  Even being touched by a skirt can be considered marime, since it probably previously touched the legs.

Thus, dancing in lines, Balkan-style, would be too risky.  Even holding hands can be a problem, because you don’t know where they’ve been.  Note that all the examples of Romani dancing that I’ve posted show people dancing as individuals.

Times they are a’changin, marime is no longer as dominant a force as it once was, and its practice and interpretation varies greatly from tribe to tribe.  Nevertheless, I believe it had a strong influence or the formation of Romani-style dancing.

The other distinguishing feature of Romani dance is improvisation.  They dance to express themselves, show their skills, and to communicate with others of their tribe, but the idea of a public performance, where a field or stage is filled with people synchronizing their pre-choreographed moves is another one of those gadje ideas.

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from basic elements to dance sketches in the characters of Russian and Bessarabian gypsies

You will learn

  • What are the characteristics of gypsy dance and why should it not be given to children under a certain age?
  • What distinguishes the gypsy dance from other nationalities and what are its regional features?
  • How to make a performance interesting and original and at the same time not use elements unusual for gypsy dance?
  • What should you pay special attention to when staging etudes and concert numbers? nine0006

Gypsy dance - one of the most popular . But, at the same time, is one of the most difficult - both in terms of technique and in terms of execution.

A set of four lessons by Andrey Kulmanov will help you understand the intricacies and nuances of gypsy dance and prevent annoying mistakes when staging numbers in this character.

Lesson 1

contains practical material to start with. nine0003

The expert gradually and sequentially:

  • introduces the participants of the master class to the main characteristic gypsy movements,
  • talks about the peculiarities of the manner of performing the female and male parts and the interaction of partners in the dance,
  • dwells in detail on the important points of the performance of the gypsy dance in general .

The second lesson

is devoted to staging studies in the gypsy character .

Together with an expert, you will analyze in detail which features in the construction of number should be taken into account and which movements are typical for men and which for women.

Separately study the technically complex male combination and find out what to look for when analyzing the elements of the combination, crackers.

In the course of the lesson the teacher also shares valuable additional information :

  • why boys and girls were forbidden to touch each other in the dance;
  • for students of what age can gypsy dance be included in the repertoire; nine0006
  • How do Roma movements differ depending on the region of residence.

As a result, you will receive valuable material that you can use in preparing concert classes or for staging concert numbers .

In the third lesson

you will learn how the dances of gypsies living in different areas differ, and also, what are the common features and dance elements of the gypsy dance, regardless of geographical location. nine0003

Step by step and sequentially, you will analyze the main elements and movements of the Bessarabian gypsies , learn about the nuances of their implementation.

The fourth lesson

is devoted to staging dance etude based on the movements characteristic of gypsies of Bessarabia . In their dance vocabulary, the influence of the Moldovan folk dance is clearly traced. Material technically difficult , suitable for experienced performers.

You will take 9 from the lesson0015 a lot of interesting vocabulary , which you can use in other educational and dance combinations, etudes and performances.

In general, this set of online lessons will be useful for folk dance teachers who teach art schools and amateur dance groups . Due to age restrictions, the material is suitable for studying in high school with children from 15 years old or with adults performers who have a good base in folk and classical dance. nine0003

Who is the expert?

Andrey Kulmanov

Artist of the Krasnoyarsk State Academic Dance Ensemble of Siberia named after. M. S. Godenko. Choreographer, stage dance teacher, choreographer of cultural events and projects. Choreographer of the regional song and dance ensemble "Metelitsa". Honored Worker of Culture of the Krasnoyarsk Territory.

Gypsy Dance (Gypsy Girl) | Dance school "Impromptu"

nine0014 Teachers:

Alexandra Usanova

Express your passion in dance!

Gypsy passionate dance cannot leave anyone indifferent. The dance of a gypsy girl is flying skirts, unusually beautiful hands and sparkling fractions with her feet !!! Gentle romance or fervent music call for a burning dance of Russian gypsies. Gypsy music mixed passion, pain, joy, and fun. The composition for a gypsy dance begins slowly and smoothly, a little lazily, and suddenly accelerates to the limit and dictates to the dancer a frantic dance of body and soul. nine0003

Today, various sites on the Internet abound with articles about the history of the emergence of gypsy dance, and we will not retell how gypsies came from India, enriching their culture, and gypsy dance with elements of culture and dances of other peoples of the world and Europe, in particular! We will talk about what Russian gypsy dance is like!

Many are sure that the Russian gypsy dance is to go out with a skirt to wave, and move your shoulders, that's all the movements of the gypsy dance. But in fact, people are deeply mistaken. The most difficult thing in Russian gypsy dance is the legs. Gypsies borrowed them from Russian folk dance: tunnels, tropak (trepak), rope, various crushers and crackers, rocking chair, winder, etc. The male dance is very energetic with a lot of crackers, quite complex and physically difficult, but we associate Russian gypsy dance mainly with very beautiful and passionate female parties. nine0003

The hands are very important in the female gypsy dance. The brushes can be both gentle and quite rough, but very expressive, something from flamenco, something from oriental dance.

Shaking the shoulders is also important, and for many beginners it is quite difficult to perform.

Gypsy dance is also rich in various tricks: these are all kinds of bridges and circles with the body in the stalls (on the floor), this is a spectacular fall to the floor, which undoubtedly brings the viewer into indescribable delight, and other acrobatic stunts. nine0003

And finally the skirt. Working with a skirt is quite simple, although it has some nuances, but what charm this accessory gives to the dance. Initially, gypsy skirts were not so puffy and long, but with the emergence of a pop version of gypsy dance, they became very beautiful, sewn from expensive fabrics, with many flounces and frills, and entrenched in our minds as an integral attribute of the “gypsy girl with an exit” dance.

Video from the performance of the gypsy dance group "Impromptu" with gypsy singer and pop singer Sergey Tarasov

But the most important thing that Russian gypsy dance is famous for is a special manner of performance: “Oh, I'm not afraid of frost, I go to bed in the cold”!!!

Gypsy dance training is a very intense physical activity and a lot of positive.

Gypsy dance lessons are held in the format of closed groups for beginners, intermediate and advanced students, where our gypsy ensemble trains.

Our Gypsy dance school is waiting for new students. Do not be shy, our gypsy team is very hospitable, cheerful, broken. nine0003

For those who find it convenient to work in contact - the address of the page of our school of gypsy dance in contact. Come, add, be surprised, enjoy.

Do you want to dance to the live singing of a real gypsy? In 2 months, with your great desire and diligence, you will be able to decorate our vocal dance concert with your magnificent performance.

Video from the performances of the gypsy dance group "Impromptu" with opera and pop singer Evgeny Berlin (stylized gypsy dance). nine0119

Video from gypsy dance lessons at the dance school "Impromptu".

Holding corporate holidays and team building is very important now. Very often we are asked to prepare employees for such an event, conduct a dance master class or stage a dance number for a corporate or team building. We not only put on a gypsy dance for a corporate party, but also select dance costumes for rent for employees. This is how, approximately, the costumed gypsy number prepared by us with a "bear" for a corporate holiday looks like. nine0003

Staging a gypsy dance for a corporate party, for team building in 1-2 lessons from scratch.

Online gypsy dance training by video.

And for those who live far from St. Petersburg, we have created a special online gypsy dance course so that you can learn from anywhere in the world, without leaving your home, using video, temperamental and hot gypsy dance ONLINE. The video course is already recorded. It can be purchased and practiced under the supervision of a teacher at any time convenient for you. nine0003


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  • We teach beginners and intermediates, adults and children
  • 5 minutes walk from metro station "Vladimirskaya" ("Dostoevskaya")
  • We educate professional dancers and coaches with the possibility of earning
  • Equipped dance and yoga room
  • Participation in competitions, festivals, parties for everyone
  • Participation in music videos with professional singers and actors
  • Dance studio for making dance costumes


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