How to island dance
| There are two distinct categories in the traditional Greek dance; the springing/leaping dance and the shuffle/dragging dance known as Syrtos. The later is the oldest, and most representative of island dance. Over the years, climatic conditions of the lands and people's social lives have both influenced and developed the characteristics of traditional regional Greek dance. Surrounded by the beautiful Mediterranean Sea, island dances are characterized by the "lightness" of steps while those of the mountainous mainland are heavier and, at times, at a slow-to-fast pace. |
Most dances are circle like dances, starting with the right foot and moving counter clockwise. Each dancer is linked by a handkerchief, or by holding hands. In island dances, the circle is usually formed by groups of families, the husband leading the wife, who would be then followed by the eldest son, and the rest of the children. Occasionally, the local priest would lead the way for the first dance, symbolizing a blessing to the family. In olden times, a man would never hold a womans hand but a kerchief unless it was his wife. While in other regions a woman would not be able to dance next to a man that was not part of her family.
Greece has 6 mainland regions, and 3 island regions. The island categories are the Ionian Islands, to the West, the Aegean Islands (Cyclades and Sporades groups) to the east and the Dodecanese islands to the southwest. The largest of all the islands is Crete. Although Cyprus is an independent country, it is however the largest inhabited island by Greeks, and falls within the Greek major cultural regions.
Here are some of the dances that are more well known and popular throughout the islands of Greece.
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Kalakeke Pacific Island Dance Co. – Home of Kalakeke Pacific Island Dance Co., Polynesian dance group and entertainment. Located in Santa Clarita and Southern California
Kalakeke PIDC is dedicated to sharing the Culture and Dance of the Pacific Islands with All. In a Family “Ohana/Feti’i” environment that exudes Love, Caring and Fellowship, in a manner that is pleasing to God.
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Spring/Summer 2023 Season Open Enrollment is Now Open. Our Spring/Summer 2023 Season Open Enrollment begins December 6th & ends December 30th. Click the button below to Register for Classes:
Register Now!Kalakeke PIDC Events
- The Cultural Event at the Newhall Family Theatre on Saturday, October 22, 2022. Event is from 5pm – 7pm. Kalakeke PIDC will be performing at 5:00pm
- Kalakeke PIDC Christmas Showcase – Real Life Church on Friday, December 2, 2022 at 7:00pm
- Open Enrollment for our Spring/Summer 2023 Season begins December 2022
Our New Location Effective January 2023. If you would like more information, please feel free to Contact Us!
Tuesday: Kalakeke PIDC @ The Cube – 27745 Smyth Dr., Valencia, CA 91355
Wednesday: Kalakeke PIDC @ The Cube – 27745 Smyth Dr., Valencia, CA 91355
Saturday: Kalakeke PIDC @ The Cube – 27745 Smyth Dr., Valencia, CA 91355
- Classes are ongoing through out each Season. Spring/Summer – January to June and Fall/Winter – July to December. Open Enrollment for our Spring/Summer 2023 season is now Open till December 30th.
- New students only need to register once during the year and may continue throughout the year.
- At Kalakeke Pacific Island Dance Co., Students will learn dances from the islands of Hawaii and Tahiti while getting a fun and exciting workout in a friendly environment!
Open Enrollment for our Spring/Summer 2023 Season is now Open!
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO MORE INFORMATION FOR CLASSES, CONTACT US AT (661) 294-3062 OR EMAIL AT SCVHULA@YAHOO.COMOpen Enrollment for our New Fall/Winter 2022-23 Season is now Closed! Our Spring/Summer 2023 Season Open Enrollment begins January 2023. Click Below the Register for Classes:
Kalakeke Pacific Island Dance Company was founded by the Farrell family in December 2007. We are dedicated to sharing the Culture and Dance of the Pacific Islands with All in a Family “Ohana/Feti’i” environment that exudes Love, Caring and Fellowship in a manner that is pleasing to God. Kalakeke PIDC has been serving the Santa Clarita Valley for Fifteen years as a Polynesian dance school and entertainment company. We dedicate our time to sharing the Polynesian culture by teaching and performing to the public, as well as offering authentic Polynesian entertainment. Kalakeke organizes and hosts two major events: Te Mana Ori Tahitian Solo Competition and the Santa Clarita Pacific Islander Festival. We perform at regular community events that are local in Santa Clarita and in Southern California.
Kalakeke PIDC performs/has performed in the following events:
- Light the Night Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Walk
- Relay for Life American Cancer Society
- the Annual Fourth of July Parade here in Santa Clarita
- Tiki Festival in Long Beach, San Dimas Ho’olaulea
- Aloha in the Valley in Northridge
- Youth Sports Festival in Santa Clarita
- Guam Liberation Celebration in Port Huene
- LA County Fair
- Literacy and Arts Festival in Santa Clarita
- Tree Lighting Ceremony and Nurses Appreciation at Henry Mayo Hospital
- Castaic Days
- The First Annual Youth Arts Showcase
- Read the Rhythm at the City of Santa Clarita Libraries
- City of Santa’s Youth Sports and Family Fitness Festival
- SCV Senior Center Luncheon
- SCV Street Fair
- Walk to End Poverty at Canyon Country Park
- Sam’s Club Diversity Awareness event
- Sweet Days of Summer at the Westfield Valencia Town Center
- Senses in Santa Clarita
- Simi Valley Days
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Dances of the island of Haiti
The island of Haiti, now occupied by two-thirds (eastern part) of the Dominican Republic and one-third by the Republic of Haiti, has a rather turbulent history that is reflected in the culture of the 21st century. Christopher Columbus landed on Hispaniola (the Spanish name for the island at the time) in 1492. The Arawak Taino tribes that lived on the island tried to resist the Spanish invasion, but were soon completely subdued.
Dances of the Dominican Republic
The first permanent European settlement in the New World was the Spanish Santo Domingo (1496), which became the capital of the Dominican Republic. Many mines and plantations were built on the island, where slave labor was used. In 1697, the French were given the western third of the island, which had many sugar plantations. The elite on the island still tried to stick to their Spanish ancestry, but most of the population was of African or mixed ancestry. Therefore, in the Dominican Republic, one of the most popular was the Dominican dance Baile de Palo ("dance of the long drums") of African origin, which is based on death rituals in which the spirit of the deceased was escorted to the last journey with the help of dance. nine0003
Haiti retains an abundance of religions that originated in Africa. After the revolution in Haiti (1791-1804) these religions were united under the common name of voodoo. Transcendence in dance, including the trance states that the dancers fell into, was a way to find some kind of outlet and relieve tension in the lives of people who existed in miserable conditions. From the time of slavery to the present day, due to constant poverty and political instability in the country, Haitians have found the meaning of life in dancing, which helped them forget about everyday life. nine0003
Therefore, voodoo dances such as rada, congo, petwo, etc. are most popular in Haiti, as well as folk dances like affranches (“liberation of slaves”) and ceremonial rara dances. The heritage of European dance is preserved in such dances as the Congo minuet and the country dance.
Both countries share one national dance: merengue in Haiti and merengue in the Dominican Republic. This dance originated during the Haitian occupation of the Dominican Republic (1822-44). After the country freed itself from Haitian oppression, Dominican musicians distanced themselves from their Haitian roots by increasing the tempo of the merengue. At the time, like other couple dances with close contact between the dancers, the merengue was stigmatized as an obscene dance and people were punished if they were caught dancing the merengue. Merengue has experienced a resurgence in popularity since the 19From 16 to 1924, during the American occupation, when-Dominicans perceived the merengue as a symbol of pride and national identity.
Deeply connected to traditional Haitian music, dance in Haiti is literally overflowing with the spirit of community, emotion and history of the island nation. Despite cultural stereotypes (most people in the world believe that dance in Haiti is used only for religious or spiritual rituals), dancing in this country appears in the life of literally every person. nine0003
The beat of the drum resonates with the soul of the people of Haiti and this finds expression through movement. The roots of Haitian dance lie in Africa. With the help of Haitian dance, stories of important events are told, spirits are called, and the dance also promotes communication among people.
This style of dance originated in Haiti and is named after the style of music it is performed to. The dance is performed at a fast pace to the accompaniment of guitars, saxophones and synthesizers. It is somewhat similar to the merengue dance, but is performed at a slower pace. Compass can be danced as a couple or solo, and some people describe it as a Haitian version of salsa. nine0003
Dancing at festivals
The Rara festival is an annual festival celebrated on the first day of Lent and Easter. Rara is unique in that it combines traditional music with cultural Haitian dances, and sometimes these dances are intertwined with expressions of political protest. The festival usually closes with a performance by the lead dancer who performs a traditional dance, as well as fireworks.
Haitian dances of African origin
When Africans were brought to the Caribbean island of Haiti as slaves, they brought their rituals and cultural traditions with them. Songs and dances from different parts of Africa, from different African cultures and ethnic groups, crossed in Haiti and merged together, creating a new, Haitian art. Some of the old traditions, songs and dances come mainly from the Congo and Dahomey, but they evolved over time and mixed with elements of the Haitian native Indian (Arawakan) traditions, as well as the customs of the French who occupied Haiti. nine0003
As in the neighboring island of Cuba, Africans, who started a new life in a new land and with new rules, tried to maintain their beliefs, customs, and sacred and social art forms under total oppression. Important religious traditions related to dance and music have been passed down from generation to generation and continue to this day. The gods and goddesses, known in the voodoo religion as Loa, are often performed by dancers, especially during religious ceremonies. nine0003
Afro-Haitian dance has greatly influenced the contemporary dance world, in large part due to the research of Katherine Dunham. Dunham was fascinated by Haiti in 1930 when she traveled there as a dancer and anthropologist to study the country's culture, history and dance. Dunham, in turn, won the hearts of Haitians by beginning to perform the indigenous dances of this country.
The "folklorization" of Haitian dance has made both the religious and social dances of Haiti known throughout the world. nine0067 French court dances such as the quadrille became social dances in Haiti, here they were complemented by movements of the torso, pelvis and legs, as well as rhythmic African melodies.
At the beginning of the 21st century, the Dance of the Congo became popular, which perfectly shows the combination of French and African influences on the Caribbean island. The dance was named after a people in West Africa and is usually dressed in red and white, which are considered the national colors of the Congo. The actual meaning of this dance has been lost, but it is believed that in the Congo it was originally a ritual dance, which was then transformed into a social one. nine0003
Religious dances and traditions of Haiti
The passionate history of the people of Haiti cannot be told without mentioning the Haitian voodoo dance. Often people ask the question: what is actually like a Haitian dance. To get an answer to this question, you first need to familiarize yourself with the West African forms of dance, accompanied by djembe drums. Without an understanding of this art form, the history of Haitian dance would be incomplete.
Haitian dance is unique because of the fusion of diverse African styles and cultural traditions. Many different African ethnic groups crossed over on the island of Hispaniol (now known as Haiti and the Dominican Republic) when they were brought as slaves by the French centuries ago.
Ancient traditions, songs and dances (which originated mainly from the Congo and Dahomey) developed and mixed with the culture of the "Arawak" (the indigenous Indian population of Haiti) and French culture. As a result, a completely new dance was formed, which became the embodiment of the culture of Haiti. The creation of the voodoo religion is also one of the most important factors that influenced Haitian dance culture. Dance rituals originated as an attempt to preserve sacred and social art forms, customs and beliefs in the face of oppression and exploitation. nine0003
Praises and offerings to the gods and goddesses (L'wa), which are part of the Haitian voodoo belief, have become dance moves. Haitian dance, which is to some extent similar to theatrical performances, is very multifaceted. But its main feature is emotions. Experts say that Haitian dance is full of opposites: it can be aggressive and dynamic, or it can be graceful and slow. Even among the French aristocrats to whom Haiti once belonged, dances arose in which the typical Haitian energetic movements of the torso, pelvis and legs, as well as African rhythms, are clearly visible. nine0003
In all this variety of dance there is always a drum as an accompaniment. Its hypnotic rhythm literally plunges the dancers into a trance and leads them along. Each movement of the dance necessarily follows the rhythm of the drums. According to the indigenous people of Haiti, you can learn a real dance only when a person allows his body to relax and follow the rhythm of the drum. Every dance in Haiti is made up of specific movements that are rooted in centuries of ritual and cultural traditions. Tourists who decide to try what Haiti dances are claim that the incredible variety of dance movements makes it easier to release the emotions of the dancers, and also, like the dances of Goa, clears the mind. nine0003
The Yanwaloo dance, commonly associated with Haitian voodoo, actually originated in Benin, West Africa. In Haiti, yanwala is performed in a group like a prayer. The gods are invoked with this dance, and the dancers often lose consciousness and enter a trance state during the Janwal. The dance moves often involve wild swaying from side to side.
Source Wikipedia and 4dancing.ru
National dances and culture of Bali island in Indonesia
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Touring Bali is not only about incredible surfing experiences, fabulous sunsets and ancient temples. We want you to plunge into the culture of the Balinese, learn about their traditions and customs. One of the most important aspects of the life of local residents is dance.
For the Balinese, this is not just fun and enjoyment. Their dances go back centuries. Children are taught the right movements from an early age, dances are always performed in elegant traditional costumes to the accompaniment of folk instruments. Therefore, this spectacle brings vivid emotions to the audience and allows a deeper understanding of the culture of the island. nine0003
In the old days dances in Bali were only available to the rich, they used them in religious ceremonies. Now the dance has become more accessible, but a serious attitude towards it has been preserved. There are several basic dances. Legong is considered the most famous - it is performed by young girls, thus expressing their beauty, grace and purity. At the same time, they dress in dresses embroidered with gold patterns made of brocade or silk. The ensemble of folk instruments gamelan accompanies the dancers. This mesmerizing action can be seen in the Royal Palace of Ubud or the Lotus Cafe. nine0003
Another famous dance - the barong - symbolizes the struggle between good and evil in corresponding full-length costumes. It can be seen in the village of Batubulan or the Royal Palace in Ubud. And in the Uluwatu temple, you can enjoy the kechak dance every day: the soundtrack is a choir of several dozen men, making the sounds “chak-chak-kechak” and plunging the dancers into a trance. Kecak is also danced at the Royal Palace of Ubud.
The island's music is also based on traditions and religious customs. It is performed by the gamelan orchestra - the one to which the girls in fabulous outfits dance. It appeared in Java, and then spread to Bali, Sumatra and other islands of the Malay Archipelago. Most gamelan instruments are percussion, but there are also plucked instruments, a flute, sometimes vocals are connected. nine0003
The unearthly sound of the ensemble amazed the navigator Francis Drake, the composer Claude Debussy and the Russian poet Konstantin Balmont, who dedicated a poem to gamelan. They didn't surf, they just visited Java. You are more fortunate: you can combine riding the right waves with cultural enrichment.
Author of the article - Dmitry Vasin
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