Choreographies

Shumadiya

Dances From the Shumadiya Region
Branko Markovich, Choreographer

This choreography evokes images of a Sunday afternoon in a village in central Serbia, where upon attending the church service young people would gather on the village green or square to dance, sing, and perhaps catch the eye of a special someone.

Dances From the Shumadiya Region
Milan Bosiljchich-Beli, Choreographer

Dances from the Shumadiya region in central Serbia are well known for their lively, intricate steps, with tricky intertwining, hops and vibrations which exhibit a true finesse in folkloric style. A medley of popular dances such as Bela Rada (White Daisy), Moravats, and Chachak are performed by men and women adorned in costumes rich in texture and color.

Ero's Wedding

Ero’s Wedding
Branko Markovich, Choreographer

This choreography is the finale of the comic opera Ero (an Everyman) From Beyond this World, inspired by famous folk music motifs and dances of the former Yugoslavia. Micha is a wealthy young man who takes his mother’s advice and disguises himself in the clothing of a poor man in an attempt to find his true love – the one who would not be interested in his wealth. “Poor” Micha falls in love with Jula, the daughter of a wealthy local baker, much to the dismay of her father. Jula returns his affections, all is revealed, and the finale performed by Grachanitsa is the happy celebration of the couple’s wedding.

Vlashko Dances

Vlashko Dances
Branko Markovich, Choreographer

The Homolye Mountains are home to the Vlasi, the shepards of eastern Serbia. Vlasi believed that tripping could drive out the spirits of the earth, so their dances consist of a series of stomping elements that slowly build in energy and exuberance.

Vlashko Dances
Dragoslav Dzadzevich, Choreographer

Another exciting and lively Vlashko choreography. Costumes for this dance are typical Vlasi shepherd’s clothes – sheep wool vests and walking sticks – worn while guarding the sheep.

Obrenovac

Dances From the Obrenovats Region
Srbolyub Ninkovich, Choreographer

The valley of the river Kolubara is known for its fertile lands and hard-working people, whose zest for life is evident in their customs and celebrations. After gathering from their harvests, young men venture into the village center in hopes of meeting the elaborately dressed young women. As the music begins, the men and women join in a display of fast-paced, high-spirited footwork, which continues to build in tempo and excitement.

Obrenovac

Lindjo
Branko Markovich, Choreographer

Dubrovnik, Hertsegovina and Konavli regions have for centuries been home to Serbs. Lindjo is originally danced to the accompaniment of the lyeritsa, a three-string instrument. This jovial couple’s dance is led by the cheerful dance master, who yells out rhyming, humorous commands that often have a double meaning. He decides who will dance with whom, and dictates the changes of dance figures, encouraging the dancers to compete in improvisations.

Nishava Valey

Dances from the Nishava Valley
Milan Bosilychich-Beli, Choreographer

The Nishava River has its source just beyond the Bulgarian border, and in its course towards the river Morava, it flows through a region of eastern Serbia known for its colorful costumes and lively dance. Dances such as the Shestorka, Rumena and Lilke are danced at village festivals, such as the one held on St. Tryphon's day. This Patron Saint of vineyards is commemorated by the first trimming of the grape vines, in anticipation of a new growing season and the future wine it will yield.

 

Gnjilane

Serbian Wedding Dance from Gnyilane
Srbolyub Ninkovich, Choreographer

Serbian dances and songs from Kosovo and Metohiya are among the most beautiful and graceful in all of Serbia. Wedding celebrations in the town of Gnyilane always began with the mother-in-law’s welcoming dance. She holds bread (symbolizing fertility) and a decorated sieve (symbolizing wealth) and dances in expression of love for the newlyweds. The festivities continue with the young women’s guest dance, is followed by the bride’s wedding song and the men’s dance, and culminates in an all-encompassing and exuberant Chachak from Gnyilane.

Silent Glamoch

Silent Glamoch
Ratomir Djurovich, Choreographer

During the Ottoman occupation of the Balkans, Serbian villagers in the Hertsegovina region were forbidden from playing music and singing national songs. However, they found ways to maintain the music and dance of their heritage by ingeniously dancing so-called mute dances – accompanied only by the rhythm of their steps accentuated by the jingling of coins worn as part of the women’s costumes. The dance celebrates the spirit, resilience and persistence of the Serbs from the town of Glamoch.

 

 

Bilyana Was Whitening the Linen
Dragoslav Dzadzevich, Choreographer

This all-women's dance is inspired by a traditional song. Originating from Ohrid, Macedonia, it takes place around the village well, where the women of the community gather to wash their linen together. A band of revelers passes by, and a handsome young man catches the eye of Bilyana, one of the women washing her linen. She falls in love with this man only to find out that she is witnessing the procession to his wedding.

Vranye Suite
Branko Markovich, Choreographer

A strong Eastern influence is reflected in this colorful yet gentle dance. Vranye is a town in southeastern Serbia under the influence of five centuries of Turkish-Ottoman rule. This choreography begins with Vranyanka, an inviting oriental-style women’s dance, followed by Teshkoto, the noblemen’s dance, and a wild and high-spirited Chochek Gypsy dance. The suite builds in tempo and exuberance to culminate in an all-encompassing finale.