Dances from Tritenii de Jos, Transylvania Plain Area
Among all folkloric areas from Romania (there are 27 of them), the most complex traditional dances are in the Transylvanian Plain. Here the boys and girls are meeting on Sundays at the crossroads where they are singing and dancing together. The beginning belongs to the boys coming in line; then they are taking the girls’ hand and they will dance in front or behind the boys or “pe sub mana” (the pirouette with the help of boys). The virtuous moments are the boys' dances. They are slapping different parts of their legs and their boots in a kind of competition and in the end everyone will take a girl and will dance “invartita rara”” and “invartita deasa”. The pirouettes of the girls amaze and charm the public.
Songs and dances from Zarand
A very interesting area from the folkloric point of view spreads from Apuseni Mountains over the Romanian border with Hungary, along two rivers – Crisul Alb and Crisul Negru. The dance songs from here are called “Ardeleana” and they can be found in the binary and also the syncopated rhythm. During the dances the rhythm is changing and produces a great variety. The melody of these dances is very expressive and that’s why they are a pleasure for those who are listening.
A specific instrument for the Romanian folklore is the “taragot”. It was made on a project which combines in a brilliant way the technique of the oboe with that of the clarinet. The timbre of the taragot is like the fagot’s. Probably, in the beginning the taragot was a part of the Austrian fanfares. So, the taragot has a Viennesse licence, manufactured in Budapest, but the greatest taragot players are Romanian. The taragot is played in Banat, Maramures and the Apuseni Mountains. Its ample sound can be modeled in piano and also in forte but it requires ability and virtuosity.
Dances from Oas, Codru and Bihor
In Romania the dances are going on vertically and horizontally. Especially those with a vertical development are based on the syncopated rhythm, the Romanian specific rhythm. Such dances are found in the folkloric areas Oas, Bihor and Codru from the North-West of Romania. The dances “De inceput” and “Fecioreste codreneste” from Codru, „Poarga”, „Luncanul” and „Pe picior” from Bihor and „Roata Feciorilor” or „Danturile” from Oas have in common the syncopated rhythm. These areas have similarities especially referring to costumes with a very coloured look.
The classic violin is used in Romanian traditional folklore for about 500 years. In fact, most of the musicians play the violin and that’s why its repertoire is very fast. That is the situation with the songs "Din cimpoi" (The bagpipes) “Ceasul” (the clock), “Furtuna” (The storm) and especially “Ciocarlia” (The lark) played with a lot of skill by the bandmaster – Doru Dejeu.
The dance „Caluşul”
The name of this dance comes from the very old custom with the same name, which was practised in the South of Romania – Oltenia and Muntenia. This custom implied a ritual of healing diseases in the past. Today it remained a dance of virtuosity. Its complexity comes from changing of different dances one following the other: “Hora” and "Braul" and in the end “Sarba” – the most popular dances in these regions. The costumes of the dancers have peculiar colours. There are always an odd number of dancers.
“Going in the army” song.
“Fecioresc des” from Corusu and Mera (dance for boys).
“Hora nevestelor”from Rosia de Secas, Alba.
"Fecioreasca fetelor" from Chrihalma, Brasov.
"Jieneasca fetelor" from Sibiu (dances for girls)
Close to our town – Cluj–Napoca – there is an area well known for the virtuous man dances. It is called “The Hills of Cluj, Gilau and Dej" or "Somesul Mic". The elements and choreographic figures, which constitute these dances, danced only by the man are spectacular. Every time the boys are going to the dance place they are singing together with the musicians songs about going in the army, or party songs. The boys who are singing and dancing very well are more respected in the community. During the dance they are improvising depending on their talent. In the same time they initiate a competition so that it will be soon an artistic euphoria.
In the areas where the boys and men were gone to work somewhere else or they were in the army, the girls and wives were meeting in the so called “sezatoare” and they were working and dancing together. Thus, interesting dances have been born, which have the basic rhythm similar to the rhythm of couple dances. “Hora nestelor” (The dance of the wives) is danced in Rosia de Secas village, Alba district, and "Fecioreasca fetelor" in Crihalma, Brasov. The simple and the complicated steps played in a syncopated rhythm, but following the music in an asymmetric rhythm are often shocking. The slow dance of girls in a binary rhythm and slow tempo is alternated with "Batuta" in aksak rhythm and fast tempo. The girls slap their feet during the dance, imitating the movements made by boys in the dances from these areas.
The bugle violin
A strange and peculiar instrument coming from the beginning of the century is the bugle violin or the violin with trumpet. This violin was made after the gramophone was invented and it has something from its principle – the trumpet is the box of resonance. Probably at the beginning this instrument was also a part of the Austrian fanfares. This instrument was settled in Bihor mountains area, in the North-West of Romania. The sound produced by this violin with trumpet is very metallic and ample that makes it heard at the dance even if there are a lot of people there.
Songs and dances from Banat - orchestra
The most beautiful and melodiously music is find in the folkloric Banat area. That’s why it is the most listened music on the different party occasions. The songs from Banat produce artistic emotions and when the musicians play the dances, “you feel like dancing”. Their style is unique and so are the instruments they are using. The most popular instrument is the taragot.
Dances from Banat
Analyzing the dances from Banat it can be observed a special particularity: the music is played on “timp” and the dance is “contratimp” which means a little delay of the dance. A perfect relation between the musicians and the dancers offers many beautiful moments of shows.
“Invartite” and “Batute” from Castau. Orastie – orchestra
“Invartite” in the asymmetric rhythm and “batute” in the binary rhythm are the most frequent dances from Center and South of Transylvania. They are reserved to the best dancers or they are named by their names. “Invartite” and “batute” we are playing are from the repertoire of the violinist Relu Sivisan from Castau , Orastie.
Dances from Buneşti – Somes Valley
In this suite of dances we have chosen the most representative dances from the Somes Valley: „De-nceput”, „Romaneste de-nvartit, Barbunc rar” and „Invartite” in a slow rhythm. In order to dance such kind of dances you have to be virtuous, but this also implies talent, a lot of work and a very good temper. During the dance the pirouettes of girls identify with the semi-round shape of peacock feathers worn by the boys at their hats. At a given moment, there is a perfect synchronizing of dancers and musicians, which delights the auditorium. All can be reduced to the pleasure of singing and dancing. We hope that you are already feeling this sentiment.
Dansuri din Aletea
The most ancient dances have been preserved in Aletea, the Romanian village from Hungary: „Lunga”, „Marunteaua”, „Tiganeasca” si „Dragostea”. Being a part of the folkloric area of Zarand Country, these dances are performed on the vertical and horizontal, in binary and syncopated rhythm, imposing by lyrism and virtuosity. One has to be a very good dancer in order to perform better than the playful village men around here.
Dances from Fărău, Alba
The greatest musicians and dancers have always created a specific style in the area they belong to. In this area from the centre of the Plain of Transylvania the magnificent violinist Alexandru Ţitruş has always played to the dancers. The dancers have enchanted him through the pride of their performance in the following dances: „Învârtită”, „Feciorească cu fete”, „Hărţagul”, „Haidăul”. In circle formation or freely, the dancing couples are competing. But always, the boys lead their partners skilfully.
Dances from Bogdan-Voda, Maramures
"Roata femeilor" (dance for women), "Feciorescul", "Barbatescul" si "Tropotita" (dances for men) are among the oldest dances from the Northern part of Romania. The oldness of these dances is supported by the non-concordance between the musical and choreographic phrases and by the rhythmic shouts in verses of the men. The multitude of beats on the floor suggests the attachment of the Maramures man towards the native land he loves and his need to exploit this as much as possible. Their colourful costumes, predominantly red emphasize the artistic beauty we hope you’ll enjoy.
Dances from the Basin of Meses (Valea Draganului and Valea Agrijului)
The dances from Valea Draganului and Valea Agrijului are parte of the Basin of Meses. : “Batuta” ,“Caluserul” and "Feciorescul Des (Rapagusul) " – man dances, “Muiereasca” – woman dances, “Roata”, “Invartita rara”, “Invartita deasa” – dances for couples. “Batuta” is at its origins a dance danced by the shepherds, having four choregraphical strophes in discordance with the music (on the model of “Fecioreste de sarit”). “Caluserul” is a national way of artistic expression, which helped to express the Latinity of Romanian people in Transylvania in the 18th century. “Muiereasca” is a choreographical variant of pair dance for women. “Roata” is a couple dance danced at “sezatoare” (the place where the woman stay and work), “Invartita rara” with aksak rhythm and “Invartita deasa” with syncopated rhythm form a dance cycle. The costumes have influences from the Bihor region.