Thursday, November 18, 2010

Jove Male Mome, Sadi Moma, Do Mar Ciften

It is hard to believe that November is almost over! 16 of my students and I did the demonstration/performance for the Rockfish Elementary School and it went very well.

We had 2 assemblies with the cafeteria full of students. My students performed Cimpoi. After performing my students went among the elementary students and I taught a Ugros(from Phyllis Weikart's book), Adjon Az Isten, and Zemer Atik. Fun was had by all!

On our regular Wednesday dance night we have been learning Jove Male Mome as you can see, Dunav spells and pronounces Malaj which is different from the US spelling and pronunciation.

Sadi Moma is another dance we learned last month. I couldn't find a video of the dance on line, but Yves Moreau has it in his collection. Here is the song being performed.

Do mar ciften is the "mystery dance"! On line I can find some songs-- not the one to which we dance.çiften-do-dal-për-gjahçiften As you notice marr has 2 "r's" in this name.

Here are the lyrics in Albanian!

Do mar çiften do dal për gjah.
Kjo është kënga origjinale e kënduar nga Grupi i Përmetit.
Me gjithë riprodhimet dhe modernizimit që i është bërë kësaj kënge, kjo përsëri mbetet kënga Flamur!

All I know is that some part of the above means "Take the gun". This is one of my favorite dances.

Have a great time dancing!

Remember to forward this site to those you think might be interested and become a follower!

Another Day, Another Dance!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Ciuleandra, Itele

At our last session Itele was taught. This video is cute with kids doing the Dance:
The Romanian Dance Ciuleandra was also done. This group doesn't do it exactly the way we do it .
This one is about the way we do it.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The website is working!

It is great to know that all of the work that was put into the website was worth it! We recieved a request to teach in a school!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Starting a 4-H Folk Dance Club for 4th - 12 grades

Yesterday we had our first meeting of "Global Explorers". It is a club designed to teach culture, language, and dances of different cultures. We select a country to study and learn a little of the language, history, customs and dances of that country. Germany was an easy first selection due to the time of year(Octoberfest) and my neighbor is German so she is teaching the culture and language.

Previously I had club with the age group K-6th grade and did something similar. This time I decide to team with 4-H because of the resources and insurance that they can offer. I am designing the program as 4-H does not have a set curriculum for an International club.

I must say I had misgivings at first. I just didn't know if I would have the energy after teaching all day. My worries went away quickly as their enthusiasm and energy spread to me! My batteries were recharged after teaching the class. Yes, it will be possible to meet every week and not get depleted, but energized!

If you love folk dancing, please share your love and enthusiasm with the next generation. It is easiest to do it with an already established club such as 4-H, boys and girls clubs, scouts. The more they are exposed, the more they are likely they are to continue. It is great fun and they really like it!

Please pass this post on to whomever you think might be interested!

Another Day, Another Dance

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Dancing at Mary Baldwin

A few weeks ago I asked " Where have all the young dancers gone? Well, I found some at Mary Baldwin College!

Irene Sarnelle from Mary Baldwin invited us to come and folk dance with them. So,last night a few of us went and had a great time! We had a group of about 20 dancers from various backgrounds. The energy and enthusiasm of the students were refreshing and inspiring. Susan O. taught dances such as Chilili from Bolivia , Ve David and Shibolet Basadeh, Lerikos a Greek dance, Adjon Az Isten a Hungarian dance and many more. The song to Adjon Az Isten is different from the one we dance to, but it is a very upbeat version!

I just wish we could have as varied a group more often - just like in a village!

Another Day, Another Dance

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Charlottesville Intenational Folk Dancers

The dances taught last night were Mechol Halahat If you watch this video, you can see the dance is done as a line dance. Susan O. taught the dance as a couple dance, with 2 oposing lines - similar to Chilili.
Susan O also taught Pinosavka Ouvre Moi, and Standyanski Buenek, again which I couldn't find. Also taught was, Jacob's Ladder .

Another Day, Another Dance!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Happy Latin American Independence Month!

In celebration of Latin American Independence, I told my students that they could bring in food for extra credit. In the classes that remembered to bring food, we also danced. What's a celebration without dancing????!!!!! Well, in one of my more challenging classes we only got through half of La Raspa!-with a vow never to try to dance with this class again. Yes, that's how challenging they are! But, what do you know, they came into class telling me how they had been "practicing" the dance during volley ball practice and singing the Spanish song that they have been learning!!!!! You just have to love them! Once I've recovered, maybe around Christmas we'll try another dance!????????????

At our regular meeting this week there was a lot of review of previous dances taught. The only Ouvre Moi that I could find was a modern version that didn't sound anything like the music to which we dance.
Susan O. taught Stranzanski Burenek from Bulgaria but I couldn't find any on the internet. Dick Oates has a dance description of Strandzansko Horo.

Have a great week dancing!
Another Day, Another Dance

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Happy Rosh Hashanah and Macedonian Independence Day

We had two new visitors and dancers tonight.
Welcome Pam and John!
The dances that were taught Tonight were :
The Macedonian version of Neda Voda Nalivala of which I couldn't find any matches to on the web. It is a women's circle dance.
Kortanc(Vorba Harrangaznak) a Hungarian dance
Jacob's Ladder an Israeli dance. The dance below is choreographed to the music that we dance to and has elements of the dance we do, but for beginners it may be confusing.
Zemer Atik an Israeli dance which is derived from Ningun Atik. The pdf file explains it and gives history and the dancers in the video do it the same way we do except they don't snap fingers.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

"Brigadoon Revisited!"

First day back to work after a great weekend at folk dance camp. Buffalo on the Danube to be exact in West Virginia. Dance 'til you Drop! That's my motto. It's pretty bad when the teacher falls asleep in her own class! In my own defense, today was a day I had to sit and listen to 85 students say the same stanza of a song through out the day! Usually, I'm circulating and pacing the room all day. About 1:30 after lunch, in a hot room, sitting, listening to the same thing I've heard over and over all day -- I challenge anyone who has been dancing from 9 AM to 1:30 AM the next day, for the 3 days, to do better! I'm surprised that I made it that long, because I was fighting it all day! What makes it even funnier is that it happened to a student who always asks me how my day is going! He didn't have to ask-he found out as he was reciting. So that's the buzz around school now-- how I fell asleep in class!

The " Brigadoon Experience", the "magic" one feels when you can lose one self and find another
for a brief time. This year it even seemed as if I was crossing an unseen line into a different dimension as I entered camp! (I have a pretty good imagination!)

It was great to see Sonia and Christian; as always their sessions were fun and easy to follow. It was really cute how they kissed at the end of each dance session, just like newly weds should!

I had a harder time with the Bulgarian sessions. The beat of the music was harder to find and keep time to. Larry Weiner gave very interesting information about the dances and the areas in Bulgaria where they were from.

And last but not least Roo and Larry teaching Scandinavian Dancing. They are always so patient! Partner dances are always a challenge. Being short, it is hard for me to get the feeling of being "grounded". Obviously I'm not doing something right. Try, try, again!

It was great having live music to dance to. Kabile was fantastic as usual as were all of the other musicians.

And now all that is left are the memories of the people, the singing, the music, and last but not least the dancing! It was great to see a few more young people there this time. Everything comes to an end. At least we don't have to wait for 100 years for another camp: just follow the link below to find out more information.

Thank you again to Betsy and Jamie Platt for organizing and running the camp. Try it out next year: contact . If you can' make it to this camp there are others like Maine Woods , Stockton , Mendicino , New Mexico , or others closer to you.

Another Day, Another Dance!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Where have all young dancers gone?

I received the following email from Dick Oates in July. The last two months have bee very busy with a serious illness and death in the family, so I haven't had time to post. I have been thinking about loss. With the loss of a life we lose more than can be expressed. Upon my recent visit to Santa Fe, there were dances that they had done in the past but we could not do because the people that led them were no longer dancing or had passed away. In essence the dances have died too.

Hi Folk Dancer!
I now have Santa Barbara Folk Dance Conference and San Diego State University Folk Dance Conference photos up on our website ( ).
Please take a look at the photos and tell me the names of folks I've forgotten in the staff and committee photos.There are new Gandy Dancer photos, flyers, more names for the roster, performances, and a reunion article.Also, if you have other photos that I don't have, would you send them to me? I'll scan them and mail them back right away.
On another note, as many of you know, Bob Moriarty passed away. Isabelle Persh sent me several of the photos as she was cleaning out Bob Moriarty's files. She kept the photos of Bob. Unfortunately, she probably threw out those photos of Bob thinking they were trash, so she now has precious few photos of him.If you would send me any photos you have of Bob, I'll scan them, send them back, and send the scans to Isabelle. If you would like to send any photos of Bob directly to Isabelle (not wanting them back, of course), her address is: Isabelle Persh 3400 Ben Lomond Pl., Apt. 230 Los Angeles, CA 90027-2954 (323) 664-5500

Thanks for listening!Cheers,
Dick Oakes13661 E. Marina Dr., Unit 109

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Karamfil, Ya Abud, Ivanice

Last Wednesday Susan O. taught Karamfil from Bulgaria and

Here is Ya Abud close to the way we do it. Bill is having fun with his drum playing along.

Sue C. also reviewed Ivanice(a?)

Susan O also taught Ouvre Moi and Neda Voda Nalirala, but I can't find them on the web.

We had a great time at the party. Even in 101 degree weather there was a great turn out of 16 people! We ate great food, listened to the Unforgettables that aren't so unforgettable! Some of us even got a dip or two in the pool, and of course we can't forget the dancing on the lawn after it "cooled" a little.

This gave us some time to get to talk, since we go from dance to dance talking gives way to dancing!

Another Day, Another Dance

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dancing in Santa Fe

We had a great time dancing in Santa Fe. Very Friendly people and fantastic dancers. Any one visiting Santa Fe -- Join the Fun on Sunday at 6:30 and Tuesday evenings at 7:00 at the Odd Fellows building. Below is the link to other organizations in the area.

Another Day, Another Dance

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

World Cup Dance

Talk about folk dancing being relevant! Has anyone heard about the Diski? It sounds like the South Africans commemorate their momentous occasions with new dances! The Codesa is the dance they use to celebrate the end of Apartheid.

Any one have any ideas for a dance to commemorate an event in the USA?

Another Day, Another Dance

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Limited again!

Well Vimeo just cut me off! I still have more to add to Vlashko, but all of the basic steps are posted. I will post more transitions tomorrow.

Continue Dancing!
Another Day, Another Dance!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Vlashko long version - teaching of steps

Vlasko - Long Version - description from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

The uploading is what takes the longest on our connection.

Vlashko Step 2

Vlashko Step 1 explanation from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Vlashko Long Version Step 2 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Vlashko long version steps 1 & 2 no music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Now for the music!

Vlashko long version steps 1 & 2 with music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Onto step 3!

Vlashko long version step 3 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Get the transition?

Vlashko long version - transition steps 2 & 3 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Now do it with music!

Vlashko long version steps 1- 3 with music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Are you ready for step 4?

Vlashko long version steps 4 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Can you transition from step 3 to step 4?

Vlashko long version steps 3 & 4 with music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Here we go with step 5!

Vlashko long version step 5 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Transition steps 4 & 5.

Vlashko long version steps 4 & 5 with music. from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Time for step 6.

Vlashko long version step 6 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Try step 6 with the music slowed.

Vlashko long version step 6 with slowed music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Let's see some styling of step 6!

Vlashko long version step 6 styling from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Finally the last step!

Vlashko long version step 7 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Try it slowed down a bit!

Vlashko long version step 7 with slowed music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Vlashko long version step 7 with music normal speed from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Next try the styling of step 7!

Vlashko long version - styling of step 7 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Practice the transition of steps 6 & 7 - it's tricky!

Vlashko long version steps 6 & 7 with slowed music from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Now let' put it all together!

Vlashko long version - The whole Dance! from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Long time no write

It's been a while since I wrote, but now I'm back! Sue Chase taught Opincuta from Romania,
I'm having trouble finding it online. I will post it as soon as I find it. I am also looking for the
DVD I purchased from Christian and Sonia about two years ago. My house is in disarray, that is one reason I haven't blogged recently and why the DVD is hiding!

We've been doing Mori Shej with Jay leading since we learned it at Makemie Woods,but Susan Oberman actually taught it this week. It is a great Hungarian- Rom tune. In fact the tune was in my head for a whole weekend a couple of weeks ago!

I am continuing "cleaning up" the videos that I took of Susan O. and hope to get Vlashko(long version) on before next Wednesday!

Continue the dance!
Another Day, Another Dance

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Vlasko - Long Version - Description

It's been a while since I have blogged. We've been having a great time dancing and learning new dances!

On May 12, Irene Sarnelle brought some of her students from Mary Baldwin College. It was wonderful to have an infusion of young energy! Who would have thought that we could use a bigger room! There were a grand total of 30 people dancing!

Below begins the teaching videos of the long version of Vlasko that we taped at the home of Susan O.

Vlasko - Long Version - description from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

More to come!

Another Day, Another Dance

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Makemie Woods

I would like to thank the Virginia Beach Folk Dance Group for their continuing efforts in bringing us such a great opportunity to learn new dances and dance the ones we know with friends we don't often see. Mike, Judy and Sam did a great job teaching. It was also a treat having live music. Would some one please email me the names of the muscians so that I can thank them properly! I hope to see more of you there in the fall!

Thank you Susan J. for the link to Sitna Zborenka

Another Day, Another Dance!

Monday, April 26, 2010

National Dance Week and New Logo

It's National Dance Week 2010(April 23 - May 2), So kick up your heels and dance! In observance of National Dance Week, I have added the BIRD logo to the site and will start emailing more contacts about the project. Up until now, only a few people from our group have viewed the blog and given me feed back.

I hope to see some old and new friends at our regular dancing time 6:30 Wednesday, April 28 at the Charlottesville Senior Center! Bring some goodies and we'll really celebrate!

Another Day, Another Dance!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Kolo Zita, Sitna Zborenka

It's great to have Susan O. back teaching.We hope that Susan J's back will heal rapidly so that she can be back dancing and teaching. Kolo Zita This youtube site has a suite of other Croatian dances being performed with Kolo Zita this one is done a little differently. I couldn't find the Bulgarian dance Sitna Zborenka on the internet.

We had an even dozen dancers this week. Great to see and dance with everyone!

Another Day, Another Dance!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Electric Slide

A small group this week only 8 die hard dancers. The 3 Susans(reminds me of The 3 Doctors-any Doctor Who fans out there?) were not available this week. Dances taught and reviewed this week by yours truly were Ersko Kolo ,
Electric Slide ,
Hava Nagila and a dance I choreographed to Esteban's Mediterana.

If any dance should be made the "official American Folk Dance", it should be the Electric Slide - in my humble opinion. It is the only dance that I've seen people of all ages get up and dance to on a regular basis.

The Hava Nagila taught in the above video is different than the one that I've done. If I teach again this week, I'll add the steps that are in this version. There is more variety.

Happy Dancing,
Another Day, Another Dance

Monday, April 5, 2010

Sweet Girl

Happy Easter Season to all.
We have been having wonderful weather in VA this year. Has your "Sweet Tooth" been satisfied with Easter candy? Well, talking about "Sweet", why don't you view Tom Bozigian teaching Sweet Girl. Sue Chase taught this dance last month. Thanks Jay for the link. Tom points out that the dance is done erect, pinky hold, and that it was choreographed in 1953.
Another Day, Another Dance!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Charlottesville International Folk Dancers' review and new dances taught

The dances reviewed this week were Dhivaratikos which you can see a group doing at , and which was taught earlier on this blog by Susan O.

Liliano Mome at
Hora la Trei- I didn't find any examples on the web.
Louisiana Saturday Night This version is a little different as it changes direction with each restart of the combinations. This next one does too, but the group doing the dance is dressed in "cowboy garb".

Another Day, Another Dance

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Fatise Kolo

Wow! Time does fly! I didn't realize that it had been so long since writing. Attendance has been a little sparse. Those of us who have been coming have had a great time. If you want to see Fatisse Kolo done by another group click on this link

If that doesn't work copy it into your browser.

Another Day, Another Dance

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Morningside Demonstration - Wheel chair dancing

The Charlottesville International Folk Dancers were invited to do a demonstration at Morningside Retirement Home on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010. The facility had an International Theme for their monthly family dinner. They were a very receptive and appreciative audience. I only regret that I "asked" them to do a dance with us instead of just telling them that part of the "program" was audience participation. I lost my nerve because I hadn't done it before.

Zemer Atik is a perfect dance that can be adapted to wheelchair dancing. The first time I saw wheel chair dancing was in Ohio performing with Zivili in an outdoor festival. If anyone out there has some other ideas about dances to include in demonstrations with people who cannot fully participate, please reply to this post or email me at .

Of course, had I tried to do it on Thursday, I would have been "Flying by the seat of my pants", because I had only thought of the idea a couple of hours earlier. Now, I have more time to plan the specifics. Once I fully think it through, I will post the plans.

Another Day, Another Dance!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Dancing after the Big Snows

People must still be digging out because not as many dancers came out to dance. The sun is still shining when we leave our house for folk dancing YEH :)! The dances reviewed last night were Siganos, Lilijano Mome, Dhivaratikos, Hora la Trei, and Vlashko. At this time I am unable to put the appropriate symbols on letters, so some of the dances are spelled phonetically in English.

You Tube has a Siganos @, couldn't find it on dancilla, or in Dick Oakes' dance notes.

I couldn't find any videos of the other dances that we reviewed this week. Another reason to post the videos as a review on this blog.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Technical Difficulties and First Video Instruction

Yes, I've been having technical difficulties in that the email address for this blog always goes to spam and is sent right back to me! Please email me with comments on this blog at and please add it to your address book.

Now for the videos. They are password protected so that only the participants from Charlottesville International Folk Dancers and guests are permitted to view them. In the future we may open them up to the public. This week it is instruction for Dhivaratikos.

Dhivaratikos 1 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Dhivaratikos 2 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Dhivaratikos 3 from M B Shaw on Vimeo.

Monday, February 8, 2010


Just received updated information from the MIT International Folk Dance Group ( ). Thank you.

It is exciting to have others support our efforts. In the coming weeks, we will continue to contact other organizations for their input.

The last post was a little serious. I just wonder how we can decrease the frustration of beginners. We naturally want them to come back. Unfortunately, we have many who try it but don't return. The MIT site has a "Catechism for Beginners". Any other suggestions? Please let us know.

Another Day, Another Dance.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Leaders vs. Followers

A question we should ask ourselves as educators is:"What is our purpose?" Is our purpose to train leaders or followers? The answer should be:"Our Purpose as teachers should be to train All so that they have the Potential to be leaders." The only way that we can be sure that All have the potential to be leaders is to listen and observe the participants and not be in too much of a rush to "get through" a dance.

As teachers, we know the material we are teaching and it may be hard to put ourselves in the place of the beginner. A phrase that is frustrating to a beginner is: "This is an easy step." From the view of the learner, it may not be easy at all. This is very true for those who do not have a large movement vocabulary.

Granted, most people are happy being followers and they don't ask questions or practice the movements between sessions. For those who do want extra instruction, our teaching videos will be available through a link to our group and by special request. The purpose of these videos is to review the dances to solidify in the learner's mind the steps of the dances taught.

I found another group that performs many Recreational Folk Dances. The site is Due to the weather we did not meet this past week.

Another Day, Another Dance!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Videos of Other Dances We Do

I was just browsing the web and came upon this site that has some videos of some of the dances we dance. Liljano Mome, Pajdusko, Ve David, Kortanc. I haven't taken the time to scrutinize them to see if they are done the same way that we do them. So just click on the link or copy it into your browser if you want to view them.

Another Day, Another Dance.

The Routine

This blog will focus on three aspects of Recreational International Dance.

I. The dances that are taught and or danced at our group each week.

Each week I video record the dances that are taught(there are over 500 clips for less than 1 year of videoing). After the teachers review the dances that they teach, I will post some of the instruction on this blog or a link to where it can be viewed for those who want to review the dance during the week. I will also browse the web to see if there is another example at another site. For example, Carnavalito was reviewed last week. A video can be found of it at

The other dances that were taught or reviewed were Hora la Trei, Dhivartikos, Techot Rechka, Liljano Mome, and Dirlada. As of this posting, I have not found links to those dances.

II. Observations and suggestions about teaching movement, or just observations in general.

III. Progress updates on the BIRD Project

I encourage everyone to comment, correct, and post links for all of us folk dance lovers to investigate.

Thank you in advance to all who participate.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The BIRD Project has been in development for two years and I would like to offer my gratitude to the following people.

To begin, I would like to thank my husband Bill for his support and hard work in developing the data base for this project - and changing it every time I think of something new.

Also, a big Thank You to Jay Darmstadter for emailing the play lists every week.

The whole group appreciates the dedication of our teachers Sue Chase, Susan Jones, and Susan Oberman.

Last but not least, the great people who come to dance and make the whole evening enjoyable and an evening to look forward to every week.