AIS GIORGIS

Greek

 
PRONUNCIATION: ah-ees YOR-gees
 
TRANSLATION: Saint George
 
SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned Ais Giorgis from Stan Isaacs, who observed the dance in an exhibition in Pireus, Greece. He taught it at the 1964 California Kolo Festival. Morley Leyton also learned the dance from Stan and presented it as "Saint George of Skyros" at the Richland (Washington) Festival Institute in 1967.
 
BACKGROUND: Ais Giorgis is from the Ionian island of Kefallinia (Kefalonia). Originally a women's dance, it was danced with each dancer holding opposite corners of a large silk kerchief folded once to form a large triangle. Holding the kerchief low in front in "V" position, the line was formed by hooking little fingers. Stan relates that there was a particular fascination in the swaying of the long dresses worn by the women.
 
MUSIC:Folkraft (45rpm) 1466x45
Folkraft (LP) LP-6
Capitol (LP) T-10219
 
FORMATION:Mixed line or open cir, hands joined and held at shldr height, elbows bent, in "W" pos.
 
METER/RHYTHM: 2/4
 
STEPS/STYLE: Steps are light. Other variations of the dance have been notated.
 

MEASMOVEMENT DESCRIPTION

 
1INTRODUCTION - 1 meas. Begin dance on vocal.
 
 THE DANCE
 
1Facing diag R, step R (ct 1); step L (ct &); step R (ct 2); step L (ct &);
 
2Facing ctr, step R swd (ct 1); close L to R without wt (ct &); step fwd L twd ctr (ct 2); close R to L without wt (ct &);
 
3Step diag bwd R (ct 1); close L to R without wt (ct &); step L swd (ct 2); close R to L without wt (ct &);
 
4Step R swd (ct 1); close L to R without wt (ct &); step L swd (ct 2); close R to L without wt (ct &).
 
 Repeat entire dance from beg.
 

 
 PERFORMANCE OPTION.
 
  Originally, Ais Giorgis was danced only by W with each dancer holding opposite corners of a large silk kerchief low in front. The line was formed by hooking little fingers in "V" pos, with heads and eyes lowered. If danced in this formation, here are head and hand actions associated with the dance, as noted by Dr. Chris Tasulis.

Meas 2, ct 2: Bring joined hands up to just above eye level, raising head and eyes.
Meas 3, ct 1: Move head and hands slightly R.
Meas 3, ct 2: Move head and hands slightly L.
Meas 4, ct 1: Move head and hands slightly R.
Meas 4, ct 2: Bring joined hands down to starting pos, lowering head and eyes.

 


 

AIS GIORGIS
Greece

Katou ston Ai Giorgi, sto kryo to nero,
Skotosan to Giannaki, ton akrivon ygio.
 
        Chorus:
        La-la, la-la, la-la la-la la-la,
        Skotosan to Giannaki, ton akrivon ygio.
 
Tourki ton eskotosan, Romji ton ’klegane,
Ta dyo tou t’ aderfakia, ton egyrevane.
 
Chorus
 
Siko more Giannaki, na ’pame spiti mas,
Pou klei i aderfi mas, klei k’ i nyi mas.
 
Chorus
  Down by St. George, by the cold water,
They killed Johnny, the one and only son.
 
        Chorus:
        La-la, la-la, la-la la-la la-la,
        They killed Johnny, the one and only son.
 
Get up Johnny, let’s go home,
Our sister and sister-in-law are crying.
 
Chorus
 
The Turks killed him, the Greeks mourned him,
His two little brothers searched for him.
 
Chorus

Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes