A JÁ ZO ŠARIŠA

Moravian

 
PRONUNCIATION: ah yah zoh shah-REE-shah
 
TRANSLATION: And I am from Šariš
 
SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned this dance from Anatol Joukowsky who introduced it to folk dancers in the United States (under the name "A Ja Tzo Saritsa") at the 1959 Stockton Folk Dance Camp and the 1960 Santa Barbara Folk Dance Conference. The dance was described in Folk Dances, Art Edition: Vol I, Part II, USSR State Edition, Moscow, 1954, and in Anatol's book The Teaching of Ethnic Dance, J. Lowell Pratt and Company, New York, New York, 1965.

"Mr. J" apparently found an old 78 recording with no title in a record shop in the San Francisco area. Listening to the song, he thought he could make out the word "saritsa" (little Czar) and and used that recording for this character dance choreography.

BACKGROUND: A Já Zo Šariša comes from Moravia, the central region of Czechoslovakia, now the Czech Republic (the western region is Bohemia and the eastern is Slovakia). Šariš is a former county north of Prešov. The administrative center of Šariš was the town of Velky Šariš, situated below Šariš castle that dates from the 12th century. In 1853, a modern steam mill was built in the area and since 1967, a well-known brewery has been located there.
 
MUSIC: National (45rpm) N-4534 "A Ja Tzo Saritsa"
Folk Art (LP) FALP-1, side 2, band 2, "A Ja Zo Šariša"
 
FORMATION: Lines of 6 cpls, ptrs facing, M backs to music. M join hands in line and hold down in "V" pos, end M free hand behind hip with palm out. W join hands in line and hold down in "V" pos, end W free hand on hip with fingers fwd. Lines about 2 meters apart.
 
METER/RHYTHM: 3/4 and 2/4
 
STEPS/STYLE: CPL TURNS: Take a modified shldr-waist pos with W L and M R hands joined, palm to palm, and held on W L hip. W R hand on M L shldr. M L hand on W R forearm. R hips are adjacent.

BUZZ STEP: Step fwd on R and bend knee slightly (ct 1); bring L up to R heel taking wt on ball of L (ct &). Repeat action of cts 1& (cts 2&) to continue "buzz" turn. Cpls usually take 1 meas to make 1 full turn CW to R, although for recreational purposes, cpls may take 2 meas to make one turn, if desired.


MEAS MOVEMENT DESCRIPTION

 
  INTRODUCTION - None.
 
  If dancers prefer (and especially for demonstration purposes) they may wait 2 meas and begin with the action of meas 3.
 
3/4 METER (LINES)
 
I.  PASSIVE PATTERN (BOTH LINES)
 
1 Turning to face R, walk RLR (cts 1,2,3);
2 Turning to face L, walk LRL (cts 1,2,3);
3 Turning to face ctr, walk RLR bending knee on third step (cts 1,2,3);
4 Walk bwd to orig place LRL (cts 1,2,3).
 
5-12 Repeat action of meas 1-4 two more times.
 
II.  W ACTIVE PATTERN (VOCAL)
 
1 W: With hands on hips, fingers fwd, and moving diag fwd R twd M line, step RLR (cts 1,2,3); stamp L next to R without wt (ct &);
 
  NOTE: As L is brought fwd between ct 1 and ct 2, the R knee is bent a little and the body tends to lean swd to the L. The action looks as if the L ft were being brushed on the floor. The action of the R knee is soft with no abrupt bending or straightening movement.
 
2 Moving diag fwd to the L, reverse action of meas 1 with opp ftwk.
 
3 Moving slightly fwd twd M line, step RLR (cts 1&2); stamp L next to R, striking the bottom of R fist against top of L fist at chest height as of to say, "I want my way!" (ct 3);
4 Making 1/2 turn CW to R and returning hands to hips, step LRL (cts 1&2); hold with W backs to M line (ct 3).
5-8 Moving away from M line, repeat action of meas 1-4.
9-12 Repeat action of meas 1-4.
 
  M: During the 12 meas of W Active Pattern, repeat action of Passive Pattern (Fig I) three more times.
 
III.  M ACTIVE PATTERN
 
1 M: With hands just behind hips, palms out, and moving diag fwd R, step R (ct 1); step L (ct 2); step R bringing L arm across and up in front of body (ct 3); bringing L ft up and outward to L with bent knee, slap outside of L heel with L hand without leaning body (ct &);
 
2 Returning hand to hip and moving diag fwd to L, reverse action of meas 1 with opp ftwk;
3 Returning hand to hip, step slightly fwd R (ct 1); close L next to R taking wt on both and bending both knees slightly (ct 2); jump in air spreading both legs apart with knees straight, toes pointed (ct &); land with ft together in place (ct 3);
 
4 Making 1/2 turn CW to R, step LRL while slapping back of R hand into palm of L hand at chest level with each step as if to say, "Why must that be so?" (cts 1&2); hold with M backs to W line (ct 3).
 
5-8 Moving away from W line, repeat action of meas 1-4.
 
9-12 Repeat action of meas 1-4.
 
  W: On meas 1-2 walk 6 steps beg R away from M line with hands still on hips. On meas 3-4 walk 6 more steps turning slowly in an arc 1/2 turn CW to R to face M line. Joining hands, dance Passive Pattern (Fig I) two more times during meas 5-12.
 
IV.  W ACTIVE PATTERN (VOCAL)
 
1-12 W: Repeat action of meas 1-12 (Fig II).
 
  M: On meas 1-2 walk 6 steps beg R away from W line with hands just behind hips, palms out. On meas 3-4 walk 6 more steps turning slowly in an arc 1/2 turn CW to R to face W line. Joining hands, dance Passive Pattern (Fig I) two more times during meas 5-12.
 
V.  M ACTIVE PATTERN
 
1-10 M and W repeat action of meas 1-10 (Fig III);
11 Ptrs moving twd each other, step R (ct 1); step L (ct 2); close R next to L taking wt on both and joining hands straight across with ptr (ct 3);
12 Cpls at both ends of lines curve them around (M moving diag bwd and pulling ptrs with them) so as to form a small cir with M backs to ctr. All cpls adjust to form the cir.
 
  NOTE: Because of the retard in meas 12 and the following pause in the music, there is plenty of time to form the cir without a scramble from lines of 6 cpls.
 
2/4 METER (SMALL CIRCLES)
 
VI.  CPL TURNS AND PROGRESSION
 
1-2 Take modified shldr-waist pos as described for Cpl Turns under "Steps and Style" and make 2 CW turns to R with ptr dancing Buzz Step.
3 Using joined hands (M R, W L) for lead, M turn W 1/2 turn out to R as both step RLR (cts 1&2); pause (ct &).
 
  NOTE: Do not release joined hands. Ptrs are now side-by-side and should both have backs to ctr of cir, M hand on hip, W hand out to side for balance. W is in front of next M to R.
 
4 M leads W into one full turn CCW to L to again end side-by-side, W to M R, both with backs to ctr of cir, joined hands encircling W waist without capturing W R arm at her side, W R handholding her own L forearm across her waist as both step LRL (cts 1&2); pause (ct 3);
 
5 Repeat action of meas 3 except that W makes full CW turn to R.
 
6 Releasing handhold, W move in a small arc 1/2 turn CW to the R to face the next M to the R, thus moving up one place as both step LRL (cts 1&2); W place back of L hand on hip and assume modified shldr-waist pos with new ptr (ct &).
 
7-42 Repeat action of meas 1-6 six more times (7 in all) except that on meas 42 do not progress to new ptr but instead repeat action of meas 4 to end side-by-side, all facing outward from cir, joined hands encircling W waist. All yell "Hey" on ct 2 of meas 42, as M raise free arm out to side at about a 45-degree angle, elbow straight, palm up.
 
7-42 NOTE: With 6 cpls in each small cir, dancers end with orig ptr. For recreational dancing, if there is a different number of cpls, M must ct 6 changes so that they will know when they are with the final ptr (it would be courteous of him to say something to let her know he is her final ptr). It is not recommended that the dance be done with fewer than 4 cpls in any small cir.

Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes