ČARLAMA

Serbian

 
PRONUNCIATION: char-LAH-mah
 
TRANSLATION: Strategy or means-to-an-end (probably from Turkish)
 
SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned this dance from Dennis Boxell who taught it to folk dancers in the United States at the 1966 Stockton Folk Dance Camp. Another dance by the same name was taught by Anatol Joukowsky in 1953.
 
BACKGROUND: Čarlama, or Užička Čarlama (Čarlama from Užice), was recorded on a film made in Zagreb in 1948 titled "Yugoslav Folk Dances" by an amateur group from the town of Užice in western Serbia. Yet, its origins are relatively unknown. Dick Crum, noted Balkan dance researcher, writes that "in the opinion of Mme. Magzinović, Serbian dance historian, Čarlama could easily have been an novelty dance created by Serbian soldiers who had seen dances of other nationalities during World War I and emulated some of the foreign movements that were fun to do in boots." Užice ("listen") is a city and municipality in western Serbia. It is the administrative center of the Zlatibor District. The city is located on the banks of Đetinja River.
 
MUSIC: Folk Art (10"EP) LP-107
Folkraft (45rpm) 1498x45
Kolo Festival (45rpm) 498
NAMA 2 (LP) 1002, side A, band 6
 
FORMATION:Line or open cir of mixed M and W with hands joined and held down in "V" pos, end dancers with free hand at small of back. In Serbia, M would be at both ends of the line or open cir. If the line is of M only, they may hold belts in "X" pos, R arm under.
 
METER/RHYTHM: 2/4
 
STEPS/STYLE: During the first part of the dance the steps are small and close to the floor.
 

MEASMOVEMENT DESCRIPTION

 
 INTRODUCTION - None.
 
I. IN PLACE (ŠUMADIJA STEP)
 
1Facing ctr, low hop in place (ct 1); very small step fwd R (ct &); step L in place (ct 2);
2Step R next to L (ct 1); low hop R in place (ct 2).
3-4Reverse action of meas 1-2 with opp ftwk.
5-16Repeat action of meas 1-4 three more times.
 
II. MOVING R, L (HEEL-CLICKS)
 
1Facing slightly diag R and moving in LOD, low hop L (ct 1); step R (ct &); step L across in front of R (ct 2);
2Low hop L clicking R heel to L heel (ct 1); low hop L clicking R heel to L heel (ct 2);
3-6Repeat action of meas 1-2 two more times;
7Repat action of meas 1;
8Step R in LOD (ct 1); turning to face diag L, low hop R (ct 2);
9-16Reverse action of meas 1-8 with opp ftwk.
 
 Repeat entire dance from beg.
 
 For variation in Fig II, the leader at either end of the line or open cir may wind his end into a spiral.

Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes