MALO KOLO

Serbian

 
PRONUNCIATION: MAH-loh KOH-loh
 
TRANSLATION: Little circle (dance)
 
SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned the basic Malo kolo from members of the Serbian community in Los Angeles, California, in the early 1960s. Both Dick Crum and John Filcich have taught the dance and included embellishments.
 
BACKGROUND: Malo kolo is an old traditional dance from the Vojvodina region of Serbia. It is widespread throughout the area and is danced at nearly every Serbian gathering. The small orchestra stands in the middle of the circle as the dance begins and then moves around from one group of dancers to the other who then try to improvise on the the basic step without losing the beat. It is customary to put money in the top of the bass player's instrument to either have the orchestra begin or continue playing Malo. The step-close-step-touch motif, alternating side to side, is basic to the dances of the Vojvodina area (thus it is known as "the basic kolo step," "basic step," or "kolo step.") and is found in many dances, including Bačko kolo, Čarlama, Jeftanovićevo kolo, Natalijino kolo, Seljančica, Srpkinja, Sremsko kolo, and Zaplet. It is interesting to note that the first migrants to the United States from Yugoslavia were from the Vojvodina area.
 
MUSIC:Festival Records "Kolo Party" (LP) FLP 1505
Kolo Festival (45rpm) KF 4802
Folk Dancer (78rpm) MH 1004
 
FORMATION:A. Closed cir of dancers with hands on shldrs of neighbors (usually only if just M are in cir) in "T" pos; or
B. Closed cir of mixed M and W with hands joined down in "V" pos; or
C. Closed cir of mixed M and W with hands joined behind W backs, W hands on nearest shldrs of the adjacent M.
Dancers should form a small cir.
 
METER/RHYTHM: 2/4
 
STEPS/STYLE: LIFT: Raise on ball of supporting ft without leaving floor.

The dance described below is a higher-energy form of the basic step-close-step-touch "basic step" as danced by the Los Angeles Serbian community beg in the 1940s.

The dance is done in place or moving slightly back and forth from R to L with a light feeling. All movement should be from the hips down. Malo kolo is subject to rich variations in styling. The M, in particular, traditionally embellish the fundamental pattern with subtle cross-kicks, tiny stamps, heel-clicks, leg-shakes, syncopations, etc.


MEASMOVEMENT DESCRIPTION

 
 INTRODUCTION - None.
 
 THE DANCE
 
1Lift on L and, at the same time, place R on floor (ct 1); step on R (ct &); step L behind R (ct 2); pause (ct &);

NOTE: A tremor should be felt between the two actions of the R ft.

 
2Step R to R (ct 1); Lift on R (ct 2).
 
3-4Repeat action of meas 1-2 with opp ftwk.
 
 Repeat entire dance from beginning, adding embellishments as desired.

Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes