PRONUNCIATION: VEH-lee-koh KOH-loh TRANSLATION: Big circle dance SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned this dance from John Filcich and also from Dick Crum who presented it at the 1960 and 1972 Folk Dance Camp at the College of the Pacific, Stockton, California (now Stockton Folk Dance Camp), and at the 1974 San Diego State University Folk Dance Conference. BACKGROUND: Veliko Kolo is one of the most enjoyable of all kolos, once it is learned. There are many subtleties in it and it would not be an exaggeration to say that it takes years to master. This dance is native to Banat, Vojvodina, and is popular with Serbian communities in the United States. It was learned by Dick Crum from members of the Banat Tamburitza Orchestra and from native dancers in Srenjanin (Banat), Yugoslavia.
Whereas native dancers don't mind if you enter a kolo circle unsure of a dance, they DO mind in the Veliko Kolo, so be sure you are either invited to join or know it quite well. The written word cannot adequately describe the subtle intricacies of what looks like a simple step in print.
MUSIC: Festival (45rpm) FR-4819
Folk Dancer (45rpm) MH 1004
FORMATION: Single Circle, no partners, hands on shldrs of adjacent dancers. METER/RHYTHM: 2/4 STEPS/STYLE: All steps are small and lifts are very small, the toe never leaving the floor, to the point of only being felt, not seen. Dick Crum referred to this as "dancing inside your shoes." MEAS MOVEMENT DESCRIPTION THE DANCE 1 Moving L, step L to L (ct 1); step R (ct 2). 2 Step L to L (ct 1); touch L toe in front of R without wt (ct 2). 3 Step R to R (ct 1); touch L toe in front of R without wt (ct 2). 4 Lift in place on R (ct 1); step L next to R (ct 2). 5 Quickly lift in place on L then step onto R next to L (ct 1); quickly lift in place on R then step onto L next to R (ct 2). 6 Step in place R,L,R or do a small, flat pas-de-basque (step in place R, step L somewhat fwd, step in place R) (cts 1,&,2). NOTE: Difficulty comes in meas 4-5, because native dancers introduce a number of subtle, additional syncopations that are impossible to reduce to written description. Natives also do variations on the dance, the men taking more lively steps, while the women are more reserved. No matter what the dancers are doing, however, the rhythm and bounces are all the same and in strict unison. Repeat entire dance from beg. Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes