(as performed by Il Quartiere Italiano, San Francisco Bay Area, California)
Performed in many countries, mazurkas are usually flirtatious couple dances. In Italy, La Mazurca is danced primarily throughout the northern part of the country, although Sicilian versions do exist. This is a courtship dance which shows its character in a series of mimed teasing and coaxing, with first the women, then the men, promenading before one another to give each other the once-over.
This mazurca is danced to “Oi Bela Vorejsse V’ni,” a traditional song of Piemonte in Piemontese dialect. In the teasing lyrics, the man tries to entice the woman to go away with him. She replies that, if he wants to marry her, she’ll gladly join him; otherwise, she’ll just wait where she is.
This dance is done with no less than three couples, and it looks nice with five to six couples. If you want more couples to participate, a second circle could be set up if the dance area is large enough.
BEGINNING POSITION: Double circle, partners facing each other, men with backs to center of circle. Man and woman hold multi-colored ribbons between them (1 yard lengths in several festive colors, knotted or sewn together about 6” from either end) both in right hands at approximately shoulder level. Man’s free hand on hip, woman’s free hand holding skirt. Circle moves counter-clockwise (CCW).
|STEP A. Starting to man’s left, woman’s right (Circle moves CCW):||
|STEP B. Closed social dance position||
|Step C: Mazurca Sequence||
|Step D||Repeat STEPS A, B, and C with new partner. At the end of STEP C, Men form small circle, backs to the center, shoulders almost touching, hands behind their backs. Women face their partners, placing ribbons in their L hands and holding skirts teasingly at their sides.|
|STEP E. Women promenade.||
|Step F: Men promenade.||
|STEP G. Balance sequence. [This sequence begins with Men with their backs to the center of the circle, facing their partners in the outside circle, still holding R hands.]||
Definitions of Dance Steps:
Dahl Step: A step-lift step [not a step-kick!] done to a waltz tempo (3 beats per step. Count: step-lift-down).
- Step to the R with the R foot (beat 1).
- Swing the L foot across the R, while lifting up onto the ball of the R foot, raising the R heel (beat 2).
- Lower the R heel (beat 3).
- A second Dahl step would be done beginning to the L, reversing directions.
Mazurca Step: A sliding, rocking step done to a waltz tempo (3 beats per step. Count: slide-together-back).
- Body facing forward, pointing R toe to the R, slide the R foot to the R and lean body slightly to R (beat 1).
- As you bring L foot toward heel of R and land on ball of foot, kick the R foot slightly forward and straighten up the body (beat 2).
- Hop slightly back on L foot, bringing R heel in front of L ankle (beat 3).
- Dancers may continue to the R repeating Steps 1-2-3, or the step may also be done to the L, reversing all directions.
|R – Right||CW – Clockwise|
|L – Left||CCW – Counter Clockwise|
Jackie Capurro, Il Quartiere Italiano