Armenian Folk Dance – The Character of the People

Armenian Folk Dance – The Character of the PeopleThe Armenian folk dance denotes the character of the Armenian people. It features the same grade of versatility as any other type of Armenian national art.

The Armenians of Van and Artsakh dance rather differently: they each create unique choreographies and wear different attire. But we are not going to dive too deep into the differences of national traditions of Armenians from all over the world and will instead focus on how the Armenian folk dance emerged.

The roots of Armenian national choreography go back to antiquity when Armenians have been worshipping pagan gods. Culturologists and historians argue that folk dance has always been expressing the national consciousness, the features of the nation’s character, its approach towards their own history as well as their surroundings. Apart from that, it has been established that Armenian folk dance has three types: ritual, religious, and everyday dances.

Armenian folk dance touches upon a variety of themes. For example, in dances dedicated to hunting, the dancers form a solid, chained row, and imitate attacking prey and defending themselves from threats. By the way, Kochari, the most renowned Armenian folk dance, has initially featured imitations of animals jumping from rock to rock.

Kochari features fast- and slow-tempo movements. The dance is usually accompanied by zurna and dhol music. Formed several thousand years ago, Kochari is now known in every corner of Armenia. Kochari is often performed at festivals, and has also been featured in Armenian composer Aram Khachatryan’s ballet “Spartacus”, “Symphonic Dances” by Edvard Mirzoyan, and other classical musical works.

Another category of Armenian folk dance is war dance, its most remarkable example being the Berd (literally translated as “fortress” from Armenian). Berd commemorates the victories of the Armenians’ ancestors in the battles for their homeland.

One could confidently say that the themes reflected in Armenian folk dance denote the events, phenomena, and concepts that the Armenians have been valuing the most over the millennia of their existence. The history of each people is unique, and so is the character uncovered by the Armenian folk dance.

Ancient Armenian War Dance – ՅԱՐԽՈՒՇՏԱ (YARKHOUSTA)

Վրեժ Ճղրիկյան – Ելեք հայեր

Armenian Kochari Multicultural Epic Wedding Dance Entrance – Talin & Mesrop

“Ярхушта” – танец армянских воинов.

Karin – Kochari Armenian traditional dance / Կարին – Քոչարի

Dance Stars Kochari 2013

Армянский танец Ярхушта/ Armenian national dance Yarkhushta


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