Croatian dance traditionally refers to a series of folk-dances, the most common being the Kolo. Croatian dance varies by region, and can be found throughout the various regions of Croatia, Bosnia and Hercegovina, Serbia, Hungary, and Romania. The traditional kolo is a circle dance, where dancers follow each other around the circle, is relatively simple in form and widespread throughout other Slavic countries. Due to immigration, Croatian folk dance groups are prevalent throughout the diaspora, most notably the United States, Canada, Australia, and Germany.
Music is a very important part of Croatian folk dance, with of the most common instruments used are the tamburica, lijerica, jedinka, šargija, bagpipe, and accordion. Today, kolo is danced at weddings, baptisms, holidays such as Easter, and ethnic festivals.
The basic steps are easy to learn, but experienced dancers dance kolo with great virtuosity due to different ornamental elements they add, such as syncopated steps. Each region has at least one unique kolo; it is difficult to master the dance and even most experienced dancers cannot master all of them.
Kolo (Croatian dance) varies by region:
An Croatian-Austrian folklore group getting ready to perform - Sokadija, Vienna-based Croatian folklore group, performing at Josefsplatz.
|Often onsidered to be the richest and liveliest of all Croatian dancing, the dancing from Slavonia is composed of difficult steps and lively music.
* Šokačko kolo
* Izvir voda izvirala
* Igra kolo u dvadeset i dva
* Srce moje
* Sitne bole
Like most northern Croatian dances, Posavina kolo is lively with plenty of singing. The Drmeš dance is one of the most popular types of kolo in Croatia, and can be seen throughout the regions.
* Staro sito
* Ženina Volja - A woman's will
* Oj Savice, tija vodo ladna -
Dances from Podravina are close to the Slavonian dances in style, which is lively with plenty of singing, which is typical for north Croatian folk dances.
* Ples z ropčecom
* Moldovan - literally Moldovan, believed to originate from local gypsies
* Jelica kolce vodila
* Lepa Anka kolo vodi
* Rendajte se milo lane
* Sejale smo bažulka
* Na kraj sela kolo igra
* Postajale cure oko kola
* Gusta magla ti ne padaj na me
* Žena ide na gosti
* Katarena kolo vodi
Hrvatsko Zagorje, or Croatian hinterland, is the north-central part of the country, which the capital Zagreb is a part of. Dances are lively and merry.
* Ajnzerica - a lively dance said to have been derived from local gypsys from Marija Bistrica
* Kriči kriči tiček
* Žena išla u gosti
* Ženil se sirotek
* Dobar vecer dobri ljudi
A variation of the traditional polka:
* Puntarska polka
* Judin polka
* Krajc polka
The Međimurje region is the northern-est tip of Croatia, and shares much of the merry and lively dance qualities as other nearby regions.
* Došla sam vam japa dimo - derived from traditional solo songs
* Kaj se z Jelkom pripetilo
* Igrajte nam japa
* Faljila se Jagica
* Lepe naše senokoše
* Zginula je pikuša
* Šoštar polka
* Žena ide na gosti
* Baroš oj Barice
Dances from Istria have strong influence from Venetian culture.
* Hrvaski - literally, "Croatian" dance
* Sedam paši
Kolo from Lika can have music and instruments, or it can be silent with no instrumental accompaniment or even singing. With the silent dances, the only sounds being made are when the feet make contact with the floor and the rhythmic clinking sound of the women's coin necklaces, and sometimes, the dancers' voices as they sing. Though not often danced these days, these silent dances are well remembered by the older Ličani and are perpetuated by folk dance performing groups.
* Ličko kolo - traditional Lika dance
* Haj na lijevo
* Oj Otočcu - from the town of Otočac
* Perjato, Rasperjato
* Okreni se, moje kolo malo
* Joj, moj dragane, ti ne radi toga
Folk dancers in Čilipi (Dalmatia)
In Dalmatia, one of the most popular dance is the Linđo, from Dubrovnik and southern Dalmatia.
* Potkolo - line dance done to tamburica
* Poskacica - a couple dance done to the lijerica
* Nemigusa - a "winking" couple dance
* Seljanica - popular
* Vrličko kolo - from the town of Vrlika
* Baška j' malo selo - From the village of Baska on Krk island
* Lipa li je rumen Rožica - from the island of Murter
* Dubravačko Kolo - Poskočica - merry dance from the Dubrovnik countryside
* Dubravačko Kolenda - A Dubrovnik carol
Dances from Herzegovina are often a cross between Dalmatian Zagora traditions, and Ottoman influences, though much less than Bosnia proper.
* O javore, javore
* Koja Gora Ivo
* Na Neretvu misecina pala
Dances from Vojvodina are most similar to the Slavonian dances in their liveliness and activity. The Bunjevci Croats from the Bačka region are renowned for their beautifully embroidered female dresses, made from real silk from France, and the rattling sound made by the dancers' boots as they dance. In the Banat region, the men have their own competitive dance.
* Šokačko kolo
* Bunjevačko momačko kolo - literally the Bunjevac men's kolo, where one man dances with two women
* Momacko nadigravanje - the men's competitive dance
* Kolo Igra, Tamburica Svira
* malo kolo
* Podvikuje Bunjevačka Vila
Croatian folklore dance meeting in Pecs, Hungary
Croatian kolo from Hungary is mainly concentrated in the southern region near Baranja, while in Romania, it is in the Banat region. Due to Hungarian influence, the Csárdás remains one of the most popular dances among all ethnic groups.