Greek dance (horos) is a very old tradition. Even for me it seems like forever as I’ve been doing it since I was 5 in Greek school.
Horos, khoros, choros (χορός) means "dance" in Greek language. This word occurs in the names of numerous Greek dances, which may be literally translated as "dance of..." or "dance from...".
Traditional Greek dancing has a primarily social function. It brings the community together at key points of the year, such as Easter, the grape harvest or patronal festivals; and at key points in the lives of individuals and families, such as weddings.
Back in the old country, our family takes to heart the strict hierarchy of dancers. Whether by age or status, we are careful not to violate the prestige of the individual giving them the respect they deserve as well as the front of the line.
Each of the islands as well as the mainland developed different styles and interpretations. The unique choreography and style to mimic their own ways of living. For example, island dances have more of a "watery" flow to them, while Pontic dancing closer to Black Sea, is very sharp. Although we don’t have them cataloged in this blog, it is estimated over 10,000 traditional dances come from all the regions of Greece.
There are also pan-Hellenic dances,
- Hasapiko, and
which have been adopted throughout the Greek world.