There are many costumes worn in the different parts
of Poland. The girl's costumes is basically a blouse,
full skirt, petticoats, apron, bodice or jacket. There
are many different designs, shapes and colours, but
striped material is very popular in the central and
western areas, and floral patterns in the Cracow region.
girls wear their hair in two plaits tied with ribbons.
Flowers or headscarves are also worn, and married women
tuck their hair into caps. Tight lace-up boots are worn
in many areas, rather like an ice skating boot. This
stiffens the ankle and foot, so the dancer uses the
knee and thigh, which gives the strong ballon typical
of Polish dances.
often wear striped trousers and there are many different
types of coat. The most popular is from the Cracow region
with the sukmana or peasant's coat. The square shaped
hat is also worn by the Polish army.
Small village bands play the animated rhythms
of Polish folk music, They usually consist of
violin, cello, various kinds of flutes, drums,
and sometimes a double bass.
The name Poland comes from the early settlers
called Polanie, meaning 'people of the fields'.
Over half the land is cultivated, so many customs
are connected with the seasons. Song and dance
was the main form of entertainment, and there
were special dances for the harvest and for the
wedding custom in Kujawy is for a man to balance
a glass of wine on the flat brim of his hat while
performing a slow dance.
Easter time, beautifully painted eggs are given
by girls to their boyfriends. Eggs are also rolled
along the edges of a field to protect the crops,
and ribbed on the foreheads of sick animals.
feathers are much admired in Poland and are considered
a sign of good luck. They are often worn in the
Polish people have a great love of animals, especially
horses, and at carnivals masks are made to represent
horses, goats and roosters.
St John's Eve, girls make wreaths which they throw
into a river or stream; if the wreath sinks or
gets stuck, the girl won't get married that year!
will Fred and Ginger travel to next?
Come back soon to find out!
Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing