Bohemian National Polka
by Cathleen Myers of PEERS
http://www.peers.org
When the polka first took American and European ballrooms by storm in the early 1840's, it was a choreographed dance incorporating lots of steps and style from its Eastern European folk origins. These folk steps were eventually edited out of the elegant mid-19th century ballroom polka. "The Bohemian National Polka" is a delightful modern reconstruction of what the original polka may have looked like in the 1830's before it became a smash-hit "ballroom dance." The Bohemian National Polka, choreographed for the ballroom by celebrated dance historian Richard Powers of Stanford University, is based on a reconstruction by Czech dance historian Frantisek Bonus and is enjoying a new wave of popularity at Bay Area Victorian balls.

Instructor Cathleen Myers is the Artistic Director of PEERS (the Period Events & Entertainments Recreation Society), famous for its monthly historical and literary-themed balls. Check us out at www.peers.org and, better still, come to some of our balls. Live music for the class will be provided by the fabulous vintage dance band Bangers & Mash (www.well.com/user/cwj/bangersandmash).

For Richard Powers' wonderful notes on the Bohemian National Polka and its choreography, see http://dance.stanford.edu/syllabi/BNP.html

 



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