Szpacyr Polka, considered a turning dance done in a circle, from the region of Śląsk (Silesia) is derived from the Polish word “Spacer” (SPAh-tsehr) which means to go for a walk or stroll. According to the well-known expert of the region, Janina Marcinkowa, who I had the opportunity to learn from in the early 1980’s, it was a social dance done by couples at gatherings throughout the whole region of Śląsk, from the mountaineers to the city folk. It is a combination of both a promenade and a polka, beginning with the stroll and hence the name of the dance. Couples execute spins and pivots as they follow each other in a large circle. At social gatherings in the region, the dance can be done for quite a long time with the musicians varying the tempo and challenging the dancers. This non-partner version gives the dancer the knowledge of the basic steps and movement.
KURPIE – Fafur
Fafur (Fah-foor) is unique to the Green Kurpie Region of Poland located in the East Central part of Poland. The dance is so named due to the long ribbon tied in a bow that adorns the woman’s head piece. The steps are light and happy representing this fafur flying behind the woman as she dances. Although usually done in couples, the dance can be adapted for individual dancers and the basic step is simple enough for children to execute. The various holds and the ability to move multi-directional can make this a challenging and interesting dance to execute.
KURPIE – Kaczor
Kaczor (KAH-chohr) is from the Green Kurpie Region of Poland located in the East Central part of Poland. The name means drake (male duck) and the dance has evolved from a wedding march into a show-off dance for men. A variation of steps allows us to incorporate women into the dance so that it can be done either as a couple dance or as an individual dance for men. The version described below is for couples and does not involve the more complicated walking in a squatted position that the men would do if dancing alone.