About this collection

Dances are an inseparable part of life for many Kalmyks. No single celebration, a holiday, a major family event, or a party is held without dances. In Kalmykia the most widely performed dances are those performed by individuals or couples, although some dances may be performed in groups. In the past, the Kalmyks had dances for specific age groups, for teenagers and single young people, for young married men and women, and for the elderly. Kalmyk dances differ from one another in terms of movements (for example, some imitate the movements of various animals and birds) and accompanying melodies and songs. There are also dances peculiar to different Kalmyk groups, such dances as 'Dolbana bi', 'Ik hurla bi' and others.

Today, in addition to traditional dances, many stage dances choreographed by ballet masters also enjoy great popularity. These dances, drawing on folklore and ethnographic sources, include famous dances such as 'Derbet tavshur', 'Chichirdyk', 'Dance of heroes', 'Tsagan shavrta bi' and many others.

Recent Submissions

  • Petr Nadbitov, About Kalmyk dances 

    Terbish, Baasanjav (Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge, 2017-10-01)
  • Boba Kokueva, about how the kalmyk youth danced 

    Terbish, Baasanjav (Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge, 2018-11-01)
  • A concert following a Buddhist ritual in Khanata 

    Terbish, Baasanjav (Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge, 2018-04-01)
  • Vera Tepkeeva, traditional dances 

    Terbish, Baasanjav (Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge, 2017-11-01)
    Vera says that Kalmyk dances change according to locations and that each place has its peculiar dancing techniques. In the past, ordinary Kalmyks danced differently to how professional dancer dance today. Ordinary people, ...

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