How To Greek Dance at a Wedding

Offley Place

Offley Place

Greeks certainly know how to throw some shapes on the dancefloor. 

In fact, their fabulous dance routines are pretty integral to Greek weddings, and if you’re ever lucky enough to attend one of these splendid occasions, you’ll be treated to a night of pure delight. 

Ready to get down low on the dance floor Greek style? 

Let’s journey through the history of their most treasured techniques, and explain how to play your part, without utterly embarrassing yourself!

What is The Greek Wedding Dance Called?

Ok, so there’s actually a few dances held pretty dear to the Greeks, but the one which sticks out would be the Kalamatiano. 

It’s a folk dance, which dates way back to the 8th century, so it’s got to be pretty decent to have stuck around for so long. 

The dance is joyous and brings out the very best of good old human spirit, that being the togetherness from holding hands and enjoying the experience as one collective.

How Do You Dance The Kalamatiano?

Firstly, everyone is invited.  Secondly, get yourself into a circle, start moving clockwise, and either hold each person next to you by their hands or via a napkin.  Now, much like your average Turkish wedding dance, things do get a little more complicated, so try and follow the general flow, but to ensure you don’t fall over at every turn, be wary of some basic steps.  Your right foot should slowly step to the side, and then your left crosses behind, but done so more quickly.  Do similar again with your right foot, before kicking your left in front and finishing off by placing all your weight downwards.  It’s then a step to the right, cross your left in front, and side once again to the right. The left then sits in front of the right, and now, we switch direction to start dancing clockwise.  You then repeat everything in reverse, and yeah, it’s pretty exhausting, but super thrilling to be part of!

Why Do Greeks Dance With Napkins?

Yes, we know what you’re thinking! Why on earth do Greeks use napkins when dancing the Kalamatiano? The reason is actually pretty standard and far less glamorous than you’d possibly anticipate

Basically, they hold napkins to allow for freer movements when dancing, which isn’t so straightforward when your hands are firmly planted into someone else’s.

Why Do Greeks Shout ‘Opa’?

No, you’re not being told off! If you keep hearing people shout ‘Opa’, then your dancing exploits are hitting the mark! 

It loosely translates to ‘bravo’ or ‘wow’, both of which are positive words, evoking a strong sense of appreciation.

Your Dream Greek Wedding Awaits

One of the best things from being one of many multicultural wedding venues, would be the different nationalities we get to serve up memorable occasions, which are always crafted with their distinct preferences and traditions at the very heart of every single detail.

Ready to create lasting memories you’ll treasure for a lifetime? Contact our expert wedding planners today for more information about our historic venue.

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