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International dance competition "Superstars of Dance", NBC, 2009.
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Cossack dance performance during basketball game NJ NETS vs Utah JAZZ on January 19th, 2011 at the Prudential Center arena in Newark, New Jersey, USA.
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January 8, 2012. Association of Performing Arts Presenters-2012, New York City
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American Museum of Natural History, New York City, October 2011.
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World On Stage Dance Festival, Stamford, Connecticut, May 2009.
Lakeside, Ohio 2007 video
June 2006, Purchase, New York video
Performance in June 2006 during "The World Cultural Festival" at PEPSICO world headquarter in Purchase, New York. Dancers Olga Chpitalnaia, Vitaliy Verterich, Mikhail Nesterenko, Andrij Cybyk, Petr Tikhonov, Valentina Kvasova, Ilia Pankratov, Ganna Makarova are performing a traditional Russian Cossack dance routine consisting acrobatic tumbles, jumps, spins and leaps and the infamous cossack kicks.
Ukrainian National Dance Hopak 1 min 38 sec video
Dancers: Andrij Cybyk, Mikhail Nesterenko, Vitaly Verterich
What exactly is a Cossack dance?
A few most famous moves of Cossack dancing include "Preesyadkee"-Knee-Bending (Russian: присядки), "Polzunok" (Ru: ползунок), "Koza"-Goat (Ru: коза), "Chyort"-Devil (Ru: чёрт), "Mashina"-Engine (Ru: машина), "Raznozhka" (Ru: разножка), Pistolet"-Pistol (Ru: пистолет), "Bochka"-Small Barrel (Ru: бочка), "Beduinsky" (Ru: бедуинский), and many others.
Most of people in the United States and Western World beleive that Cossack Dance move is when the male dancer crouch down and kick his heels out. This particular move called "Kozatsky" (knee-bending) or "Preesyadkee".
The best way to understand what Cossack Dance looks like is to watch videos of Cossack dance troupes performances. To read more about Cossack and Russian dancing check the article Russian dance written by Mikhail Smirnov for the The Balalaika and Domra Association of America quarterly journal.
Kazaki are better known outside of Russia as Cossacks (Turkish word meaning Outlaw, Adventurer or freebooter/freeman). The Don Cossacks had their own independent republic for most of the
17th century, and in 1835 reached an agreement with the Russian czar, according to which they would provide him with highly trained soldiers in return for land and special privileges.
Kazaki (Cossacks) are first mentioned in the 15th century as freedom-loving exserfs, Tatars and descendants of Scythian warriors living on the open plains of southern Ukraine and Russia's Don River basin. Many Hollywood movies depict fearless, captivating warriors, quite lively, dancing with their sabers.
These free, independent Russian men were actually a sort of vagabond who lived in the wild, beyond the reach of the Russian government. Living primarily on the banks of the river Don and its tributaries, these people managed to survive by hunting, fishing, and foraging for what food they could find. They did not know agriculture or farming theirs was truly a wild life, in which forming and building families and social structure had little importance. The Cossacks acquired clothing and weapons both by raiding Turkish and Krimtartar villages on the coast of the Sea of Azov, and by attacking merchant caravans that traveled along the banks of the Don and the Volga . With light sailboats they sailed the Caspian Sea, the Sea of Azov, and the Black Sea all the way to Constantinople, now known as Istanbul.
The Cossacks never forgot their blood relationship with the Russian people, however. As the Cossacks matured as a society and started to form military-like organizations, they began to aid the Russian troops against Czar Ivan the Terrible, who eventually conquered the city Kazan . The Cossacks also battled on the eastern seaboard to help Moscow gain control over other empires. It was the Cossacks who fiercely and successfully defended Russia from the invading Swedish armies, driving the Swedes back to their homeland, off of Russian territory.
Throughout the centuries, Russian rulers were well aware of the substantial military role the Cossacks had played: freeing the Russians from the tight grip of the Tartars, winning wars against the Turks, and dislodging Napoleon and his troops were possible largely because of the Cossacks.
The Russian czars did everything they could to enlist the formidable power of the Cossacks, keeping the Cossacks content by sending to the Don weapons, ammunition, money, goods, and food. In fact, this appeasement was the only way to have some sort of control over the turbulent Cossacks. With so many armed forces in their backyard, the czars really had no other choice but to try to keep the Cossacks happy. Just imagine if the Cossacks had decide to turn against the Russians the Cossacks were truly loyal to only one person, their appointed chief, "the Ataman"!
Around 1800, the Cossack's fame, especially that of the Don Cossacks, reached its high point . Side-by-side with the regular Russian troops, they fought under the leadership of Suworof. They reaped everlasting fame during the Italian campaign after an agonizing expedition through the Alps . In Austria and Prussia , they fought against Napoleon and his armies, and moved toward the shores of the North Sea, continuing as far as Paris.
The cradle of all Don Cossacks is on the river Don. At the beginning of the last century they were divided over eleven armies: The Don, The Kuban, Astrachan, The Terek, Uralsk, Orenburg , in Semiretsjensk, on the Usuri, on the Amur, in Siberia and on the Trans-Baikal. All of these armies consisted of so-called sotjen (hundreds) and regiments of the Don army. They settled there where borders had to be guarded and, if necessary, defended. On the Don alone it was possible to mobilize 70,000 sabers (skilled horsemen).
The Cossacks played a vital role in Russian history the Russian empire fought no wars in the 19th and early 20th century without the participation of the Cossack troops: they fought in the Caucasus, on the Crimea, and during the Russian-Turkish war; they fought for the liberation of Bulgaria; they fought against the German imperial armies during the First World War from 1914 to 1918.
The communist revolution of 1917 caused a certain split in the Cossack community: some of them followed the Bolshevists, the others took up a neutral and passive position. For them, loyalty to their country was more important than loyalty to the czar (who would soon be deposed). However, that reservedness didn't last long. People who were accustomed to stating their opinions clearly quickly met trouble under the new communist, dictatorial rulers. From 1919 on, a sort of "de-cossackization" took place, a governmental policy under which the Cossacks were bloodily persecuted, resulting in the ultimate destruction of the Cossacks as a military power. The proud Cossacks were give only two choices flee the new Russia as emigrants or renounce their heritage.
The remaining Cossacks in Russia therefore went underground as a community, where they remained for some seventy years. With the fall of communism, descendants of the former Cossack army immediately returned. These descendants have returned to the banks of the Don and elsewhere, the land of their forebears. These Cossack settlements, called stanitsas and headed by chiefs called atamans, represent the return of the Cossacks.
|Rostov Don Cossacks State Academic Song and Dance Ensemble from Rostov-Na-Donu, Russia.|
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"Cossack Spirit" photos
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American Museum of Natural History, New York City
Utah Jazz vs. NJ Nets. January 19, 2011, Newark, NJ
Russian Cossack dancers/musicians showcase in New York City
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Ukrainian dancers of New York
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"Superstars of dance", NBC
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|Cossack Dancers troupe is available in New York, New Jersey, PA, CT, VT, and Nationwide.|
Barynya - Russian music, song and dance ensemble from New York is a unique group of top soloists: musicians, singers and dancers who were trained and performed with Don Cossacks of Rostov, Andreev State symphonic balalaika orchestra, Moscow State center of "Russian Song"
The Russian Collection Dance Ensemble from San Francisco, California provides a selection of thrilling and colorful Russian folk dancing, enchanting Russian folk music, and Russian magical illusions. Group was founded in 1945 and has performed in Europe, Asia, North and South America
Revival - Russian dance ensemble from Toronto Canada is available in Canada and the United States of America to provide live entertainment for corporate events, parties, weddings, and all other events. Artistic Director Ekaterina Kornienkova
Canary dance ensemble from Los Angeles, California performs Russian, Moldovan, Ukrainian, Gypsy, Armenian and Jewish folk traditional dances
|"Kalinka" dancers from Baltimore, Maryland perform in beautifully detailed costumes and accompanied by a full orchestra, Russian Folk Instruments quartet/trio or pre-recorded music. Artistic Director Ekaterina (Katya) Denisova.|
|"Cossack Spirit" from New York founded by dancer and singer Valentina Kvasova, singer Victoria Pichurova and Russian button accordion virtuoso Victor Danilochkin in 2007. Ensemble performs Cossack folk music, songs and dances. All members of the group are highly trained in former USSR performers.|
|Ukrainian Cossack dancers of New York founded in New York City by Ukrainian choreographer, teacher and dancer Andrij Cybyk in 2007.|
|Brooklyn Cossacks - folk song and dance trio from Brooklyn, New York.|
Russian traditional dance and music program NY, NJ, CT, PA, MD designed for smaller budget venues with limites space for the dancing. 3 dancers, 1 musician perform Russian, Cossack, Ukrainian, Siberian folk dances, songs and music.
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