Russian Children's Welfare Society - The Petroushka Ball - New York City
The Petroushka Ball, a traditional Russian ball held annually in New York City, is the primary fundraising event for the Russian Children's Welfare Society. The Petroushka Ball was started in 1965 as a small tea dance by a group of descendants of Russian families whose intent was to raise funds to help Russian children. Since then, the Ball has become one of New York Society's most vibrant and anticipated annual events, attracting upwards of 700 dinner and dancing guests. The Barynya Balalaika Orchestra led by Mikhail Smirnov is providing additional entertainment in the best spirit of Russian culture and romance well into the morning hours.
Performance during dinner by Elina Karokhina (balalaika), Leonid Bruk (balalaika-contrabass), Mikhail Smirnov (guitar), singer Alexander Menshikov. Recorded by Alexander Gurman (alexandergurman's YouTube channel) on February 11, 2011 at the Waldorf Astoria during Petroushka Ball.
And indeed everybody in the room looked with a smile of pleasure
at the jovial old gentleman, who standing beside his tall and stout
partner, Marya Dmitrievna, curved his arms, beat time, straightened
his shoulders, turned out his toes, tapped gently with his foot,
and, by a smile that broadened his round face more and more,
prepared the onlookers for what was to follow.
As soon as the
provocatively gay strains of Daniel Cooper (somewhat resembling
those of a merry peasant dance) began to sound, all the doorways of
the ballroom were suddenly filled by the domestic serfs- the men on
one side and the women on the other- who with beaming faces had come
to see their master making merry.
"Just look at the master! A regular eagle he is!" loudly remarked
the nurse, as she stood in one of the doorways.
The count danced well and knew it. But his partner could not and did
not want to dance well.
Her enormous figure stood erect, her
powerful arms hanging down (she had handed her reticule to the
countess), and only her stern but handsome face really joined in the
What was expressed by the whole of the count's plump figure, in
Marya Dmitrievna found expression only in her more and more beaming
face and quivering nose. But if the count, getting more and more
into the swing of it, charmed the spectators by the unexpectedness
of his adroit maneuvers and the agility with which he capered about on
his light feet, Marya Dmitrievna produced no less impression by slight
exertions- the least effort to move her shoulders or bend her arms
when turning, or stamp her foot- which everyone appreciated in view of
her size and habitual severity. The dance grew livelier and
The other couples could not attract a moment's attention
to their own evolutions and did not even try to do so. All were
watching the count and Marya Dmitrievna. Natasha kept pulling everyone
by sleeve or dress, urging them to "look at Papa!" though as it was
they never took their eyes off the couple. In the intervals of the
dance the count, breathing deeply, waved and shouted to the
musicians to play faster.
Faster, faster, and faster; lightly, more
lightly, and yet more lightly whirled the count, flying round Marya
Dmitrievna, now on his toes, now on his heels; until, turning his
partner round to her seat, he executed the final pas, raising his soft
foot backwards, bowing his perspiring head, smiling and making a
wide sweep with his arm, amid a thunder of applause and laughter led
by Natasha. Both partners stood still, breathing heavily and wiping
their faces with their cambric handkerchiefs.
"That's how we used to dance in our time, ma chere," said the count.
Traditional music and dance ensembles
Barynya - Russian folk music and dance ensemble from New York established in 1991. Russian, Tsygansky (Russian Gypsy Roma), Cossack, Ukrainian traditional dances, songs, virtuoso performances on musical instruments (balalaika, garmoshka, bayan, domra, balalaika-contrabass) with explanation of the program in English. Artistic Director Mikhail Smirnov.
New York Balalaika Orchestra is usually invited to play at Russian Orthodox weddings, fundraising balls, large scale social events, presentations, Doctor Zhivago's style corporate parties in New York Tri-State area
VIA ROMEN - Russian Gypsy Roma traditional music and dance ensemble . Artistic director Vadim Kolpakov.
RUSSIAN BAND specialty is Gypsy, Ukrainian, Russian music and songs. All RUSSIAN BAND members are top professionals with many years of experience. Choice of Gypsy, Ukrainian, Russian (2 different sets) and Cossack costumes. Extended repertoire. Formal concert, background music or music for dancing party. Our main instruments are balalaika, domra, drums, garmoshka (Russian button accordion), Gypsy guitar, classic guitar, contrabass balalaika, cello and vocals. Travel with own pro-quality sound system.
Russian Balalaika duo from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Alex Siniavski - balalaika, Mikhail Smirnov - guitar, garmoshka, vocals
Russian Gypsy Guitar Violin Duo from New York, New York performs Russian, Gypsy, Ukrainian, Moldovian, Hungarian music and songs. Sergei Pobedinski - guitar, vocals, Valeriy Zhmud - violin.
Vasily Romany Gypsy Band -
New York based Tsygansky (Russian Gypsy Roma) music and dance show. Artistic Director Vasily Romani (Yankovich).
Tsygane - Russian Gypsy Roma dance, music, song ensemble New York City
Tum Balalaika - Russian, Jewish, Ukranian, Gypsy band from Chicago, Illinois
Russian Dance & Music Duo from New York performs in traditional costumes. Program of Russian Cossack Ukrainian and Tsygansky (Russian Gypsy Roma) folk songs, music and dances. Affordable price. Duo is available for Arts in education programs, concerts, convention promotions, media appearances, private parties, special events, theme engagements, weddings, etc.
Brooklyn Balalaikas -Russian Folk Music Trio from Brooklyn, New York. Artistic Director Leonid Bruk.
Cossack Spirit - Cossack song, music and dance trio 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.
Old Red Wine - Klezmer, Yiddish, Russian dixieland band from Brooklyn, New York. Artistic Director Shlomo Leiderman.
Kalinka Duo - Sergey Vashchenko- balalaika, Vladimir Kaliazine- bayan, Austin, TX
Zabava - Russian folk ethnographic group from Saratov, Russia
Timofeyev and Kolpakov Russian Gypsy 7-string guitar duo performs traditional music, songs and dances of the Russian Roma (Gypsy) tradition, ancient Gypsy melodies, heartfelt lyrical romansy, accompanied by the Russian Gypsy 7-string guitars. Oleg Timofeyev holds an M.A. in Early Music Performance from the University of Southern California (1993), and a Ph.D. in Performance Practice from Duke University (1999). Lead guitarist and artist of the Moscow Gypsy Theater Romen, Vadim Kolpakov has been steeped in the tradition from childhood, plays the Russian 7- string guitar, sings and dances.
The Internationals World Music Ensemble from Chicago, Illinois plays Russian, Italian, Jewish, Ukrainian, Cossack, Gypsy, American oldies, and classical music from all around the world. Flexible structure depending on the clients' needs.
Piques Dames - Russian singers from New York City is a group of talented, classically trained musicians that perform in the New York metropolitan area at musical festivals, weddings, radio shows private and corporate events. Their repertoire includes a variety of Slavic and European Classical and Folk vocal music as well as compositions from operatic and sacred classics.