Pushteno

REGION: Macedonia from the areas of Kostur and Lerin in Northern Greece

RHYTHM: 12/8

THE NAME: Most Macedonians would not recognize the name of this dance.  It is more widely known as Boufsko by the older generation of immigrants, after the name of a village, Buf, that purportedly dance it the best.  It has other names, some named for other villages.  It is related to the Baireche family of dances.  Other Macedonians may call this dance Push-che-no. Although originally Slavic, the Greek communities now also dance it.  But the name they use is Leventikos or Litos.  I prefer the name Pushteno because of the feeling one gets when dancing it, a feeling of wild abandonment, for the word implies a letting go or release (from a mundane existence).  The word Litos in Greek has the same or similar meaning, and Leventikos means the dance of the brave (heroes).

ARMS: Normally a “V” position, although a line of only men may assume the “T” position.  On occasion, the leader may use the “W” position with the second person when doing fancy steps.

NOTES: I like to think of this dance as a three measure dance with five steps per measure, where the second “step” is quick. Thus, count it as SQSSS.  The parenthesized word “step” is in reality a lift on the supporting foot.

Description

MeasureStepAction
11With weight on LF, chukche on LF & lift RF and bounce once
2Chukche on the LF and bounce one more time
3Step RF to right
4Step on LF behind RF
5Step on RF to right
21Step on LF in front of right foot
2Chukche on LF and extend RF to right
3Step on RF
4Step on LF in front of right foot
5Step on RF in back of left foot
31Chukche on RF and lift LF and bounce once
2Chukche on RF and bounce one more time
3Step on LF to left
4Step on RF directly in front of LF (keep the body facing center)
5Step on LF directly behind RF

(There are many variations to this dance, as in most true folk dances.  This is because it is danced by young and old, and in many localities.  The person leading the dance has more options, and performance groups add even more.)