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The Ikarian dance, from a musical standpoint, is unique in the Greek
realm. Its variations look like the “Kalamatiano” (a kind of “syrtos”
dance from Southern Greece)
and originates from antiquity, in the ancient “χόρειο άλογο” dance.
The traditional songs, such as “Ambelokoutsoura”, in iambic 15-syllable
metre, are what has been saved as a specimen of dactylic metre and of the music
we come across in Homer.
The musical instruments used by Ikarian musicians are the lyra, the
violin and the tsabounofylaka (island bagpipes).
Apart from the traditional songs, there are the epics (rives), which
refer to the history of Ikaria. The Riva of the Castle of Koskina (Kossikia,
Mesaria) in three variations is about the taking over of the Castle by the Genoese,
and the Riva of Lagada about
the rebuttal of the pirates by the inhabitants.
Rives and traditional songs are sung at feasts and traditional weddings.
This text (extract) is cited January 2004 from the Evdilos
Municipal Cultural Organization tourist pamphlet.
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