(HELL-sing-eh POHL-ska)

Skandia CD, track 35


Credible English Title Polska from Hälsingland.


Heritage Swedish, this version from Arbrå in Hälsingland.
U.S. Source As danced in Sweden by Gordon E. Tracie and taught at Skandia Folkdance Society, Seattle.
Category Regional ethnic dance.
Motivation and application Recreational, non-performance-oriented.


Type 16th-note ("semiquaver") polska.


Function Individual couple dance.
Character and form Smooth and pompous.
Footwork Opposite.
Specific steps Open polska step, closed polska turn, light run.
Dance holds During introduction:  Arm-in-arm, outside arms loose (hanging). During turn and rest:  Polska hold (see description in Appendix A), but the M rests the side of the L hand, where the thumb is, on the W's R lower arm near the elbow from below.
Formation Any number of couples in a circle moving LOD (CCW).


As with all regional ethnic dances there are no specified number of measures for each variation.


The dance begins with the M escorting the W onto the dance floor, arm-in-arm, logically using an open polska step to match the music (M begins with L, W with R foot).  When the M chooses, he transitions to the CW polska turn.

Polska Turn:

Man's step:

By the end of Count 1 of the previous measure, the M is facing out from the center of the hall, facing but slightly ahead of the partner.

Each polska step should begin facing in the same direction.  In other words, each measure makes a complete turn.  Cue: L, Both, R.

Woman's step:

While turn is in motion, placing the R parallel to L ("Both") becomes a continuation and completion of each rotation, such that W is always facing LOD (or nearly LOD) as she begins each turn with Both.  Cue: Both, R, L.


According to the M's choice, the dance can shift into the resting part.  Maintaining polska hold, M and W dance to the left of each other, the M usually faces LOD, light running steps, one step to a beat.  M starts with L, W with R.

The M indicates the transition to polska turn by stamping his R foot on the beat just before the start of the turn.



Copyright © 1997 Skandia Music Foundation Hälsingepolska

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