UNESCO Croatian intangible cultural heritage
Nijemo Kolo, silent circle dance of the Dalmatian hinterland
In the nijemo kolo - silent circle dance, each dancer performs his own steps, jumping in a closed circle or in couples, leading his female partners, one or two, to be clearly seen by everyone, and then again energetically jumping from one leg to another, at the same time pulling his female partners along, publicly testing his skill, seemingly without defined rules, spontaneously, depending on his mood and desire for common vigorous and impressive movement in a circle when he joins with others into the kolo with long steps.
The common characteristic of the silent kolo is that it can be, although it does not have to be, a continuation of walking steps with singing. It is conducted entirely independently of vocal or instrumental performance. A musical or vocal performance may, however, precede or follow the silent kolo. The dance is performed spontaneously at carnivals, fairs and on holidays (feast days) and at weddings. Nowadays, it is mostly danced by village performing groups at local, regional or international folklore festivals and at local shows, carnivals or on the saint days of their parish church. It is still passed on from generation to generation, more and more through cultural clubs.
Ministry of Culture