Sirtaki or syrtaki (Greek: συρτάκι) is a popular dance of Greek origin, choreographed by Giorgos Provias for the 1964 film Zorba the Greek. It is not a traditional Greek folkdance, but a mixture of the slow and fast versions of the hasapiko dance. The dance, and the accompanying music by Míkis Theodorakis, are also called Zorbá's dance, Zorbas, or "the dance of Zorba".
The name Sirtáki comes from the Greek word: syrtos (from σύρω (τον χορό) which means "drag (the dance)"), a common name for a group of traditional Cretan dances of so-called "dragging" style, as opposed to pidikhtos (πηδηχτός), a hopping or leaping style. Despite that, Sirtaki incorporates both syrtos (in its slower part) and pidikhtós (in its faster part) elements.
Sirtáki is danced in a line or circle formation with hands held on neighbours' shoulders. Line formation is more traditional. A similar choreography will be featured in Just Dance 2015.
Meter is 4/4, tempo increasing, and often the signature is changed to 2/4 in the fastest part. Accordingly, the dance begins with slower, smoother actions, gradually transforming into faster, vivid ones, often including hops and leaps. The choreographer of the dance is Giorgos Provias.
Zorba the Greek (film)
Zorba the Greek (Greek title: Αλέξης Ζορμπάς, Alexis Zorba(s)) is a 1964 British-Greek drama film directed by Cypriot Michael Cacoyannis and starring Anthony Quinn as the title character. It is based on the novel Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis. The supporting cast includes Alan Bates, Lila Kedrova, Irene Papas and Sotiris Moustakas.
Traveling to inspect an abandoned mine his father owns in Crete, English author Basil (Alan Bates) meets the exuberant peasant Zorba (Anthony Quinn) and invites him along when the older man claims he has mining experience. In Basil's father's old village, he finds himself attracted to a young widow (Irene Papas), and Zorba takes up with the woman who runs their hotel (Lila Kedrova). When things go wrong, Zorba teaches Basil how to enjoy life even under the most trying circumstances.
At the end of the movie Basil and Zorba sit by the shore to eat a rack of lamb for lunch. Zorba pretends to tell the future from the lamb shank, saying that he foresees a great journey to a big city. He then asks Basil directly when he plans to leave, and Basil replies that he will leave in a few days. Zorba declares his sadness about Basil's imminent departure to England and tells Basil that he is missing madness. Basil asks Zorba to teach him to dance. Zorba teaches him the sirtaki and Basil begins to laugh hysterically at the catastrophic outcome. The story ends with both men enthusiastically dancing the sirtaki on the beach.