TRANSLATION: Butchers' dance
SOURCE: Dick Oakes learned this dance in the Greek community of Los Angeles. Athan Karras, a prominent Greek dance researcher, also has taught Hasapikos to folk dancers in the United States, as have many other teachers of Greek dance, including Dave Rosenberg at the 1960 Santa Barbara Folk Dance Conference, Oliver "Sonny" Newman at the 1963 Stockton Folk Dance Camp, Vilma Matchette at the 1967 Santa Barbara Folk Dance Conference, and John Filcich at the 1970 Stockton Folk Dance Camp.
BACKGROUND: The Hasapikos was called Makellarion Horon (makellarios is the Greek word for "butcher") during Byzantine days because it was adopted by the butchers' guild in Constantinople (now İstanbul, Turkey). The dance is also spelled Hassapikos (Hassip is Turkish for "butcher"). It is also known as Grigoro (fast) Hasapikos, or simply Zoero (lively). The dance is mostly known outside of Greece because of its being danced during the Syrtaki in the film Alexis Zorbas (titled Zorba the Greek in America). The Hasapikos is sometimes referred to as Hasaposervikos, whose basic step is based on that of the fast Hasapikos. Other dances that have a similar dance motif are the Arkan of the Ukraine, Hora of Israel, the Debki of the Arab countries, the Kasapsko Horo of Bulgaria, the Kasapsko Kolo of Serbia, the Lesnoto of Macedonia, and the Soorch Bar of Armenia.
MUSIC: Festival (45rpm) 3513-B
Folkraft (LP) 8
or any fast hasapikos music.
FORMATION:Lines of mixed M and W with hands holding neighbors' shldrs in "T" pos. The dance also may be seen being danced with hands joined with elbows bent and held at shldr height in "W" pos (although this is not as stable).
STEPS/STYLE: The dance has a happy, joyful, high-spirited, and carefree nature.


 None or at the discretion of the leader.
1Step (or leap) R swd (ct 1); step (or leap) L across in back of R (ct 2);
2Step (or leap) R swd (ct 1); hop R, swinging L across in front of R (ct 2);
3Step (or leap) L swd (ct 1); hop L, swinging R across in front of L (ct 2).
 Repeat dance from beg.
 Several variations are danced, such as:
  • Cross in front (instead of back) on meas 1;
  • Double-time leaps on meas 1;
  • Pas de Basque (triplet) steps on meas 2 and 3.
The leader also may release his hand hold and
  • Dance a CW turn on the two steps (or leaps) on meas 1, or even
  • Signal for the entire line to dance a CW turn on the two steps (or leaps) on meas 1.

Copyright © 2012 by Dick Oakes