Originally, the dancers formed a linked chain by joining hands or by means of red handkerchiefs. The music, which was originally in 6/8, gave the signal; the chain gave way, running, skipping or just walk through the streets or roads, increasing with all the people whom it meets, and it goes on thus in a very quick and very rhythmical movement. At certain moments, the chain joins its two ends and forms a frolicsome circle or carole, or
it unstrings, and the dancers skip under the arch formed by two dancers who have separated from it. They can move to any music with a regular pulse in duple or triple time, simple or compound. The Rounds were quite pretty and easy to dance with the importance of the dancing of the figures, such as the: 'Arches, The Hay or Grand Chain, L'Escargot (the snail) and Threading the needle' with the 'Arched figures' being the most characteristic.
They are danced to the popular airs composed for this purpose. The music was very up and lively. The dance was one of celebration (weddings, births, anniversaries etc.). Originally one person sings the stanza, then everybody joins the refrain in chorus, holding hands and skipping very vigorously in a circle as one sees children do:
* Avait une rose, Sur mon sein l'a mis.
* Les gens qui sont jeunes, Le marieront-ils?
All the dancers would answer in singing, "Oui, Oui!" and they jump as high as they can. When going thru the arch the dancers would yell out the name 'Thesus'. The dance seems to have been popular in the 1890s.
The farandole has some similarities to the gavotte, jig, and tarantella with the carmagnole of the French Revolution is a derivative. In Belvédère, during the festival honoring the patron Saint Blaise, the most recently-married couple will lead the dance rather than the abbat-mage. Musically, the dance is a moderate to fast tempo 6/8 time and usually played by a flute and drum.
The Bulgarian Chorovod and the Servian Kolo are gigantic Farandoles, in which all the female population of a city or village would take part. On the occasion of certain feasts the young girls would assemble in a garden outside of the city and lead an immense brawl (Branle/ball), conducted by one of them, who sings verses. Half of the dancers would support the voice, the others repeated after each verse and always thus, even to the end of the song. The chorovodka (leader of the chorus) yields her place to her neighbor and went to the end of the procession. Each dancer must have her turn, unless all prefer to leave the charge to the one who has the prettiest voice and the best memory. These songs were always legends put into verse and music; ballads gathered from generation to generation.