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The Sicilian

     Le Siciliano was a peasant dance of Sicily, a graceful pastorale which can be performed by a solo dancer or group, and was often given to the sound of the flageolet and tambourine. It carries with it the sunny influence of the Siciliano country to which it owes its birth. Venus, The Goddess of Love was born in Sicily so its no wonder this dance is a love dance expressing tender courtship and where it played its part at many weddings, festivals and Masquerades to the strains of a flute accompanied by a tambourine, but it need not be a solo dance. In that country, the man chooses his partner first,

and they dance together, each holding a handkerchief. Then he retires having, it is supposed, avowed his love, and she dances alone for a while, and chooses another partner which shows that it has not always been the gentlemen who had to select their partners.

    By 1877 this dance was very seldom used, but exceedingly graceful. It was one of the most difficult to execute, and consisted of 33, 35, and 40 tours de Mazourka. The gentlemen commenced in figure one, with the second movements in the Varsoviana. The Tarentella and Saltarello were very close in design.

Birth Place

Creation Date


Dance Type

Sicilano Country, Italy 1800s n/a Courtship

Posters, Lobby Cards etc.

Sheet Music Covers

Music Titles

n/a n/a 1835 - The Sicilian Dance (Reed)
            1898 - Siciliene (Faure)
            A Luna Ammenzu 'U Mari
            Si Maritau Rosa
            Valzer Siciliano

Night Clubs



n/a n/a Italy



Ballets / Stage

n/a n/a n/a

Other Related Dances of the time...

L'Italienne Polka St Vitus Dance Varsoviana
La Tarentella Redowa Tuscan Tresca Veith
Mazourka Salterelo Valse Wedding Dance
Pastoral Sicilian Pole Dance    

Dancers, Choreographers etc.


Cerrito & St. Leon n/a n/a

Books, Magazine Articles on the dance...

Title Author Date Published Publisher
How To Dance a revival of ancient dances Ardern, Holt 1907 Cox

Musicians / Composers


Poets / Writers

Faure, Gabriel (1845-1924) n/a n/a

Misc. Research Words that may be related ... to help your searches

n/a     -

Basic Steps ... (from Holt's Dancing made easy)
1. Step forward with right foot, then with the left, and turn. Step to the left and then to the right, and turn. Repeat the same thing, accompanying each step with a tambourine.
2. Pirouette to the left, point the foot to the right. Then repeat and make the chassé forward. That occupies seven beats of the music, and then point to the left, and pose, the arms raised upwards, using the tambourine.
3. Four pas de basques forward and four back, then a pirouette to the right and four pas de Basques forward, a pirouette to the left and four back.
4. Point the toe of the left foot four times, then back with the right foot, pirouette to the right, point the toe four times, and back with the left foot, and pirouette to the left.
5. Eight pas de Basques forward, and turning on the fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth round, with pirouette and pose. It is a gay dance in 6-4, 6-8 time. (Purcell's Suite No. 11 gives suitable music).