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Regin Smiður a Faroese Ballad, Faroese Chain Dance on Ólavsøka 2011

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Published on Aug 19, 2011

Regin Smiður is a very long Faroese ballad (kvæði), it has 131 verses. This film shows Faroese people dancing the traditional Faroese chain dance while singing "Regin Smiður". Parts of the ballad have become famous in around the world because of the Faroese Viking metal band Týr, who made their own version of the ballad. I have added the lyrics in Faroese, but I have not translated the text into English (it is too difficult, it is a very poetic language and there are words which I don't understand even if Faroese is my mother tongue.
The dance is recorded in a former theatre in Tórshavn, which is called Sjónleikarhúsið. This event is public, it is for people who love to dance the Faroese chain dance, sometimes tourists join in the dance. I have recorded from vers 46 to 77, so the beginning and the end of the ballad (kvæði in Faroese) is missing, but you will get an idea of the Faroese chain dance anyway I think by watching this. Some people from other countries find it interesting. The chain dance is popular amongs some people and some people have no interest what so ever, but here you can see some passionate dancers. There is one person who leads the dance, he (in this case it is a man) starts every vers and after two-three words the rest of the people join him, if they remember the text. The one who leads the Faroese dance often has some other men or women to help him to remember the verses, sometimes there are a few men, perhaps three to five men who help the "skipper" to lead the dance. The leader is called "skipari" which means skipper or captain. If you come from another country and would like to try to dance the Faroese chain dance, Ólavsøka is a good oppertunity to try it. There is Faroese chain dance in Sjónleikarhúsið on 28 July late in the evening until 3 or 4 in the morning, and on 29 July there is outdoor dancing with lots and lots of people dancing in the streets in front of the parliament building and the Town Hall of Tórshavn and the Tourist Information. I have uploaded another film from the outdoor Faroese chain dance, it is after the midnight singing on 29 July (between 29 and 30 July).
Regin Smiður is a person from the Niebelungen Lied, which you can read about on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nibelung... - "Smiður" means black smith. Sjúrður (Sigurd in English) wants him to make him a very strong sword, so he can kill the dragon (ormur in Faroese). Regin wants the dragon's heart in return. The dragon is called Fávnir (Fafnir). There are four Faroese ballads which together are called Sjúrðar kvæðini (Sigurd's ballads), Regin Smiður is one of them, the other two are Brynhildar Táttur and Høgna Táttur 1 and 2. They all have the same refrain:
Grani bar gullið av heiði,
brá hann sínum brandi av reiði,
Sjúrður vann av orminum,
Grani bar gullið av heiði.'

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