Photo © Narek Harutyunyan
National Armenian dances are something that every Armenian should be proud of. They are all full of tranquility, peace, joy, love and tender. Ver-veri (Վեր-վերի) or Ver-Veruk (Վեր-վերուկ) is one of the most beautiful Armenian dances, popular in all regions of Armenia. It belongs to the two steps-forward/one step-back type of dances and is very easy to learn.

The name Ver-veri indicates the mood of the dance — light, joyful and sometimes even humorous. The root of the word “Վեր-վերի” means to jump up high, to dance from joy, to rejoice. It also includes the meaning of height and upwards. In old Armenian this dance was called Vernapar, which means “dance upwards.”

Leaps and jumps are used quite often in Armenian dances. They symbolize the efforts of the dancers to have a magical impact on the fertility of the plants, birds, animals and humans. Ver-veri is usually performed in circles, either hand in hand or by holding each others’ shoulders, with handkerchiefs attached to their waists.

As mentioned above, Ver-veri is quite easy to learn. I suggest you watching the tutorial, which, unfortunately, is available only in Armenian, but I will try to help you with the language:

In the first part the choreographer speaks about the dance. Ver-veri has 2 versions – average and high speed.

Average speed version: dancers perform hands down by taking each others’ hands. Hands slowly move back and forth during the dance. The feet movements are as follows: right foot makes a step to the right, left foot makes a cross-step to the right, right foot makes another step to the right, left foot makes a move in the air without touching the ground, and then goes backward. Then the right foot moves to the left in the air and comes back to its initial position.  

High speed version: dancers hold each others’ shoulders. The feet movements are basically the same, they just perform this version with more leaps and jumps.

To me the dance is more beautiful when it is performed with at least 7-8 people. I suggest you watching the full dance video below:

You already have an understanding about this beautiful dance of Ver-veri and probably know the basic steps. Now time to turn on the music and jump up high!

Download Ver-veri music here!