Halay is the national dance of Turkey and a regional category of folk dance styles in central, southern, eastern, and southeastern Turkey. It is mainly performed by Turks, Arabs, and Kurds in Turkey. Halay and similar dances are parts of multiple ancient folk dance traditions and cultures throughout the Middle East and regions in proximity.


These dances are mostly found in weddings and generally accompanied by zurna and davul, but in the recent years, electronic instruments have started to replace them. Typically, Halay dancers form a circle or a line, while holding each other in many ways, such as finger to finger, shoulder to shoulder, or hand to hand. The last and the first player may hold a piece of cloth. It usually begins slow and speeds up.

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