Austrian Folk Dance and the Sound of Music

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Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


The Austrian Folk Dance is a traditional dance that has been around for centuries. The Sound of Music is a popular movie that was released in 1965.


Folk dancing is a traditional form of expressive dance which is characteristic of a particular group of people, usually performed to music that is specific to the group. Folk dances vary widely between cultures, but some elements are common to many dances. Typically, folk dances are performed in a circle, line, or square formation, and they often involve singing or clapping as well as dancing.

The Sound of Music is a 1965 American musical drama film directed by Robert Wise and starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. The film is an adaptation of the 1959 stage musical of the same name, composed by Richard Rodgers with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. The film’s screenplay was written by Ernest Lehman, adapted from the stage musical’s book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse.

What is Austrian Folk Dance?

Austrian folk dance (Österreichischer Volksmusik) is the folk dance of Austria. It is closely related to the other Germanic-language dances, such as those found in Bavaria, South Tyrol and Switzerland. Like most European folk dance traditions, it has regional variations which often reflect the history and cultural influences of each area.

Austrian folk dance is generally categorized into two types: ländler and waltz. The ländler is a slower, more elegant dance that originated in the countryside, while the waltz is a faster, more upbeat dance that originated in the cities.

The sound of music is also an important part of Austrian culture. Traditional Austrian music includes both folk and classical music, as well as a wide variety of other genres. Folk music is an important part of Austrian folk dance, and many traditional dances are accompanied by traditional Austrian folk songs. Classical music has also been an important part of Austria’s musical heritage for centuries, and Vienna is home to some of the world’s most renowned classical musicians and composers.

The History of Austrian Folk Dance

Austrian folk dance has been around for centuries, with different areas of the country developing their own distinct styles. One of the most well-known forms of Austrian folk dance is the Landler, which was brought to Vienna in the early 1800s by peasants from Upper Austria. The Landler is a slow, graceful dance that is often performed in couples.

Another popular form of Austrian folk dance is the Wiener Waltz, which originated in Vienna in the 19th century. The Wiener Waltz is a fast, elegant dance that is usually performed by a single couple.

Today, Austrian folk dance is still popular, both in Austria and around the world. Many people are first introduced to Austrian folk dance through the music of Johann Strauss and other famous composers from Austria. The Sound of Music, which features several scenes of Austrian folk dancing, is also responsible for introducing many people to this type of dance.

The Sound of Music and Austrian Folk Dance

The Sound of Music is one of the most popular and beloved musicals of all time. The story, set in Austria in the early 1900s, follows the von Trapp family as they escape the Nazis and find refuge in the Alps. The film’s soundtrack is filled with beautiful Austrian folk songs, many of which are still popular today.

Austrian folk dance is an important part of the country’s cultural heritage. There are hundreds of different dances, each with its own unique steps and music. Some of the most popular Austrian folk dances include the waltz, polka, and landler. Many of these dances were featured in The Sound of Music, and they are still danced by people all over the world today.

How to Do Austrian Folk Dance

Dancing has always been an important part of Austrian culture, and folk dance is no exception. As a matter of fact, some of the most popular dances originated in Austria, such as the waltz and the polka.

If you’re interested in learning how to do Austrian folk dance, there are a few things you should know. First of all, it’s important to wear the proper attire. Traditional dress for women includes a dirndl (a dress with a full skirt) or lederhosen (leather pants) for men. You’ll also need comfortable shoes that will allow you to move around easily.

Once you have your outfit sorted out, it’s time to start learning the steps. One of the most popular Austrian folk dances is the waltz, which is traditionally done to 3/4 time music. If you’re not familiar with waltzing, there are plenty of instructional videos and resources available online.

Another popular Austrian dance is the polka, which is danced to 2/4 time music. This dance is characterized by its quick, upbeat tempo and lively movements. Again, there are plenty of instructional videos available if you need help learning the steps.

If you want to really get into the spirit of Austrian culture, try attending a traditional folk dance event. These are often held in open-air settings such as town squares or parks, and they offer a great opportunity to watch dancers in traditional costume while enjoying live music.


Austrian folk dances have been around for centuries, and the Sound of Music is one of the most popular and enduring examples. Though the movie may not be completely accurate in its portrayal of Austrian culture, it has brought joy to millions of viewers and helps keep the traditions alive. If you’re looking to add a little bit of Austrian flavor to your life, consider learning a folk dance or two.

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