"Eh, bull's-eye, but where you roll, you get into my mouth - you won't come back!" The words may be different, but the melody is always recognizable, like the dance itself, known as the "Apple". A true "visiting card" of the Russian fleet!
The whole character of the dance emphasizes its marine origin. First, the dance moves are typically masculine, designed to demonstrate not grace, but strength. Secondly, these movements involve dancing in a confined space: the arms are folded on the chest, the torso is straightened, the legs make movements in one place. It is easy to imagine that sailors could entertain themselves with such a dance in a moment of rest, and this is how another characteristic feature of the dance was born: two dancers alternately demonstrate and repeat certain movements one after another.
English ancestor "Apple"
The origins of this dance are to be found in England. A folk dance with syncopated hornpipe rhythm has existed here since the 15th century. The name alludes to those instruments to the accompaniment of which he was performed - horn and trumpet. The movements consisted mainly of jumping in place and swinging with bent legs. At the same time, the hands almost did not move, they were either held on the belt, or pulled along the body, or folded on the chest.
There were several varieties of hornpipe, both three-beat and two-beat, the latter being known as the sailors' hornpipe. Probably such a dance was easy to dance in the heavy shoes worn by the sailors.
Sailor dance in Russia
The dance, which came from England, in our country has absorbed the elements of the Russian dance. However, it was the dance movements that were borrowed, but not the melody. It is no longer possible to establish who was its author, but its similarity with the Moldavian folk song "Kalach" is noted. Perhaps she was the source.
One way or another, the melody, merged with the sailor's dance, turned out to be in demand in the conditions of revolutionary upheavals and civil war. It was easy to remember, it was distinguished by its energy, it was easy to put words of any content on it. There were many verses for this melody:
Eh, bull's-eye, Yes, the side is green.
Kolchak through the Urals
They were not ordered to walk.
Eh, bull's-eye, Yes rolled, And the bourgeois power
Of course, politics was not always the theme of the verses:
Eh, bull's-eye, Yes, on a platter.
I'm tired of my wife
I'll go to the girls.
And yet, first of all, "Yablochko" was associated with sailors. So, in the ballet "Red Poppy", staged in 1927, the composer R. Glier used this melody as a dance of Soviet sailors.
Yablochko remains that way to this day. On stage, it is performed by dancers dressed in vests and peakless caps. The only change that the dance has undergone is the participation of women in it, but this is rare.