Domesticus Vulgaris or Plain Domestic


The music and dance project Domesticus vulgaris, or Plain Domestic, was inspired by Cinkusi’s albums Zeleni kader and Domesticus vulgaris and the animated film Ciganjska by Marko Mestrovic and Davor Medurecan.
In a Cinkusi arrangement, every song is a motivation to dance, giving it not only a stimulus to bodily movement but also a special semantic component. This creates a distinctive corpus poeticum of music and movement, which, consciously or unconsciously, becomes a genuine source of contemporary "ethno dance".
Dancing to Cinkusi brings tears to our eyes, but at the same time gives us fits of laughter. Through tears and laughter, this amazing music makes you experience a real explosion of emotion, recognizing in yourself feelings that summon up everything primordial, instinctual, immediate, deep-rooted and fantastic within us.

The animated film Ciganjska by Marko Mestrovic and Davor Medurecan was inspired by the song “Domesticus vulgaris”, a Cinkusi original. This song puts them in quite a different dimension, revealing new musical qualities. It is based on the ballad “Ciganjska” (“In the Gypsy Style”), a text from Miroslav Krleza’s 1936 collection entitled Balade Petrice Kerempuha (Ballads of Petrica Kerempuh). As the directors themselves have remarked, the film’s atmosphere is a dark and troubled one, emphasizing feelings of alienation in the asphalt jungle and the bewildering drive toward self-destruction.


This brilliant film served me as counterpoint to a rapturous, poetic atmosphere that suddenly turns into an “anti-happy ending”. This is typical of our native environment, where celebration inevitably ends up drowning in sadness and pain. And who wouldn’t be impressed by this ability to transform the powerful adrenalin of the drmes (a Croatian folk dance – translator’s note) into the slow steps of a funeral march?
I would call this “dance without frontiers”; and that is what this music and dance performance is talking about. There is no specific story here, for the story is all around us, and woven into every song. Rather, there is only emotion and what comes out of it, along with a few personal memories about human persistence, and about music as the best means of getting through life with a few less inner scars.


Rajko Pavlic