All forms of folk dance reflect the social and cultural wealth of communities, and knowledge of and interaction with other cultural communities helps to transmit them from one generation to another.
Folk dances and musical forms, performed traditionally during important social or religious celebrations, were an integral part of the cultural and regional traditions of North Africa and the Middle East. Influenced by increased interaction with European culture, new rhythms and harmonies were integrated with traditional styles of dance and music. This is seen, for example, in Flamenco music and dance, whose Arab, Berber, Romany gypsy, Jewish and local Spanish influences can all be felt. The tarantella, from Italy, reveals a similar synthesis, of rhythm, sound and instrumental composition, with Arabic musical forms. In the majority of the Balkan countries, the Trakia region and western Anatolia, a similar cultural synthesis of rhythm and sound, instruments and dance forms reveal a common cultural heritage formed historically through a combination of Slavic, Greek, Byzantine and Ottoman influences.