Level One: Circle Unit, Class 2
Updated: Mar 20
This week, we learned the shoulder shimmy (relax, and try to keep the hips and hands still), the twisting hip shimmy (engage the lower abs and keep the lower back long to protect it. Keep the chest lifted and breathe to prevent cramps), the horizontal chest circle (keep the hips still, use the muscles around your back and ribs to move the ribcage), and the hip circle (long lower back, drop the tail bone in the back of the circle. Keep the hips level all the way around, and engage the glutes and abs to protect your back during the front of the circle). As always, remember to breathe check yourself for soft knees, and only go as big and as fast as you feel in control of.
For this week, let's start widening our understanding of the MENAHT area! Every 4 weeks these same links will come up, click around on Wikipedia and get to learn how diverse the Middle East, North Africa, Helenic areas, and Turkey are. Another good acronym to know is SWANA, which stands for South West Asia and North Africa. All of these regions have influenced the development of bellydance, and future classes will get into how, so having an understanding of the region is important.
Sandra, from California, does a great job of showing how our dance translates the music into movement.
This video is cut from a festival, there is lots of beledi dance (think “salt of the earth” for this context). You can see how it feels a little off set to reggae, but the clip is too fun in spite of that!
Each dancer brings her/his own personality to their style. Here are two of the biggest stars from Egypt's Golden age: Samia Gamal (listening to the record and appearing on it second) and Taheyya Karioka (the first "ghost" to dance)