Location: Thunder Bay, Ont.
Just signed up today. There's not much discussion happening in this section. Would love to chat with other belly dancers/enthusiasts/hobbyists etc. I fell in love with this dance form over three years ago and still love it. What made you become a Belly dance fan?
Location: Los Angeles
Hi fellow newbie I signed up today too!!! I have been passionate about Bellydancing for only a year. I guess I became interested after exhausting so many other styles of dance over the past 27yrs,plus it was one of the 1st auditions I responded to when I began looking for professional dance gigs in LA. I have given up evey weekend since that day to perform. How did you get introduced?
Location: Los Angeles
Oooops how funny, I never even looked at the date APRIL 2004!!!!Guess nobody bothers to go to this forum, thats a shame
Location: Northern New Jersey
Hi all...I realize that this is an under-used forum...but I thought I'd check in!
I am Gia al Qamar...a professional belly dancer in Northern NJ! I've danced all my life, but began studying to dance professionally just about 5 years ago. I now teach and my weekends are booked with shows and events, parties and other appearances!
Nice to meet whom ever visits this forum!
Hello, I am interested in beginning belly dancing and would like to know what is the best way to start? I thought I would start with purchacing a DVD and learn some of the moves before I get brave enough to take a class. Can anyone recommend a great beginning DVD to help me get started?
TracyLynn, Go to naturaljourneys.com they have TONS of videos for all types of dances! I have the Belly Dancing with Pilates one! It's great and Suhaila is awesome and very informative!
Location: Whidbey Island, WA USA
I would suggest finding an instructor instead of using a video. Videos don't break down the moves, and many of my students have been injured using them before they began lessons with me. www.shira.net is a great place to find an instructor in your area. Look for one who offers a free class to begin with. This way you can check out her ability to teach without shelling out money for classes you may not want to take. Also, be aware that there are MANY instructors out there who are self-taught these days (many times using those videos as their sole instruction!). You'll want to inquire about your prospective teacher's training, and history of injuries, if any, she's incurred while dancing. Bellydance should never hurt you, but should strengthen your body instead. If an instructor says she's been injured while dancing, or has ever injured a student, please look elsewhere. There are some wonderful teachers out there, just have to do a little homework.
I have been passionate about Bellydancing for only a year. I guess I became interested after exhausting so many other styles of dance over the past 27yrs,plus it was one of the 1st auditions I responded to when I began looking for professional dance gigs in LA.
Today there are two forms of Oriental belly dance. The first is called raqs baladi, a social dance performed for fun and celebration by men and women of all ages, usually during festive occasions such as weddings and other social gatherings. The second form, the more theatrical and the more popular in the West today, is called raqs sharqi. Like raqs baladi, raqs sharqi is performed by both male and female dancers. In regions where belly dancing is native, boys and girls learn it informally from an early age by observing and imitating their elders during family/community celebrations and gatherings with friends.Historically, most of the dances associated with belly dance were performed with the sexes separated; men with men and women with women. Few depictions of mixed dancing exist. This practice ensured that a "good" woman would not be seen dancing by anyone but her husband, her close family, or her female friends.
I was introduced to belly dance by an article in Cosmopolitan magazine (which I was NOT supposed to be reading at the age of eleven) in 1966. I was fascinated and followed the written instructions to the best of my ability. Saw my first live belly dancer when I was at college about ten years later and switched from ballet to belly dance as soon as I found an instructor. I never looked back and am still teaching and occasionally dancing several decades later.
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