Thursday, 10 May 2007

A bit about dance . . .

I thought I'd write a little about my dancing today, as my camera has run out of battery power and I can't take any pictures of knitting. I wish I could, I just learned how to crochet and am making a crochet wave blanket, inspired by yarnstorm's blankets. In fact, it's the same pattern, but I'll write about it tomorrow. I'll have to get some batteries!

I've been belly dancing now for 2 1/2 years. I go to a class on Thursdays, and another on Saturday. On Saturday I also go to American Tribal Style and Bollywood classes. I've totally got the dancing bug, I'm obsessed with it! My teachers are really good, and the classes are always interesting and fun. I go to workshops when I can, I've been to workshops by Lorna Gow (I also went to one of her classes before she went to Cairo, and she's amazing! I learned so much from just one term with her!), Fareshteh (not sure if I've spelled that right), and Khaled.

What I love about belly dance is that it's so suited for the female form. Any woman can do it, you don't have to be stick thin like a ballerina, and it really shows off the curves and attitude of a woman. Every woman dances differently, I've seen this in my classes, and their personality really comes through in the dance. We're all doing the same moves, but it can look so different. It's great for body image, because it is so suited for the female form. I've heard people saying it helped with recovery from eating disorders, and I know it's definitely increased my own confidence! Also, I love performing, and the belly dance 'scene' gives plenty of opportunity to do that, with lots of haflas where people get together and dance. The other dancers are so supportive and accepting as well. I never realised really how much I love performing (I always just thought of it as showing off before), but it's such a great feeling dancing for (and with!) other people. It's really opened up a whole other side to my personality that was hidden before!

Tribal is more about dancing in a group. It's mostly improvised on the night, one dancer leads and the others follow by reading her signals. This is definitely a dance for improving confidence! It's nerve-racking dancing in front of the group, having to remember moves, and signals, and make up the moves that are coming up next, all in the same moment! But it's great fun, and the people who do tribal are REALLY friendly and supportive. It seems to attract the type of person who works well in a group. I suppose in order to dance it, you have to be that type of person really. It's good practice for me, I'm quite shy and am not usually good in groups!

Bollywood! That class is sooo energetic and exciting. Lots of jumping, moving, and hand movements! Our teacher teaches us a dance every term, and it's so fast-paced, and fun!

I think I'm improving in my dancing. I still have a hell of a lot to learn, and much confidence to build up before I'll be anywhere near good, but it's very inspiring going to classes and workshops and learning new things. This is really just an overview about my dancing, there's so much more I could say, and I'm sure I will as this blog goes on.

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