Dear Dance Studio, College Dance Depts,
I Barbara of The Dancing Spirit Studio,1759 Main Rd,Tiverton, RI. Modern Ballet ,Classical Mid East
Belly Dance artist,connecting two dance worlds.BFA Dance,SUNY Purchase.
In many countries Mid East Belly Dance is studied alongside Ballet & Modern. Not so in the USA.We are
behind. My experience in both dance worlds enables me to explain & fuse dance forms.I teach music education, technique,
isolations,veil,skirt & choreography.I have veils & hip scarves for classes,workshops.
Most Ballet,Modern dancers are not aware that Belly Dance can enhance their dance.I didn’t know either.
I had the misconceptions most people do until I began learning the dance. I, as many, became hooked.My dance friend
Blanca said it well" Belly Dance grabs you". Ballet & Modern Dance etc is extensions, lightness,pointed toes, traveling
thru space.Performances don't engage interaction with audience as the dance is usually on a stage.Belly Dance is earthy,
soft-knees,can be danced on a dime,in intimate spaces.It expresses torso curves,circles,isolations.Much is learned
personally & about world thru the study of Belly Dance.
Misconceptions are "My belly is too big or I have a belly to shake".The belly showing isn’t important.No one
dances with a belly.Belly Dance education is the vocabulary of expressive torso, hips, rhythms, arms and hands.It
includes techniques which connect to global dance forms which can add interesting choreographic possibilities.Students,
all ages & levels can learn the dance together. I believe the dance should be a requirement for all dancers
Belly Dance in essence is Middle Eastern Folk Dance .It requires proud posture,grace & controll.It is
completely different from Ballet & Modern etc but combined the dance forms are beautiful.It is easier on the body as
legs stay closer to the floor but learning is a challenge.To be pro takes
6 yrs but students can feel they know something quickly. Belly Dance can grow classical dancers & non-dancers.It is
vocabulary, style, body awareness, education & fitness.Belly Dancers are the music & interpret it with knowledge of
rhythms & style. Great Belly Dancers have a body confident attitude which develops over time & which is a different body
attitude than in Ballet and Modern which is enhancing for classical dancers.
For beginners Belly Dance Wear is what is most comfortable but individual style grows & changes as
students learn. When a students ties a hip scarf, or feels the light silky lift of a 3 yd veil, or feel movements with full
skirt it is a beginning of entering a vast dance world.
Well-trained Belly Dancers can also earn an income performing in restaurants,at weddings,for house parties
and more. Belly Dance is the western name for Mid East Dance also called Raqs Sharqi, Cabaret, American Belly Dance,
Tribal Style. The vocab of all styles is the same but the musical interpretation changes from region to country with
costume styles and with performance execution.