Egyptian Style?

Aniseteph

New member
If I was being taught this as Egyptian style belly dance... :confused:. Well I don't really think so. But maybe "many elements of Egyptian, Turkish, Spanish, Indian, and Moroccan styles..." is fair enough. I don't know enough about most of those styles to say. Perhaps this was a multi-fusional choreography.

But IMNSHO using Turkish/Egyptian as a description to mean not tribal/gothic is not exactly conducive to the accurate labelling of belly dance and related dance genres.
 

Kashmir

New member
So I wanted to share a choreography of a local teacher's...She usually advertises her stuff as Egyptian style...occasionally she'll advertise that she teaches Egyptian and Turkish...

YouTube - The Jewels Rock!
If this clip was what she calls "Egyptian" - I'd have to strongly disagree!! I know Randa has a thing with high kicks - but as a rule Egyptian doesn't include them, nor sword, nor upper body undulations, nor ...

So I questioned her in an email about her calling what she does Egyptian...and here is her response:

It's true that I do combine many elements of Egyptian, Turkish, Spanish, Indian, and Moroccan styles...but if we are going to go to the picky state, we have to then look at Badia of Egypt for a "real" Egyptian style Belly Dance...because it evolves and takes many different forms. More so when you are not in Egypt looking at the latest trends that are not even close to the original ways. Some instructors don't even teach torso isolations which are very key to Egyptian movements. That doesn't make them to have a "less" Egyptian style.

I usually advertise Egyptian and Turkish styles to differentiate from Tribal and Gothic styles which are definitely very different. So I hope that clarifies your concerns. I've perform with the best and I have never been questioned because they understand the above.

What do you all think?
Actually there is no "Indian" (or Spanish) belly dance - any more than "North American" belly dance - which is what this clip looked like. And I believe the Moroccan belly dance is copied from further east - although they do have their own dance styles which can be incorporated as appropriate.

Yes, "Egyptian" takes many forms. But usually you can still look at a range of mixed clips and pick out the Egyptian ones - they have "something". And no, Egyptian does not include the extreme torso articulations seen in the clip. They tend to be ab generated rather than using the muscles of the back and ribs.

Turkish and Egyptian are very different - unless you are watching a Turkish dancer performing Arabic style. Sounds like your teacher just wants to avoid using the words "cabaret" or "nightclub" - or "raqs sharqi". I guess this is what happens when the term "belly dance" is appropriated by Tribal and Gothic dancers. Maybe we should mount an action to get it back so it can be used for generic belly dance ;)
 

Is'adZahira

New member
Maybe when she said "Spanish" was erroneously talking about "Flamenco"; and when she said Indian was referring to Bollywood kind of choreographies; I remember that Bellydance Superstarts Company did something like that in a presentation at Follies Bergere .

Now, what she is showing in the video is not Egyptian at all, she could have incorporated some steps but you would never see a truly Egyptian choreography where the dancer opens her legs.
 

Sita

New member
Maybe when she said "Spanish" was erroneously talking about "Flamenco"; and when she said Indian was referring to Bollywood kind of choreographies; I remember that Bellydance Superstarts Company did something like that in a presentation at Follies Bergere .

I don't know what Bollywood films Bellydance Superstars have been watching as that to me was nothing like bollywood dance it was missing all the joy,energy and fun of bollywood and more importantly it was flat and lifeless; which too me is the polar opposite of bollywood. It appeared to me like sterotype indian motifs, particularly ones that seemed to try and give the impression of a Bharatanatyam dance, with a couple of hip movements added over indian music and maybe with a little kathak like spin at the end.
Bollywood dance is more like this:


even it's solos are more energetic

I have seen 6yr old children with no major dance lessons do better :rolleyes:
Anyway sorry for that rant couldn't help it I'm a bollywood and Classical Indian dance fan :) and I kind of expect more from a professional dance company - even from what I've heard of them A) its a matter of artistic intergrity(sp) and B) Bollywood dance is all about fusion.

Anyway back to the topic; the dance shown looked like a form of American cabaret to me - very diffrerent from Egyptian - and I'm far from an expert at these things but the kicks, torso movements and the arms and everything else....:naghty:the egyptian i know. Why does'nt she just refer to it as Oriental, or AmCab? people will still come - the lure of the props for one :)
Also in regards to these Spanish, Indian styles I just assumed she meant borrowing elements from non-MED dance forms as Is'adZahira said however reading it back I'm starting to wonder. Her phrasing does seem imply a Indian and Spainish style of belly dance. What are her teaching credentials/ experience? - I'm really unimpressed by what I saw.

Sita
 
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Phoebedances

New member
It's not Egyptian or Turkish. More American Caberet simply because it has such a conglomeration of moves.

My Egyptian teacher said, 'No Egyptian dances with a sword, no Egyptian gets down on the floor.. why would you want to lay on the floor and get your costume all dirty?' The putting the arms up palms flat together and the side to side head move is definitely not Egyptian either.

I did see a You Tube clip, though, of Samia Gamal dancing in this set that looked a bit like a palace with pillars and some 'suppporting dancers' and two men dressed as Egyptian palace guards. She did employ some kicks to the front as she moved around the room, but it was as she was stepping out.. like kick, walk, walk.. kick.. walk walk.. and she had a veil and it was very, very lovely. Moumoud Reda did this step in a workshop I attended where he did a bit of a grapevine to the side, turning a bit to the right and the left and then at the end he went a bit up on his supporting foot, and had a pause with the other leg in the air about a foot and a half off the ground before he started the other way, so it was a little kick. This was a candelabra dance, though and it was very impressive to think of him keeping the candelabra balanced while doing this.

I really didn't see the point in that choreography of having the sword in it at all. They made a big deal of running to the back and grabbing them and then did one balancing trick on the hip? The diving to the floor part didn't make a lot of sense either, since they didn't do too much when there, and I found the part where they took off their zills and bent over to lay them on the floor distracting, but that's just my opinion.
 

Samira bint Aya

New member
This choreography has exactly what I don’t like. It lacks musicality.

I don’t object to the multi-fusion part, although it is not to my taste.

What I really dislike is that they move independently from the music. Where is the expression? :confused:

Never mind “Egyptian style dance”, I refuse to call this “dance”.
 

nitewindz

New member
It's not Egyptian or Turkish. More American Caberet simply because it has such a conglomeration of moves.

My Egyptian teacher said, 'No Egyptian dances with a sword, no Egyptian gets down on the floor.. why would you want to lay on the floor and get your costume all dirty?' The putting the arms up palms flat together and the side to side head move is definitely not Egyptian either..
I agree this is American cabaret.

But, I've heard that Egyptian dance originally did include floor work - Floor work was one of the things specifically banned in the 1940s, along with showing bellies, etc. So now after 60+ years of banishment, floor work is no longer part of Egyptian dance.

And I agree - I don't want to roll around on a dirty floor in my expensive costumes!

I really didn't see the point in that choreography of having the sword in it at all. They made a big deal of running to the back and grabbing them and then did one balancing trick on the hip? The diving to the floor part didn't make a lot of sense either, since they didn't do too much when there, and I found the part where they took off their zills and bent over to lay them on the floor distracting, but that's just my opinion
Again, I agree. Why did they even bother taking the zills off? They did nothing that required intricate finger movements ... might as well leave them on..
 

Farasha Hanem

New member
*after watching the video in question*

oO?

oO;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

GaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm by no means sophisticated enough to tell you Egyptian from Turkish, Lebanese, or AmCab, but I think I've seen enough bellydance now to know when it's bad, and this isn't just bad, it's baaaaaaaaaaad. :doh: I can't even call this "Bellydance 101" (more like "Bellydance Pre-K"?). The dancers aren't together, and for me, there is too much of a lot of mish-mash going on. It's like they tried to throw in as many props in one number as possible (so, like, where were the canes? lol). I liked the music, even if it wasn't authentic, but, well, how do I describe it? It's like they really weren't feeling the music. The whole performance for me was kind of like it was sort of an afterthought for them. IMNSHO, they weren't all that. :rolleyes:

Momentary hijack: To Sita-*HUGZZZZUUUUUUU!!!!!* :D Thank you for those two video posts; I love Bollywood! :D Strangely enough, I have that BDSS clip in my collection, not so much because I like it, but I've got it as an example of how not to dance Bollywood. Again (as already mentioned), their performance was so not from the heart. Some of the girls weren't even smiling, let alone dancing with joy. That performance for me ranks as one of BDSS's worst ones.
 

janaki

New member
*after watching the video in question*

oO?

oO;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

GaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Let me make some more sounds to what Farasha already contributed!!!

umn.....ouch....G.....shish....oh no.....OMG....lol

A dance presented as an ART form is very different to a dance that is presented as exhibitionism...look how many moves I can do...a move per second attitude. It looked to me that belly dance moves are overlayed on music but not danced to what music is saying. The lead dancer looked technically ok. I don't understand why a dancer with no particular style, can't call herself an oriental dancer???

Sita, you made great points about bollywood dancing!!!!
 

speckie

New member
well I do think this is American Cabaret style but like many said, in a bad way. It's clear that the performers are not well connected and it makes this look like a students' performance... not even mention some of the student performances I've watched are really much more graceful and enjoyable...
 

sstacy123

New member
Well the thing about this teacher is though I think I have seen her advertise the group as a professional troupe there are certainly varying levels of skill...some of the people have been dancing for years and some not so long...which is especially true of some of her even more recent shows...The lead dancer in this piece is actually a very good dancer...and her own personal style of dancing doesn't look anything like what this teacher does...And several of my friends have joined this teacher...so, you know some people like that...it wasn't for me but my main gripe was about her advertising herself as Egyptian when she's not...
 

speckie

New member
I agree that each individual dancer is good, but it's a group choreography and difficult to see in this video the connection of everyone while dancing :)... then what's the point of a group choreo?
 
Not Egyptian
Not Turkish
Not Morrocan
Not Lebanese

When all of these genres are mixed together, then the result does not represent a true form but a fusion.
The choreography is a fusion of all of these style against the backdrop of generic Arabic pop music. In this case, the dancers were performing American or better yet Westernized nightclub cabaret act.
To describe the dance as something it is not does not inform the audience/student of what it actually is!!

As Samira mentioned, there is no connection wth the music...not just the beat but the feeling is totally lacking. Often the choice of music is the first clue about what the dance is about, if she had chosen an Egyptian musical piece(whether classical, folkloric or shaabi) then she would have been closer to calling the dance Eyptian. Alas she did not.
Yasmine
 

Moon

New member
I think it's not even those styles put together. There are movements in there I even haven't seen in American style. This is purely her own fantasy imo.
 

Aniseteph

New member
Rather than start a new "?Egyptian" thread, thought I might as well tack this onto one of the ones we've already got.

belly dancing - Renee's Magical Bellydancing Video Volume 1, belly dancing for beginners

Misses Egyptian style by miles IMO, because of A'isha's "it's not just about the moves" and Hossam Ramzy's "listen to the music and dance to it"? If this isn't a great example of those two rules of belly dance, I don't know what is.

Maybe the music was out of synch, but if a technical hitch makes a clip a bad illustration, surely you don't put it on your site. I wouldn't have posted but this is being taught as an advanced level workshop...:shok: And calling it "ARTISTIC Egyptian style" is not a get out clause.

(on a positive note, I love this dance! Just had a bellydance revelation moment - got my head/body around the difference between chonks and taqs while waiting for the kettle to boil :yay:. The glass door in one of the kitchen cupboards makes a handy mirror, expect the neighbours think I'm odd though :D)
 

Sita

New member
:shok:Wow!! that was just wierd I don't think her body appeared to respond and interpret the music at any point in that video. And for an advanced workshop actually claiming to teach you that rhythm my lord... its kind of scary...
I don't even know what you would cartogorize that dance as it's not Egyptian, not Amcab prehaps we can place it as experimental style (as in dancing completly against the music:think:)
It must be a technical glitch ... someone please tell me its a technical glitz and she's not teaching people to dance like that....

Sita
 
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PriscillaAdum

New member
WHO is Badia of Egypt? Is she referring to Badia Masabni of LEBANON??
Badia Masabni may have lived in Egypt in her later years but she was very Lebanese.
As for torso isolations being key to Egyptian style dance...uh, NO. Where'd she get that idea?
We have some dancers in my area professing to teach Egyptian style complete with swords, isis wings, veil, double veil and floorwork. hehehe


Regards
Priscilla
 
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