Nadira Jamal's Improv DVD

adiemus

New member
Does anyone have this? Opinions? I'd love to see if anyone has written a review...
Thanks
Bronnie
 

teela

New member
I am in transit but I do have this DVD and I'll give you an off the head review and information.
First off, I love it. The DVD discusses noodling which is just playing around with the music, keeping a journal of your dance moves you know well, doing exercises that allow you to do one move at a time to music and using it to explore the floor space, arm movement with the move, etc. It then moves on to combining moves in various ways. This DVD is the first released in proposed series of 5.
It is designed to help increase a person's ability to do improvisation without freezing up or thinking about the next move. I love it and am working my way through the DVD slowly. It can be used to help any level of dancer. The second volume is due out soon.
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
I agree teela -- I got a lot out of this dvd. There are sections where you just PRACTICE, so the screen is blank. That put me off the first time I sat down and just WATCHED it, but working with the dvd made me really appreciate those exercises.

Bahaia has a dvd out about improv too, and I've tried to watch it, but everytime I try, I get interrupted. It seems similar in structure to Nadira's.
 

adiemus

New member
It sounds a bit like the way Ranya Renee's baladi one is set up, with the music looped so you can practice although she dances all the way through.
 

Mosaic

Super Moderator
Funny that DVD came up, I actually just ordered it from Amazon yesterday, because I received a gift cert from a friend, I tossed up between several DVDs and decided getting my head around improv just might be a good idea, so seeing a couple of good remarks on it makes me feel I have at least made a good choice:D Now to wait out the usual 3 weeks it takes for Amazon to get their stuff to Aussie.

Hmmmm maybe I should have a NY resolution on practising patience ? :lol:
~Mosaic
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
The nice thing about this dvd is that no matter what level a dancer you are, you can get a lot out of it. It's one I WON'T be selling. I'll be keeping this one and working with it (most likely) for the rest of my dance "career."

I took notes the first time I just watched it, and the dvd is really full of good information, and you can take her notes and create your own practice "noodling" exercises.

As soon as I get paid, I'm ordering vol. 2.
 

adiemus

New member
**important**

By strange coincidence, I got this email today from Nadira Jamal:

'TODAY ONLY: Special-Order PAL-Formatted Improvisation Toolkit Volume 1

I'm sorry to send two emails so close together, but this is time-sensitive.

This message is for those of you in Europe, Australia, NZ, and other places where PAL is the standard TV format. (Those of you in North America, etc., can ignore this.)

I don't usually keep the PAL-formatted version of the Improvisation Toolkit Volume 1: Movement Recall in stock, so it's usually available only directly from the manufacturer.
However, I'm about to reorder the NTSC version from the manufacturer, so I could pick up some PAL copies as well.

If you'd like me to order a copy for you, please let me know by 5pm Eastern Time tomorrow: Friday, January 8th. I'm sorry to give you so little notice, but I need to restock the other videos ASAP.
You order via Paypal - using this email addy
nadira [at] nadirajamal [dot] com

Recommended!
 

Mosaic

Super Moderator
That was nice of her to let everyone know. I have NTSC/Pal DVD player and they also are OK on my computer so I never worry about having PAL only. My computer has a 24" screen so it is great for DVDs, I don't have to push everyone off the TV downstairs if I want to play my BD DVDS:D

After the good rap I can't wait to get it!.
~Mosaic
 

Jujube

New member
Improvisation Toolkit: PLUS: I liked the noodling concept, and the activity of categorizing moves. NEGATIVE: I found this to be a one-time watch. Once I had the info, I had it. I sold it after I watched it. Also, the way she talks is clearly from cue cards--she seems uncomfortable and her eyes keep darting back and forth. A little distracting.

Bahaia's Combinography: PLUS: Bahaia wowed me with her stage presence and beautiful movement. I've been working with this one the past few days and love it. There are some unique moves I've never seen, and some combinations I really enjoy. She is loose and comfortable in front of the camera. Her instruction is smooth and organized, and it's easy to pick it up--her breakdown is great. She doesn't repeat something so long you feel the need to fast-forward to the next thing. Also, the menu is really broken out by section, so it's easy to find something quickly or repeat a section. She also talks about categorizing your steps, and gives you ways to get "unstuck" when doing improv. Also, she shows ways to vary your "safety" or "signature" move.

Bottom line: Bahaia's Combinography is a real keeper!

Hope that helps. :)

ETA: I just realized I didn't put any negatives on Bahaia's DVD. The only thing I can come up with is that the set is lackluster. It's just a carpet, and the background is all unlit so that she's in an abyss of black. Doesn't really bother me though!
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
Improvisation Toolkit: PLUS: I liked the noodling concept, and the activity of categorizing moves. NEGATIVE: I found this to be a one-time watch. Once I had the info, I had it.
Really? Well different strokes for different folks. :)

I still work with this one, and I've had it since it came out -- about a year I guess?


It's funny how different people's tastes can be. I bought Tamalyn Dallal's "Sensual Passion" dvd and thought it was a complete waste of time, but people on Shira's video group LOVED it. I guess that's why there's a secondary market, though :)
 

Jujube

New member
It's definitely true that different things appeal to different people. It's all about what style you admire, the kind of thing you like to study, what you personally have already learned (and what you haven't), how quickly you pick things up....lots of variables! No one video will please everyone.

Makes it tough for us to try to select the DVDs that will be most useful to us though! :)
 

teela

New member
I have both Combinagraphy and the Toolkit and I like them both as they dovetail. The thing I do not like about the Combinagraphy that I do like about the toolkit is the sessions where the music is played with no demo so I can do the movement I want. I find it very difficult to do a movement different to what Bahaia is doing in some of her exercises unless I turn my back away from the TV. I think both are keepers and work with both. I also like that the Toolkit had some additional sessions I could download from her website for more practice.
 
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