Sadie... hmmmm...

Meera

New member
I honestly don't like Sadie that much as a dancer (although she seems pretty sweet in real life) and I really don't know why I don't like her dancing. But when I watch her performances it never keeps my interest, also her face hardly has any expression on it. I don't know, I just dont really like her.
 

lily_raks

New member
I think Sadie has excellent technique but crams too many things into her dance. She also doesn't seem to be as passionate as other dancers who do simpler things but are moved by their love for the dance and music. I like her instructional videos because I always take something from there and I think she is a great teacher (again, she has amazing skills). But I'm not a fan of her as a performer and entertainer.
 

kaza26

New member
love her!

I love her! I saw her once on stage..she was at her 6 or 7 month pregnant..and she was amazing! great presence on stage!
 

hikari_no_yami

New member
I just got her Complete Bellydance Guide DVD and I'm waiting on the Ultimate Bellydance DVD. It's already one of my favorite DVDs. The former is geared toward beginners while the latter is more intermediate. I'm a fan of hers, no doubt about it. As for public image, it should be separate from a career, but sadly they do overlap.
 

BehindTheSun

New member
I think Sadie has great skill. Like many others have said, I feel like her performances are too much about "look what I can do" and not enough about passion, emotion or interpreting the music. Unfortunately, when a dancer lacks those qualities the performance becomes boring. That being said, if I ever had the opportunity to take a class/workshop with her, without a doubt I would!
 

lexiconlush

New member
I found a recent video of Sadie while trying to decide if I wanted to take that online workshop with her and Ansuya. I actually enjoyed this performance.

 

Ariadne

Well-known member
I wish she would stop moving her arms so much. She's just paring them with the movements without thought to the music. It's distracting from her otherwise skillful dancing.


PS. Having watched it again I will say that she is getting better. I also have to say I love her costume.
 
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Sirène

New member
I found a recent video of Sadie while trying to decide if I wanted to take that online workshop with her and Ansuya. I actually enjoyed this performance.

I enjoyed it. Of course, I'm a sucker for when belly dancers dance with tiny kids. (At 7:10 Sadie starts dancing with a toddler from the audience.)
 

Ahava_Melantha

New member
the BEST clip of her dancing that I have seen is when she's dancing to live drumming with karem Nagi, her expression was much more genuine and it didn't look so recorded.
 

Dunyah

New member
I liked it, beautiful costume, skillful dancing. I didn't see what others saw about too many pops and locks or too busy arms.

Having such a perfect body that clearly shows every movement is a wonderful thing, but at the same time it can be a little bit of a drawback, too, because sometimes a dancer with less physical perfection has worked hard to express her unique spirit. I am having a hard time putting it into words, but I've noticed that I often enjoy the dancers who have less perfect figures and more emotion, if that makes sense.
 

Yame

New member
I liked it, beautiful costume, skillful dancing. I didn't see what others saw about too many pops and locks or too busy arms.

Having such a perfect body that clearly shows every movement is a wonderful thing, but at the same time it can be a little bit of a drawback, too, because sometimes a dancer with less physical perfection has worked hard to express her unique spirit. I am having a hard time putting it into words, but I've noticed that I often enjoy the dancers who have less perfect figures and more emotion, if that makes sense.
I'd be very careful about making statements like this. No matter what one thinks of Sadie's dancing and her style, one thing is clear... she has worked very hard to achieve the level of technique she has achieved. I don't think it was your intention, but I think statements like this can be made (or read) in a dismissive manner... as if So-and-so is only capable of doing what she does because she was born with the "right" body for it... as if it didn't take her years and years of daily practice for hours and hours to be able to do it.

Plenty of people in the world have bodies shaped like Sadie's. But few can dance like her.

I'd also be very careful about using these generalizations to make excuses for our own shortcomings. It's easier to say "oh, I can't dance like that because my body isn't shaped that way" than to work hard to achieve a high level of technique. It is true that our bodies place many limitations on us... but a lot of our limitations are mental... they are limits we place on ourselves when we assume we will never be able to achieve something that is very much possible, if only we are willing and able to work for them.

Moves may look different on different body types... but there is no one "perfect" body type for belly dance. I've seen dancers of all body types and all sizes making their bodies work for them. I've also seen dancers with bodies just like Sadie's who can't dance their way out of a paper bag.
 

Dunyah

New member
I'd be very careful about making statements like this. No matter what one thinks of Sadie's dancing and her style, one thing is clear... she has worked very hard to achieve the level of technique she has achieved. I don't think it was your intention, but I think statements like this can be made (or read) in a dismissive manner... as if So-and-so is only capable of doing what she does because she was born with the "right" body for it... as if it didn't take her years and years of daily practice for hours and hours to be able to do it.

Plenty of people in the world have bodies shaped like Sadie's. But few can dance like her.

I'd also be very careful about using these generalizations to make excuses for our own shortcomings. It's easier to say "oh, I can't dance like that because my body isn't shaped that way" than to work hard to achieve a high level of technique. It is true that our bodies place many limitations on us... but a lot of our limitations are mental... they are limits we place on ourselves when we assume we will never be able to achieve something that is very much possible, if only we are willing and able to work for them.

Moves may look different on different body types... but there is no one "perfect" body type for belly dance. I've seen dancers of all body types and all sizes making their bodies work for them. I've also seen dancers with bodies just like Sadie's who can't dance their way out of a paper bag.
Yes I see what you are saying and I don't disagree with you. I didn't mean to imply that she hasn't worked hard at perfecting her technique and her art. I mean that FOR ME, perhaps it is an odd personal quirk, but I often enjoy dancers who are less physically perfect but more emotionally expressive. Sonya of the BDSS is another example of someone who is very perfect, too, but doesn't seem to get the emotional response from me that other dancers do.

And seeing someone live, in person, can and does produce a very different reaction than seeing a video.

I don't know if I can really articulate my reaction to dancers like Sadie and Sonya, but I will say that I have been watching dancers since 1976, so I have seen a lot. It's a personal response, not everybody likes the same thing in a dancer, and my tastes have changed over the years.

I'm proud that we have such skilled dancers as Sadie, Sonya and Rachel George (she's another one that I have a similar response to). They are great and not many people can do what they do. They just don't inspire me in the same way that some other dancers do who may have less perfect technique but more passion. Nadia Gamal was the example I gave on another thread along these lines.
 

Yame

New member
Yes I see what you are saying and I don't disagree with you. I didn't mean to imply that she hasn't worked hard at perfecting her technique and her art. I mean that FOR ME, perhaps it is an odd personal quirk, but I often enjoy dancers who are less physically perfect but more emotionally expressive. Sonya of the BDSS is another example of someone who is very perfect, too, but doesn't seem to get the emotional response from me that other dancers do.

And seeing someone live, in person, can and does produce a very different reaction than seeing a video.

I don't know if I can really articulate my reaction to dancers like Sadie and Sonya, but I will say that I have been watching dancers since 1976, so I have seen a lot. It's a personal response, not everybody likes the same thing in a dancer, and my tastes have changed over the years.

I'm proud that we have such skilled dancers as Sadie, Sonya and Rachel George (she's another one that I have a similar response to). They are great and not many people can do what they do. They just don't inspire me in the same way that some other dancers do who may have less perfect technique but more passion. Nadia Gamal was the example I gave on another thread along these lines.
When you talk about having more passion, that's one thing and I think most of us will agree that it is more interesting to see dancers whom we perceive as being more passionate/emotive... but when you mention preferring dancers with less perfect bodies and more emotion, it seems as if you think these things are mutually exclusive?

I'm not trying to nitpick at your statements or criticize you, by the way, just trying to understand your thinking. Do you see a pattern that I'm not seeing, of dancers with "perfect bodies" being more technical and less emotional than dancers with less perfect bodies?
 

Dunyah

New member
When you talk about having more passion, that's one thing and I think most of us will agree that it is more interesting to see dancers whom we perceive as being more passionate/emotive... but when you mention preferring dancers with less perfect bodies and more emotion, it seems as if you think these things are mutually exclusive?

I'm not trying to nitpick at your statements or criticize you, by the way, just trying to understand your thinking. Do you see a pattern that I'm not seeing, of dancers with "perfect bodies" being more technical and less emotional than dancers with less perfect bodies?
Yes, I am saying that but only as my own personal reaction to dancers. I find slight imperfections more interesting than perfect beauty. Maybe I'm just weird that way. Not everyone looks for the same things when they watch a dancer.
 

Darshiva

Moderator
Yes, I am saying that but only as my own personal reaction to dancers. I find slight imperfections more interesting than perfect beauty. Maybe I'm just weird that way. Not everyone looks for the same things when they watch a dancer.
Not everyone finds the same attributes beautiful.
 

Sophia Maria

New member
This is actually probably the best I've ever seen from her. I liked her interaction with the violinist. Even still, her style will always be too busy, technical and poppy locky for me.

Lovely costume!
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
Dunyah, I've been contemplating what you said in your posts, and it's something I've been thinking about a lot, especially since I got Nadira Jamal's Personal Style Snafus course. I've been looking at dancers that I personally adore, and analyzing what I like and what I want to steal from them :) and also looking at dancers everyone ELSE likes and trying to figure out why those dancers aren't on my first list.

These are the things I considered:

1. Clarity of movement. Sadie has this in spades! Her technique is precise, and all the movements look full and complete (not truncated or squished into other movements.) Jillina is another dancer with excellent clarity of movement. I enjoy dancers with clarity of movement.

2. Externally expressed movements. This one is tricky to discuss because we often refer to Egyptian greats as having very "internal" movements, but what I'm talking about is movement that may be generated internally, but still manages to explode out past the boundaries of the abdominals or the dancer's energetic center.

Sohair Zaki and Fifi Abdo are my two Egyptian faves (although sometimes Fifi can explode outward so much you wonder if she'll ever be able to rein it all back in again!)

I think SOMETIMES Sadie has externally expressed movement -- especially in her drum solos. But this is what Sonia and Rachel George, and current Suhaila (and really most of Suhaila's dancers) lack. It's almost like they're so focused on keeping everything so small and tightly contained that it looks like the movements are being chained inside their bodies. I don't enjoy watching this kind of dancing much, even though I can fully appreciate the technical mastery, because it's like all the movement has nowhere to go. Like a singer who never projects, or swallows her own words. It's just flat.

3. Saltana. We sometimes think of this as Tarab, but it's really Saltana -- it's the dancer herself getting in that quasi-trance-esque state where they and the music are one, that allows US the audience to achieve Tarab. Now this is where I don't think Sadie is very successful -- she hasn't yet had a performance that made me think "Oh she's there. She's in that place! Now I can go too!" But she's young yet, and the best ones seem to get it at a much older age, so we'll see.

So maybe, Dunyah, you're looking at some similar criteria that you haven't yet fully discovered?

(Analyzing this kind of thing is so geeky, but it REALLY made me more aware of the kind of dancer I wanted to be, and what I wanted my dance to look like to the audience, and feel like to myself.)
 

Ahava_Melantha

New member
okay I rewatched the clip- love her costume but it still fell short to me

okay - Sadie is a highly skilled dancer even if I don't care for her style
shes very knowledgable about the human body and how to do moves to protect you from doing it incorrectly

not very emotional, and shes dancing only on pops locks and shimmies (Imho)

i think a lot of ppl think that if someone doesn't dance as complicated looking and advanced or whatever as Sadie then its NOT technical. NOT true.

i think people underestimate dances that may LOOK natural and easy and emotional. well the emotional AND physical technique is NOT easy. it just looks that way. trust me - ranya renee anyone. her baladi dvd STILL challenges me to no end.

also, NO ONE has a perfect body. and I don't think that body time equals emotional dancer. Dina, by some, has a very nice looking body, even before implants, and shes ALWAYS been an expressive dancer. so I don't think that having an imperfect body gives you passion for the dance.

and also, you might say the emotional expressivesness might come late, it could, and it could NOT. Dina was expressive from teh beginning. some of the most expressive dancers I've seen were quite expressive even as baby dancers.

but thats just my opinion.

and to me - Sadie's forte will ALWAYS be drum solos.
 

Dunyah

New member
Dunyah, I've been contemplating what you said in your posts, and it's something I've been thinking about a lot, especially since I got Nadira Jamal's Personal Style Snafus course. I've been looking at dancers that I personally adore, and analyzing what I like and what I want to steal from them :) and also looking at dancers everyone ELSE likes and trying to figure out why those dancers aren't on my first list.

These are the things I considered:

1. Clarity of movement. Sadie has this in spades! Her technique is precise, and all the movements look full and complete (not truncated or squished into other movements.) Jillina is another dancer with excellent clarity of movement. I enjoy dancers with clarity of movement.

2. Externally expressed movements. This one is tricky to discuss because we often refer to Egyptian greats as having very "internal" movements, but what I'm talking about is movement that may be generated internally, but still manages to explode out past the boundaries of the abdominals or the dancer's energetic center.

Sohair Zaki and Fifi Abdo are my two Egyptian faves (although sometimes Fifi can explode outward so much you wonder if she'll ever be able to rein it all back in again!)

I think SOMETIMES Sadie has externally expressed movement -- especially in her drum solos. But this is what Sonia and Rachel George, and current Suhaila (and really most of Suhaila's dancers) lack. It's almost like they're so focused on keeping everything so small and tightly contained that it looks like the movements are being chained inside their bodies. I don't enjoy watching this kind of dancing much, even though I can fully appreciate the technical mastery, because it's like all the movement has nowhere to go. Like a singer who never projects, or swallows her own words. It's just flat.

3. Saltana. We sometimes think of this as Tarab, but it's really Saltana -- it's the dancer herself getting in that quasi-trance-esque state where they and the music are one, that allows US the audience to achieve Tarab. Now this is where I don't think Sadie is very successful -- she hasn't yet had a performance that made me think "Oh she's there. She's in that place! Now I can go too!" But she's young yet, and the best ones seem to get it at a much older age, so we'll see.

So maybe, Dunyah, you're looking at some similar criteria that you haven't yet fully discovered?

(Analyzing this kind of thing is so geeky, but it REALLY made me more aware of the kind of dancer I wanted to be, and what I wanted my dance to look like to the audience, and feel like to myself.)
Aziyade, I think you're onto something with the Saltana idea, and the clarity of movement. Maybe the externally expressed movements idea is what I refer to as "energy pouring out of the body." With some performers you feel that energy and with others it's not there.

I am just not as analytical as you are, I admire the ability to analyze but it's not the way I normally think about things. Maybe because I'm a "P" in the Myers-Briggs personality test and you might be a "J". I dunno.

Ahava_Melantha, I didn't mean to say that a perfect body equals a lack of passion or an imperfect one equals passion. I just mean that sometimes slick perfection in a dancer is less interesting TO ME (totally subjective reaction) than a dancer who is less "commercially" attractive but has that extra something - the Saltana, or the external expression or energy pouring out, or just an engaging personality, perhaps. It's difficult to put into words. I don't expect other people to have the same reaction I do, everybody likes to see something in a dancer, and not always the same thing that I am looking for. And that's fine. Variety is the spice, etc.
 
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