Posts tagged learning
Posts tagged learning
LOVE this!! Are there any teachers out there in the VA/MD/DC area that’d like to make this happen in the bellydance arena..? Let me hear you! ♥♥♥
Day 29. (Long-but FUN-one ahead. Readers be warned. ;))
—Today I learned to find the joy in the little things. ^_^
Throughout this day I put dancing off.. and put it off and put it off and put it off some more. ..And BOY, was that a big mistake!! *lol* When I fiiiinally got down to dancing tonight/this morning; OMG it was SO MUCH FUN!!! ^_^
I was hurty and sore and looking none too forward to dancing tonight, so when I finally made myself go to it, I started out slow, determined NOT to aggravate my ankle, or this weird neck thingy I’ve been somehow stirring up. So I started off in the middle of the livingroom at like 5am, just sitting on a little rocking hassock, thinking I’d do all chair dancing tonight. BZZZZ!!! WRONG!!
For the first lesson of today, I learned that chair dancing is one thing, but chair dancing w/a rocking surface to park your bootie on is TOTALLY another. ^_^ Having the ability to move your lower half a little bit makes it MUCH more entertaining and enjoyable, as you can still keep your weight off of whatever’s hurting you, but you still get to MOVE a bit to the music, beyond solely stationary jiggles and lifts. You can do seated Mayas and Incase of course, but w/a rocking seat, you can also do FORWARD and BACKWARD figure 8s (some people call Camels), and work on isolating your lower half while you concentrate on your pelvis, too!
-In fact, I think this’d be a great technique for people trying to learn the back/forth pelvic figure 8! (Especially if it’s the isolation that’s giving them trouble.) My first bd teacher taught us this great analogy of imagining your pelvis is on a roller coaster: Starting out level in bd posture, you graaadually climb the hill/track, then crest over it, go dowwwn the slope, curve under back towards Home, and eeease your way back into starting position. ^_^ But I’ve noticed that lots of beginners have issues w/this movement, and even moreso w/keeping their upper halves sationary while their lower bodies go for a ride. So tonight w/the hassock, as I was using it to go back & forth easily w/o being on my feet, I realized how easy it was to DO that movement, w/o much effort when it came to keeping my body (ribcage up) straight. It kinda made me wanna pull hassocks into the next class I get the opportunity to help out with. ^_^
But after the first song, the music had LONG gotten to me, so I got up. ^_^ -And it turns out, putting your music on Random and challenging yourself to be smooth, calm, take it easy, and work in smaller movements CAN BE SO MUCH FUN!!! ^_^ (Especially when you add the challenge of still working to be just as expressive & illustrative of the music as you are when you can be a bit freer in your movements. ^_^) How neat it is to find expression in the tiniest sharp hip lift, or be reminded of how facial expressions & moving parts slowly can be JUST as expressive & passionate (if not moreso) than constantly going hard and moving all grand and fast!! ^_^ There’s a certain freedom & playfulness in being slower & steadier, too. ^_^ ..More.. intentional. :D And if there’s comedy in the music, have the chance to play off on what’s happening in the music can be -that much more fun,- and an opportunity to ham it up! ;D
Plus, this let me work on my transitions, which I’ve always had a little trouble with. I’ve always found it tough to say.. switch from left hip figure 8s in front to right hip figure 8s in front. I never know how I’m supposed to change my stance, or work the motion so it’s fluid. Plus I’ve always been a little hesitant of finding transitions between one dramatically different move to another. How do you get that all to work out and be fluid and seamless, w/o looking like you’re stopping & going between each move..? Well.. turns out, moving slowly makes you really focus on how to (gracefully & artfully) get from one move to the other, ‘cause there’s no frantic hopping or jumping from one point to the other. You gotta sliiiide or work another swirl of a hip in there, and that feels fantabulous. ^_^
Moreover, being forced to dance more slowly makes your dance more intentional and thoughtful somehow… It gives you time to go from mind to heart & back again as you travel through one loooong move, and allows you time to enjoy both aspects. :) While you’re taking one looong, wiiiiide hip circle around during 16 counts, you have time to plan your next meovemtn AND feel how good it is to travel there, in the moment, and that feels delectible. ^_^ N’ when it’s over, you just ooooze onward and go from there.. like improv, w/out all the panic. *lol* So, SOlovely. ^_^
Now, of course sometimes the music got to my head & I realized I was going faster or moving more grandiosly than I’d planned… But pulling it back was no big deal, and retuning to the “challenge” was both fun & engaging- not frustrating or disheartening at all. :) (And there was no shamein losing track, either. It was just like “ah-ah, girrl, you’re gonna hurt yourself again. Cool it down..!” *lol*) All said, it was too much fun- playing w/songs, keeping myself still and slow & easy, and glorying in the smaller movements to express the PERSONALITY of the music. ^_^ I loved being able to enjoy and love and laugh and revel in each moment, w/o feeling rushed. *beams*
Plus it was great learning that I could be easier on my weary body, while still dancing w/alll my heart, n’ having LOADS of fun.. ^_^
What a super challenge! ♥♥ I’m really likin’ the feel of this, and DEFINITELY wanna make do this again in future. ^_^
La Playlist de Esta Noche:
Last night I was exhausted & just didn’t feel like DOING it that day, so.. come the end of the night, I decided to get into my bed n’ “voice dance.” ^_^ I found a variety of tracks that inspired me to sing along (especially improv with) the music, closed the door so I didn’t disturb anybody, and snuggled into my bed to set to it. Turns out, even if you’re just intent on singing, the body tends to have a mind of its own, and I danced in bed anyway. ;)
I couldn’t letterrip like one would want of course (a; ‘cause it was the middle of the night, and b; because it’s hard to belt it out when there’s ANYBODY else at home-‘cause that means the TV is blaring until they’re unconscious). But that did give me a refresher course in keeping the throat open and still singing -correctly,- even if I was in bed, laying down, & had the keep the volume, way, way down. :) Plus believe it or not, singing (and subconsciously dancing in my bed ;)) taught me a few lessons about dancing, too.
When you’re singing w/a song (especially improving), it’s not always good form to just go and go and go. You’ve got to learn the art of timing, of listening, of responding to the music, and feeling when the time is right to sing, or stay quiet. You’ve got to let your brain and your heart do a duet of sorts, while you intellectually ponder when you might next come in, where you should go from that note, when you might wanna stop, hold a note, etc. But you’ve also got to FEEL the music- really- like in dance, become one with it. Because otherwise, whatever you’re doing w/your voice along w/the music is just noise.
So singing last night was a reminder of things like rests, of mindfully, thoughtfully listening, and of letting your brain & heart form this interesting kind of double helix, that gradually wraps in and around and through whatever piece you’re listening to.. dancing to.. or singing with. ^_^ It made me mindful of accents and rests, of that sort of synergy musicians and their singers, as well as their dancers can have.. and strive to have, at every collaboration. It reminded me that w/o mindfulness, just dancing w/ALL heart can be chaos, and w/o heart, you might was well be hearing a car alarm toll along w/your music, or seeing a Newton’s Cradle tick-tick-tick back and forth, like a mindless metronome to the beat.
It reminded me of the art & poetry inherent in dance, and in the collaboration of musician & singer, as well as musician & dancer. It reminded me of listening so you know when to come on strong, or when to just bloody STOP. *lol* It reminded me of rests and cadences and all the juicy moments you wait for as ANY kind of performer, regardless of medium, and of that succulent moment when you grab it- as well as that moment where you go too long, stop short, miss your cute, or whiff it all together. ^_^ Plus it was fun to dance along in my mind, and to take a piece of that mental-emotional connection & plot out routines to each of the pieces- even if only in flits and fragmentations. :) ..I guess that’s where my bed-dancing came from.. my over-active imagination, my attention-span issues, and a booty that just needs to MOVE when the music is inspiring. ;)
I hope you danced AND sang w/your body last night.. in whatever you did, too. ^_^
Playlist for Day 28:
What are your biggest positives & negatives when it comes to bellydance?
Personally, I think it’s important to reevaluate these things once in a while, so people can a; be reminded of the awesomeness that they DO possess, and b; work on stuff they might wanna improve. :)
Now, some might be saying “uh, hel-lo..? Have we totally forgotten about that whole fat/blind thing, here??? After all those ARE the other 2 main focuses of your blog, right?? :P” Well of course I haven’t forgotten them. I can’t. They’re w/me- all the time. My essential reasoning for not puttin’ them here was this:
Sure, I could appoint my weight and my vision as my 2 biggest “Cons,” but a; I most always find ways to work around (or with) them, and b; I will always continue to fight against letting EITHER of them hinder me from pursuing my passion(s) & dream(s). In bellydance, and in life.
So, they were taken out of the running from being viable options for this. :)
See, bellydance (and odd as it may sound- some people on Tumblr) have been helping me to figure some stuff out. Some of which is that I am determined to find the beauty in my body at whatever size I am. Plus, I can’t DO anything about my life-long eye condition. I was born w/my eyes like this. They’re the only eyes I’ve ever seen through, and there’s no real cure for my condition on the horizon. And as for my weight, I’ve been critiqued as being “fat” since I was little. (Though really, if you saw pics of me as a little kid, you’d think those other kids were on CRACK.) But they have BOTH loooong been a part of my life, and therefore are, ostensibly, part of what makes me, me.
Sure they’re hurdles for me to deal with. GIANT hurdles. But they have also given me insights and abilities to empathize w/certain people and situations that I may not have been able to w/o them, and therefore they are (essentially) part of who I am. (And FTR, even if I lost a TON of weight, I’d still likely be a curvy girl.) But even if I got down to the old Weight Watcher’s recommended height/weight index of 93lbs and did it alll tomorrow, these things would STILL be part of my story. And as I don’t have Robin Williams trapped in a genie lamp, I need to find at least a LITTLE peace w/myself NOW- healthy, unhealthy, short, tall, fat, thin, dark, fair, or 3-eyed cockateel that only speaks Swahili w/a broken backwards-facing beak and a lisp.
Of course that doesn’t mean I don’t need to improve on things- let alone a NUMBER of things. (Obviously, or I wouldn’t have written this entry.) What it DOES mean however, is that for the foreseeable future, I IS WHO I IS. ..So why sweat it?? ;D I think it’s high time I started cherishing all the good I’m blessed with, continued along my journey to being healthier inside AND out, kept endeavoring to love ALL of myself (REGARDLESS of my body size), and valued living for today. ..In this body, as I am- RIGHT HERE and RIGHT NOW. ^_^ -And work with what I have from there.
'Cause frankly, I've learned the hard way that life's too short to go through it hating yourself and wishing your life away.. when you'll never have the chance to get all that wish-time back. For every moment you spend hating yourself, that's another moment you're missing the chance to experience all the GOOD that's HERE, AROUND YOU, RIGHT NOW.
Trust me, I ruined my own surprise 25th birthday party (only for myself, I hope)- ‘cause I was too busy being upset over not being the person I’d expected to be by that point in my life. (I was still fat, I was still alone, and I had nothing of the life I’d planned on having achieved by then. :P) Yep, there I was, feeling positively MISERABLE (no lie, you can ask my friend Jen- who had to accompany me into the bathroom because I’d burst into tears as everyone yelled “SURPISE!!!”), not because I was happy, but because I felt SO unworthy of all that celebration. :((( Meanwhile, the biggest number of friends and loved ones I’ll likely ever have come together was there to celebrate- ME. I had friends, I had family, and there was love allll around me- but I had my head stuck up my butt; ‘cause I was FAR too busy hating myself and being a pitiful schmuck to realize what I had- let alone enjoy it. :P~~~~~
Annnnd not only did that ruin my time, but I now realize how much of an insult that was to the gift that EVERY SINGLE PERSON there was giving me- the gift of THEIR time.. THEIR love. There was cake and presents and music.. but THEIR presence meant EVERYTHING, and I was essentially spitting on it, ‘cause I was too much of a self-absorbed git to realize what a precious gift that truly was. And now, one of my biggest regrets is letting THAT moment slip away.
Yeah.. kinda sobbing now. ’Scuse me for a minute… I sorta need a moment…
Now, take that into consideration, and fat or thin, tall or short, dark or light, imagine alllll the moments you’ve lost to do something divine w/your time because you were too busy feeling badly about yourself. Consider the people you might’ve ignored, the pursuits, ideas or dreams you may have let fade away, because you were too scared. Think of all the missed opportunities, ‘cause you were positively convinced that you were unworthy. And what about all the lies that we believe about ourselves- like “no one” loves you, and aaall the other stupid shite that ends up sinking in- because we feel badly about ourselves.
Think of the people you’ve never really given a chance ‘cause you were dead-SURE that “they could never be interested ‘in someone like you.’” :P Think of all the people you’ve silently scoffed at inside (or worse yet, thought less of), for telling you that you’re beautiful. Remind yourself of all the opportunities for joy, success, personal improvement or fun that you might have pushed away or let go, because you (for whatever reason) doubted or disliked (even hated) yourself. .And worse still, think of those times when you figured SURELY there MUST be something wrong w/someone, simply because they saw something MAGICAL in you.. cared about you, orr.. maybe even loved you…
Now, think of all the time that you still have, and ruddy well QUIDDIT. ***GIANT, MEGA, SQUISHY HUGS***
Now I’m not saying we should blow off everything. We all have responsibilities and things (or people) we each need to take care of. What I -am- advocating however, is that we all, as they say “honor the past, cherish the present, and prepare for the future.” :) Try to celebrate each day (each hour, each minute- or hell- each second- if that’s what makes you happy) and WORK watchoo got, AND endeavor to clean up the messier bits. Lift others up, but never be afraid to let yourself shine. ^_^
Please, ENJOY all the blessings that life has put in your path- and SHIMMY! ^_^ DANCE w/an open heart, let yourself SPARKLE, and allow others in this world who need to see it admire how much you glow.
'Cause you- yes you, right there.. I see you. And YOU are stunning. ♥♥♥
*more HUGE hugs*
Now, BACK TO BELLYDANCE! ;D
So, how about you..? What do you adore about your dance (or your life), and what things do you need to rearrange, uplift, or allow to blossom..?
Do tell! ^_^
As many of you know, I have this show coming up. It’s a variety show at this GREAT venue in DC, and as it happens, both of my acts (one singing and one dancing) just happen to be rather vintage-era-inspired. :) (Seriously, this was absolutey NOT intentional. Funny how some things work out this way though, huh? And now I have another event coming up that’s inspired by the same time period. Maybe the stars are aligned! ;D) So when I realized I had to do something w/my hair for the show, it occurred to me that I ought to look into vintage 1920s & ’30s hairdos. :)
..But I have longish hair (just past my shoulders), and it is staaarrrraight, not to mention FINE FINE FINE. So when I kept hearing “this works -great- if you’ve got curly or wavy hair, but not so much w/straight hair,” I was worried. Turns out that worry was not entirely unfounded, but also, that given enough patience, time, and product (along w/a helpful family member who happens to have lived through said era) even this girl can have really fabulous hair. ^_^
First, I tried doing finger waves on SUPER wet, utterly gel-lacquered hair. But that idea crashed & burned like a space cruiser onto planet Endor, as I’m not the most adept at doing hair (unless it’s braiding), so this was definitely an adventure. (But I shall be trying finger waves again- as soon as I get some wave clips and Bender-ish curlers to use underneath them, so the waves aren’t so spiky. :))
So next (as my hair was still slathered w/gel and just -waiting- for me to do SOMETHING with it), I decided to try my hand at pin curls and spit curls. :) (This is where you hold the end of a section of hair and loop the hair in on itself, traveling in one direction of the other. You can make them REALLY large, or very small, like I did. :))
Turns out those little dooies are not too, too difficult- yaaay! And since my hair is so fine and straight, I decided to make my curls VERY tight and small, which also made creating them easier. :) (And from the get-go I decided to let my hair set as loooong as possible- because it often rejects curls so easily.) I just wooound them around my index finger, caaarefully removed my hand (trying to keep the layers of the coil and the center of each curl- which was the beginning of the lock- intact), and held onto them as I laid them flat against my head. Then each curl got at LEAST 2 pins buried into it (one at the center holding it round, and the other over the whole thing, so it stayed flat on my head- *stab stab*) et voila!
I did 2 rows of ‘em on each side and only did the front, while the back of my hair stayed in a bun. I figured I’d only let down the front sections when it was all said n’ done, and, as I’m just a beginner, I didn’t wanna do my WHOLE head. (Yeah.. SO not read for that yet!) After that I spraaaaaaaaaayed the piss out of my whole noggin w/Pantene hairspray (that has WICKED hold), and let it all set for about a day. Oh! And about 1-2 hrs after I pinned all the curls down, I ended up covering it w/a kerchief, so it all stayed better in place. This also made it more secure to sleep in, which was a very good thing. :) (And oddly enough, this ‘do was CRAZY easy to sleep on. It wasn’t painful or tight & hurty like braided ‘dos can often be, and I didn’t wake up in the night ONCE from hairdo ouchies, which was what I was totally expecting. WIN! :D)
When alll that was over, I just pulled the pins out after about 24hrs, and geeently brushed the whole configuration. I used a spiral brush w/hard & soft bristles, (which seemed to go through it more easily than my second try at styling it w/a regular flat brush that had plastic bristles). And to complete the look, my grandma sat me down and showed me how to brush all the ends together as one cohesive section, so the curls kind of unified and helped to create more of a grand, overall wave structure. ^_^ Eee! Keen, no? ^_^ I’d always WONDERED how women of the era got those grandly-sweeping, unified & cohesively smooth waves! :D ..Now, thanks to my gramma, I know! They brushed at their ends as if it was all one large lock of tresses, so the curls bound & locked together. :D So cool! ^_^ (Oh! And you know that bun I mentioned earlier? Well she convinced me to take that down, and it turns out it must have picked up some residual spray, ‘cause it came out wavy as well! :D I dunno how all that’s gonna last (as my hair doesn’t like to hold a ‘do for too, too long), but I am loving that my whooole head is curly and full of waves now. ^_^
After that she capped the entire look off w/a single decorated bobby pin, to sweep my new “bangs” over to the side. I admit I was a little irritated at first when she kept telling me to come over so she could “fix it,” (as I thought it looked just fine on its own before), but I had nooo idea how much more authentic it would look w/that little bit of brushing and the addition of just one simple bobby pin. ^_^ It just goes to show ya- TRUST GRAMMA. (Especially when it comes to styles she used to do for people herself. ;D She has curly hair so never needed to curl her own, but apparently she used to help her family & friends w/their hair. :) How neat is that? :))
And now that I’ve done it, I freaking LOVE this style, and think I might even try curling my whole head next time. :) For a beginner at hair styling, it’s not too, toooo intimidating, and very technically doable. Plus the ease of sleeping on it and ability to walk about w/o looking like you’re in curlers is DEFINITELY a bonus. :) You can go out and get things done, w/o looking like Mrs. Kravits. *lol*
Oh! And there is back-combing. I think I should back-comb the roots at the top of my head next time after the curling phase, so I can add some volume to the top, and then sweep an un-ratted section over that, to give it a little bit of lift and that glossy, voluminous look all the way around. ^_^ Ideas, ideas, ideas! ^_^ Overall..? I rate this ‘do TOTALLY worth it. And WAY easier than I expected. Yes, it’s a little time-consuming, and yes, you do kinda need to practice a bit so you learn how to get it right. But I imagine that the more you do it the faster you’ll get, and as far as materials go, it doesn’t take that much. :) (And maaan, as a girl w/commonly super-straight tresses? I freaking loved this. SO glad to see there’s something else I can do w/my hair beyond braiding and pulling it back! ^_^)
So if you’re in the mood for a vintage look for one of your gigs, -or just a night out on the town, I -highly- recommend giving pin curls and spit curls a go. (Spit curls are made much like pin curls, except many often kept those un-brushed, short and small, so they delicately framed the face & tended to look kinda wet.) I hope this helps some of you out there get inspired to try something new. As for me, I am TOTALLY inspired to keep trying vintage looks, and to do this again! ^_^
Now the question is: ”How can I be THIS OLD and never have tried this before???” ;D *lol*
After a LIFETIME of feeling less than, hating almost every aspect of who I am inside & out, and thinking ALWAYS that I am some how lacking, unable, and unworthy, I am just beginning to hear, understand, accept, and (most importantly) act on words like this. After THIRTY FIVE YEARS, I am finally learning this lesson, and beginning to be able to take its words to heart.
Don’t wait three and a half decades to accept yourself, to love yourself, and to adore who you are. YOU ARE SPLENDIFEROUS, PRECISELY AS YOU ARE. Right now, AT THIS VERY MOMENT. AS IS. If you wanna change, do it because YOU dream of becoming something greater, not because you wanna become someone ELSE. We’ve already got one of THEM in the world. We still need ONE OF YOU.
I’m also (slowly) starting to realize that the only way you can start being the person you dream of is by loving the person you ARE. (Again, yes; right now.) But it shouldn’t take years upon years of self-hate, self-doubt, waiting, wishing & yearning (and allll kinds of other nonsense) to come to this realization. Don’t wait for your life to begin- or sit forever on the sidelines. Act on your dreams! Challenge your fears! Open your heart, and let your pain GO. Set it, and all your wiiiillldest imaginings free. ^_^ You can do, and be, and achieve anything you dream- just GO FOR IT!! ^_^
I know it’s a hard lesson, but why waste all that time??? -Every moment- lost to fear and doubt and self-hate is a TRAGEDY. Why do that to yourself, your lovedones, and waste even a second of this oh-so-precious life??? LET YOUR INNER LIGHT SHINE. UNLEASH YOUR INNERMOST BEAUTY. BOWL THEM OVER WITH ALL THE GREATNESS THAT YOU HAVE TO OFFER. ..’Cause as trite as it sounds, there really IS only one you. Don’t hold back your unique light BECAUSE OF FEAR. ♥ ♥ ♥
TODAY IS ALL WE HAVE.
LOVE YOURSELF- NOW. ♥ ♥ ♥
You know, it’s funny… When hearing the litany of teachers many dancers would list upon mention of their training (when I was a total, newbie beebee dancer), I said to myself “I could never remember all of those names! How do these people remember every, single, person that they ever learned from???”
..And now as I look back on my years of being enchanted by this dance, I realize that I can indeed remember aaaalllmost all of mine. :)
First there was Amira of Roanoke, who taught 1hr intros courses at conventions in VA.
Then there was Bambi of NoVA, who also taught me in similar fashion at a 1hr class or two at local cons.
Next came the one a teacher at Starwood 2004, who taught me another intro hour course.
And then I visited MD, where the lovely Latifa taught me yet another 1hr intro class- but this one had a wonderful bit of beginning choreography. :D
Years later, I eventually developed the nards to take a REAL bellydance class, & ended up taking 2 or 3 from the incomparable Galena of MD. :)
And while I was still living up in NoVA, I took one Intro to Tribal class from Belladonna. (Whom I got to learn from again; a few years later, only a few months ago, and looong after moving here. Sadly it wasn’t a full course, but thankfully I was lucky enough to be able to take one more class from Bella; a sword workshop! :D I helped Radford University’s Middle Eastern Dance Club attend, and as I was working w/them at the time, I got to go, too. ^_^ *happy shimmies* And today, I wish I could have the chance to learn from them all again. :)
It’s strange.. in the grand scheme of things, you wouldn’t think people would remember the names of folks they encountered from so many years back- and often so briefly… (Especially in comparison with all the other crap in daily life I regularly forget. ;)) In some small, quiet way, I’m still a little surprised now and then that so many of us remember our “dance lineages,” so to speak.. you know? (And if you study for a while, that’s a lot to remember! *lol*) ..But we do, and once in a while, I still think of all my teachers too.
-Especially now that I’ve begun to get more serious about the dance.
I guess our teachers leave more of an impression on us than most might surmise. ..Maybe because we’re so open mentally, emotionally & personally when we dance. Maybe because they’re all distinctive and wonderful people who teach us a variety of new things in many different ways.
And maybe it’s both. :)
But clearly, our teachers leave an impression on us- one that goes way beyond the ability to recollect a few “simple” dance moves.
So to all you beautiful teachers out there, I guess all I have to say is “thank you for being wonderful.”
Often when watching bellydancers I think quietly “hey, I can do that!" :)
(As a big girl, that’s a great feeling.. to’ve found something that for whatever reason, I’m actually kinda good at. :)) I’m by no means FABULOUS at it, mind you, but I am grateful to say I’m somewhat of a quick study w/most things *knocks on wood*, and that can be a HUGE blessing. :) (Though there are various moves I still have to work on a TON, and I -suck- at learning others’ choreo, so don’t get me wrong- I do have my hurdles. ;)) And sometimes I’m proved wrong in thinking “hey, I can learn that,” but that just makes me more determined to learn. :)
And when I see something that clearly is not within my reach yet, or if my first attempts prove futile, my first thought is “OOH! I WANNA LEARN HOW TO DO THAT!!” :) (..Often with the next thought being “hmm.. I wonder how that’s done…” -This then frequently precedes me getting up out of my chair (or going home after the performance) & actively trying to figure out said move. :D
Sometimes I get it, sometimes I don’t, but when I do have a more advanced dancer nearby (in casual settings- I’d NEVER query someone at a performance), I’m also not afraid to ask them “hey, by the way, how did you do “x..?” In my experience, most dancers are happy to teach students of the dance a thing or two. :) -And if you want more, well.. that’s what classes are for! :D
How ‘bout you? How do you face new moves or talented dancers’ arts when they’re clearly not within your perceived “league..?” How do you approach new movements and steps that are yet to be within your reach? And how do you see your lexicon of movement developing in the past, as well as in the future..?
Getting My Groove Back, and Insanely Grateful For It, ^_^
What constitutes a “talented” dancer to you? Is it someone who picks up new moves easily and quickly, and who executes them well straight out of the gate? Is a talented dancer someone whose movements seem to flow inexorably together, appearing to be easy and fluid, no matter how wildly they turn or how complex you know the actual motion (or layering of motions) to be? Or is a talented dancer one who can learn & retain choreography well; only needing to go over a new routine once or twice (if that) before they’ve got it down..?
Is a talented dancer someone who isolates & breaks down movements automatically, with razor-sharp movements and muscles moving in places you didn’t know exist..? What about a person who travels effortlessly, or one who has incredible, unending amounts of energy..? Or what about someone who has an innate sense of power and drama? Maybe a great sense of musicality or character is most important to you?
Or perhaps one who can put together any costume from nothing but a few nuts n’ bolts, a pair of scissors, and their grandmother’s rubberband set that they found in a box marked “1973..” is your definition of “most talented?” Do you prefer people who can perform beautiful, improvised pieces naturally and effortlessly when put on the spot? Maybe those who can perform unbelievable shows w/o suspecting that they may be called to dance that day/night? Or do you think audience interaction and synthesis/empathy is most important..? And what about gravitas..? Is a “talented dancer” someone who can walk into a room and captivate everyone in it, silencing the crowd with with just a look, the simple lifting of a toe, or the flutter of an arm, wrist, veil, lash or hip?
Is it someone who can use 1,000 different props, or perform in a thousand different styles? Or is it someone who only knows one prop- one style- but who can positively BLOW YOU AWAY even if they only know one..? Do you consider a “talented dancer” one of these things, or must a truly “talented dancer” possess them all..?
Personally, each of these qualities are attributes I admire in many “talented dancers.” They’re elements which I think we should (and likely do) all pursue, and seek to achieve individually as we journey along our own paths of dance.
-But I also know that we all have our own priorities. We all have differing subjects and styles, matters & materials which lay closest to our hearts, for a bevvy of different reasons. So, in all seriousness, which qualities do you value most in a “talented dancer..?” Or must the truly great possess each and every one, in order to achieve real, lasting success?
What are your thoughts..?
So, for those who tend to get braggy or be pompous about their level of dance ability, those who get staid or tend to plateau thinking they’ve “got it all covered,” I hereby offer one GIANT ego-check. ;)
In all seriousness, though: this video is SO COOL! Even this snippet of a full workshop could be grand for learning, inspiring, and (definitely for relative beginners like me) reminding us that we all have different levels of skill, and are all at different places when it comes to our journey in exploring the dance.
(Not to mention the fact that I personally have got a looooong way to go when it comes to personal fitness, the ability to layer, and general skills like the ability to balance on one foot. ;)
I adore the idea of learning from videos like this- and what a cool opportunity; to be able to learn from Zoe Jakes herself- even if you can’t make one of her workshops in person!! XD
For more info, check out the link below. :)
Zoe Jakes “Train Like a Pro” 2012 workshop trailer (fusion bellydance) (by DillaTaunt)
Yes! I need this in my life. I haven’t had the chance to attend her workshops and likely never will. Thankfully, she’s now made this workshop available for rent online! It’s only $29.99 for a month long rental. Check it out. -Corinne