Dance Certification: Beginner Dance 1A Raks Leyla, 7/9/12

The Joy of Belly DancingWelcome to the Belly Dance Certification Program!

This program is strictly for fun, exercise or for those who love Belly Dance.

HOW TO WIN A FREE BOOK?

I will mail a copy of “Learn to Belly Dance Textbook and Certification Program” to the first dancer who sends me a copy of them performing the choreography to Raks Leyla! Raks Leyla is a fun, simple and easy dance for beginners. So be the first to send me a video of you doing this dance and you will win a free BOOK! It’s just that easy. Please contact me before uploading the video, see my contact info below.

The first 5 dances in the program are very easy to do. After all, a beginner dancer has to start SOMEWHERE. You can’t start out advanced or doing advanced choreography. Please take the time to learn at your own pace so that you can explore creating your own personal style of dance.

Dance Choreographies
Beginning Level

  • Raks Leyla, cabaret with finger cymbals to 4/4
  • Jasmine Dancer, cabaret w/veil and finger cymbals
  • Varter, veil dance
  • Village Girl, cane dance to beledi
  • Tomzara, tambourine dance to 9/8

Beginner Dance #1

 

RAKS LEYLA, 4/4 Beledi w/Chiftitelli
Choreographed in 1984, music by George Abdo, The Joy of Belly Dancing

 

NOTE:
This dance can be performed as a solo, duet or group of 4 dancers.
The instructions are written for the dancer(s) on the Left side of stage who are leading with their right foot.
A group of 4 dancers would have a dancer on R front, R back, L front & L back. The dancers on Left side lead with right foot and the dancers on the Right side lead with their left foot, until they switch sides and use the opposite lead foot.

BELEDI 4/4

1. Intro 16 counts (Hip drop pose in place)

2. Walking hip shimmy 32 cts. (in square, 8 cts. on each side, R foot leads)

3. Neck slide pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on R, 4 cts. on L)

4. Shoulder shimmy pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on R, 4 cts. on L)

5. Turn 8 cts. (from stage L to stage R)

6. Walking hip shimmy 32 cts. (in square, 8 cts. on each side, L foot leads)

7. Neck slide pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on L, 4 cts. on R)

8. Shoulder shimmy pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on L, 4 cts. on R)

9. Turn 8 cts. (from stage R to stage L)

CHIFTITELLI

10. Hip circle w/bounce 8 cts. (from R to L, in place)

11. (Reverse) Hip circle/w bounce 8 cts. (from L to R)

12. Camel walk 24 cts. (in circle, 4 cts. each; stage R L)

13. Figure 8 16 cts. (slide back/circle forward, in place)

14. Camel walk 24 cts. (in circle, 4 cts. each; stage L R)

15. Figure 8 16 cts. (slide forward/circle back, in place)

16. Turn 6 cts. (in place)/Arm circle pose w/up & down hip shimmy (or vibration) 2 cts.

DRUM SOLO

17. Hip thrusts 32 cts. (in circle, stage R L; RRLR, LLRL, RRLR, LLRL, RRLR, LLRL, RRLR, LLRL)

18. Hip circle w/bounce 8 cts. (from R to L, in place)

19. (Reverse) Hip circle w/bounce 8 cts. (from L to R)

20. Hip shimmy drop pose 6 cts. (in place)

BELEDI 4/4

21. Walking hip shimmy 32 cts. (in square, 8 cts. each side, R foot leads)

22. Neck slide pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on R, 4 cts. on L)

23. Shoulder shimmy pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on R, 4 cts. on L)

24. Turn 8 cts. (from stage L to stage R)

25. Walking hip shimmy 32 cts. (in square, 8 cts. each side, L foot leads)

26. Neck slide pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on L, 4 cts. on R)

27. Shoulder shimmy pose 8 cts. (4 cts. on L, 4 cts. on R)

28. Turn 8 cts. (from stage R to center stage)

29. Spin 16 cts. (in place, w/skirt edges up optional; reverse direction of Turn #28 above)

FINGER CYMBALS:

Finger Cymbal Pattern: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1. 4/4 (Triple Time) R L R

1 2 3

L R L

1 2 3

R L R

1 2 3

L R L

1 2 3

R L R

1 2 3

L R L

1 2 3

R L R

1 2 3

L R L

1 2 3

2. Beledi R

1

L

2

R

1

3. Chiftitelli R

1

L R

2

L R

4

L

5

R

6

L

7

Raks Leyla

 

MUSIC LINK ON AMAZON:

http://www.amazon.com/Joy-Belly-Dancing-CD/dp/B000S96RQY/ref=pd_sim_sbs_dmusic_a_4

You can listen to a sample of “Raks Leyla” or purchase the MP3 download for .99¢ (cents).

You can check out the entire book, Learn to Belly Dance Textbook & Certification Program available at:

AMAZON:
http://www.amazon.com/Learn-Belly-Textbook-Certification-Program/dp/1465346589/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1341875947&sr=8-1&keywords=learn+to+belly+dance+textbook

BARNES & NOBLE:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learn-to-belly-dance-textbook-certification-program-shalimar-ali/1105014103?ean=9781465346582&itm=1&usri=9781465346582

Please contact me before uploading your video:

FACEBOOK
http://www.facebook.com/people/Shalimar-Ali/1459163265
TWITTER
www.twitter.com/shalimaral
YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/Shalimarali
WORDPRESS
https://learnbellydancewithshalimarali.com/

Now is your time to join the Conversation! Comments, questions, concerns, controversy, rebuttals, tributes, blog suggestions, guest bloggers, etc., are all welcome!

How to win a Free Book?

George Abdo
George Abdo

Belly Dance Publication Tribute 2/24/12: The Belly Dancer Magazine (Los Altos, CA). Where were you 32 years ago?

BDM5

WHERE WERE YOU 32 YEARS AGO?

Some would answer, not born yet. Or some would say, raising a small child.

Well 32 years ago, I was raising a small child, and I was also a Belly Dance student back then. I LOVED the belly dance publications, like The Belly Dancer Magazine, Arabesque, Habibi, The Caravan, Jareeda, etc. Back when I was a beginner dancer, I fantasized about the day that perhaps maybe, just maybe I could grace a magazine cover. Did not happen until 1994 when I graced the cover of Shimmy Chronicles.

The old belly dance magazines bring back so many good memories. It’s weird to look at the ads and names in the dancer directory and see names of great dancers and musicians who are no longer with us (Bobby Farrah, Bert Balladine, George Abdo, etc.)

BDM1Belly Dance has changed so much in the past 30 years, that it is refreshing to look back on “simpler” times. No Facebook buddies to share the latest dance item, no dancers on Twitter giving their latest dance update or being able to view any dancer or video instantly via YouTube or MySpace.

Back then, you had to TRAVEL and take a dance workshop to study with the greats. Now you can just buy or rent their DVDs.

Most dancers used to make their own costumes back then, but now it is so cheap to get costumes on eBay, why bother?

Belly dance times were so simple then. You had to wait 1 month to get caught up on the news, Belly Dance news by waiting for your favorite magazine to arrive by mail.

BDM2And when you got your copy, you were in for a treat. That’s how you found out what dancers were doing all across the country. Now that we have Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, MySpace, email and Internet, we don’t need to wait a month, we can find out in seconds.

A great place to search for rare books and magazines is Abe’s Books (URL is below).  Here’s to a look back at simpler times . . .

http://www.abebooks.com/
For more Dance Gossip & Goodies, check out my book, "Learn to Belly Dance Textbook" available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble :
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learn-to-belly-dance-textbook-certification-program-shalimar-ali/1105014103?ean=9781465346582&itm=1&usri=9781465346582

BDM4Now is your time to Join the Conversation!  Comments, questions, concerns, controversy, rebuttals, tributes, etc., are all welcome!

Where were you 32 years ago?

BDM3

Belly Dancer Tribute 2/18/12: Yassmeen Samra (Los Gatos, CA) original Tweet 10/5/11, What is your favorite recollection of “The Belly Dancer Magazine” or Yassmeen Samra?

Black Belly DancersBelly Dancer Tribute 2/18/12: Yassmeen Samra (Los Gatos, CA) original Tweet 10/5/11

Do you ever think back to when you were a kid and what you wanted to be when you grew up?

Surprisingly (or not), the first thing I wanted to be at age 5 was a dancer.

I am so glad that my mom allowed me to take dances lessons in ballet, tap & jazz.  She also enrolled me in acrobatics, but I was so horrible at acrobatics that I gave up.  I can’t turn a decent somersault or do the splits if my life depended on it.

I love it when I see any “older” person turn a flip, like Diana Ross did in The Wiz, tee hee.  I get a big kick out of it, because it’s something I can’t do.

I had a life-changing event in 1973 and was forced to change my life goal.  My next favorite thing to do was write.  I was an editor on the newspaper and yearbook staffs during high school.  So no more dancing, from now on, Journalism.  My father worked as a photographer for a local newspaper so when I graduated from high school, I saw my future as a journalist at the same newspaper.  I majored in journalism in college, until . . .

Ut-oh, life happened again and a new change happened in 1977-78.  Journalism was out, baby was in, 1977.  Then came Belly dance in 1978.  I taught my little sister Candy everything I learned in my belly dance classes.  One year I was at her dance recital and a little girl (show-off) was dancing to “ I want to be a dancer.”  I cried when I saw that and knew that I wanted to dance.

So dance I did from the late 1970s onward.  I was still in college, but noticed that I kept changing my major to classes that would help me in dance like Costume History, Sewing, Business Administration, etc.  And along the way, I ended up doing more dancing than college, with teaching dance, travelling, performing and directing my dance troupe.

When you are at age 5 and want to be a dancer and then become a teen and pick a more practical vocation, it is so hard to predict that you will end up doing what you wanted to do at age 5.  Who knew?

Yassmeen Samra was a Mentor for me in so many ways.  I am so proud to have had a chance to meet her in person at a dance workshop in Fort Worth, TX sponsored by Carol Shannon featuring Bert Balladine.  I also met Amaya there and saw George Abdo perform Live in person.  Talk about a dream belly dance workshop!  I tried to recreate those types of Dream workshops back when I used to sponsor workshops with great teachers like Bert Balladine, Amaya, Raja Zahr, Lala Hakim, Morocco, Aisha Ali, DeAnn, The Sirocco Band, the Trans Arabian Band and many more.

I used to contact Yassmeen Samra by mail (not email, cell phone or fax back then, LOL) back in the late 1970s and early 1980s because I was a customer of her Belly Dance Bazaar.  She had some great items.  And she mentioned that she had became a Multi-Millionaire.

Yassmeen, you are my personal Hero in dance.  With so many achievements as far as journalism, financial success in dance, personal style in dance and just being a great role model.  I wish you were still around, I don’t know what happened to you, where you are, if you are still dancing, etc.  I wish I still had some of my copies of the Belly Dancer Magazine from the late 1970s.  But a lot can happen from 1980 to 2012.  I have lived in different houses, sometimes my favorite magazines were stored in the basement, some of them got moisture damage and ended up being thrown away.

But, please check with your local libraries to see if they can get copies of them:

Hello,

It looks like the magazine is in storage at New York Public Library.  Were you hoping to find an article or did you need any information about the magazine itself?  I also checked the Los Altos library, but they don’t show the magazine in their catalog.   Let us know if we can help you with more information.

Melinda Mattingly, Reference Librarian

Also, I sent an email today to Lynette Holloway.  She wrote: “From flab to fab: belly dance your way to fitness,” for the August 2007 issue of Ebony Magazine.  Her website is listed below and it has her contact email address in it.  Please contact her and suggest doing an article that includes dancers like Nakish, Yassmeen Samra, Zarifa Aradoon, etc.  Also, the 1st 2 links below pertain to that article.

Again, 6 Degrees of Separation, shows how our belly dance paths are linked as one journey.

http://blackbellydancers.tribe.net/thread/6217a9a4-2f20-4725-a5c0-f7318dbd9c89
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1077/is_10_62/ai_n19378636/?tag=content;col1
http://nubiandivas.tribenetwork.com/thread/611625f8-d768-41da-8a3f-3007992ed281
http://lynetteholloway.net/
http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=5856802912&searchurl=bi%3Ds%26pics%3Don%26vci%3D14508
For
more Dance Gossip & Goodies, check out my book, "Learn to Belly Dance Textbook" available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble :
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learn-to-belly-dance-textbook-certification-program-shalimar-ali/1105014103?ean=9781465346582&itm=1&usri=9781465346582

I will be posting some of my original Dancer Tributes in WordPress, only the early ones that were in Twitter only, not WordPress.  Back when I first starting posting the dancer tributes on Twitter I only had 2 subscribers.  Now that I have more, I realized that a lot of people missed my early dancer tributes.  But as I am reposting those, I will also keep adding new content for topics like Dance Choreography, new Dancer tributes, etc.

Black Belly Dancers

Yassmeen1

Now is your time to Join the Conversation!  Comments, questions, concerns, controversy, rebuttals, tributes, etc., are all welcome!

What is your favorite recollection of “The Belly Dancer Magazine” or Yassmeen Samra?

Belly Dance Style Tribute 1/24/12: Pharonic Dance

Pharonic4Belly Dance Style Tribute 1/24/12: Pharonic Dance

How do you describe Pharonic Style Belly Dance?

I usually visualize the dancers of ancient Egypt, especially the ones depicted in hieroglyphic drawings.

COSTUMING:
There are many retailers who sell costumes with a Pharonic look.  But here are some great links with lots of pictures for inspiration:

MUSIC:
Some of my favorite songs to use for Pharonic Style Belly Dance are:

DANCE STEPS:
One of my favorite Pharonic style choreographies is to Souk el Jawaree.  This dance can have a group intro, but you can also do the entire dance as a soloist.  Here are some of the steps used in the choreography:

Dog-chase-tail turn to R (optional, use pharonic side pose arms)
Dog-chase-tail turn to L (optional, use pharonic side pose arms)
Floor descent w/Lotus hand pose

End in floor pose face audience, with both arms forward, palms down

III. Slow Tempo: Taxim Dance

1. Both arms out/up to L side, palms up, then down, 4 cts.

Both arms out/up to R side, palms up, then down, 4 cts.
Both arms out/up face front, palms up, then down, 4 cts.

2. Caduceus arms/up from floor, 8 cts.

Maya, face aud. w/palms up, 8 cts.

Pelvic Roll, face L, w/pharonic side pose, 7 cts.

Rib Circle, travel to L in circle, 8 cts., end up facing L

3. Rib Lift/Lift/Lift, face L (Rah: closed/closed/open); Rib Drop/Drop, face F (closed

Rahs); Rib Lift/Lift/Lift, face R (Rah: closed/closed/open); Rib Drop/Drop, face F
(closed Rahs); (Rah-Look at Sun, cover eyes w/palms); then sharply open hands
to Pharonic front pose

Rib Circle face R, 8 cts., Rib Undulation, 8 cts.; Pelvic Roll w/Pharonic side pose, 8
cts., end with Pharonic Side Pose, facing R

In the Pharonic Candle dance we use the candle position to create the movements, as you see in many candle dances:

B.) Section #2:

1. Do Camel Walks, traveling, 4 times, 16 cts. (RLRI, LRLR, RLRL, LRLR); until group is in row formation; hold candles in front, close to body

2. Stagger hand positions, then slowly switch to opposite, 2 cts. each position

a. Dancer #1, candles down (she is in front of row)

b. Dancer #2, candles half down (she is behind dancer #1)

C. Dancer #3, candles half up (she is behind dancer #2)

d. Dancer #4, candles up (she is last in row)

3. Do Rib Circles, traveling, back into line formation, 8 cts.

 

 

For more dance gossip & goodies, check out my book, "Learn to Belly Dance Textbook" available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble :  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learn-to-belly-dance-textbook-certification-program-shalimar-ali/1105014103?ean=9781465346582&itm=1&usri=9781465346582

Pharonic1

Pharonic2

Pharonic3

Now is the time for you to join the conversation.  Comments, questions and posts are welcome.

What is your favorite Pharonic dance song, steps or choreography?

Belly Dance Musician Tribute 12/19/11: John Vartan Ensemble (Spotlight on Belly Dance)

Belly Dance Musician Tribute 12/19/11: John Vartan Ensemble (Spotlight on Belly Dance)
Right now I am practicing some of my old dance choreographies from 20 year ago, so I was looking for cassette tapes to convert to MP3 (with my new Grace Cassette-to-USB gizmo).  Whilst looking for “Tamzara” (Brothers of the Baladi, Food of Love Cassette Tape), I ran across my tape for “Spotlight on Belly Dancing” by the John Vartan Ensemble.  I’m showing my age here, since this cassette (album?) came out in 1980.  I think I have this on LP, but that involves a whole new search to confirm.  At any rate.  I really LOVE this cassette by John Vartan.  I had not heard this in many years.  But I do remember dancing to this music at many shows a long time ago.  It was one of my “go to” dance cassettes.   Back in the day (meaning the 1970s), Monitor Music was a record label to be trusted by Belly Dancers.  They had George Abdo, Hatchig Kazarian, the Feenjon Group and many other great artists.  These talented artists for making music specifically tailored to belly dancers for their dance routines.  As a dancer, you had options back then, as far as picking music that had separation between tracks, or music like Spotlight on Belly Dance, where there was a “blended transition” between tracks.  I remember when Spotlight on Belly Dance first came out.  It was very popular and used by a lot of dancers for shows.  Also, I’m glad that the “Cover Dancer” had some HIPS.  Previous to this cover, most of the dancers used on covers were smaller in size.   Check it out
Spotlight on Belly Dance

http://www.folkways.si.edu/albumdetails.aspx?itemid=2633

For more dance gossip & goodies, check out my book, "Learn to Belly Dance Textbook" available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble :

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learn-to-belly-dance-textbook-certification-program-shalimar-ali/1105014103?ean=9781465346582&itm=1&usri=9781465346582