Everybody is always so happy and positive in class, I felt a bit better immediately. We went into warm-up and I messed up a simple step-touch excercise. Uh oh... I really hoped that wasn't a sign of things to come. Puja was calming as always, and then we began dancing. The great thing about it is you can't think anymore. You just have to dance. Before I knew it my teacher had cued the Doubleback. My feet started going right away and though my arms were a sloppy for a few beats they remembered by the time she changed the move again. That's pretty much how it was the rest of the night, maybe a little sloppy, but my feet and hips moved before I even knew what was happening! Way better than I thought it would be. Egyptian Full Turn has been going well, and Reshamka is fun. Fading is still very intimidating for me but I'm sure it'll get better as we practice more.
New move number one - Arabic Hip Twist Flourish. This one is very straightforward! Cue with a gaze on 1, complete the hip twist to 4, then do a spin for 4 counts with arms raised. Needs a bit of practice to be smoother, but just like the Egyptian half-turn it has a very clear cue and very simply addition to a move I already know. (Much appreciated after the Doubleback brain-splosion of last week!)
The second new move is one I think I'm falling in love with. A slow move called the Wrap-Around Turn. In my opinion it is a very plain, understated, even misleading name for such a beautiful move. Regardless, this slow turn is Flamenco influenced and very elegant. It has 'feelings' - which is a new concept my dance teacher is introducing as a popular one in Level 3.
This gorgeous painting of a Flamenco dancer is by Fabian Perez. I love how he conveys the strength in her arms - the same tension we should have in 'Part 2' of the Wrap-Around Turn.
The Wrap-Around Turn begins with the feeling of 'gathering'. The left arm sits behind the back as the right arm slides in front, dramatically pulling the audience in towards yourself. The second feeling is 'tension'. The move turns around and weight sinks coyly into the right hip. Hands do a reverse floreo to the sides and then rise - with said 'tension'. The head is turned slightly to the left, giving the audience a mysterious bit of profile to admire. Then lastly, the feeling is 'release' as the dancer completes a Corkscrew Turn spin all the way back to the front. The Wrap-Around Turn is mysterious, dramatic and magnetic. Beautiful. I can't wait to improve at this one and perform it with confidence!
* By the way, my dance teacher was recently in Oregon for training from Carolena and she purchased the book 'Tribal Talk'. She's been meaning to get it for a long time and now that she has it she wondered why she waited so long! Fat Chance Belly Dance used to have a newsletter and 'Tribal Talk' is full of the best (and still relevant) articles. Here is a link if you want to take a peek: Tribal Talk