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  1. #61
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aziyade View Post
    I already know people who say "why on earth do you need to take classes to learn how to belly dance. You just get shake your butt. How hard is that?" The concept of taking a class to learn bellydance is as alien to them as the concept of taking a class to learn WALKING. So in their minds, there is no perceived value to a bellydance class.
    One plus for Belly Dance Hens Nights (where people who would never sign up for a belly dance class are peer pressured into a lesson) more than once I've overheard "actually this is much harder than it looks" or "this a lot more involved than I thought"

  2. #62
    V.I.P. Aziyade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onela View Post
    Personally, I think college *should* be free. I can't wait until we live in a world where knowledge isn't a privilidge, it's a right.
    I'd love to have free college tuition.

    But who would end up paying for it? Where would the instructor's salaries come from? Who would pay for maintenance on the building? Or if it's all done online, the websites and structural network?

    Don't tell me the taxpayers -- I'm already paying high enough taxes!

  3. #63
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    "redefining belly dance as something you do with a bare, pierced belly while communing with the goddess of free love and including a skateboard."

    ROFLMAO!!!!! Love this! Hilarious! but I know what you mean! LOL!

  4. #64
    Junior Member Crow's Avatar
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    Aziyade,

    I get what you say, your point about hiring the clown for the party was actually very good. Maybe in there there is the secret of what price people should charge for a "belly dance service". What dictates what you should be charging is the expectation of what the customer would be willing to pay for an equivalent service.

    So, if the local clown charges $250 as a party entertainer, and only stays there for half an hour, then so should you. If the local ballet teacher charges $20 per student for a one hour class, then that's the guideline. Anything more and you must be a heck of of a good teacher/performer, anything less and you are either a beginner trying to break into the "scene" or not very business savvy.


    Quote Originally Posted by Aziyade View Post
    I'm already paying high enough taxes!
    You Americans have it easy! Middle class tax bracket at 25% and the cheapest petrol in the world! Try living in the UK...

  5. #65
    V.I.P. Aziyade's Avatar
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    I can't argue about the expense of England - wow! But we do actually have more taxes than it seems. 23-25% is an average federal income tax. Each state has its own taxes (variable depending upon the state -- some tax income, some have a higher sales tax.) We have sales taxes on pretty much everything, gas taxes, taxes on our utilities, phone, internet, sewage and waste disposal, insurance premiums, and toll roads.

    Someone in my state once figured it up and came up with a figure of around 40% of our earned income actually goes out in taxes. I don't know how accurate that is, because so many of the taxes are hidden. If you're like me, with no dependents and few deductions, you end up paying a lot more than others. Our middle class is dwindling FAST! But OT.

  6. #66
    Member onela's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aziyade View Post
    I'd love to have free college tuition.

    But who would end up paying for it? Where would the instructor's salaries come from? Who would pay for maintenance on the building? Or if it's all done online, the websites and structural network?

    Don't tell me the taxpayers -- I'm already paying high enough taxes!
    I don't want to further derail this thread, but can't help but comment- I think universities have to be smarter and more cost-effective. I went to one of the most expensive universities in Canada. For me it was a fairly "right" choice, because I did a specialized program and at the time, there weren't any others that were comparable in quality. But for a lot of the kids who go straight to uni from high school with no real plans, it's basically a scam- sure the arts program is ok but you can have a comparable educational experience at lower cost elsewhere. This is unacceptable. Universities need to be held accountable for the way they are mis-managing what funds they have. Your suggestion of online stuff is interesting- my husband is an academic and we're discussed time and again how universities are really missing the mark by not really using these tactics to full effect- think how much more money you'd be making if you only had to pay an instructor's salary and the cost of maintaining Blackboard or whatever! I also think students need to be better equipped to actually figure out how to manage their debt loads (I applied for my first student loan before I was 18- who else on earth would give a dumb kid that kind of scratch other than the Federal Government of Canada? No sensible person working at a bank, that's for damned sure. I really wish somebody had encouraged me to take a gap year- I would have benefited from real-world experience before going to school.). My education wouldn't have been cheaper, but I wouldn't basically be working poor today like I am now because I would have made better decisions about how to pay for school.

  7. #67
    Moderator Amulya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiradotnet View Post
    Lots of qualified belly dance instructors will mention Shakira in their promotional material. She's the "hook" that brings people into our classrooms. So it doesn't bother me to see belly dance teachers advertising "Shake it like Shakira".

    When Shakira got popular it really brought in a lot of students for me, not a problem; you can teach them what belly dance really is about. So more chance to educate people

  8. #68
    V.I.P. jenc's Avatar
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    I think there is a difference between accepting studentswho idolise Shakira and actually saying that you will teach students to dance "like Shakira", apart from putting off serious students, t could be seen as false advertising if you then teach the real thing. A more oblique reference to Shakira such as "As popularized by Shakira, come and learn the real thing would IMO be preferrable

  9. #69
    Member MissVega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shakti View Post
    Sounds interesting. Shakira does get ppl into classes. when she first came out, there was like 50 people in class. I think she has a new/ recent album so maybe it will drive ppl to come to classes.

    Shakira's style is a fusion of Dance Hall style, & merengue, fused with elements of bellydance. A girl who I practice with is an African Dancer, her sister is a Dancer hall dancer. She said that In Shakiras early days she was accused of copying the late singer Aliyah. I am a fan of both. Had Aliyah been alive today the whole music scene would be different.The influence of the both of their styles brought world music to a new audience.

    There is a big kinship of cultures of South American and Carribbean music. I vacationed in the Domican Republic recently, the home of Merengue Music, the mother of all latin American music. As an American I was a minority, most vacationers were SAmerican.(I loved it there, BTW!)Bellydance is huge there and everyone dances like shakira! So if anyone really wants to dance like Shakira, learn some Dance hall, pair it with bellydance, then go to the DR , learn some easy merengue ,to show off your skillz!Dont drink to much Rum though! BTW the guys are very SEXY!

    Shakira started bellydance classes at 6 years old according to everything I have read. I have been to two of her concerts. I have to be honest, I hardly saw any dancehall steps in her dancing. She does some "booty popping" but that isn't unique to dancehall. My family is Jamaican, I'm very familiar with dancehall and I follow the trends and competitions. It is actually the other way around I would say that Aliyah was inspired by bellydance and incorporated some bellydance movements into a couple of her video choreographies. Not to sway this off topic, but honestly there is hardly any if at all dancehall in Shakira's performances or choreographies that I have seen. You can clearly see in my opinion that Shakira has bellydance training, even if she uses it out of context the majority of the time. I'm just shocked that someone would say Shakira was a mix of dancehall
    Dancehall has actually been inspired by bellydance in recent years as it isn't uncommon to see the odd coin scarf or belt appear on a dancehall dancer in competition. Tanisha Scott, an incredibly successful dancehall choreographer and dancer from Jamaica/Toronto actually said when she was little she wanted to be a bellydancer She is self taught and has choreographed and appeared in videos for Sean Paul, Beenie Man,Jay -Z etc.



    For reference, One of the biggest dancehall queens at the moment, Shisha.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSkNY...PL4F08F38F2A60

    A video choreographed by Tanisha Scott. She is in it as well, she is the dancer with the fluffy skirt and hat on
    YouTube - Beenie Man - King of the Dancehall

  10. #70
    V.I.P. Yame's Avatar
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    And while we're at it, what's this business about Shakira copying Aaliyah in her early days? In Shakira's early days she was pretty much this Latin light rock singer, slightly dishevelled, tomboyish, playing her own acoustic guitar.

    Even in her early days of American fame, she was very different from Aaliyah. She never sang R&B. She never dressed like Aaliyah, never danced like Aaliyah. Aaliyah had a much more "hip hop-like" look to her, and her dancing followed that aesthetic. In Shakira's early days of fame in the US, she used the belly dance gimmick a lot more than she does now. The dancing in Aaliyah's videos looked a lot like the dancing in most popular music videos back then... the stuff Nsync, Britney Spears, etc were all doing. Shakira was doing hip drops, undulations, and belly rolls. It was quite different from everything else that was popular at the time.

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