Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 21
  1. #1
    Member Roshanna's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    England
    Posts
    483
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default What do we mean when we say 'modern' bellydance?

    I've been thinking about this on a few occasions lately, what with the whole 'cultural appropriation' debate and stuff. When we describe dance as 'modern' or 'traditional', what do we actually mean? And what does it say about how we see the dance and its cultures of origin?

    I wrote a blog post on this this morning, because I saw the old 'modern fusion vs. traditional Middle Eastern' dichotomy cropping up again in a discussion:

    On ?modernity? in bellydance | Bellydance by Rasha Nour

    What do you think?

  2. #2
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Sussex, England
    Posts
    4,848
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default



    To me, modern belly dance is what's trending in Cairo, not global belly dance developments. But then I'm an old stick in the mud purist.

    Traditional is a complicated word. It's a useful shortcut I suppose, and I think I'd probably be OK using it in a general way to differentiate ME-centric styles from Tribal and TF and other branches. It's a convenient label. OTOH if it is being used with the implication that it's stuck in the past ME style as opposed to evolving envelope-pushing styles elsewhere... umm, no, that'll be Orientalist hogwash from people who don't get it. IMO.

  3. #3
    Moderator Daimona's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Norway
    Posts
    3,651
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I'm seconding Aniseteph. From an Egyptian style point of view, modern belly dance is the contemporary trend in Cairo. Currently I would say it is the style that developed and draw heavy influence from Dina and Randa, as opposing to the more romantic and softer style popular in the mid 1990ies and earlier.

    ETA: There are lots of contemporary trends around the globe, but what dancers based in other styles think about "modern" I cannot say anything about, though.
    Last edited by Daimona; 03-26-2014 at 11:50 AM. Reason: ETA
    --
    Daim.

  4. #4
    Moderator Amulya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    7,065
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    The word modern would include so many dance forms it gets complicated. All the middle eastern styles done in the Middle East right now are modern, but so are the styles done in the west. But where in the time frame would you call let's say Egyptian style, modern? Like 10 years ago? Or do the styles from the 90s count as modern? The 80s? And you could go on and on, per country and style...

  5. #5
    Moderator Darshiva's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kyabram, Vic
    Posts
    4,470
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I think of Modern Oriental as using contemporary ME music with distinctly bellydance stylings and if using props they are contemporary (things like wings, fanveils, poi, etc would fall in this catagory)

    Modern Egyptian I think is what other posters have described - being what's hot in Cairo right now.
    Bellydance in Kyabram!
    Skype classes a specialty.
    Email kyabrambellydance@gmail.com for more information.

  6. #6
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Posts
    1,945
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Darshiva View Post
    I think of Modern Oriental as using contemporary ME music with distinctly bellydance stylings and if using props they are contemporary (things like wings, fanveils, poi, etc would fall in this catagory)

    Modern Egyptian I think is what other posters have described - being what's hot in Cairo right now.
    I can't see "Oriental" and wings , fanveil or poi in the same sentence! Oriental is not just a synonym for belly dance - it carries with it specific music styles and interpretation. Worse, most wing, fanveil or poi performances I have seen have NO belly dance elements (other than maybe the costume).

    "Modern Egyptian" is the style that came out in the 1990s - made famous by Raqia Hassan. It introduced movements like the "straight-legged" shimmy (which isn't).

    I'm reminded of a course I attended on "Modern Structured Programming" - by the time teh course came out programming had already moved on.

  7. #7
    Moderator Daimona's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Norway
    Posts
    3,651
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Modern Egyptian seem to be rather well defined with the change in the 1990ies.

    Apart from the use of properties (and forgetting how to actually dance when using them), how has the dance itself evolved in other styles? Have there been similar or perhaps more subtle changes in Turkish or Lebanese, Russian/eastern European, American and other styles that would define a modern version of that style?





    And a small digression:
    Some years back (2007) I attended a workshop in "Modern Oriental" by an elderly Egyptian teacher at a large festival. I believe most of the attendees expected some of the recent trends the past decade would be included, but it turned out to be a rather soft and romantic choreography. One of my friends attending the same class asked what made this a modern oriental. "This move", the teacher said being slightly annoyed and demonstrated a cute little combination with the feet from the choreography.
    Last edited by Daimona; 03-26-2014 at 08:54 PM. Reason: rephrasing
    --
    Daim.

  8. #8
    Moderator Darshiva's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kyabram, Vic
    Posts
    4,470
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kashmir View Post
    I can't see "Oriental" and wings , fanveil or poi in the same sentence! Oriental is not just a synonym for belly dance - it carries with it specific music styles and interpretation. Worse, most wing, fanveil or poi performances I have seen have NO belly dance elements (other than maybe the costume).
    That's pretty much why I said that it uses the moves and the props. Was I unclear?

    Oriental is a descriptor that is used for 'bellydancy' moves rather than 'tribally' moves. It to me is a fusion style that evolves in a local area from ME influences & stylings (an example of this being American Oriental, originally known as American Cabaret). I stand by my descriptor, although I would enjoy a debate on what new name to call it.
    Bellydance in Kyabram!
    Skype classes a specialty.
    Email kyabrambellydance@gmail.com for more information.

  9. #9
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Posts
    1,945
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Darshiva View Post
    Oriental is a descriptor that is used for 'bellydancy' moves rather than 'tribally' moves. It to me is a fusion style that evolves in a local area from ME influences & stylings (an example of this being American Oriental, originally known as American Cabaret). I stand by my descriptor, although I would enjoy a debate on what new name to call it.
    I use it as used in Egypt where it is short for danse orientale - and not all bellydancy moves are covered! (A bit like the confusion recently when a Tribal dancer referred to something as "Egyptian" when she actually meant non-Tribal.) In this case I would use belly dance vs tribal. But that might cause some ruckions.

  10. #10
    Moderator Darshiva's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Kyabram, Vic
    Posts
    4,470
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    that's why I use oriental. I use Egyptian when describing something from Egypt and oriental for derivative forms that are obviously from that source. Tribal has definitely diverged enough to be called it's own thing, so it wouldn't fall under oriental as far as I was concerned although it is still obviously bellydance.
    Bellydance in Kyabram!
    Skype classes a specialty.
    Email kyabrambellydance@gmail.com for more information.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •