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Thread: Hiding yourself

  1. #11
    V.I.P. chryssanthi sahar's Avatar
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    Dear AngelofDance.

    First of all, don't worry about your pale skin. Pale skin is very popular among poeple from Middle East. I also have white skin, although otherwise I look very Mediterranean because I am Greek (but I have this all-mediterranean-type, so Arabs usually think I am an Arab, Turks think I am Turkish, even Iranians think I am Iranian and they get offended when they speak their language to me and I don't understand them ) and Middle East people love it.
    As about the hair and eye colour, it is very interesting for many Middle Easterners to watch dancers with such "exotic" colours. And, as Salome said, if you want to be authentic it is better to learn an authentic style (Egyptian, Lebanese or Turkish) and become a master in it, than try to look like somebody from Middle East, but dance American Cabaret, Fusions or Fantasy. This might offend them. It would also offend me, if somebody would try to act as been a Greek and I notice very clearly that this person doesn't really have much idea about Greek culture, dances etc.
    I also think, the biggest problem in your case are the tattoos. In this case, maybe you should follow Sedoniaraqs advise
    But remember one thing: the only way to be authentic is TO BE YOURSELF!!!!

  2. #12
    V.I.P. Moon's Avatar
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    But remember one thing: the only way to be authentic is TO BE YOURSELF!!!!
    !

  3. #13
    Moderator Safran's Avatar
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    Oh my, reading all your posts shows that there are concerns no matter what you look like, so Salome's and Chryssanthi's advice on being yourself and making sure your dancing is good, is the best kind of advice.

    I am blonde with fair skin a well + I come from a country both geographically as well as culturally far away from the home of the dance. I had an opportunity to dance to a small group of young Arabs last summer, and I only got positive feedback. They were very much flattered that all the way up North we make an effort to get to know their culture. That was a great motivation boost!

  4. #14
    Moderator Amulya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maria_Aya View Post
    Pls take a min and think the situation from the opposite side:
    Look at my profile pic, and 90% you will think i'm arab, of any nationality, all arabs think i'm arab and that I hide it.
    I used to have the same problem, they mostly thought I was Turkish and trying to hide it. Absolutely no fun! They are insulted when they think you are trying to hide something. Not nice! Strange thing was, at that time I was blond! After I got rid of the blond hair I didn't have the problem so much anymore (this still amazes me). People do ask me where I am from but are more accepting when I explain.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelofdance View Post
    I didn't know what to call this thread.

    Honestly, I have been thinking of some how "claoking myself" to try to make the dance more authentic I was thinking that this way I may be more accepted at a "traditional" venue with people from the middle east. I'm white, altnerativey (sort of), and I wonder if it would be a good/interesting idea to try to "blend in" at tradition venues.

    Iris/aod
    Hi Iris,

    Well first let me say WOW. I find that super sweet of you to even consider changing yourself for your audience. It shows a genuine love for this art form and culture and as an Egyptian I must say thanks.

    But to be honnest I do feel the need to point something out... Middle Eastern people come in all shapes, sizes and culture so no need to blend in to the masses when you can stand out.

    Listen, I am dark haired, brown eyes and olive skinned but my mom has green eyes, white skin and auburn hair and is a PURE ARAB (no mixed blood at all).

    So no, stay as you are it add to the charm of you as a dancer.

    Assal

  6. #16
    Member Hadassah's Avatar
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    I'm a pale person, too. Most of the gals in the troupe are - and it's OK! I've come to accept my paleness, and although I use a self-tanner every now and then, I feel like red hair and green eyes are just fine for me.

    Btw the last time my teacher was in Egypt, my teacher(a blonde)received numerous marriage proposals, was asked to dance on stage on a Nile cruise, and was given many compliments on her coloring from Arabs. They were very impressed that she knew how to dance Khaleegi, and I think it's your dancing that matters the most.

  7. #17
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    I think you should just be yourself...Maybe it has some more mysterious look if you have long black hair and dark eyes....
    Myself I'm 100%Dutch, but I have black hair, thick eyebrows, dark eyes.., bit a dark skin. They often ask if I'm from Turkey or from Bosnia. But I only think some people will say it looks more ''1001 night''

  8. #18
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    o I forgot... I also think a natural blonde dancer who looks just good, confident and real, looks better dan a self tanned,unnatural , fake eyebrow one with a wig... If your wig falls of...horror!

  9. #19
    Member Demelza's Avatar
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    here in the UK (well nottingham anyway) - they are saying that white is the new brown !! xx love it

  10. #20
    Junior Member Taletha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelofdance View Post
    The only reason why I ask is because I have a Lebanese friend, and I got her to watch Rachel Brice. She said she was amazing, but that she would never be accepted by a traditional audience, besides her style, but she said her tattoos would freak them out. I know that my friend is quite light, so I wouldn't try to make my skin brown, just a bit more of a glow either by spray tanners/or a light glow of mineral makeup.

    I do love my pale skin...I love my corset and big boots too, but when I'm going for a job at the local spa I don't wear them*w* I hide my tattoos as much as I can when I go for a job as well. I thought it would be the same sort of thing if you were performing in certain venues. Sure they may love you because your dancing rocks, but if people don't like who you look (for whatever reason) they may not want to watch you.

    I think I may play dress up in a while....I need a reason to buy a new wig! I'll take side by side shots*lol*

    Iris/aod

    LOL. As usual, you can't get me to shut up when tattoos come into the conversation. I am Middle Eastern looking (and also apparently Indian, Latino, and many other things "looking" as well). I am also heavily tattooed and have been since before I became a dancer.

    When I was a baby, super greenie dancer doing my very first gig (to a live band and music I'd never heard), with tattoos hanging out, and honestly, not in very good shape either...I received nothing but acceptance from my audience (which was in this case a largely Arab audience). The fact was, they saw that I FELT the music I was dancing to. I could most certainly have been better, but something in my understanding of the music made them like my dancing.

    I had some people ask about my tattoos, others try to speak to me in Arabic and/or asking me if I was from Egypt, and yet others just telling me out right that they just plain liked my dancing.

    Just as with any culture (a term I'm using loosely) SOME people will be disgusted with you for any number of reasons and OTHERS will be accepting.

    I agree with everyone who says you should be yourself. Just dance, dance well, and most importantly, dance from the heart.

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