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  1. #11
    Member nitewindz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moon View Post
    Hmm not always I think having experience with another dance form can work against you in some cases.
    I've only been bellydancing for almost 2.5 years now and ballroom & latin dancing for 1.5 years, but I already noticed I use a different technique for moving my hips than ballroom dancers do, because that's how I learned it at bellydance class. And I've heard bellydance teachers complain about "those annoying competitive ballroom dancers" in their class
    A little off topic though, I'm sorry. I agree with the others, you can become a professional at an older age. I feel a lot of bellydance movements are more "natural" than for example ballet movements. The emotional connection is more important than being extremely flexible. This makes the dance more suitable to learn at an older age than, for example, ballet.
    Yes BUT you NOTICE and UNDERSTAND the difference!! Believe it or not that gives you an edge over the people who haven't reached that level of body awareness!

    And yes, while sports and other dance forms emphasize athletic prowess, bellydance emphasizes natural movements and emotional expression.

  2. #12
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    That is very true about the media and body type. I think that looks also play a part in everyday life in things like getting a job, getting good service at a store, or whatever. It's unfortunate that the media's perceptions of the ideal body type are not reality. I do, think, however that things are slowly changing with curvy starts, such as Beyonce, Scarlett Johansen, and Jennifer Lopez, being body role models. I realize they're both still slim, but they do have curves.

    But, even when you have a nice figure, it does seem like there is still the age stigma in the mainstream media, although many of the big name "hot" female celebrities are starting to be a lot older and everyone is always talking about "30 is the new 20" and "40 is the new 30." lol...

    In my case, I have not decided whether or not I do want to become a professional dancer (i.e. making my living that way), but I do want to feel like I have the option and not like because I did not start dancing when I was 18 or even 20 that it is something that is totally out of my reach and something I should never aspire to do because it's unreasonable. I feel like it's totally reasonable now and will continue to study and learn as much as possible about the dance and culutre and just see where it takes me!

  3. #13
    Member LLAIMA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gypsy8522 View Post
    CurlyBellyGirl,

    d, not the dance itself. There are others who only care about making fast money, whether it is negatively affecting other people or the way dancing is perceived in the long run, it makes no difference to them. Bottom line, if you're thinking of becoming a professional dancer one day, make sure that you really ARE a professional and it is not just a label you attach next to your name.
    THAT IS RIGHT MANY TIMES IS JUST AN EGO THING.

    Also please, before dancing professionally inform yourself about Professional ethics:

    -Don't undercut other dancers fees, stay within the price range for your area,
    I had turned down many gigs because of this...There are many articles by Salome on this forum that might guide you on becoming professional dancer...Best wishes and remember, you don't have to be a professional to enjoy middle eastern music and have fun dancing!
    thanks
    Last edited by LLAIMA; 12-18-2007 at 09:13 PM.

  4. #14
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    Well, I think people have a right to become a "professional" whatever and for whatever reason even if it is just about ego. I'm big on people being free to do what they want as long as they're not hurting someone else. That said, if I do decide to become a professional then I would, of course, do all the necessary work and learn everything that I can. To me, a "professional" is someone who know the rules of business etiquette and conduct for all aspects of their business/industry and that and not just parts of it.

    For me, I really just wondered if it was possible for one to become a professional when they are not quite so young if that is something that they choose to do and not necessarily specific for my own personal situation as I'm not decided either way. I am just on the dance journey and seeing where it takes me but, again, it's nice to know that I have options if I do want to walk the "professional" path and also that there are so many who are happy to help guide the way!

  5. #15
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CurlyBellyGirl View Post
    Well, I think people have a right to become a "professional" whatever and for whatever reason even if it is just about ego. I'm big on people being free to do what they want as long as they're not hurting someone else.
    I have to disagree. You have the right to become a professional whatever provided you put in the necessary training and come up to certain standards. If you are not very good you drag down the name of what you say you are doing, whether it's belly dance or plumbing. And the minimal-ability egomaniacs never see that they are part of the problem, they are always just being free....

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aniseteph View Post
    I have to disagree. You have the right to become a professional whatever provided you put in the necessary training and come up to certain standards. If you are not very good you drag down the name of what you say you are doing, whether it's belly dance or plumbing. And the minimal-ability egomaniacs never see that they are part of the problem, they are always just being free....
    You disagree with what people having the right to freedom? Just because someone is doing something to feed their ego does not mean that they have not "put in the necessary training and come up to certain standards." We all have different motivations to propel us to do things and for some it may be ego or some it may be a love for art or whatever. There are quite a few very talent ego-maniacs in many different art forms and many forms in life period.

    Having grown up the product of professional artists, I think that any form of art or entertainment is going to naturally attract some people who are egotistical and don't do it just for the love of the art. That doesn't mean they're not good at what they do or even amazing at what they do. It doesn't mean they don't study either. Having an ego is one thing and being well trained or well learned is another. So, I don't think one can make a blanket statement that one should not become a professional to feed thier own ego, which is why I said that people should be free to do as they want as long as they're not hurting anyone. I mean this is dance we're talking about, right?

  7. #17
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    Hey Curly!

    I think what Aniseteph was trying to say was that you do have to have a deep respect and consideration for the culture of the dance. There are a lot of people who dance to feed their ego and damage the work the majority of bellydancers do in trying to potray the dance in the correct light. I know that not eveyone that dances to 'feed their ego' is necessarily doing this.

    If you are dancing to feed your ego though, are you really in the right mind-set to represent a cultural art form? I think that could be a point to consider too.

    I know to some extent the majority of artists like the buzz they get from performing. But for ego to be the main drive is a bit scary

    I'll have to think bout this one...

  8. #18
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    Maybe it depends on how one defines "ego." I mean, if you are dancing because it makes you feel good (even if you are not doing it properly and may possibly be sending the wrong message about this dance form) is that being egotistical or just ignorant?

    I don't see how having a big ego means that you can't respect or "properly represent a cultural art-form" though. I also think that phrasing it as "representing a cultural art-form" statement could tie in with a whole different train of thought (which is not where I'm trying to go in this thread ) about whether or not someone of another culture can ever properly represent a culture that they are not a part of and maybe those that represent themselves as doing that are being egotistical in even thinking they can ever truly capture the spirit of a culture? I'm not saying that's the case at all or that I think that, but just adding another idea to ponder myself as well...

    Anyway, I see how none of this has to do with whehter or not it's possible to become a pro after a certain age, which was my initial question, so steering the conversation back to that , do you think there is a certain cutoff when someone would not be able to be pro due to their age?

  9. #19
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    I think it depends on what type of performances they're intending to give, and in what setting. Like a restuarant, or a fair, or a carnival or on stage.

    If it's for a stage show like the BDSS put on then I think being younger is an advantage cause of energy levels, a 23 year old will have higher energy levels and keep up with the demands probably better than a 65 year old.

    I'll explain better later. Gunna go bed, lol. All tired from uni.

  10. #20
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
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    I don't disagree with freedom, perhaps I misunderstood.

    Of course people should have the freedom to pursue whatever profession they choose. If they make a good job of it and don't hurt anyone else, I don't care whether their motivation is; save the planet, make a lot of money, earn a crust, just be a wonderful human being, or show everyone how earth-shatteringly amazing they believe they are... I don't care - their issues, not mine.

    But in belly dance it seems to be extremely common for people to get away with NOT making a good job of it, for a public that doesn't know any different. Performing or even teaching. How good a teacher you can be if it's all about you and not about your students?

    I agree a lot of people perform for the buzz it gives their ego. That's entirely normal - but IMHO seeking that buzz should never become more important than integrity about what you are doing.

    As for what age is too late, I guess it depends where you are and what you want to do. If your local venues are mainly after eye candy you are generally going to have a harder time of it if you are older. If your area is saturated with teachers already it's going to be harder to build up a student base to make a living teaching.

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