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  1. #21
    V.I.P. alosha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darshiva View Post
    That may well be. I'll have you note though, that I made no mention of how great you were for winning, just how great you were.


    I missed that. Thank you.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by alosha View Post
    What constitutes good technique? I think "good technique" is the place where muscle memory has fully taken root and you start to really dance with the music.
    I think Alosha sums it up perfectly. Without good technique you're slightly limited in how you can express yourself through this dance. My teacher doesn't focus entirely on technique, but she doesn't play it down either. She also places a lot of emphasis on the ability to improvise, and I have felt I have become better at this as my technique has improved.

    I think it is just a case of not focusing SO much on technique that you forget to be expressive with it, injecting your own personality into your dance is very important.

  3. #23
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    Technique to me is how you execute your moves. "Technique" in itself does not need to be good or efficient - you can have lots of technique but it might be bad or sloppy.

    When I hear people say someone has "too much technique" what they usually mean is the dancer is putting their all into executing the moves rather than dancing. Often the other symptom is the dancer is showing everything they have learnt in a few minutes. What is lost is the spirit of the dance, connection with the audience, and a feel for the culture.

    You can have very good (ie clean, efficient, complete) technique and still dance as a belly dancer. But it is also possible to have poor technique and actually do a very good job.

  4. #24
    V.I.P. adiemus's Avatar
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    Good point Kashmir! It's when all the energy goes into 'look how many layers I can do' rather than 'isn't this an amazing piece of music, I'm expressing what it makes me feel' that things seem to get boring and frantic.
    But there has to be some level of technique present before the whole dance gets unintelligible? I think this might be what happens in some of these fusion pieces...

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by adiemus View Post
    But there has to be some level of technique present before the whole dance gets unintelligible? I think this might be what happens in some of these fusion pieces...
    I think this is the case sometimes Adiemus - sometimes I watch fusion pieces and think that people have just labelled it as such so that they don't have to put any actual belly dance moves in! Don't get me wrong, I've seen some great fusion pieces, and I wouldn't call myself a "purist" by any stretch of the imagination, but surely you need to actually be able to tell (to a certain extent at least) what forms are being fused together? Otherwise it's not really belly dance fusion is it? And I think it's in instances like that that technique is really important - you need good technique for an effective fusion piece.

    The interview "Anasma on belly dance fusion" on orientaldancer.net goes into this topic, I found it really interesting.

  6. #26
    V.I.P. Aziyade's Avatar
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    OKay, I love all the responses. Thank you for taking the time to consider my questions.

    I think personally I'm struggling with something.

    I love being able to do all the fancy schmancy layers and it just THRILLS me on a personal level to hear someone say "Oh the drills on this dvd are SO hard" so I buy the dvd, work the drills and get them. It's a sense of personal accomplishment that exists separate from dance -- and it's the same motivation (for me) to be able to do 25 pushups, or be able to run 10miles, or whatever. Just personally it's kind of neat to be able to do it.

    But I've spent a lot of time trying to do technical "tricks" or fancy layers and I keep thinking "when am I EVER going to use this in my dancing?" The style that I like is very Mona Said and Sohair Zaki. The music that I like is very orchestral. I keep feeling that the only way I'm ever going to be able to use any of these fancy technical things is to add them deliberately, and then they LOOK like "oh she stuck that in to show off the fact that she can do that."

    I can pop and lock pretty good -- according to my teachers. But I NEVER use it. I mean like .000000000001 percent of the time.

    But I keep feeling like I'm EXPECTED to do fancy stuff and break out crazy layers because it's sort of this arbitrary "end goal" I've created for myself, AND because some of the more popular performers out there are respected because of their ability to do it.

    I don't know -- I'm just having a personal "dark night of the soul" I guess, and I brought it to the board. It's just confusing, trying to balance soul and technical ability (not technique actually) and figure out what I'm supposed to do with all this training I've had. :/

  7. #27
    V.I.P. alosha's Avatar
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    save the pops and locks for a hafla performance... Set it up as a show-off routine, get some kicks out of it, then do the style you LOVE. Does that make sense?

  8. #28
    V.I.P. shiradotnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aziyade View Post
    I keep feeling that the only way I'm ever going to be able to use any of these fancy technical things is to add them deliberately, and then they LOOK like "oh she stuck that in to show off the fact that she can do that."
    I personally don't enjoy watching dancers who throw fancy tricks into their dance just for the sake of doing fancy tricks. Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.

    I possess the capability of utilizing obfuscatory palaver; however, aforesaid bloviating and embellishment merely obscures and adumbrates the underlying intimation. Additionally this exhibition of vocabulary in all probability exasperates the unfortunate auditor.

    Using lots of fancy-schmancy technique, especially layers upon layers, is like talking the way I talked in the above paragraph.

  9. #29
    V.I.P. adiemus's Avatar
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  10. #30
    V.I.P. Aziyade's Avatar
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    LOL -- too funny, Shira

    (it was YOU that started me thinking about all this, I hope you know. The blog post that launched 1000 doubts...)

    I will save the crazy stuff -- maybe I'll stick my sword on my head and create a "layered buffet" for our next hafla

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