Belly dancer in Texas...

Darshiva

Moderator
If you're going to put it on youtube where you're representing our dance form with the whole world potentially watching? YES.
 

Straycat009

New member
I am literally brand new to this and seem to notice a shortage of males even attempting this art. I am honestly surprised at the hostility and from a moderator no less. Thanks for the warm welcome I suppose.
 

Straycat009

New member
Better yet, I will keep doing what I am doing so you will remain silent. I swear, only a short sighted fool would complain about this. It is like finding a unicorn and then complaining because it is red, instead of white.
 
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BigJim

New member
Oops... Looks like we are not off to a good start.... I don't think anyone is complaining about your dance skills... I should be so lucky as to be as good as you... But we are not really seeing any bellydancing here... You are showing us great club dancing .. twerking... but not really bellydance... your costume choice is O.K. for a club dancing vid but not O.K. for the Bellydancing scene...

No one here is down on you.. this forum is a pretty easy going place and is full of acceptance... maybe go on rewind and start again...we always have room for another male dancer....
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
A unicorn? Please, honey. My sixty-five year old husband stuffs a codpiece at least as well as you do and has more creative things to do with the contents than shake them in front of an anonymous audience. ;)

Seriously, I have been involved in belly dance as a performer or a teacher for getting on close to forty years now. Belly dance as a style depends on proper music, proper movement vocabulary, and proper costuming. Your performance lacks all three elements of belly dance even though the visual of rotating hips, protruding pelvis, and tight black underwear might've entertained me more before I left my teens.

If you are truly interested in learning to belly dance, find yourself a qualified teacher and take classes. In the mean time, take a look at videos featuring Tito and Tarik Sultan (for starters) and get yourself a clue as to what you are really aspiring to learn.
 

Straycat009

New member
BigJim, I honestly do not feel very welcome. Not at all.

"A unicorn? Please, honey. My sixty-five year old husband stuffs a codpiece at least as well as you do and has more creative things to do with the contents than shake them in front of an anonymous audience."

Insult.

"Your performance lacks all three elements of belly dance even though the visual of rotating hips, protruding pelvis, and tight black underwear might've entertained me more before I left my teens."

Insult.

"Dude, put some clothes on and then we can talk."

Condescending insult.

Two of them coming from someone with 40 years of experience. Truly depressing. Shanazel, I think you misunderstood my unicorn comment. I am referring to the fact that I am a male in Texas, who is interested in something very unorthodox. Anyhow, nice backhanded compliment. Really shows the quality of your teaching, I am sure. I appreciate the feedback thus far. Not really constructive, but thanks nonetheless.

One post and this is what happens? If this is a laid back environment and receptive to male dancers, I am sure fooled. Nothing about this is welcoming.
 

Darshiva

Moderator
Your post of you dancing in underwear: insulting to bellydancers, particularly male bellydancers who already have a hard enough time of it having to deal with the insults to their sexuality and gender without you lumping in the whole sexydance thing, dragging back any progress we might have made in upholding the traditions of this middle eastern dance style.

Your insistence that we worship you for being male: insulting to every single member of this board, PARTICULARLY our lovely male bellydancers, who work DAMNED HARD for the praise they are rightly given.

No, we will not worship you in your little black undies. If you absolutely INSIST on dancing around in your underwear for the whole world to see, would it trouble you to find a pair with sequins or fringe in the vaguest nod to the aesthetics of this dance form?
 

Straycat009

New member
It is insulting to embrace male sensuality and sexuality? News to me. Dragging back progress? Right. I never asked anyone to worship me for being male and dancing. Not once. The fact that you even infer that tells me of your mindset toward me. Which is bewildering if I have to be candid. If your biggest complaint is a costume, it is noted but duly ignored. I never thought a group of people whose sole claim to fame is expression would be so expressionless. I usually dance in thick, black shorts. They mask movement and are a bit constricting. Again, I repeat. I wanted your opinion, not worship or mindless compliments. If you feel I wanted something else, please voice why you think that. As far as worrying about sexuality and gender as a belly dancer, that is someone else's problem. I know my orientation and cut a rug without regret. I am in the process of putting together my dance materials and as I said before, I JUST STARTED. I swear, with the attitude of superiority I would assume I would be learning more from the inane and petty posts you follow up with. :/
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
Sorry, kiddo. The unicorn thing was a joke; figured you'd be up for it (no pun intended) since you seemed to be a racy sort of guy.

You have to understand that genuine belly dancers who have studied hard for years might insulted by your arrival on this site to post something so contrary to what we do and having the nerve to call it belly dance. At least one person is convinced you are a troll. I'm not. I think you are ignorant and expected to arrive here to thunderous applause because you can swivel your hips and instead found yourself laughed at because you don't have a clue.

Had you posted this on an exotic dance site, I'd not have said a word about posture, costuming, or body language. However, this is a belly dance site. What you portrayed in your video is exactly what belly dancers have protesting for fifty or sixty years: the idea that what we do involves pelvic thrusts, wide-leg stance, sexual posturing, and black underwear.

Get over your hurt feelings, cowboy the hell up, and pay attention: like it or not, what you are doing is the equivalent of female hoochie kooch. Should you really want to learn to belly dance, I will be the first one in line to hold out a hand and welcome you. Well, after Big Jim. :)

You bombed. Really bombed. Most of us have bombed at some point. What made us dancers is we asked someone, "What the hell did I d wrong?" and listened while they told us.
 

Straycat009

New member
Again, you misunderstand. You cannot bomb when you ask for an opinion. I have a lot more content I will just refrain from even sharing because the attitude here is a xenophobic one to say the least. No hurt feelings here. Insinuating someone is offended is a common tactic to create friction where there is none. I just wanted feedback. Negative feedback is still a response. No harm done. Still, going out of your way to portray someone in the worst light often makes a fool out of the person doing it. If you teach any sort of class well, you would know that off the bat. Also, only three people have responded. One thinking I am seeking praise and another preaching the glories of tradition. Only one actually bothered to say welcome and lend any real admonition. What were the odds he was male? Anyhow, no more worries. This male dancer will go back to lurking. Peace.
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
Okay. Let me see if I can be a little gentler. You asked for a response. You got it. Responses like mine with crude remarks about your body are what you can expect if you put out content like that. Ask any exotic dancer; it's part of his or her job to expect those remarks.

If you didn't learn anything else here, you learned that and it is valuable.

By not understanding belly dance and making your very first post a video illustrating your lack of knowledge, you put yourself in a position of looking like a fool. Whatever you intention was, I don't think this was it. Take a deep breath, say some version of "oops," put it behind you, and find out what you need to know to go on from here.

As for tradition: if you don't understand the rules traditional belly dance follows, how in the heck are you going to break those rules?
 

~Diana~

AFK Moderator
NSFW! I watched the videos since I wanted to see what is going on as I have been away for a month. My male co-worker/office roomie peaked around the corner and wanted to know why I was watching a guy dance in his boxer shorts at work :S.

Anyway, Straycat, there are male bellydancers on this forum and I do know some male dancers myself. Yes there are not that many but there are some. I will say that dancing in your boxers on a youtube video maybe fine for you. However if you want to get into the bellydance world, it is not helping the males already in it break through the stereotypes that are already here. It also does not give a good impression to the general public (who may not know that much about bellydance either) to see a male dancer dancing in boxers. This brings back the bellydance= stripper attitude we have all (males and females) worked so hard over years to break, which unfortunately is still strong in many places.

Also if you want anyone in the bellydance community to take you seriously as a dancer, one just does not dance in their underwear. Remember, if a venue would not hire you to dance in your boxers (not including a stripclub) then it is not correct to dance with boxer in youtube videos. Also word of caution, you might not want to take some comments so personally and react with such vigor. I can say there will always be people in the bellydance community that will disagree with you (they have with me) and be very to extremely vocal about it (again been on that end of the line). Reacting back as you have in the above conversation line because you might not like what someone says and throwing insluts back does not help you get your point across nor change their minds.

Maybe it is likly you really didn't know that it is inappropriate to post videos of yourself bellydancing in your boxers online. A lot of new people make blunders like that since they don't have someone teaching them everything before they put themselves out into public like that. I know when I first joined the community that I said and believed a lot of things that I now know are wrong. Also when I first joined I expected it to be all butterfly's and rainbows, boy was I in for a shock. The first thread I started about my style of bellydance I felt vocally attacked by some vicious very opinionated women (luckily they are no longer on this forum). I was going to leave but then I decided that I wasn't going to slink away every time someone disagreed with me. I don't do that in real life so why do it online. However I have also learned over the years to react with tact and not so much gut reaction like I used to. I don't let others negatives words hurt my self-esteem anymore. Yet at the same time I think about why they are saying that and learn where I can.
 
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Darshiva

Moderator
Holy hell, I missed the 'hay guyz u hate me cuz I'm [insert race/region of origin here]' post!

We have a bellydancer butthurt bingo here guys!

Stray, I am linking you to some absolutely amazing male bellydancers. From my youtube bookmarks. Because I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE good bellydancing.

Anyway, please note the key similarities and differences between your video and theirs.

[video=youtube;LPQbDxI0E_I]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPQbDxI0E_I[/video]

[video=youtube;MIAvtU4mYMA]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIAvtU4mYMA[/video]

[video=youtube;_h2X8alFPKA]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_h2X8alFPKA[/video]
 

gisela

Super Moderator
Hi Straycat, not sure you are checking in here anymore but I'll try to write some of my thoughts. As you can see in the excellent examples in the post above mine, bellydancers (both male and female) dance with their whole body. They use the body and it's parts (also the face and head) to express the sounds of the music and the emotions they get from the music. The hips are just one part of it. You seem to be very focused on just one type of movement in the hips. The good thing is that you have loosened your hips so that you probably will be able to execute other moves as well, with a little practice (such as figure 8s, flat circles and a more controlled version of what you are doing now, which could be an "omi"/"afro-circle"/"tilted hip-circle"). Start with placing your feet closer together, about hipwidth. Bellydance is rarely done in a wide, squatting position. Usually the legs are quite close together. There are a lot of dvds to learn from in case you can't get to a live class, which is always the best.
Happy Dancing!
 
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