Male Dancer Costume

Swirlicious

New member
Hi all, I am a new dance brother and am part of a beginners dance group and we have a performance in the coming months. I am the only guy in the group and so my costume is going to me a problem. For rehearsals I wear t-shirts and leggings along with a hip scarf But for performance, everyone is supposed to be colour coordinated. I wonder what I should wear. Belly dance skirts and jewellery is fine with me but what do I replace the bra with? Any suggestions are welcome.
 

Kashmir

New member
Personally, if you were in my class, I would not put you in a skirt (unless by preference you are a cross dresser in real life). And certainly NEVER any thing that looks even vaguely like a bra. My preference would be loose trousers, a belt and a vest.
 

Zorba

"The Veiled Male"
Take a look at my links page - there are links to every male Belly Dancer in the world who has a website - and that I know about it. Take a look at what they're wearing, pick something you like.

I mainly wear vests, although I have the one costume inspired by male dancer "Raffa", which isn't a vest, and at the same time isn't something a woman would/could wear. There is a contingent who think male dancers should wear shirts, but I'm not one of them. I don't like the bare chested look either - although its the rage right now in eastern Europe. I avoid anything that remotely looks like a bra.

Skirts on the other hand, are completely unisex as far as I'm concerned - and they're a LOT of fun!

The other possibility is a dress - but dresses on males are problematic as they generally must be made to our male measurements, otherwise they end up just looking bad. And not all dress styles will work on guys. I have 2 dresses that were made specifically for me, and they look very nice, but they weren't cheap!

But whatever you decide, find something you like and that YOU are comfortable with - and ignore the rulebooks some would put onto you. And there certainly isn't anything wrong with a vest/belt/pantaloon combo - for either gender!
 
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Swirlicious

New member
Thanks for the great reply Zorba. I have been looking aunt costumes. Skirts I am okay with. And I think a crop top would be great as showing my waist (I've worked hard on it) is important. Love your look as well.
 

Zorba

"The Veiled Male"
Crop tops can work - I wear them for class, but they're too "modern" for *my* tastes as performance wear. DaVid, among others, is more into the contemporary look. But your costumes, like any other dancer's, will evolve over time.
 

Swirlicious

New member
I agree. As of now, I am thinking of an embellished crop top ad skirt. I don't prefer pants and the moves are highlighted more in a skirt I believe and they are pretty unisex.
 

Roshanna

New member
Most male dancers from the middle east wear either folkloric costumes based on traditional mens' clothing (e.g. galabeyya with hip scarf), or embellished trousers (most usually tight, lycra and slightly flared, or sometimes loose pantaloons) with a fitted top of some sort (vest, waistcoat, bolero...).
 

Kashmir

New member
I agree. As of now, I am thinking of an embellished crop top ad skirt. I don't prefer pants and the moves are highlighted more in a skirt I believe and they are pretty unisex.
Your choice - but personally I don't see how moves are highlighted in a skirt. The moves are mostly in the hips. It's the belt that emphasises the movement.
 

Zorba

"The Veiled Male"
Your choice - but personally I don't see how moves are highlighted in a skirt. The moves are mostly in the hips. It's the belt that emphasises the movement.
Correct - but a skirt hides a multitude of evils!
 

Zumarrad

New member
Yeah, that's why we weren't allowed to wear them in class. Gotta see what's going on.

I am also not a fan of skirts for men. People WILL think you're crossdressing - because you are, there is no reason whatsoever for a man who is bellydancing to wear a skirt unless it's a specifically skirt dance - and you need to be cool with that.

As for "dresses", there's a better idea - a galabeya.

A former male student of mine used to wear crop tops and pants, with embellished belt. There are so many different pant styles you can choose!
 
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Zorba

"The Veiled Male"
People WILL think you're crossdressing - because you are, there is no reason whatsoever for a man who is bellydancing to wear a skirt unless it's a specifically skirt dance - and you need to be cool with that.
Those that think like this had better never condone pants on women.
 

Zumarrad

New member
With the exception of the kilt and lavalava, which are not exactly ten yard skirts, in which cultures do men wear long skirts, as opposed to long shirts/tunics/kaftans/galabeyas/wrapped garments that cover the upper body as well as the lower? In which cultures have women never worn pants? To what extent do these cultures resonate with Middle Eastern dance?
 

Darshiva

Moderator
I think the point he's making (which, imho, is quite valid) is that dictating dress codes across genders perpetuates misogynistic ideals. And to answer your question, I cite the tanoura and the sarong:

https://www.google.com.au/search?q=tanoura&biw=1366&bih=610&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj7z8m5kM_QAhXHqJQKHaFbDokQ_AUIBigB

https://www.google.com.au/search?q=tanoura&biw=1366&bih=610&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj7z8m5kM_QAhXHqJQKHaFbDokQ_AUIBigB#tbm=isch&q=sarong+men


Maybe it's time for us to stop thinking about dress codes in terms of gender lines and more in terms of practicality and personal preference? :)
 

Shanazel

Super Moderator
Dictating dress codes across genders perpetuates misogynistic ideals? You lost me on that one.;)

Zummarad also has a valid point when she says people will think a male belly dancer in a skirt is cross dressing and that a person needs to be prepared for that. A guy who turns out in a chiffon skirt is making as definitive a statement as a woman who turns out in embellished trousers and an open vest over a bare chest. Guys in skirts are A-Okay nifty fine with me but at this point in social history, it is still a statement and not simply a costume choice.
 

Darshiva

Moderator
It's like a woman wearing pants. Shocking when we first started doing it, but people got over it. And yeah, it does perpetuate misogyny by implying that if you are a certain gender you aren't able to do/wear/act. It is one of those things that looks like it's misandry but it does perpetuate the mindset that gender lines shouldn't be crossed (a misogynist ideal). Which, if you are a card carrying feminist, should frankly be abhorrent.

There are plenty of examples of what we think of as belonging to one gender as having belonged to another. Men were originally the ones wearing high heels. Pink was a boy's colour. Trousers and skirts have been worn by either gender as far back as history goes. Just because something is currently thought to belong to one gender does not mean that it has always been so, nor that it always will be. <3
 

Zorba

"The Veiled Male"
Darvisha gets it.

As for a skirt (on a guy) "making a statement", maybe it does. Art is *always* in the eye of the beholder, interpretation is *always* up to the audience! Myself, I just think they're pretty and add a lot to the dance; nothing more, nothing less. Well, and hide that above mentioned "multitude of evils"!
 
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