Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Time travelling

Quite often I do some digging around in various online archives, and here's some stuff I've dusted off from the Guardian's. I unearthed this 1999 gem about the state of belly dance in Cairo. It features a few soundbites from Yasmina of Cairo and touches on the West's dubious contribution to the artform: the use of pop music. (Foxy has already provoked, erm, 'lively' debate over at Shimmies, Sequins & Slippers on this very issue. (For what it's worth - i.e. nothing - in my humble opinion it's a bit like the old maxim about playing jazz. Once you know the rules about dancing to Arabic music, then you can go off and dance to pop music occasionally. Otherwise you may as well take up street dancing.)) Since this was written over ten years ago, it would be great if there was a follow-up piece about how the Arab Spring has or hasn't affected the Egyptian dance scene. But I won't hold my breath.

There's also this Q & A with one of my teachers, Jo Wise, in which she dispenses such pearls of wisdom as "No six pack, no problem." Ladies and gentlemen, I do believe I've found the legend I will have tattooed in Gothic script across my bread basket, Tommy Lee-styles.

And finally, this very, very, short-to-the-point-of-why-bother? bit about male dancers in Istanbul, which opens with the most deliciously terrible opening sentence since "It was a dark and stormy night":
"When darkness falls over the Bosphorus, veils are adjusted and sequins shimmer."
Don't think too hard about that one, 'kay? If you start wondering how sequins can shimmer in the darkness and why the night seemingly gets really clumsy over the Bosphorus and so on, your head is going to explode.

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