30 de junho de 2015

ALUNAS DE JAMILA - MARY ELLEN DONALD I

Texto escrito por Khalida para o site de Mary Ellen 

Mary Ellen nasceu e cresceu nos arredores de Filadélfia, PA. 

Quando tinha 8 anos, ela se apaixonou pelo piano, e foi diagnosticada com degeneração macular: uma condição visual séria, que causa a perda gradual da visão central. 

Ela descobriu o piano na casa de amigos da família, e implorou para aos seus pais para ter aulas e eles concordaram. Como a família não podia pagar por um piano, Mary Ellen praticava na casa de sua professora, cerca de 05 dias por semana. Mais tarde, quando seus pais já não podia pagar as aulas, Mary Ellen limpava a casa da professora para que ela pudesse continuar seus estudos.

Sua deficiência visual não a impediu de ser uma criança ativa e, na verdade, ela era muito atlética, jogava muitos esportes na escola. Graças à sua mãe e materiais gratuitos prestados pelos Gravações para Cegos e americanos Printing House for the Blind, ela foi capaz de prosseguir os seus estudos. Ela se formou o orador oficial do ensino médio, no Phi Beta Kappa da Dickinson College e recebeu seu mestrado em Psiquiatria Trabalho Social em 1969.

Em 1969, Mary Ellen começou aulas de dança com Jamila Salimpour e depois de alguns meses tocando snujs (zills), Jamila percebeu sentido rítmico , e a convidou a aprender a tocar derbake. 

Depois de duas aulas, Mary Ellen teve formação on-the-job, enquanto tocava com trupe de Jamila, Bal Anat, na Renaissance Faire.

Em 1971 ela começou aulas de dança com Bert Balladine e quando ela já não podia pagar as aulas, fez uma oferta para Bert que ele não pode recusar: tocar derbake uma aula por mês, em troca de aulas de dança o resto do mês. 

Ele foi fundamental no lançamento de sua profissão. 

Enquanto ensaiava em casa um dia, uma vizinha (também um dançarina) a ouviu tocando, veio e queria aulas de derbake: Será que você poderia me ensinar? 
Mary Ellen disse: "Sim".





Texto escrito para o Gilded Serpent


Mary Ellen Donald nasceu e cresceu nos arredores de Filadélfia, Pensilvânia. Na juventude, estudou piano clássico, voz e folk e guitarra flamenca. Em 1969 foi apresentada à arte da dança do ventre, que estudou com Jamila Salimpour e Bert Balladine por seis anos. Muito em breve, se apaixonou pela música do Oriente Médio acompanhava na dança. Também em 1969 começou a ter aulas de snujs e doumbec (um tambor de colo feito de argila ou metal também conhecido como darabouka e tabla). Vários anos mais tarde, ela acrescentou o riqq (pandeiro Oriente Médio) e tar (tambor de madeira) em seu aprendizado..


http://www.gildedserpent.com/aboutuspages/maryellen.htm#axzz3e75ocaff

29 de junho de 2015

MASHA ARCHER, BIOGRAFIA

Masha Archer era aluna de Jamila Salimpour, que desenvolveu sua própria interpretação. Ela eliminou a distinção entre as diferentes origens geográficas para a dança, figurino e música.

Masha, aka Maria Muchin-Archer, nasceu em Kiev, Ucrânia filha de Sophia e Mykola Muchin, ambos os artistas e mestres da pintura e da escultura nos institutos de Arte de Kiev e Kharkov. Depois de passar anos do pós-guerra na Europa, eles emigraram para os Estados Unidos em 1949. Masha residiu em San Francisco desde 1967 com o marido, o fotógrafo Charles Archer (que morreu em 1993), junto com as duas filhas, Maya e Larissa.

Ela estudou no Pratt Institute, em Nova York, com especialização em pintura e design gráfico. Mais tarde, ela trabalhou como restaurador e expositor no Museo Nacional de México, Cidade do México, e projetado jóias e roupas em Tucson e San Francisco.

Honras e reconhecimento especial
1997: Patrocinado pela Aeroflot e Consulado russo para uma série de one-artista mostra em Moscou, St. Petersberg, e Kiev.
1997: feira de jóias da Masha foi escolhida para abrir os "Dias da Rússia Festival", em San Francisco (organizado conjuntamente pelo Consulado da Rússia eo Serge Sorokko Gallery na Costa Oeste).
1995: Masha Archer foi batizada de "Art-to-Wear Jóias Designer, EUA" pelo Fashion Group Nova York, em um evento patrocinado pelo Museu San Francisco de Arte Moderna.
1996: Desde 50 colares originais para a Great Lakes Festival Theater (Cleveland, Ohio) para uma produção moderna vestido de Shakespeare "Antônio e Cleópatra".
1997: Desde 10 colares originais para a empresa Opera Manhattan (NY, NY) para a produção do concerto de Massenet 'Cleópatra' no Sarah Lawrence College e Alice Tully Hall.

** Tradução livre - Carine Würch **

Masha Archer was a student of Jamila Salimpour who developed her own interpretation. She removed the distinction between different geographical origins for the dance, costuming and music.

Masha, aka Maria Muchin-Archer, was born in Kiev, Ukraine to Sophia and Mykola Muchin, both artists and teachers of painting and sculpture at the Kiev and Kharkov Art institutes. After spending post-war years in Europe, they emigrated to the United States in 1949. Masha has resided in San Francisco since 1967 with her husband, photographer Charles Archer (who died in 1993), along with her two daughters, Maya and Larissa.
She studied at Pratt Institute in New York City, majoring in painting and graphic design. Later she worked as a restorer and exhibitor at the Museo Nacional de Mexico, Mexico City, and designed jewelry and clothing in Tucson and San Francisco.
Honors and Special Recognition
1997: Sponsored by Aeroflot and Russian Consulate for a series of one-artist shows in Moscow, St Petersberg, and Kiev.
1997: Masha's jewelry show was chosen to open the "Days of Russia Festival" in San Francisco (organized jointly by the Russian Consulate and the Serge Sorokko Gallery on the West Coast).
1995: Masha Archer was named "Art-to-Wear Jewelry Designer, USA" by the New York Fashion Group in an event sponsored by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
1996: Provided 50 original necklaces to the Great Lakes Theater Festival (Cleveland, Ohio) for a modern-dress production of Shakespeare's 'Antony and Cleopatra.'
1997: Provided 10 original necklaces to the Opera Manhattan company (NY, NY) for a concert production of Massenet's 'Cleopatra' at Sarah Lawrence College and Alice Tully Hall .


Masha, aka Maria Muchin-Archer, was born in Kiev, Ukraine to Sophia and Mykola Muchin, both artists and teachers of painting and sculpture at the Kiev and Kharkov Art institutes. After spending post-war years in Europe, they emigrated to the United States in 1949. Masha has resided in San Francisco since 1967 with her husband, photographer Charles Archer (who died in 1993), along with her two daughters, Maya and Larissa.
She studied at Pratt Institute in New York City, majoring in painting and graphic design. Later she worked as a restorer and exhibitor at the Museo Nacional de Mexico, Mexico City, and designed jewelry and clothing in Tucson and San Francisco.
Honors and Special Recognition
1997: Sponsored by Aeroflot and Russian Consulate for a series of one-artist shows in Moscow, St Petersberg, and Kiev.
1997: Masha's jewelry show was chosen to open the "Days of Russia Festival" in San Francisco (organized jointly by the Russian Consulate and the Serge Sorokko Gallery on the West Coast).
1995: Masha Archer was named "Art-to-Wear Jewelry Designer, USA" by the New York Fashion Group in an event sponsored by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
1996: Provided 50 original necklaces to the Great Lakes Theater Festival (Cleveland, Ohio) for a modern-dress production of Shakespeare's 'Antony and Cleopatra.'
1997: Provided 10 original necklaces to the Opera Manhattan company (NY, NY) for a concert production of Massenet's 'Cleopatra' at Sarah Lawrence College and Alice Tully Hall .



ALUNAS DE JAMILA - NAKISH

Texto escrito por Yasmela para o Gilded Serpent:

Nakish era uma negra alta, de seios grandes, que era dançarina com espada no grupo de Jamila no Renaissance Faire, no ano eu comecei a ter aulas. 

Ela tinha a pele como o chocolate, e usava o cabelo penteado para trás e amarrado em um rabo de cavalo alto ou cone em cima de sua cabeça a la "I Dream of Jeannie".

Seus olhos estavam sombreados com uma sombra turquesa brilhante e esfumados em preto com pontos brancos e vermelhos sob o delineador preto. 

Incrivelmente exótica, ela era uma dançarina exuberante. 
Suas fortes e graciosas mãos, unhas compridas pintadas de vermelho sangue, moviam-se delicadamente no final de seus braços cheios de braceletes. 

Ela parecia uma princesa Núbia, e parecia se mover em todos os lugares ao mesmo tempo. 

Depois de um turbilhão de atividade frenética, ela parava de repente, e olhava fixamente para o público, com um olhar penetrante e um aberto, envolvente, sorriso. 

Sua cabeça ia para o lado, arqueando uma sobrancelha na batida da música, repetindo a mesma ação para o outro lado. Era como ser hipnotizado por uma cobra. 

Uma vez que ela fixa seus os olhos, você estava paralisado. 

Seu estilo dinâmico e alegre era diferente do resto de dançarinos de Jamila

Nakish enchia o palco com energia. 

Esta foi a primeira vez que vi uma dançarina, com um estilo diferente de Jamila, que me atraiu.

Leia o texto completo aqui -  http://www.gildedserpent.com/art41/yasmelajamila.htm

LINKS DE PESQUISA

http://www.tribalbellydance.org/resources.html

Publications, Chats, Listserves, Museums, History/Research, etc.

Organizations and Events



Near Eastern Dance and Music Info and Resources:

MECDA - perhaps the premier organization for Middle Eastern dancers in the US, based in LA but with chapters elsewhere (including SF Bay Area, of which I am a member); organizes Cairo Carnivale each June in Glendale

SF/Bay Area MECDA - tireless organizers of many excellent haflas, shows, and workshops in the Bay Area

ME Dance Resource Guide - lots of information, well-organized (but no longer maintained, so some info may be out of date)
Shira.net - fabulous compendium of a lot of information
Bhuz.com - great place to locate dancers, teachers, and events through a good search engine; discussion boards and a store as well
Lennie Clark's Arabic Song Translations - a great resouce for Arabic song lyrics translated
Gilded Serpent - on-line magazine with good articles, interviews, and, everything archived (as far as I can tell)
Belly Dance Classes - a huge resource listing of Bellydance classes from around the world


Events:   (for more events, see the Calendar page)
Rakkasah (Richmond, CA) - (March) the big Mama of all the dance festivals and an annual tradition for me since 1994
Carnival of Stars (Richmond, CA) - (August) another great festival, always with an excellent line-up of performers - and a twist: comic authors and costume competition (think ComicCon)
Middle Eastern Music and Dance Camp (Mendocino, CA) - (August) complete immersion among the best ME musicians and dancers in the world...that plus the rustic redwood camp create a week of absolute Paradise!
Desert Dance Festival (San Jose, CA) - (Sept.) Dunia and Nile Spice put on a great event and a great show each September


Further Education


Shira.net - Articles, video reviews, song translations and more. Shira.net is an encyclopaedic resource for Middle Eastern dancers.

Morocco's Meanderings - New York-based dancer Morocco's site hosts a variety of articles on her dance research and her experiences in the Middle East.

The Gilded Serpent- An online magazine on Middle Eastern music and dance: keep up with everything from costuming trends in Cairo to the latest academic research on the dance.

Jas's Middle Eastern Rhythms FAQ - How can you dance without knowing what you're dancing to? Jas's page breaks down all the rhythms you're likely to encounter in Middle Eastern music. 

Zaghareet - Zaghareet Magazine's website hosts a dancer directory and a national events calendar.



Community

Bhuz - Home to an international forum for belly dancers. Dancers of all levels are welcome to ask questions and participate in threads.

Belly Dance Forums - Another excellent site for discussing dance topics.

Belly Dance Community of Connecticut - Events calendar and community information for all things belly dance in Connecticut. Requires a Yahoo ID.

Northeast Belly Dance Association (NBDA) - Social organization for dancers in New England and neighbouring northeast states.

Belly Dance New England - Information on events, teachers, and dancers throughout New England.

East Coast Middle Eastern Dance Association (ECMEDA) - An online community for Middle Eastern dancers across the East Coast.

AGENDA: ATS para todos!

24 de outubro - 10 às 13h

ATS...ATS...ATSssssssssssiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!!!

by Maria Badulaques


Estive vendo os vídeos de ATS publicados pelo 15º Tribal Fest, um pouco de tudo... havia da técnica mais apurada à simplicidade e beleza do básico. Duetos, trios, quartetos, grupos conhecidos e festejados... pessoas se misturando, membros de tal trupe dançando em formações diferentes e voilà, zaz faz-se a luz.

Fazer um evento onde as pessoas pudessem se misturar, afinal os códigos do ATS fomentam a homogeneidade  entre os heterogêneos era um sonho que estava na incubadora. Então, as meninas (Claudia Buzian e Karina Christmas) lançaram a proposta em Sampa, onde ocorrerá o ATS na Praça - edição São Paulo, dia 27 de setembro às 14hs... ah, como não me somar? Tamo junto! Então, o Pilares do Tribal e a Maria Badulaques promoverão a versão Campinas-SP em outubro dia 24.

Não dá pra perder essas confraternizações, acredito num ATS para todos, independente de fazer ou não parte de uma trupe, ter muita ou pouca técnica, onde o importante é ser feliz, tilintar os snujs, transmitir essa alegria que vem da simplicidade e se deixar levar. Isso me fascina nesta dança codificada, dançar com liberdade entre os que conhecemos e aqueles que vimos pela primeiríssima vez.

A agenda do ATS tá no ar:

  • 27 set - 14h em São Paulo, Praça Visconde de Souza Fontes, para participar entra no evento criado e diz: tou dentro :)

  • 24 out - 10hs em Campinas, Praça do Coco (Barão Geraldo), para participar se joga nos badulaques e vem ser feliz conosco. :) A página do evento tá no ar esperando sua adesão.

Ambos encontros tem o EVENTO publicado no face, só entrar, se informar... e ir conhecer a TRIBO.

https://www.facebook.com/events/1644358789128554/  - Sampa

https://www.facebook.com/events/1460707110893362/ - Campinas

Os eventos são de ATS e procuram divulgar o estilo, portanto você pode ir mesmo que não saiba tocar snujs ou dançar, se deixe levar pela atmosfera, certamente a conexão virá. Em Campinas teremos a presença da Trupe Gira Ballo que trará as Danças Circulares para que todos possam confraternizar e brindes da Maria Badulaques aos participantes, yes!!!!

Aguardamos você!

Xeros no pulsante.

Maria Badulaques

 





28 de junho de 2015

ALUNAS DE JAMILA - Em que ano foi o que...


Nesta conversa no Facebook, vemos Anzelle, Aida, Mish Mish e Habiba conversando sobre seus tempos de Bal Anat e tentando lembrar o ano da foto, e o que cada uma fazia durante aquele ano específico, no espetáculo do Bal Anat.


Anzelle Pieretti  - Eu amo que estou nesta foto com você (Aida) e obrigado por me deixar compartilhá-la. (Anzelle é a primeira da foto, na parte de trás, tocando snujs, com um lenço na cabeça).

Habiba Dajani - 1972 foi meu primeiro ano no Bal Anat, as dançarinas com espada eram Signa, Libby, Vealah, Cassandra, Meta, Asmahan, Shukriya e eu ... Signa, Meta, Libby e eu nos revezávamos fazendo o solo em frente do grupo, bonitas fotos.
Habiba Dajani - Esqueci de incluir Laura Choulos no grupo espada. Ela era uma mulher bonita, nós ensaiávamos sob as sequoias em sua casa

Anzelle Pieretti  - Pensei que nós havíamos dançado com espada um ano juntas, Habiba Dajani. (Eu não estava nesse grupo mencionado acima).

Pamela Sklavos-Jaque Desculpe vocês, mas acredito que isto tinha era 1971, porque 1972 foi o ano em que eu comecei e a dançar Khatak com Jamila e Meta. Também nesse ano dancei com cobras junto com Samira & Sue Corsola e algumas vezes dancei o Finale. Lembro que este ano, a Dança com Espadas foi apresentado por Lisa & Hilary 

Habiba Dajani Estou olhando fotos antigas e creio que foi o ano de 1973, como acredito que foi o primeiro ano de John (Compton) com Bal Anat, foi o ano das grandes danças em grupo, que ano você dançou Karshalma com o grupo?

Aida Al Adawi Não pode ser 1971 porque era o meu primeiro ano e tenho a imagem que tinha o pote na minha cabeça. No meu primeiro ano, não fiz o Finale. Então tinha que ser 1972 ou mais tarde. 

Pamela Sklavos-Jaque Habiba ... Fui a primeira dançarina Kashlama. Dancei pela primeira vez como um solo nesse ano (72) na Feira Dickens, em seguida, no outono seguinte Renaisance Faire em 1973 com o grupo. Esse foi o primeiro ano em que Jamila deixou que todos fizessem seus próprios figurinos e coreografia. Naquele ano infame do Pink Ladies.

27 de junho de 2015

ALUNAS DE JAMILA - ANZELLE aka ANISA

Mais uma, das inúmeras alunas de Jamila Salimpour e integrante do grupo Bal Anat foi Anzelle Pieretti, conhecida também como Anisa.


Neste album do Pinterest você pode ver inúmeras fotografias dela e de suas companheiras do Bal Anat.

De suas fotos pessoais conseguimos muitas fotos que não encontrava pela internet.


Anzelle com Suhaila Salimpour ainda criança.

26 de junho de 2015

CRIAÇÃO DO BAL ANAT


Texto postado no Tribe Net, por Andre Khoury, pai de Isabella Salimpour (neta de Jamila Salimpour)

A criação do grupo de dança Bal Anat começou em 1968, quando a oportunidade se apresentar em um festival ao ar livre chamado Renaisance Pleasure Faire, desafiou minha imaginação para criar um show de variedades, que se pode ser visto em um festival árabe Souk ou no Oriente Médio

Era o formato que era admirado e imitado em todo o Estados Unidos, cujos praticantes às vezes sabiam, mas muitas vezes não sabiam qual sua origem. 

De fato, muitas pessoas pensaram que era a "coisa real", quando na verdade metade era real, metade era invenção. 

Pegando como inspiração meu passado, que incluia as danças com bailarinos que dançavam em taças, dançarinos com jarros e mágicos, treinei e apresentei muitas variedades de entretenimento, adicionando uma "surpresa" a cada ano. 

Entre muitas outras coisas, até que em 1971, pus uma espada sobre a cabeça de Rhea Deanna Rose, a dança da espada nunca havia sido vista na América.
Era para ser o primeiro, como aconteceu com muitas das danças do Bal Anat, que foram copiadas e exportadas para lugares desconhecidos. 

A dança com espada, Dança com Jarros, Karshlama, Dança Marroquina, Ouled Nail, da Tunísia, Dança com Cobra, Dança Masculina com Bandeja, Dervish, Katak e a Dança com Máscara interpretada por Katrina Burda, eram originais naquele tempo. 
Nunca vistos antes de 1968 na Northern Renaisance Pleasure Faire, são memorias que as pessoas trazem vivas até os dias de hoje. 

Como o formato evoluiu, muitos dos meus alunos contribuíram com seus talentos coreográficos para a variedade do show, muitas vezes sugerindo adições, complementando a gama de Dança do Oriente Médio." (Jamila Salimpour 2001)

22 de junho de 2015

DISCURSO DE JAMILA SALIMPOUR

Speech presented by Jamila Salimpour at the

International Conference on Middle Eastern DanceOrange Coast College, Costa Mesa, CA
May 16-18, 1997by Jamila Salimpour


Hello and welcome to you all. I am honored to be here tonight and to be a part of the first International Middle-Eastern Dance Conference.

In 60 minutes I am going to try to give you a glimpse into my journey with this dance. For those of you who already know me, you will hear my personal experience, and those of you who are just getting to know me, you will also get a look into the history of Middle-Eastern dance in America through my story. Please remember those were different times and I was struggling to create something that had never been done before, my love and passion for the dance always guiding me when there were no role models.

My basic Oriental dance training come first from my father who was in the Sicilian Navy, stationed in the Middle East in 1910. His favorite pastime when in Egypt was watching the Ghawazee dance.

Here is an excerpt from by father’s letter:
"The first time I saw an Arabian dancer it was at Alexandria Egypt in 1910 on a corner of a public square on carpet – canvas like carpet. There were 3 players – one a clarinet, a chitar – a small type and a little drum I think. The dancer was bare foot, bare arms to the shoulder; bare back down to the curve of the buttocks – there a belt holding a tight fitting indumenta ending in strips of different colors half way to the legs. She had a large necklace made out of small disks of white metal probably tin – a row white and one yellow – probably gold gilded – kept together with their chains of the same color. These disks were about the size of a dime on top – distant one another one diameter – a larger size of disks down next row and so on – 7” or 8” long – 2 small cups for brazier that would came up from a garment held up from the belt in front leaving uncovered the front of the stomach – rings on both arms and forearms to the wrist 3 or 4 up and 6 or so below to the wrist. The twistings were to the music and the onlookers would throw money on the canvas. The party would scramble and the money would quickly get covered otherwise she would get pinched for it was performed in a public square. The English were there at the time and us sailors would feast our eyes for we liked to look at that type of dancing. When in Tunis or Algiers or … or Tripoli or … more or less it was all the same."

When I was young he used to imitate them for us. In the late 40s my Egyptian landlady and I would go to the Egyptian movies every month. We saw many dancers, including Tahia Carioca and Samia Gamal. We would come home, put on Abdel Wahab and Farid Al Atrash records, and dance, trying to remember every move we'd seen. And so, from my father’s recollections, my landlady's firsthand knowledge, and from the movie’s examples, this was how I got my dance information.

I first taught Oriental Dance in the early 1950s to old 78, three-minute Cife Telli records. Not having a dance vocabulary yet, I repeated the music as I improvised the dance. My students watched and imitated me, asking questions which often I couldn’t answer. I would just perform the dance again and again until they got it. Often, I would do variations on the theme, overlaying the basic movements, causing confusion, because I couldn’t break it down. Since I had never been taught the dance, I didn’t know how to teach the dance. There were no teachers, schools, or method that existed.

From this background, I was ready at the beginning of the Arabic night-club craze, which erupted onto the scenes in the late 1950s. Whatever the catalyst, Americans were becoming curious about this dance and the music. Clubs sprouted in Hollywood. 1001 Nights on Sunset and Vine never made it. Hersheway’s, across the street from the Farmer’s Market, was short-lived. The Greek Village was the first club to open with its spontaneous weekend entertainment of dance-crazed Greek sailors. They didn’t want a belly-dancer for a long time. Then the Fez opened with an Egyptian trio featuring Siham, the cause of my marital break-up. She was the quintessential femme fatale. Her dance was indescribable. Shaker’s Oasis brought Turkish dancers from a club in Chicago.

As business was beginning to boom, Middle-Eastern dancers were being imported to the clubs and I had the chance to watch show after show of technique. The repetition of the performers enabled me to observe a variety of movements which I mentally recorded and added to my repertoire. The majority of the dancers in Los Angeles were Egyptian style. There was Zenouba and Maya Medwar, who said she was trained by Ali Reda. Everyone wanted to dance like Maya. She was something to watch but not so easy to imitate.
Jamila dancing at 12 Adler St., San Francisco 1960

I commuted to dance in a club in Fresno, where Richard Hagopian played for me. I danced at the Greek Village, and had student nights upstairs at the Fez, where I begged Lou Shelby to let me dance, teach, and hostess. While he was thinking about it I was offered a job dancing at 12 Adler in San Francisco. The money was too good to turn down so I went to dance in San Francisco and never left. Eventually I owned the Bagdad Cabaret on Broadway, hiring musicians and dancers.

It was only after I went to dance in San Francisco, where dancers were hired from different countries of the Middle East, that I saw a variety of styles. We worked in the same club and imitated each other’s specialties, of course, not in the same show, and usually only after they’d left town. Turkish Aisha wowed the audience with her full-body vibrations. During her show I would run to the dressing room to analyze her pivots. Soraya from Morocco danced almost always in a Beledi dress, balancing a pot on her head. Fatima Akef danced on water glasses with “Laura,” her parrot, perched on her shoulder. Nargis did the most incredible belly rolls and her entire finale consisted of continuous choo-choos. Fatima Ali did a 4/4 shimmy on the balls of her feet. I was told by Mohammed El Scali that she was an Ouled Nail. And so it went, show after show, night after night, year after year.

Since the musicians were mostly amateurs, and from a variety of Arab countries, the music was haphazard. Rarely did they know the same piece, often going in different directions, and they practiced during the show. Rehearsals were unheard of. Musicians were in short supply so we couldn’t complain. You could replace a dancer easier than a musician.

All of the musicals we danced to were in 4/4 rhythm with a waha-da-oh-noz for taqseem. Musicals like Aziza, with breaks and changes in rhythm, were then only played between shows.

As I worked with and watched dancer after dancer, I would try to describe to my dancer friends some of the things I had seen that were different. When Tabora Najim come to town, it was the first time I had seen what I named the Turkish Drop and stomach flutter. Her veil work was unique and choreographed. She ended all her shows with an exciting Kashlama. Often a dancer would do a step and then do variations on a theme. If a movement was similar or related in some form, I categorized it as a family. I mentally catalogued as much as I could remember and included it in my format.
Jamila at the Bagdad Cafe, 1962

In Los Angeles, where Arabs made up a large part of the audience, the dance was short and in three parts: entrance, taqseem, and finale. Arabs came to hear the music and singer. In San Francisco, where you had a predominately American audience, they came to see the dancers. They didn’t understand Arabic so the songs meant nothing to them. A girl onstage brought the customers in, the owners would say, so now it was three dancers back-to-back, three shows a night.

As time went on my specialty was to become a finger cymbal/shimmy solo which I performed without music, using my coin girdle as a percussion instrument, interspersing shimmy rhythms with finger cymbal variations. I mentally notated 4/4 shimmy, choo-choo, and ¾ shimmy while practicing my coin solo.

1965 was a turning point in my career. While pregnant with Suhaila I began to teach full time. My performing career came to a complete halt the day I got married to Suhaila’s father. I was told that both my legs would be broken if I put one foot on the stage. I turned one of the rooms in our apartment into a studio and costume making salon. Not only was I teaching the dance but designing and making costumes as well. I remember having taught Bob Mackie’s wife to dance when he was a dishwasher in my restaurant, The Nine Muses. Bob and I had many creative adventures fixing her up for photo sessions and performances. We bought our first piece of assuit together on Olivera Street, which he made into a dress for me. We had no Madame Abla back then.

Suhaila was born severely pigeon-toed, a condition inherited from her father’s family. When she began to walk she would trip over her feet. Children were very cruel and would make fun of her. I tried everything, including metal rods with special shoes. Nothing seemed to work. As a last resort I put her in ballet classes three times per week. The first position - turnout - exercises corrected the defect after a few years. Little did I know it was a blessing in disguise. Not only did her posture improve, but it gave Suhaila a body line soon to become characteristic in the new style of Middle Eastern dance.

As Suhaila was growing up, so was the age of video. Now for the price of a video rental you could transport yourself to the hot night-clubs and hotels in the Middle East, seeing firsthand, the latest trends and movements. Americans were now able to tap into the Middle East and not just do our version or interpretation of the dance. This was a turning point in the Salimpour School. When Suhaila was 14 years old, teaching on her own with her trained body line, she combined her traditional training in my method with the new direction from Egypt.

I began sponsoring dancers from Egypt, Morocco, Lebanon, Turkey and other countries-Ahmed Jarjour from Lebanon, Lala Hakim, Faten Salama, Shawki Naim, and Ahmed Hussein from Egypt, Bora Oskuk from Turkey, and Hassan Wakrim from  Morocco who taught Shikatt. Some of them were lead dancers with folkloric troupes. It was very important for me to have all styles available to my students. The dance was growing and so was our school. Although it wasn’t my specialty, I made sure to have all styles explored. One week I would have a Guedra workshop, the next week Suhaila would teach the choreography she learned from Nadia Gamal.

Not only was the dance changing, but the music as well. It was no longer simply 4/4 but complicated musical compositions. A new wave of musicians from the Middle East was coming to America, and they brought the new music with them; Mahrajan, Mashal, Sit il Hassan, and many more dramatic opening musicals for a dancer’s show. Suhaila and I began to collaborate in a series of routines enabling the dancer to grow with the times. Once again my format took a turn. I was able to mold a blend of old style and new through my daughter’s body. We were always growing an feeling a sense of accomplishment.

While Suhaila was assisting me with Oriental dance she was also studying ballet and jazz, and I watched every class. This enabled us to understand the direction of the dance interpretations of the new musical compositions. We choreographed to Mohamed Abdel Wahab, Abboud Abdel Al, Ahmad Fouad Hassa, and Farouk Slame, to name a few.

I had a large amount of information accumulated and so I published a manual in 1978. I also catalogued finger cymbal patterns, releasing an audio tape with 24 patters and booklet with the history and notation of 47 patterns. I also invented loop tapes to teach Arabic dance.

The dance began changing in America when Egyptian dancers visited, bringing their own orchestras. Sohair Zeki and Nagwa Fouad brought musicians who played complicated musicals which we had never heard before or danced to; Then we choreographed our first piece Joumana.

As videos were being made available to us, featuring Oriental dance interpretations of modern musical compositions, the Reda Troupe, Sohair Zedi, Nahed Sabri, Hanan, Mona El Said, the dance in Egypt was evolving and the Russian presence was felt with the inclusion of ballet as a prerequisite to dance in the national folkloric companies. Members of these companies began choreographing for well-known cabaret dancers.

The language that I developed enabled us to write down their choreography and teach it. From the ranks of these dancers have come some of the favorite performers and choreographers of our time. Many performers, formerly troupe members, were now doing solo cabaret. Others are choreographers we have heard of: Mohammed Khalil, Raquia Hassan, and Hassan Afifi, to name a few.

As I catalogued each step that I had seen during my years on the stage, I began to categorize the movements performed by dancers from different areas of the Middle East, all of whom were trying to interpret Egyptian dance but had dance accents from their own countries. Fatima Ali from Algeria had a unique 4/4 shimmy which she executed on the balls of her feet. I teach that now as an Algerian shimmy. What I named the Turkish drop I credit to Taboura Najim. Basic Egyptian, a step pivot walk, was like a comma between steps for most dancers. The Arabic family with transitions One, Two and Three—variations on a one-foot shuffle were to be seen in almost all of the old-time Arab movies. Maya Medwar would do a figure eight from top to bottom as if being stuck between two walls. Maya has become a favorite step of dancers all over the world. Samiha was the opening step of the owner of the Club Ibis in New York. It was a horizontal ¾ shimmy with a hesitation moving from left to right. Zenouba was a zig-zag step which was done the reverse direction of running choo-choo.

My next challenge was to put each step in order. It was the 60s and 70s and every teenager wanted to learn to belly-dance. It was important to me to structure a foundation for each dancer to be able to go from step one and progress. I didn’t want them to imitate my movements so much as I wanted to be able to put a name to a step, break it down, and when I wanted them to repeat that movement I would just call out the name.

A former student, Debbie Goldman, wrote to me from Israel:
“But you should know that my basic teaching method, my ABC technique is based on your method. Some of the movements I have obviously translated name in Hebrew. All my students, and generally dancers in Israel know ¾ shimmy, and they better know the difference between an up one and a down one! Maya has become a household word. It’s a real popular one! Sometimes I have girls call me saying how they can’t get it-and then I tell them why it’s called Maya, Basic Egyptian, 5-step, the Arabic family, etc…. The emphasis that you place on correct posture, in lengthening the lower spine and holding in the stomach muscles……We have two trends at the moment. One: is the studios and the serious students who are studying and improving and some start to perform, and two is the profession dancers and groups of girls from Eastern backgrounds who think because they are Moroccan or Iraqi or whatever, they don’t have anything to learn. So they buy and costume and start performing. In ethnic dance, there has always been a division between the folk dance of the people, and the more sophisticated professional style, and that the professional dancer has always been highly trained.”

But, I want to backtrack now to the year 1967. Many of my students were disappearing from my Saturday classes. I was told that they were attending an event called the Renaissance Pleasure Faire, where, if you came in costume you got in free. In 1967 performances were spontaneous and whoever captured the stage could hold it for as long as they wished. People could and were performing along the road, gathering audiences, and causing congestion. The program director complained to me about all my students coming in costume, and performing all over the fairgrounds. She said it had to be controlled and gave the responsibility to me. We would be allowed three one-half hour performances a day and that would be it! We couldn’t go over or we would be out! I knew the cabaret format would not have been suitable for the Fair and that is when my Ringling Brothers Circus background came to the rescue.

I patterned my dance troupe Bal-Anat, after a circus-like variety show which someone might see at an Arabian festival or a souk in the Middle East. It was a format with a look that was eventually imitated all over the United States, whose practitioners sometimes knew, but more often did not know, where it cam from. Indeed, many people thought it was the “real thing” when in fact it was half real and half hokum. Our leaflet informed the audience that we came from many tribes. Perhaps that’s where the expression “tribal dancing” originated.

I created a variety show where each number was no more than three to five minutes long and represented a cross-section of old styles from the Middle East. We had two magicians, Gilli from Egypt, and Hassan from Morocco. I featured snake dancers, water glass dancing routines, and pot dances. Years before, Danny Reserva had given me a print by Gerome of the Sword Dancer and , copying the painting, in 1971, I had a student dance with a real Turkish sabre, balancing it on her head. For her finale she did a backbend and plunged the sword into the wooden stage where it stood upright as she retreated to make room for the next dance. That was, I believe, the first time the sword dance was seen in America. Suhaila at age 3 opened the show. We had a Ouled Nail dancer from Algeria, Kashlama dancers from Turkey, a Mother Goddess mask dancer, male tray dancers and the list goes on and on. We even had a Greek math professor from UC Berkeley who knew how to pick a table up with his teeth, all the while balancing Suhaila on top of it. The crowd went wild.

Another first for me was the problem of music. Since the Faire would not allow recorded or amplified accompaniment of any kind, I had to search for an alternative. All the professional musicians I had worked with were not interested in getting up early, driving out to the boon-docks playing in the dust and worst of all not being heard or paid a decent wage. Only Louis Habib, fulltime barber and sometime oudist, volunteered to play for us “just for fun”. It wasn’t long before it wasn’t fun for him anymore. The oud was a delicate instrument which was easily over powered by drums. Not so with Mizmars. After teaching to mizmar taped music for a few years, I finally managed to collect a few of them, and began to ask craftsmen at the fair if they’d like to blow into the things. We always had craftsmen at the fair coming up to us asking if they could “sit in”. I wanted some structure but it was becoming hard to control. The first good, almost-Middle-Eastern sounding-mizmar player we got was craftsman/musician Ernie Fishbach, who dabbled in Indian music and had a Middle Eastern flair. He became the backbone of our Middle Eastern orchestra teaching enthusiasts who were willing to puff up their cheek for 30 minutes, three times a day. The ear-piercing hypnotic shrieks of several mizmars, with tabl belledi and multiple darboukas accompanying the dancers, became for many of our fans the sound of the fair.

Tradition is not static. Every generation draws from the past. Evolving from the salon and street performer, to the night-club, and concert hall, whether its Belledi, Cabaret, or Folklore, the Oriental dance will endure.

I have heard a couple of new expressions since my return to Berkeley. They are East Coast Tribal, West Coast Tribal, and the Ethnic Police, an expression I find very amusing. I don’t object to anything as long as it is entertaining.

I am pleased that you honor me for my contribution to the dance and I am always happy when my method is shared. As you thank me for my format I want to thank all the dancers that have inspired me. 


21 de junho de 2015

Rest In Peace Phyllis Patterson - MISH MISH

https://www.facebook.com/pamela.sklavosjaque/media_set?set=a.10152371289273670.1073741832.696738669&type=3

Sharing a Phyllis Patterson Story.
You probably don't know me by my birth name, most of you know or remember me as Mish Mish. I started Belly Dancing at Faire in 1972 with Jamila Salimpours Bal Anat. Then Southern & Northern with Pitu Guli / Babaganoush (Patty Farbers Group). Then in the 80's with Sage & the Bells for our Mullah (Don Brown) on Caravansary Stage. Then formed Gypsy Moor Dancers who later turned into Habi Ru.
I had retired from dancing (1992) & formed an Andean Band playing traditional folkloric music & dance from So. America.
I approached Lesley Patterson with an idea:
That when Christopher Columbus set out for the New World, Pizarro discovered natives of So. America which they thought to be India.
Bringing back some of these Indian dancers and musicians on their Spanish Galleons for King Ferdinand & Queen Isabella, their ships were attacked by the English and instead ended up being brought to Court for Queen Elizabeth's entertainment.
The storyline was approved by Phyliss and 1994 we were hired for Northern Faire (Blackpoint) Caravansary Stage.
Okay, that's the background.....Now, the Phyliss story:
There's a very famous Andean Song written & composed at least a century ago called "El Condor Pasa". It was a collaboration by all the Andean Nations paying tribute to "The Last Inca". Its kind of like their National Anthem, loved by all its people.
Well from time to time Phyliss would pass by and listen and watch the show. She loved it and its newness & storyline to Faire but one day approached me and politely asked me to "Please tell the musicians to stop playing that Simon & Garfunkel song"! "Its not Period"!!!!!
Lol...laugh out loud...no one says "No" to our Fairey Godmother.
So I very delicately had to explain to her the true history behind the song and how Simon & Garfunkel were inspired by it & only put lyrics to it.
She still wasn't going for it and the song was respectfully taken out of the repertoire.


20 de junho de 2015

HISTÓRIA DA DANÇA DO VENTRE NOS EUA II (Jamila Salimpour)

Texto postado no Tribe Net, por Andre Khoury, pai de Isabella Salimpour (neta de Jamila Salimpour)

Quando chegou o dia para ver a famosa "Rosemarie", gravadores pesando uma tonelada, foram levados para o teatro. Naqueles dias, eram poucos os que poderiam se dar ao luxo de possuir um. Pegamos assentos no centro, de frente, bons lugares para um auditório, onde se sentam cerca de três mil. 

Fomos cedo e as luzes ainda estavam acessas, assim olhamos em volta para ver quem estava sentado onde, antes do show começar. Era quase a hora de começar e, exceto pelo nosso grupo, havia cerca de vinte pessoas no balcão do teatro. Lá embaixo, havia um punhado de pessoas, e havia chegado do show começar. Esperamos, esperamos e esperamos, percebendo que algo estava acontecendo, e que talvez poucas pessoas compareceriam. Quando se tornou evidente que não haveriam mais pessoas, os que estavam no balcão concordaram em ficar no andar de baixo, mais perto da música. 

Não me lembro muito sobre a dança de Rosemarie. Eu tinha mais ou menos 24 anos. Ela foi a primeira dançarina que vi em pessoa. Ela não tocava snujs. Tio Vahan disse que ela estava chateada quando ele gravou seu show, sem um acordo de antemão, e que precisaram negociar para que ele pudesse manter a fita. Zetrac a convidou para sua casa para uma noite musical, e fui apresentada a ela como uma aspirante a dançarina oriental

A seu pedido, dancei para ela. Ela foi gentil em suas críticas sobre a minha "coreografia" e fez sugestões sobre meus braços, atitude e etapas. A única coisa que ela me mostrou, e que eu não poderia fazer, era uma figura de um oito indo devagar até até o chão e todo o caminho para cima novamente. Perdemos seu paradeiro, exceto por um breve visão dela em um clube recém-inaugurado na Sunset Boulevard, chamado de "Mil e Uma Noites", onde ouvimos que ela estava trabalhando. Eu nunca a vi dançar novamente.

Houve outros programas Orientais de tempo em tempo. Um dos mais memoráveis foi de Shah Baroviano, um músico de tar, armênio persa, que se apresentou no Wilshire Ebell. Ainda posso ouvir sua bela versão de "Naz Bar". Parecia que todo o público cantava junto. Foi por volta de 1950 ou algo assim. De FresnoRichard Hagopian, um jovem virtuoso no Oud, estava sendo comparado ao grande Oudi Harant. Passariam mais alguns anos até que eu dançasse com sua música em uma boate em Fresno.

Town and Country Market em La Cienega abaixo Melrose, tinha um restaurante Oriente Médio que tinha música e dança popular nos fins de semana, mas não havia dançarinas do ventre. Nós fomos lá algumas vezes, e nos juntávamos ao dabke, entre as mesas. 

Haviam programas em que uma mulher chamada Khanza Omar, que fazia proezas, que precisávamos ver para crer. Dizia-se que além de ser uma grande dançarina, ela poderia fazer backbends maravilhosos e levantar cadeiras com seus dentes, levantando e continuando a dançar ao mesmo tempo, mantendo a cadeira entre os dentes. 

Vídeo de Princess Raja, cerca de 1904, mostrando a dança onde as dançarinas seguravam a cadeira com a boca.


Nos anos mais tarde, vi um documentário sobre bailarinos do Egito, que tinha uma sequência feita em uma tenda, do fora das pirâmides chamado The Balloon Café, ou algo parecido. Uma das dançarinas, vestida com Assuit da cabeça aos pés, e tocando enormes snujs, desceu até o chão em duplos shimmies, inclinou-se, ainda mantendo o tempo da música com seus snujs, e pegou uma mesa com os dentes, equilibrando-a alto no ar, enquanto dançava. Eu fui a uma apresentação da amada Khanza Omar. Para surpresa de todos, ela morreu no fim de semana antes de a comunidade árabe apresenta-la em um show chamado "ExtravaKhanza". Diziam que ela era uma princesa marroquina. Ocasionalmente, ela trabalhava como figurante em filmes. Outra dançarina Orientale chamado Delalah Mur, residia em algum lugar em Los Angeles, ensinava e tinha uma trupe. Nunca vi o ela dançando.

Tinha por volta de vinte e seis anos, quando eu decidi aprender a tocar Oud. Encontrar um professor, era história aparte, e novamente tenho que agradecer Anoosh, por encontrar o Sr. Levonian, que estava disposto a me ensinar a tocar Oud. Eu queria muito aprender estilo egípcio, mas Levonian tocava o estilo turco. Mas era ele ou nada. Lembro-me dele reclamando sobre uma dançarina chamada Karoon Tootikian, que queria que ele compusesse uma música para ela. Incomodava-lhe que ela queria que ele colocasse a harmonia em sua composição, e ele diria que a nossa música é inocente, que ela deve deixá-la em paz! 

Do que eu consegui reunir sobre sua dança, ela era uma dançarina folclórica armênia interpretativa. Ouvi que sua especialidade era um dervish rodopiante , o que era fácil para ela dançar, pois tinha uma doença ocular, que tirou sua visão. Uma vez, que ela calculou mal as dimensões do palco no Wilshire Ebell e, durante a apresentação de seu dervish, ela caiu no fosso da orquestra.

De Boston, vieram histórias de dois clubes, onde o negócio foi crescendo: Khayyam Club Zarra, que tinha apresentações de música e dança do Oriente Médio.

Histórias da briga em curso entre a cantora libanesa Morrocos e a impetuosa dançarina argelina Bedeah eram relatados semanalmente pela imprensa, que estavam sempre incitando, na esperança de criar uma briga. 

Greek Village abriu em Hollywood Boulevard. Eles contrataram meus músicos, mas não queriam uma dançarina do ventre. Os proprietários eram da Costa Leste. A esposa do proprietário cantava e dançava um Cifte Telli em roupas de normais (não figurino). Tinham uma filha que se parecia com Sophia Loren. Ela usava blusas de corte baixo e acompanhava os músicos com um tambor de conga. Não importava se ela sabia tocar ou não. A visão dela, valia o preço da entrada.

Tradução livre por Carine Würch