Susan's Blog

Monday, June 2, 2008

Here’s Why I’m Psyched

This is a picture a friend took at yesterday’s workshop, of Petite Jamilla and me! The whole event sings inside my head as one of the best days of my life so far. A dusty old VFW building in Medford (“Med-fuhd”) Mass., about thirty sweaty women, and one gorgeous lithe young thing (PJ), explaining her magical moves, and finishing every explanation with, “Does that make sense?” So adorable!

And it did make sense. I learned how to spin two veils vertically, one side, then the other, making a vertical figure eight with them across me; I learned how to spin in a star shape with the veils rolling overhead; how to roll the veils like the wind, around me; how to part the veils and step inside and spin in the “floating skirt” move; how to take a veil in each palm and spin in a paddle turn and then a barrel turn, the most exquisite of all. Crazy fun.

Then, after we were all finished, I went down the road with a friend to get some flatbread pizza and wine. We sat and ate and ate and drank; we were so hungry and thirsty after about 6 hours of dancing! We toasted performing.

Came back to the VFW and ran into Ned! With his camera and his smile. Then we went into the dressing room and changed with all the other girls, including the two bellydance superstars! This was fun, the sisterhood of dancers, helping each other with make-up, pinning torn costumes, laughing over spiderlike false eyelashes. I felt giddy with excitement.

Dressed in our cossies, we wrapped ourselves in coverings, as is the custom. Other dancers are not supposed to steal attention from the one performing. It is tacky to sit around in your cossie.

So when Za-Beth announced me, I shed Ned’s bathrobe and strode down the aisle in my Pharaonics pink, to the front of the audience. I smiled at people, and then my music started. But it was not my music. “Uh,” I said, “That’s not my song.”

A few minutes of Za-Beth and her husband messing around with CDs, and there was I, with my arms raised and a genuine smile on my face. It was funny, after all. But when the first drums of “I Put a Spell on You” started up, my body took over and then there was only movement and a sea of friendly faces. They even started clapping along with me when the music picked up. It was fantastic to have an audience to respond to!

I wonder how I can find a way to dance again…? Tomorrow is the last Baby Bellies class and I can’t wait to show them the double veil stuff!!


oh that is just fabulous….my husband and I used to play in a band together and I just love the buzz of performing and the audience responding…they can’t imagine how much hard work went into it all! You look amazing, so happy for you, you are shining!

— added by eileen on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 5:26 pm

Actually, check out Za-Beth’s advertisements about the Diva pageant. Hopefully she will also have her George Abdo tribute. If so, it’s an opportunity to perform to any George Abdo song, performances under 5 minutes. Last year I danced to Raks Mustapha (a 3 minute version of it.)
Also, join the NBDA (New England Bellydancers Association) – there is a local Boston chapter that Sabrina runs. About once a year there is an event where NBDA members have an opportunity to perform. The purpose of the organization was to provide a forum for student recitals. You might even be able to show off your Baby Bellies there!

— added by Shannon on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 10:58 am

%d bloggers like this: