Friday, March 16, 2012

The Sabah Ensemble performed tonight, the first night of the Rakkasah (for the yarnies, it's basically Stitches for belly dancers). The battery on my camera died before I could take photos of the convention space from the upper balcony, but I have blogged about it in years past here and here and here, and there are some photos in those posts that can give you the feel of the thing.

This year I did not perform with the troupe, but I was part of the entire rehearsal process and assisted by giving direction and assisting to create the choreography. Our goal this year was to create a new repertoire piece, one that could be easily adapted to different numbers of dancers and to dancers of different abilities. I think we succeeded in that, but the proof will be in the pudding when we adapt it to a new group the next time we run it. The general gist is that the troupe travels together very simply on a path around the stage, taking moments here and there to stop and undulation and rotate. As the group then begins to travel the path again, people drop in and out of the group to perform solos. It's simple really, but what makes it complicated is handling the transitions and making it look fluid and meditative. It's really a beautiful thing we created :-)

Here's a little taste:

At the end of the meditative-ish piece, the music shifts into something more percussive and celebratory, something that opens up more to the audience. Less introspective. More outward. And look how much fun was being had! LOL (I love the looks on the faces!)

When you go to Rakkasah you see mannnnnny different styles of bellydance, but I honestly can say I think we bring something unique to the table. We use bellydance as a form of creative expression in a way that's just a bit different. We spend a lot less time on choreography and a lot more time on dropping into the movement so that it feels rich and deep, and it really shows. It's like some troupes bellydance and make a statement with their dance, and it's more like we have a statement to make, and we use bellydance as the medium. I don't think I'm explaining myself very well, but it's almost midnight, so hey-- you get whatcha get LOL. ANYHOW....

I think we're awesome :-)
And I love what we do.

My shopping there this year netted me the bottom half of the new costume I am trying to assemble. I want to wear something metallic and gold. I'm working on a new solo that is turning out to be part three of a trilogy I had no idea I was creating when I did parts 1 and 2. Anyhow, so I found the pants. And go figure, I found a booth selling really great chocolate. Leave it to me to find the chocolate LOL.

Alrighty! I am pooped! Early day tomorrow. MyFavoriteKid has a dentist appointment and another drumline rehearsal (he's so exhausted! thank goodness there is only 2 more weeks of this and then the season is over!).


~Donna~ said...

Gah. I've missed Rakkasah yet again. I should put a reminder in my calendar RIGHT NOW so that I don't miss it again next year. Sigh.

Question: Do you guys dance to traditional bellydance music, more modern bellydance music or something that goes along with what your dance means no matter what genre?