Thursday, July 28, 2011

Win-Win for Pennsic-Goers & Dance 101 Students!

Wanted to let everyone know that the one and only Aziza Nawal will be subbing for Teejei's Tuesday night Discover Tribal Bellydance choreography class at Dance 101 August 2nd and 9th at 8:00 (and for her Monday night 7:00 technique class on the 8th).  What makes this news, you might ask?  Well, two things...

Pretty exciting news -- Teejei is now a member of Brizeus, a group of pipers, drummers, and string players based all over the USA performing Celtic, historic European, and original folk dance music at outdoor festivals.  Teejei has been adding to her considerable dance talents by developing her drumming skills... and for the next few weeks, she'll be performing with Brizeus at Pennsic, a huge Society for Creative Anachronism event in Pennsylvania.


Teejei's Awalim Dance Company troupemate Aziza Nawal will be teaching Teejei's classes!  I am personally excited about this because though I've admired her for years and been in classes and workshops with her, I've never studied with Aziza before.  Following the format Teejei has established, on Tuesdays at 8:00 she will be teaching a section of one of her choreographies on Tuesdays; on Monday night at 7:00, she will focus on the technique for some of the moves in the choreography.  And I am so excited about it!  See Dance 101's web site for drop-in and class card pricing.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Poetry Wednesday

Valencia, Spain, 1952 (Robert and Mary Frank dancing)
Elliott Erwitt
Dance Me To The End Of Love
Leonard Cohen

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic 'til I'm gathered safely in
Lift me like an olive branch and be my homeward dove
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love

Oh let me see your beauty when the witnesses are gone
Let me feel you moving like they do in Babylon
Show me slowly what I only know the limits of
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to the wedding now, dance me on and on
Dance me very tenderly and dance me very long
We're both of us beneath our love, we're both of us above
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to the children who are asking to be born
Dance me through the curtains that our kisses have outworn
Raise a tent of shelter now, though every thread is torn
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic till I'm gathered safely in
Touch me with your naked hand or touch me with your glove
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love

Friday, July 22, 2011

Belly Dance by Samora Amateur Night Sunday at Nicola's

Join Samora and her students this Sunday night, July 24, at Nicola's for Belly Dance by Samora's Amateur Night Student Showcase!

Samora teaches four classes each week at Several Dancers Core in downtown Decatur, and her student population is among the most enthusiastic in the Atlanta community.  Samora's passion for the art of Oriental dance really shows in her students... so don't miss this chance to see them strut their stuff!

No tickets are required, but reservations are suggested; contact Nicola's at 404-325-2523 to reserve your table.  The show starts at 7:00.  Enjoy a delicious Lebanese dinner while supporting some of the potential future stars of the Atlanta belly dance scene!  And you know that Nicola will personally make sure you have a great time.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Poetry Wednesday

Ballet School
Babette Deutsch

Fawns in the winter wood
Who feel their horns, and leap,
Swans whom the bleakening mood
Of evening stirs from sleep,
Tall flowers that unfurl
As a moth, driven, flies,
Flowers with the breasts of a girl
And sea-cold eyes.
The bare bright mirrors glow
For their enchanted shapes.
Each is a flame, and so,
Like flame, escapes.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Travel the World with Jahara Phoenix this Saturday!

Jaki, Oracle & CA of Jahara Phoenix
This Saturday, July 23rd, Jahara Phoenix Dance Company presents "Around the World in 80 Minutes," a world fusion tour that will give audiences a taste of many cultures, including not only the Middle East but also India, Spain, Argentina, and the United States!  RSVP to the Facebook event for more details.

The stellar line-up for this show will feature talent from around the Southeast, including...
The venue is Lionheart Theater in Norcross.  There will be a matinee performance at 2:00 as well as an evening show at 8:00 (a matinee -- how cool is that?)
Advance ticket prices:  $15 matinee; $20 evening
At the door:  $18 matinee; $25 evening

Friday, July 15, 2011

Get Ready for ATS Liftoff with Teejei 7/23!

Mark your calendars for "ATS: From the Earth to the Moon," an awesome American Tribal Style belly dance workshop with Teejei of Awalim, Saturday July 23rd from 1:00 to 3:00 at Dance & Arts Showcase near Northlake Mall.

This will be an all-levels technique and improvisation workshop.  Experience ATS for the first time, or get a tune-up if (like me) you're rusty!  There won't be anything too advanced; just some good quality time in a dance-and-troubleshoot format. Wear what you like and please bring your zills.

Teejei is certified in the FatChanceBellydance format, so the technique is high-caliber and straight from the source. And to top it all off, your attendance will help fund Teejei's journey to Middle Eastern jam band heaven -- Pennsic!  A portion of the proceeds will also benefit the Cheb I Sabbah Cancer Treatment Fund.

Workshop fee is $30.  You can pay in advance (just send money via Paypal to, or via cash or check at the door.  However, Teejei would appreciate RSVPs, either via e-mail or on the Facebook event, so she knows how many students to expect.

Dance & Arts Showcase is located at 2861 Henderson Mill Road in Atlanta, just past Northlake Mall and near Mercer University.  Click here for a map.

Jahara Phoenix & 4th Ward Afro Klezmer Orchestra Tonight!

In the second installation of a new music series pairing Atlanta bands with Atlanta dancers, the lovely ladies of Jahara Phoenix will be performing with the 4th Ward Afro Klezmer Orchestra tonight, Friday July 15.  
The "4WAKO" is a nine-piece band that (according to Doug DeLoach of Stomp & Stammer), "...carve soulfunk grooves remiscent of Fela Kuti's Africa 70's and rock the bar mitzvah like there's no Second Coming."  
Seriously, between that and the eclectic style of Jahara Phoenix, how much fusion can you take?!?  Come to the Goat Farm's Rodriguez Room tonight at 10:00, fork over just ten bucks, and find out!  Check out the Facebook event for more info.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Poetry Wednesday

Night-Scented Stock
Katherine Mansfield
Alphonse Mucha, "Study for the Moon"

White, white in the milky night
The moon danced over a tree.
“Wouldn't it be lovely to swim in the lake !”
Someone whispered to me.

“Oh, do-do-do !” cooed someone else,
And clasped her hands to her chin.
“I should so love to see the white bodies-
All the white bodies jump in !”

The big dark house hid secretly
Behind the magnolia and the spreading pear-tree,
But there was a sound of music—music rippled and ran
Like a lady laughing behind her fan,
Laughing and mocking and running away …
“Come into the garden—it's as light as day !”

“I can't dance to that Hungarian stuff,
The rhythm in it is not passionate enough,”
Said somebody. “I absolutely refuse…”
But he took off his socks and his shoes
And round he spun. “It's like Hungarian fruit dishes
Hard and bright—a mechanical blue !”

His white feet flicked in the grass like fishes …
Someone cried : “I want to dance, too !”

But one with a queer Russian ballet head
Curled up on a blue wooden bench instead.
And another, shadowy—shadowy and tall—
Walked in the shadow of the dark house wall,
Someone beside her. It shone in the gloom,
His round grey hat, like a wet mushroom.

“Don't you think, perhaps … ?” piped someone's flute …
“How sweet the flowers smell!” I heard the other say—
Somebody picked a wet, wet pink
Smelled it and threw it away.

“Is the moon a virgin or is she a harlot ?”
Asked somebody. Nobody would tell.
The faces and the hands moved in a pattern
As the music rose and fell,
In a dancing, mysterious, moon-bright pattern
Like flowers nodding under the sea …

The music stopped and there was nothing left of them
But the moon dancing over the tree.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Tribal Carnivale is This Saturday!

Aziza Nawal
A few weeks back, we asked you to mark your calendars for an amazing show at the Red Light Cafe featuring a rare opportunity to see performances by many talented dancers in several styles -- all to live music.  Well, it's almost time!

This Saturday, July 16th at the Red Light Cafe, Awalim Dance Company will present TribalCarnivale Extraordinaire.  This will be the first time in over ten years that the Atlanta scene has experienced a belly dance show and hafla with 100% live music!

At 9:00, Greenville's Wasted Wine and some of the area's most talented dancers will open the show.

Natalie Brown of Delirium Tribal
The main event will be a series of performances with accompaniment from the  Day Late & Dollar Shortkestra, featuring Natalie Brown, Glenn Weinstein, Majda Anwar, and the great Darbuka Dave.  You'll hear traditional favorites like "Aziza" (guess who's dancing to that one?!?), "Rampi Rampi," "Uskudara" and "Ah Ya Zein," as well as lots of other amazing music from all over the world! 

The lineup includes Awalim, Jahara Phoenix, Kira Lang, Melanie Parker, Zaina Zahra, Halleyah, Lacy Perry, and the multi-talented Natalie Brown.  RSVP to the Facebook event to keep abreast of all the updates on this one-of-a-kind show!  Tickets are just $13 in advance -- get yours here.  See you there!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Open Stage Night at Dune Lounge This Saturday

Once again, Kira brings her monthly Open Stage Night to Dune Lounge this Saturday! 

This month's theme is "Melting Pot" -- celebrating diversity through dance and music, American style.  With line dancing(!) lessons at 7:00, open stage dancing from 8:00 to 10:00, and drumming for social dancing starting at 10:00, this promises to be a really fun night! 

Click here for more info, or visit the Facebook event to RSVP.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Awalim's "Foundation Revelations" Workshop Series Wraps Up This Saturday

Aziza, Majda and Ziah of Awalim Dance Company
This Saturday, July 9, Awalim Dance Company will wrap up their three-part workshop series at Atlanta Fusion Belly Dance with "How to Simplify What Seems Complex."  The goal of this workshop is to give you the tools to get the most out of your investment in other  workshops!  Ever been to an expensive workshop and spent much of your time just trying to figure out what the famous dancer at the front of the room is doing?  Ever gotten home from a workshop and realized that you've already forgotten most of what you learned -- and don't really know how to integrate what you do remember into your own dance practice?

Awalim is here to help.  In this workshop, you will learn:
  • How to discern what a dancer's feet are doing -- common footwork patterns to recognize and simplify. Stop being frustrated with the basic portions of workshops so that you can really grab the essence of what an instructor is trying to convey!
  • How to break dance down into simple parts to make class and workshops you attend fit together and be more relevant to each other. You will receive tools to better understand how simple this can all be.
Don't miss this workshop at the beautiful AFBD studios, this Saturday from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.  Click here to register!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Poetry Wednesday

This is what you shall do

From the preface of Leaves of Grass

Isadora Duncan on the Lido in Venice (Raymond Duncan 1903)
This is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Mahmoud Reda is Returning - Super Saver Rate Available NOW!

In case you haven't heard, the legendary dancer and choreographer Mahmoud Reda will be back in Atlanta this September for workshops and a gala show.  Amani Jabril sponsored two days of workshops and an amazing show last year, and she has booked Mr. Reda again for Labor Day weekend (September 3-4)!

From now until July 31, Amani is offering a great deal!  A full weekend pass, including workshops on Saturday and Sunday as well as the Saturday night show, is just $175.  Individual day passes are $100 each, and show tickets are $15.  Click here to learn more and to buy your tickets before prices go up!  After the 15th, weekend passes will be $200 and day passes will be $125.  Workshops will be at the Tolbert Yilmaz School of Dance, a lovely facility with a big studio space in Roswell.

If you're not already booked for Labor Day weekend, you owe it to yourself to spend some time with Mr. Reda -- particularly if you are interested in folkloric dance.  I was at last year's Saturday workshop, and though it was one of the most challenging things I have ever done (there is a lot of intricate footwork, which is always difficult for me without detailed breakdowns), I am so grateful that I was able to study with this living legend.  Though his explanations were not always easy to follow, he was surrounded by professional dancers who immediately (amazingly, to me) interpreted his movements into graceful folkloric combinations.  Saturday night's show included amazing talent from throughout the Southeast, including several Reda choreographies that are seldom seen live.  Personally, I am an absolute nut for folkloric dance in general and the ballet-infused Reda style in particular, so I was in heaven!

I hope you'll take advantage of this amazing opportunity to save some money on a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will really enhance your life as a dancer.