Loving dance

The lines at the beginning of the first story in The History of (my) Dance are: I love to dance. I always have. Dancing makes me happy in a way that nothing else does…. I dance all the time. I do have a day job. But most of my vacation, weekends, and evenings (along with […]

Dance Everyday: an Invitation

I recently gave myself a challenge: do something dance-related everyday. That can mean many things: Attending class Reading a book to affect stagecraft Watching videos for inspiration Performing Working out with performance enhancement in mind Costuming The list is endless. But mindfully engage in an activity related to my dance. And document it. I chose to […]

Daily practice or Jumping back on the wagon

Sometimes your daily practice gets sidelined. Perhaps you’ve been sick. Maybe you’ve done a different practice, such as attended a dance intensive workshop. Perhaps you’ve created and performed a show about the history of your dance. Any of these would be a good reason for temporarily letting go of your regular daily practice. In my […]

Space

I’ve just spent the past week in the middle of the desert in northern New Mexico on a dance retreat with Mira Betz. Mira offers many types of intensives, and I’ve enjoyed them all. But her retreats are my favorites. Mornings give me a chance for some awesome fusion drilling and technique work. Afternoons and […]

Finale – or not…

We finished our run at the 2016 Minnesota Fringe Festival last night with our show The History of (my) Dance. There are still 2 days left of the festival, and I will be relaxing, and enjoying shows during both. I’m sitting here, enjoying my lunch and a little down time, and trying to process a […]

The Choreographer Equation, or Process

Recently, the subject of my process has come up a couple of times in conversations with others. I thought I would ponder on this a bit and share the results here. I wrote this thinking about the works that I’m proudest of: Dancing with Death from 2011, and The Forgotten Angle from 2015. My guess […]

Transnational Fusion Music

Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to have a conversation about my upcoming Fringe Festival show with a remarkably intelligent and analytical woman. She is from Turkey, but has been living in the US for quite some time. As such, she is both familiar with bellydance in her home culture and has seen it in the […]

Request for support

I am hard at work on my next show, History of (my) Dance. If you’ve spoken to me about the project, you know that it is something very new for me. I am combining 3 separate threads: academic lecture on the origins and development of American belly dance, personal storytelling narrative about how I found […]

“Drones” from “Apocolyptic”

Here is part of Smiling Lune’s new piece “Apocolyptic”.  We debuted this on April 23, 2016 as part of the Guild of Oriental Dance’s annual show. I played quite a bit with some of the ideas that I learned in a Delsartian workshop. I’m looking forward to playing with this more.  

The dirty little (not so) secret…

This dance form has a rather sordid past. Borne of the Orientalism and sensationalism of the late 19th century, transnational dance (more commonly known as belly dance) is rooted in colonialism,  cultural appropriation, and the sexualization of others who were “lesser”. But today’s dancers try to ignore this. We study Arabic rhythms while tuning out […]