Belly dance or bellydance is a Western-coined name for a "traditional West Asian" dance, especially raqs sharqi (Arabic: رقص شرقي). It is sometimes also called Middle Eastern dance or Arabic dance in the West.
The term "belly dance" is a translation of the French "danse du ventre" which was applied to the dance in the Victorian era. It is something of a misnomer as every part of the body is involved in the dance; the most featured body part is usually the hips. Belly dance takes many different forms depending on the country and region, both in costume and dance style, and new styles have evolved in the West as its popularity has spread globally. Although contemporary forms of the dance have generally been performed by women, some of the dances, particularly the cane dance, have origins in male forms of performance.
- Raqs sharqi (Arabic: رقص شرقي; literally "eastern/oriental dancing") is the style more familiar to Westerners, performed in restaurants and cabarets around the world. It is more commonly performed by female dancers but is also sometimes danced by men. It is a solo improvisational dance, although students often perform choreographed dances in a group.
- Raqs baladi, (Arabic: رقص بلدي; literally "local dancing", or "folk" dance) is the folkloric style, danced socially by men and women of all ages in some Middle Eastern countries, usually at festive occasions such as weddings. However, this naming is used synonymously in Egypt with Raqs sharqi as a generic term for "belly dancing".
Belly dance was popularized in the West during the Romantic movement of the 18th and 19th centuries, when Orientalist artists depicted romanticized images of harem life in the Ottoman Empire. Around this time, dancers from Middle Eastern countries began to perform at various World's Fairs, often drawing crowds in numbers that rivaled those for the science and technology exhibits. It was during this period that the term "oriental" or "eastern" dancing was first used. Several dancers, including the French author Colette, engaged in "oriental" dance, sometimes passing off their own interpretations as authentic.
Other articles related to "belly dance, belly, dance, dances":
... Tribal Fusion Belly Dance is a modern form of belly dance which has evolved from American Tribal Style belly dancing, blending elements of ATS with any other style of dance ... elements from Popping, Hip Hop, Breakdance, 'Egyptian' or 'Cabaret' belly dance, as well as from traditional forms such as Flamenco, Kathak, Bhangra, Balinese ...
... Belly dancing has recently been repopularized by Latin American superstar Shakira ... Videos of hers that belly dance is used in include "Whenever, Wherever," "Hips Don't Lie," "She Wolf," "Ojos Así," "Beautiful Liar," "Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)," "Loca" and "Gypsy." The Brazilian novella ... Several James Bond films have featured belly dancers ...
... Belly Dance culture has been in evidence in the UK since the early 1960s ... During the 1980s a new expertise started to appear in the form of the Belly Dancer teacher ... Pioneered by the importation of American Belly Dance talent, new British talent attempted to establish a distinctive British flavour in the class room ...
... Amera Eid is an Australian belly dancer and owner of an Australian belly dance school, Amera's Palace ... Amera is of Egyptian and European background and was introduced to belly dancing at the age of twelve ... Eid opened Amera's Palace belly dance boutique in 1987, which included one of the first belly dance schools in Sydney ...
... who fostered a fusion of costumes and folkloric dances styles from the Middle East, North African, Spain, and India (such as the Banjara gypsies of Rajasthan) and began teaching ... Using traditional folkloric dance elements and costumes inspired by traditional and ethnographic traditions, she presented on stage through Bal Anat a colorful dance company which included musicians, singers and ... were dancing in the United States, she began to catalogue "belly dance movement" and began creating a basic repertoire terminology which is still the basis for Tribal Style and ...
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