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Saturday, September 22, 2012

"Return to the Goddess" by Suzanna del Vecchio - The "Challenge Dance" for Autumn 2012

Return to the Goddess (a Chifti Telli) by Suzanna del Vecchio - The "Challenge Dance" for Alay'nya Studio Members; Autumn, 2012

Challenge Dance for Alay'nya Studio Members: Autumn, 2012

Every quarter we select a different challenge dance: one that is sure to push us to our limits, both technically and artistically. Each challenge dance is one done by a world-class dancer, and available for all to watch via a YouTube clip or other (free) web-based source.

For the Autumn, 2012 quarter, we're selecting Suzanna del Vecchio's beautifully-rendered
Return to the Goddess from her DVD, Dances From the Heart. This is set to a beautiful chifti telli by Alan Bachman (Desert Wind).

The music for this dance is the Isis Chiftitelli, on Alan Bachman's Kali Ma, and is one of the most-loved songs in the Oriental dance community.

Members of the Alay'nya Studio should begin by studying the portion of Suzanna's dance that they can watch online, and practicing the first minute with her. (This would be up to the point where she starts circling the floor while doing a rib circle.

Be very careful about easing into your backbend. In our class, we'll modify that aspect of choreography and defer it (for each student) until she can safely and confidently and comfortably do a backbend facing away from the audience (so that when she moves into the backbend itself, she's looking "back" to see the audience and they can see her face.)

Alay'nya doing a backbend during Red Phoenix. Photo by Crystal Barnes. Used with permission.


Roxy Reyes said...

That backbend is awesome but looks hard. =/

Alay'nya said...

Thanks for commenting, Roxy. And it's really two important things:
1) Really good warm-ups and stretch, and
2) Tilting our pelvis forward as we go into the backbend, so it's not all an arch in the back, but leaning the whole torso back.
The REAL secret? Getting a strong core. (Part of why we do the "abs workout from hell" in class, part of why Gerson Kuhr's "Core Training for Belly Dancers" is required.) We need a really strong core to do the RECOVERY from the backbend. That's the REALLY tricky part!