Spring 2007 OPA! News, Victoria by Sidona
On February 18th members of Women of Widad piled into a van to take the trip up to Nanaimo to attend a workshop with Lynette Harper.
We were excited and all felt that we needed a burst of dance energy after the long winter and also to beat the February blues. When we arrived at the Harbour Dance Centre in Nanaimo we were pleasantly surprised by the sunshine streaming through the windows and bouncing playfully off the hardwood floors. One of the topics discussed was “Tarab” and none of us really knew what that meant.
Lynette started with a warm-up with all of us in a circle facing each other. We moved on to “Turkish Curves” using a smoky Turkish song that really got us into that slow syrupy movement. She started with some examples and then had each of us pick a part of our body to focus on for several minutes. IT was a real joy to explore our inner emotions and combine it with a dance. Lynette promotes dance as a whole woman experience. In her workshops you are pushed out of your comfort zone in a comfortable way. She then did a mini-Ghawazee workshop called “Ghawazee Sparkle”.
The rest of the afternoon was spent on “Tarab” which when translated means “Art is Feeling” or is also described as a “musically induced state of ecstasy”. The dancers were asked to describe what they felt when dancing and words were tossed back and forth like, Freedom, Revitalized, Divine Feminine, Health, In my Veins. We moved energy to different parts of our bodies and explored alone and with other dancers using “light” and “heavy” movements, infectious music and complementary movements. It was a delight and as a group we all felt richer as dancers and as women.
It is vital to express our full selves as we dance and Lynette facilitated in her warm and welcoming way an excellent day of playing in the sun. As we drove home we felt fuller and more complete as dancers. Thank-you Lynette!