(A nostalgic photo – Duncan Garage 2007)
*** See also the Vancouver Island Belly Dancers Fb page for other notices of classes and events. https://www.facebook.com/groups/16858407337
Vancouver Island Teachers
You may have noticed that a growing number of dancers around the world are taking a more sensitive and specific approach to naming our dance. They are very clear when their styles are Fusions of different forms. And they consistently recognize the cultural background(s) of the dance, instead of using an umbrella term like “Belly Dance” or “Middle Eastern dance.” Both of those terms originated in Europe or the Americas, and have often been used to belittle, disparage, or restrict the dance.
Dancers in the countries of origin recommend that we use words like Raqs Sharqi (Arabic), Baladi (Arabic) and Oryantal (Turkish) for the most popular performance styles. And they recommend that whenever possible, we name the country, region, or ethnic inspirations – eg. Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey, Saidi, Romani, Khawliya, etc.
The International Dance Council has hosted zoom discussions on this topic, perhaps we should include a panel at next year’s Dance Bazaar in Nanaimo June 8 2024?!