Sunday, May 31, 2009

HoT Show and VDP Costume Workshop

Wow, what a fun past couple of days!

Friday night was my last show in the US for quite some time featuring Najla and me with House of Tarab, who are not only a fabulous band but some of my favorite people that I try to spend time with whenever I'm in town. As I tell everyone, I feel like they're family to me, and am so glad to be part of their circle of friends!

My family (adopted and biological) all came out--in fact we made up pretty much the entire audience as lots of people seemed to be busy that night. My parents were also there, which was a real treat since they rarely get to see my dance these days as we live two states apart.

HoT didn't care about the limited audience though, they still delivered a fun and engaging show of classic cabaret music that everyone raved about! My family has heard their music before, we all agreed that HoT has made great strides this past year as a group. I have always been moved by their music and they are sounding better than ever now, especially with the inclusion of new member Andy Zadrozny on bass. In addition, my parents were particularly impressed with drummer Erik Brown's skills on the doumbek, remarking that he's sounding, "much sharper and cleaner than ever before."

Sallah Ali
performed a wonderfully elegant and soulful violin taqsim, which I'm pretty sure I did not do full justice to, but definitely enjoyed. Stephen Elaimy and David McGrath also played wonderful solo sections, and fed into the great chemistry this group has. I haven't worked with a band as cohesive and with such good group dynamics as HoT. To me, their teamwork and friendship lays the foundation for not only great music, but an engaging attitude that keeps the audience clapping and cheering all night. Everyone there had a blast!

As for my dancing, I ended up somewhat underwhelming myself, but I'm feeling good over all about the show. I've been dancing with the wonderful Georges Lammam Ensemble for the past two years, and it's true that one can get easily attuned to a certain band's style. This can be an advantage, but not always in this case, as I didn't get as tarab-ed out as I was hoping for. Still, I was just happy to see them again and enjoy the company of friends and family! Both my awesome teachers Dahlia and Delilah were there and I was beyond glad for their support! They've both given me a lot over the last few years I've been dancing and are such inspirational dancers--definitely catch any shows of theirs you can!

Here's a short youtube vid of me dancing to HoT's version of Ana Fi Enta Zarek--by the way the costume is one of my original creations, and you can read more about my costuming here

Today, I dropped by Delilah's costume workshop for participants in her group for the Fremont Solstice Parade. The parade is special to me because seeing Delilah's group of over 100 dancers there inspired me to take belly dance lessons myself! I've participated each year since, but as I won't be able to attend the actual event for 2009 I've been popping in to practices and workshops to help out and stay connected. This year the theme for her group is water, and they're coming up with some gorgeous dances so far, including Dahlia's Khaleeji group who will be doing dances from the gulf region.

I was dropping by the workshop to say hi, put in a few words on costuming, and show a few original costumes as well as my portfolio! Here's a sneak look at my portfolio, which will be published online at some point in the future:

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad to see you dance! It's been too long.
    You are fabulous, I'm excited to follow you on your adventure.
    Love, Vic