Monday, November 29, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Growing in love with TANGO...
I am falling in love with TANGO so deep that I actually find it scary.
Just attended by first milonga and could feel the different feeling of dancing with each partner, each man different from the other, every one of them with their own unique magic, energy, personality.
I heard that Tango was a single heart with four legs.
I happen to agree.
I also learnt that this is a sub-world where unforgettable love affairs happen in the time of a song. Like I always say, ETERNITY can fit in a minute. It's not the time you live that defines it but the quality of it.
Some people enjoy a life time in a minute (line from the magnificent movie
" Scent of a Woman")!
So true...so I can already guess that TANGO will become a huge thing in my life.
Thankful to God for this - one more!- PASSION in my life. And may it bring all that is beautiful, true and ETERNAL.
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Cairo, the 27th November, 2010
When you dance...
I feel proud, rejoicing with happiness, wishing I could lift your arms and help you to fly.
I breath with you, I turn with you, I suffer and I enjoy with you. Our bodies are ONE.
I see angels and love everywhere and I am sure they dance with you, within you.
When you dance...
It's ME dancing on stage because you're my mirror, the extension of my body, the layer that spreads itself to the sky holding hands with my soul.
When you dance...
Time and space disappears and all I see is LIFE.
When you dance...
I have absolutely no doubt that we were meant to dance together ( in the sky, in pleasure, in passionate madness and in LIFE).
When you dance...
I say to myself - and to you - I love you so much, baby. (And I know you hear me).
And everything turns to nothing and all I see is LOVE.
Cairo, the 27th November,2010
A brand new day...
Or the wonder of knowing absolutely "anything".
Difficult art to master: letting go...leaving important matters in the hands of the Universe!
How hard can it be for a warrior like me to do such thing?! And yet, I reach the conclusion that, some times, the best thing to do is : NOTHING.
Sometimes, the best weapon to use in a war is : SURRENDER.
That doesn't mean quitting but admiting there are things that are not in our hands to decide and make it happen.
Deep inside, it's our faith in God/Universe put to the test. How well taken care of are we when we lower our hands and surrender, allowing LIFE to take its course and brings us whatever is the absolute BEST?
Now that's what I call FAITH.
And I am working on it during this bright new surrender day.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
BASTET - thanks for the mirror, dear Sultana!
(How could I not see it?)
Bastet in me, Bastet is ME. And this mirror had to come from outside (dear Sultana, thanks for being my mirror!).
Sweet, caring, purring cat when respected, loved and caressed and hungry, wild, incontrollable, destructive lion when her nature is not appreciated and loved. I know both by heart as I am both so clearly (now!).
Incredible how we discover the deeper layers of ourselves through other people's loving recognition.:)
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Now...that's what I am talking about!
From the deepest of my ignorance in the subject (yet getting there...),I can already say this is not the best TANGO technique or close but they DO have the feeling.
And that's what I am talking about, my dear friends!
I finally discover a kind of DANCE that is the exact mirror of this side of me that is a helpless romantic in full bloom and PASSION.
Why didn't I start studying TANGO before?!
Will not loose a moment, from now on.
And I wonder what effects this new PASSION will have on me and on my Oriental Dance?!
Well, let's wait and see, shall we?!
Carlos Gardel & Madreselva...
Going deeper and deeper into my latest passion: TANGO.
As it happens with all my true passions (the ones that feed me, lift me up, make me HAPPY!), I just can't run away from it!
Cairo, the 23rd November, 2010
"El Bandoneon" - one of my favourite instruments in the world
Here it is a delicious short history of the " BANDONEON" (instrument par excellence of the TANGO) told by the innovator genius, Astor Piazzolla.
I cannot even start to describe what this instrument provokes in me.
While in Buenos Aires, I cried with no self-control whatso ever when watching a show of BANDONEONES. No dancers, no fancy fru-frus, JUST a bunch of wonderful old musicians playing their bandoneones and all the hidden strings of my soul were touched in a magical way I cannot effectively describe by words.
Here it is my humble homage to one of my elected world music instruments: El Bandoneon.
Monday, November 22, 2010
Cairo, the 22nd November, 2010
Next sweet challenges:
1. Preparing for India (workshops, shows and Ganga river baths in the morning...);
2. Revolution in my Egypt shows.
Taking as much as I can from Egypt, enjoying every minute as if it was the last.
3. Workshops in Portugal and Italy soon (romantic, gorgeous Venice, here I come!);
4. Other surprises that Universe has for me and that I am willing to take on (making the best of it!).
P.S. Being the best TANGO dancer I can manage to be!
Cairo, the 22nd November, 2010
The Scent of a Woman - my homage to my newest passion : TANGO!
If only there were more Al Pacinos in this world...knowing a woman by her scent...taking her in their arms like a real man...oh, boy!
May all the great women of this world find their own Frank and tango on with true passion.
Life is only worth like that.:)
Cairo, the 22nd November, 2010
Revolutions in my life, Tango delights and Dancing discoveries!
The tempest has arrived and it seems to be staying around for a while...I can't even catch my breath to recover from the shocks and turbulence...
I am, literally, out of breath in a way that is forcing me to reach for inner resources I didn't know I had to avoid drawning!
Injustices, disappointments in all areas of my life, more of the men trying to buy me in exchange for work...I am really getting tired of this "egyptian system" of treating women, specially female dancers and, in particular, what they call " belly dancers"!
Oh, such an old boring theme, really...
As an answer to low attacks, I always answer in style (my style) and never going down to the level of the aggressors. I am too proud for that!
So, although I am so exhausted, it's WAR TIME and I never gave my back to war when I know God is on my side and all I ever did was to struggle for my Art with honesty and a white heart.
I am not afraid of fighting so...let the enemies presume they are winning the battle because there's still a war to be decided and there's no way I give up without ending it victorious (with God's help).
Then it came the TANGO...
And it was a sweet surrender to pain and pleasure...
Ahhh...................................................................................................................................................................like a smooth breeze in my body, something soothing to distract me from all the harships.
Dancing for pleasure - not for professional purposes - has its own secret taste.
Letting myself go in the arms of my partner and listening to that tender/passionate conversation happen through movement is pure magic.
Above all, I feel great to learn a new dance and flow with it, without deciding what to do all the time (as I do in my work).
I dance tango with my eyes shut. I did it the first time a professional grabbed me and danced with me (long time ago, in Spain) and I still do it. Tango is really pure feeling and listening to your partner's heart. So beautiful....
I close my eyes and let my partner take me away, talking to me in a language that is close to making love with your man. (Just sooooo damned sexy!)
If most people consider Oriental Dance as a sensual dance, then I tell them:
-Oh, please!!! Check Tango and then tell me about S-E-N-S-U-A-L-I-T-Y.
Oriental Dance is a sensual relation between the dancer and God within herself. It's me with myself in a highly elevated way, almost absent in my own body.
Tango, in comparison, is a sensual relation between a man and a woman, body to body, heart to heart. More carnal, more human in the earthy aspect of what Humanity is.
Tango is a conflict, a passional discussion between two lovers who cannot escape their human fragilities, attachment, jealousy, need of needing and being needed. Tango is not " me with myself" or " me and God within myself" but me and a man, both human and on fire.
How delicious can it get?!
And there I go, listening to my partner's heart beat and following him with my infamous eyes closed, giving him hints of who I am and how I love through simple dance steps, simple walking hand in hand.
I am delighted and anxious to get started with my first milonga. That will be amazing,,,
Classes are great but being in a milonga and practicing with different partners has its own magical adventure to it!
P.S. Who knew that Tango could be such a life saver?!
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Glimpses of my own personal heaven
Next free days will be kept for the beach (more than one year without sun or sea has turned me into a milk advertisement perfect picture) or to go back to my newest passion: the baby lion.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
For my one and only LOVE!
In a Fayoum paradise mood...no need to even comment on it.
Just sending a special song for THE special man in my life.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
It has been carrying me around life with such dignity, intensity, joy, feeling, oh my GOD!!!
That last night's show was dedicated to my own TEMPLE, the BODY of a Dancer.
The vision of my own expressive, sacred body will never leave me again and I will be forever thankful for all it has done for me and with me.
Monday, November 15, 2010
Early bird shows (so anti-natural...)
Wishing a GREAT, HAPPY, BEAUTIFUL day to every one!
Today I will be an early dancing bird...first show to start within 30 minutes and the other ones to follow until 1.00h in the morning.
Knowing that I will, probably, have a limited time in Egypt (plans for new horizons on the move) makes me enjoy it even more than usual. I guess I will start taking FULL pleasure on each day I spend performing here because I will miss it so much in the future. I am sure of that.
Instead of forbidding Oriental Dance in Ramadan, they should forbid it in the mornings but, hey!, I am not the one who makes the laws in Egypt and the ones who do are well known opposite of geniuses so... duty calls!
LOVE to you all from an early dancing bird (sleepy, sleepy...)
(Great to laugh with my musicians since the morning, though!)
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Cairo, the 14th November, 2010
Kamikaze show and
Happy on stage!
With less than one hour to prepare there I went running to the NILE MAXIM to substitute Randa Kamel (egyptian dancer for the ones who don't know her) who was not feeling well.
I had just arrived from my first tango lesson (this time, I will do it for real...no matter what!) and relaxing a bit before leaving to do my next show in another part of the city when the phone rang and the urgent request to perform within an hour came to me as a kamikaze little bomb that I had to handle in my hands with care and...just make it work into a beautiful explosion!
Not enough time to reach all my musicians so I had to perform with the orchestra of Randa Kamel. They know me only by name (except the tabal who worked with me for a few months) and I don't know them. Also not enough time for a proper rehearsal.
Full house with VIP people...yeah, right! And there I was happily thrown to the lion's cage without a clue of how it would all work out.
In a few minutes, I arranged the full hour program with the orchestra and prayed to God for the energy to flow!
Not surprisingly, the show was AMAZING and I thank God for that.
People were actually yelling my name and doing cute, appreciative remarks during the whole show. I was as HAPPY as ever...it made me remember that, no matter how hard are the circumstances around me (or even inside me, at the moment), I am truly HAPPY on stage!
I've always been and now, ready to start planning a new phase in my life and probably leave Egypt to conquer another horizons, I realize how HAPPY I am on stage, sharing all that I am with people, my real life experiences and feelings...
Being a GREAT dancer requires LIVING a GREAT life, otherwise your dance will always be fake, look phony and forced like an acting disaster of a truly bad actor...You need to have REAL LOVE in your life in order to DANCE REAL LOVE on stage. You need to breath joy and excitement in your " real life" in order to communicate that on stage in a truthful, credible way.
Dancers are not actors and I guess that's a common mistake in my profession.
A dancer should always RE-LIVE on stage the magnitude of his/her REAL LIFE, outside the stage. For that and in the sake of my DANCING, I am hungry for LIFE out there...thirsty for passion, for tango embraces with a gorgeous man, for sweet apples and magical treaps, for laughs and tears that come from the deepest place in my soul.
To dance better, I have to live better and MORE...oh, and I will...I am......
Happy...so HAPPY on stage!
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Cairo, the 13th November, 2010
And one of my famous baladi improvisations...
If I dare not to dance one of my baladis, I suspect I will have tomatoes and other culinary delights (like lebanese hummus and fallafel ) thrown at my face...
The audience (specially egyptians, the best audience in the world!) DEMANDS one of my baladi improvisations and, if I don't do it in one show, there are complaints and assertive requests!
So I concede and do it with all my pleasure, joy and FIRE.
My dance is me...simply as that. And I am LIFE!!! So full, so much, so intense all the time that it makes me tired, some times, of being myself! LOL
Cairo, the 13th November, 2010
Free tabla...crazy and free as usual!
I don't know another way of living LIFE - and DANCING - if not with my FULL passion and EMOTIONS.
That's me: exaggerated, REAL, truthful, always TOTAL and PRESENT in all that I do.
In this improvised (the usual) solo tabla you can feel a bit of my sense of freedom and the immense pleasure I take in LIFE. I hope all the disappointments and exhaustion will never change me and put this FIRE off.
I pray to God!
Cairo, the 13th November, 2010
Dancing Saiidi with an old Reda Troupe theme!
Here I am dancing one of the many musical themes I borrowed from my dearest teacher-friend-dance soul mate, Mahmoud Reda.
Love you, Mahmoud!
Now and always, I thank you for all you taught me and for all the inspiration and faith you keep instilling in my life.
Friday, November 12, 2010
And this is how I found my video...
This is me, raw and true from the inside out. My absolute desire for totally, truth, pure love and BEAUTY, LIFE in all its grandiosity and wonder...
Inside my mind, I always walk along with these panthers, I hug them, kiss them and lay down in the sand with them interwining my hips on theirs.
Then I look them deep in their eyes where all the answers I need have their eternal home (there are piercing mirrors of myself in their eyes) and return to PEACE (my original home).
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Cairo, the 11th November, 2010
This video and the ones which follow are essencial information for women and men who are interested about LIFE and Truth. It can also shed some powerful light into the origins of Oriental Dance.
I am fascinated and inspired...
Amazing, fascinating stuff around here.
Thank you, Zara, for sending me this incredible video and saving my day!
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Oh, the familiar same old Cairo tears...
The struggle never seems to end and the persistence (and lack of character) of most egyptian/arab rich men is revolting.
For four years of hard, solitary struggle I managed - with God's help - to build my name and be respected as an artist in a country where Oriental Dancers are still seen as prostitutes.
For four years, I have denied dirty offer after dirty offer and spit on so many men's faces for confusing me with a prostitute. It's known in the egyptian market that no man will have me in bed in exchange for work opportunities and yet some of them keep trying and punishing me over and over again because I denied them what they wish to have.
Women seen as objects and men's property is a local subject that I never got over with.
Dancers seen as the biggest prostitutes (and most of them are, indeed, prostitutes and that contributes to confirm and extend people's prejudices) has been the hardest thing to deal with since my arrival to Egypt and the Middle East, in general.
If you don't allow any pasha to take you by his arm and exhibit you in public as his latest sexual conquest, you're mostly screwed, sooner or later. These men do not forget a refusal and they keep trying and trying to catch you, hoping you will concede, give up your principles, reach the conclusion that you cannot grow in your career unless you become their girlfriend of the moment.
For the 10000th time, I say it out loud:
I choose the man I sleep with.
I choose the man I go out with.
I don't get envolved with any man to get work or any benefit.
I am that kind of incompreensible alien who chooses men for LOVE and not for other secondary interests.
I go out with my male friends - whom I choose because they're good, interesting people who care about me and with whom I have somethings in common - and I go out with the man I love.
What these rich, influencial guys cannot understand is that not every woman has a price tag on her ass.
What they don't understand is that I would prefer to die before I would even consider going out or sleeping with them for career opportunities.
What they don't understand - or keep ignoring - is that I am a
W-O-M-A-N and not a dog.
Once more, I am screwed (in lack of a better word) for being honest.
It seems that, in Egypt and all Middle East, talent and professionalism do not count a bit. You need to be a prostitute before you are given the chance to be an artist.
I thought I was already over this drama but Egypt keeps surprising me in strange ways...
Tears of rage fall down my cheeks with a sadness that I thought I had forgotten.
It's not fair, it's just not fair...
But they will not break me.
I could eat low standard guys like these for breakfast, if I wished...
I am appalled and for that a new strenght and rage to fight back grows inside me.
The war is not over yet.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Cairo, the 9th November, 2010
Sexy and free...
Love this video.
Besides being visually beautiful and raw, I love the freedom beneath it. It speaks about a love of a woman for another woman in such a prejudice-free, passionate way...I think that's just lovely.
Enjoy all this passion and fire...yeahhhh....Rihanna is just up-there!
Monday, November 8, 2010
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Cairo, the 7th November, 2010
Looking for the Woman in me (in my life as in my dance)
Why can't I be one of the sheeps? Act and think according to the masses and the society I live in?
Rest above my well earned successes and smile with my pride?
Why can't I be small minded, at times if that brings such comfort? Sometimes, I wish I had less brain, less heart and soul so that I wouldn't feel so much, see so much and live - day by day - with that urgency to experience everything in life as a burning - often painful - flame that never goes off.
While dancing, I search for the Woman in me. The TOTAL woman that feels herself 100% in her body, emotions and soul. I run away from conventional movement and music and, instead of it, I look out for a true version of my best self. In DANCE as in LIFE. Always urgent - as if I was going to die tomorrow and yet...maybe I will...- and always way to passionate for a world which has turned into cold rock.
I often wish I didn't have all this fire burning inside me but then...why live if I didn't?!
"I am forever punished by the gods for being given the fire and trying to put it out.
The fire, of course, is you."
Richard Burton refering to Elizabeth Taylor
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Thursday, November 4, 2010
MUSIC IS GOD!
And everything is said.
This video has moved me like no other...for such a long time. And it says so much of what I have always felt and it gives me more LIGHT, more inspiration, MORE JOY for being ALIVE.
The Power of Art, Music, Spirit over any adversity.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Cairo, the 3rd November, 2010
My favourite song from my far from favourite singer (Fairouz)
Fairouz (lebanese biggest DIVA) has been a subject of argument and argumental fighting between me and lots of lebanese. They say she's the best, I answer Om Kolthoum IS THE BEST.
They love her voice, I think it's too high pitched and gives me headaches.
They say her reportoire is innovative and I say her reportoire is a mix of copies from different songs from all around the world with a sense of identity loss that does not, particularly, appeal to me.
Yet this song makes me enter in direct contradiction with myself.
Kifak enta is special...don't really know why.
Wish I could dance it one day, also don't know why.
And yes, I assume my absolute contradictions and unsolved mysteries. I must hate Fairouz so much that I listen to her again and again in this song that makes me wanna dance...
(Don't even try to figure me out! Neither will I.)