Wednesday, November 30, 2011
"Recuerdos" from Spain...
Improvizing on a solo tabla in Barcelona.Dancing without my orchestra still is my most difficult challenge to face. Dancing with my musicians give me all the things I need to deliver a performance that is a proper mix of entertainment and ART. Dancing with cd is almost like moving within a cold, silenced bubble where I can hardly feel what I am doing BUT I always do my best.
If I have to dance in the most total silence, in the middle of the desert, I will. And I will do it with TOTAL presence and PASSION. No doubt about it.
Friday, November 25, 2011
Lord, I Love travelling...and seeing the great and the worst in people, places, mentalities.
This is the biggest school, right after LIFE or even confused with it: travelling... with wide open eyes.
Barcelona performance and workshops were great and a day of Barcelona city watching made me feel why you could fall in love with it. Each city has an "aura" of itself, a kind of specific colour in the air...It's so wonderful to taste these differences like distinct kinds of honey melting in my mouth.LOVE it.
Now I m in Madrid with more workshops to share and some nostalgia trips to do (I lived in Madrid for about one year while I was studying Acting with a scholarship in the Conservatoire of Spain). Ah! Also chasing flamenco shows, not the touristic ones, the REAL ones. Hope to catch one of them.
Next will be Malaga and then PORTUGAL with more events in different cities and lots of writing with a deadline over "the rainbow". MY rainbow.
All I can say is Ole!Ole! or Yalla" Yalla! which are one and the same.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Performance and workshops. It will be AMAZING.:)
After Barcelona, Madrid will follow with more workshops and after that I will be heading to Malaga...ahh....BEAUTIFUL.
PORTUGAL will follow with Lisbon Workshops, Figueira da Foz and Oporto.
Dear Lord, I LOVE my life and feel grateful for so many blessings, my health and borrowed talents, my immense energy to CREATE and use obstacles and negative experiences as LEARNING tools and added STRENGHT. May more of these blessings shake hands with me always. NOW.
Writing like a mad woman in airports, hotels and the air...It will be quite a RIDE!
Wish me all luck and see you around here, in my blogs and Facebook, as soon as I can manage to sit down and dedicate some extra time to cybernetic pleasures.
Sending LOVE and INSPIRATION to everyone and wishing to see you in one of my upcoming events!
Daily life in a country shaped - even legally wise- by some strange (at my eyes) interpretation of the "Coran" is, not only bearable, but even interesting while you are allowed not to be immersed and brainwashed by it in a way that runs into de clinical madness marathon.
I observe egyptians are, in general, very fond of following rules, laws and traditions directly connected to their religion (may that be muslim religion or other) and yet they are flexible and seem to accept, to a certain point, other religions and individuals who don t follow the rituals they do.
Egyptians are social beings with a great sense of humour and a light heart. Usually, they will accept the differences you may find in a country like Egypt, with so many foreigners living, working, taking vacations, investing in this country.
It is all very interesting and challenging till the point when you feel that your own right to think and live with your born freedom is being taken away from you and that phenomenon takes charge of your life in the subtlest, more wicked details.
On a trip to the biggest shopping mall in Egypt, I caught myself inside of a mosque (nobody asked me if I was interested in going to a mosque or even invited me there!) listening to the preach of a "sheikh alongside my cup of cappuccino and club sandwich.
I was used to the mosques INSIDE of these public places and I accept them because everyone is free to use them or not and they don t interfere with my own freedom BUT paying good money to have some relaxing time with a friend over coffee and, suddenly, seeing myself in the middle of an enraged religious discourse was too much. Instead of the chill out music of the "Beano's Cafe" I listened to a sheikh for one whole hour, trying to convince me God knows of what with that hangry/hungry voice that only demons have.
Then I returned home and tried to speak on the phone with a friend from Portugal, barely listening to her, because the taxi driver had the "muezzin" call to prayer blasting at full power from the radio.
This morning at the gym, I was stopped from going into the "steam/kind of turkish hammam" because I didn t wear a full swimsuit.
Let s see...I am in a sexually segregated gym, meaning that ONLY women are allowed there.
I am ALSO inside the locker area (destined to showers and dressing up) and I will be the only one using the small "steam room".
YET I cannot go into the steam without a full swimm suit.
I am wearing underwear AND a towell wraped around my body BUT the danger, oh the dancer!, of having some parts of my body disclosed to the microbes present in the steam room is against the good morals of the Gym's administration.
Of course I refused to obbey this crazy order, I enjoyed my steam time and complained about this episode to the girls in the entrance desk who could not explain to me why I HAVE to cover my body to be alone in a small room which is inside a locker space which is also inside an exclusively feminine gym.
I've seen A LOT in this life time. I also have an, often, inconveniently fertile imagination YET, YET, YET I cannot imagine what those dirty heads are thinking to make such a law.
What would I do in the steam room in the company of very sexy microbes?!
Am I the only one who thinks this is getting wayyyyyyyyy too much?!
Friday, November 11, 2011
Lovely Friday...(miraculous daily bits that turn reality into JOY)...
Going to the gym in the morning and teaching a bit of portuguese language to the nice, old taxi driver that takes me there. Laughing with him, repeating some portuguese words with me, like a happy, childish sing-along and listening to him thanking me: "Obrigada!" with that smile that always takes me by surprise (how can an old egyptian, poor man who has, for sure, struggled all his life in many difficulties, can STILL have the smile of a child?!).
Arriving home and feeling the smell of fresh "boukhour" (incense) specially burnt on fridays, before and after the main muslim prayer of the week around 12.00h.
The whole building smelling like the best quality saudi arabian incense...and me, being taken by that undescribable pleasure, breathing in, slowly and deeply, sighing in pure happiness.
So much of these small pleasures it is what makes LIFE in this crazy city of CAIRO so special.
Thursday, November 10, 2011
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
If you're a weak human being, your ART - whatever shape it may take - will reflect your weakness.
If you have no true JOY, LOVE, PASSION in your LIFE, then your ART will be empty of those.
I've met a few assholes who were very talented in their art (yes, there are people who are ugly human beings but manage to be beautiful in their artistic work...go figure how!???) but, somehow, that low character they are so proud of in their private lives always end up showing in their work.
For me, the connection has always been clear and DIRECT: I dance, choreograph, teach, write as a MIRROR of who I am and how I LIVE. If there is a predominance of JOY in my LIFE, then my work will reflect that. If I am going through hard times, then I will turn them into ART and produce the alchemic job of a magician, turning sadness and fear into happiness and FREEDOM. I grab my LIFE with my own hands and shape it into ART.
For that, I need my LIFE to be FULL of REAL stuff: REAL me, REAL love in all forms, REAL friends (even if the REAL ones are very few), REAL work of quality (even if I m punished for not surrendering to the dirty system that asks me to sell my body and soul to the devils), REAL tenderness, even REAL anger and sadness...
The acting does NOT substitute the REAL thing in DANCING. Many dancers ACT on stage and are convinced the trick will do. I m not so sure about that. For me, there are NO tricks, no acting while on stage. Or you open yourself and show your LIFE to your audience, or you will only be a fake, weak approximation of a dancer.
Being vulnerable is the quality of the STRONG. Having a QUALITY LIFE to share with your audiences is the quality of the RARE human beings.
Strong individuals, as strong artists.
For me, they are the same.
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Meet me in the pouring rain and...DANCE 'cause Life is way too short. Why wait for the sun to come out? Let's LIVE in the rain and, sure enough, a sunny day crowned with a rainbow will follow.:)
Being a professional Oriental Dancer means building my mind, body, emotional and spiritual re-actions as totally autonomous and only depending on the music and myself.
That's why it has been so wonderful and challenging to dance Tango, attend some milongas (not learning from classes but from dancing with different partners) and see myself progressing, widening my dance/life understanding through the argentinian dance.
Dancing with my favourite Tango partner is another story altogether. It is HEAVEN. It is something I wish every person could experience, at least ONCE in their life time.
As it happens in all genres of dance, there are talented and not so talented people. We all can do it till a certain extent but GENIUS dance is allowed only to a few.
And yeah, GENIUS can be defined by several ways.
My own definition goes through the ability to RE-CREATE the dance, READ the music in a personal, original way, always new and fresh depending on the mood of the moment and SHARE emotions with your partner, besides that SPIRITUAL connection that is so rarely achieved between two tango partners.
Also there are the SILENCES, often forgotten by dancers. How important it is to be able to STOP and enjoy a good, meaningful PAUSE where the imobility says more than a thousand movements?!
Emotion, silences, musicality, technique that you feel like words and not like a dry imposition on your body, etc, etc...the list is endless. When a man and woman can reach this kind of mutual quality in Tango something not short of miraculous happens.
That connection just looks sexy, warm (should I say HOT?! Yes, I should...:), tremendously physical AND spiritual at the same time.
I love my favourite partner for that.
"Fly me to the moon and let me stay among the stars...let me see what Spring is like or Jupiter and Mars..." Indeed he does. And, from the top of my most exaggerated idealism, I want to believe that is TANGO.
Monday, November 7, 2011
Saturday, November 5, 2011
"Aid mubarak" to all my muslim (and other) friends.
I am prone to appreciate every person and occasion that brings people together for a good cause. In this case, it s the muslim Aid that, not by coincidence, opens the doors to the cold season.
Don t appreciate the crying of the animals which will be killed and eaten all over Egypt. I could dispense that detail yet the family and friends gatherings are wonderful and the good wishes everyone delivers you pretty much everywhere are also a nice thing to have. Wish it could "Aid" like that all the year round...
To all my muslim friends, in particular, for whom this Feast has a religious meaning (o.k, not every "muslim" knows about his/her own religion but let's NOT go into that cause I have enough enemies who hate me for speaking the truth and I don 't need to gather a few more!):
To wake up and teach a group of students that come from Japan at my own home.
We drink tea, work on our dance, share laughs (laugh is one of my most essencial compulsions) and emotions (because dance, without emotion, is NOT dance for me).
I look out of the window and see birds coming to visit my cats , singing for them. All is fine, no matter how many difficulties I face, all is PERFECT as it is.
Realizing this brings me an added jewel made of PEACE.
Having lunch with a dear friend in a gorgeous "vintage" coffee shop that opened across the street from my home. The smell of the cappuccinos, milk, pastry freshly baked, the humming of people coming and going, telling each other about their lives, the walls of this magnificent place covered with old photos of times that are not any more but still cling to us in their beauty.
Playing with the baby cats and their mom (whom I feed every day at the door of my appartment). Going mad with pleasure with their sweetness and perfection.
Performing at night with my men (orchestra) or going for a tango (or salsa) night with a selected group of friends, being protected by their true friendship and DANCING, DANCING, DANCING...
Working, believing all is possible, learning how to LOVE despite so many disappointments, rediscovering what it means to DANCE (which is also what it means "to LIVE") and, therefore, be sure I know very close to nothing...I think, no matter what, "what a beautiful world this is, indeed!".
Thursday, November 3, 2011
It s known I have a television which never works because:
1. I don t have time to work, keep my daily chores update, go to the gym, do my yoga, go out with friends and read (as a way of relaxing but always as a way of continually educating myself);
2. The contents of current television channels *(with rare exceptions like Discovery, History, Cinema channels, OWN by Oprah...) are, in my eyes, targeted for the mental retarded. And I mean no disrespect in this comment. I am not even referring to the so called mental retarded who are cathalogued by society and doctors like that. I am talking about the also so called "normal people" who watch garbadge on television and get addicted to it.
Recently found out a PRECIOUS site (www.topdocumentaryfilms.com) where you can find INTERESTING television products that respect and stimulate your intelligence.
Great videos of a varied array of sujects...between these videos I found one that caught my attention :" The perfect vagina", about women's newest obsession with plastic cirurgy.
It was not enough to feed women's insecurities about the bits of their bodies that can be seen by everybody but NOW there are VAGINA "improvement" operations and it seems women are running to these smart ass doctors, delivering themselves to excruciating pain in order to fit the mold they imagine is BEAUTIFUL regarding their vaginas.
Is it me or the world is going nuts?! I mean...even nuttier than it already has been for the last thousands of years?
I am in shock with this documentary and its meaning.
Women! Women! WOMEN! What the F......... are you doing to yourselves????
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Thanks, my dear little bird (Sarita!).
If we could wrap a yogic experience, a peaceful hug from a loved one, a moment of SILENCE that reconstructs our own SELF this would be its soundtrack.
Friends are, indeed, a GIFT of heaven, specially the ones who are connected with us beyond time and space (like you, Sara).
Me and my friend Sara are very different from each other and have always disagreed on much.
We're like water and wine (yes, Sara, you may be the wine!:) and we love each other, feed other with our own - apparently - opposite worlds.
From all the blessings of our friendship (resisting time and geographic distances), this one is, particularly, SPECIAL to me.
Music, as close to silence as possible. An open heart operation where each string of the piano is, in FACT, a vein of pulsating human blood.
I sigh...breath in..............................and out................................and return to that sacred part of MYSELF where nothing is missing, no wounds have been inflicted, no past, present or future.
Just ME, a baby portion of dust floating in the Universe.
No greater gift than this one.