Weekly Challenge for 5-5-14

Monday! For me, this means another day closer to Tribal Fest! Eek! I’m looking forward to it, but at the same time, I’m a little scared! I can’t wait to perform! But it also means that it’s time for another weekly belly dance challenge!

Layering with Traveling

Yikes, another layering challenge! But not to worry. Layering isn’t just doing the crazy hits with two different parts of the body. It’s also about dancing while moving.

What does that mean? It means just not standing still with the arms out to the sides and busting out some cool hits. Let’s do something more with that!

Beginner: Don’t worry about the fact that layering can be scary. If you can walk and do shoulder shimmies, you are layering. This week, work on doing just that! Take a upper body movement, like shoulder shimmies, and take a walk! The challenge will be to keep the walk looking nice (keep it on beat and don’t stomp) and keeping the shoulders going at the same time. Practice this every day this week for at least one song!

Intermediate: We’re going try hip movements and walking. Hip locks (hip bumps, hips on the up, whatever you happen to call them) are relatively easy to pair with walking (and I mean relatively easy…it won’t be easy easy, so don’t give up or get too frustrated!) Some teachers get their students walking with hip locks early, so if you already know this, great! Turn it into a three-quarter shimmy, but keep them sharp! Practice walking with hip locks for a whole song every day this week. If you got this, layer the locks over dance steps, like a grapevine or a salsa step.

Advanced: It’s great to see a dancer that can do layering bust it out when the song calls for it. But sometimes the locks get sloppy, or it’s boring to watch a dancer suddenly stand still and do a bunch of layering locks (if it’s done too much). We should be moving, at least some of the time. This week, practice dancing while you layer. Do arm movements when you shimmy or do a series of body locks. Do a grapevine with those ummis. Walk with your chest locks. Make a foot pattern while doing mayas or three-quarter shimmies. Do something weird while shimmying. Just make it interesting and keep the layers separate and precise. Don’t let the locks get sloppy just because you are walking! Practice every day this week, and let me know what you come up with!

Happy dancing!

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About Kamrah

Kamrah is a belly dancer in Chicago, IL. They started belly dance as an exercise routine but it turned into a passion for dance that has not lessened, even after more than a decade. They have a powerful presence on the stage, and is particularly known for their amazing shimmies. Kamrah is also known as a very versatile belly dancer, and audiences have come to expect the unexpected from them. Performances can be anything from traditional Egyptian, to tribal fusion, to fantasy cosplay (costume play) pieces.

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