Photo by EventLab OÜ.
TürküBel troupe members names-clockwise from drum:
1-Mari-liis, 2-Tiina, 3- Ines, 4-Jargmine, 5-Janne, 6- Liisa
My name is Ines. I´m a Middle Eastern Dance Artist,
Choreographer and Instructor from Estonia. I came to USA to improve my dancing
skills with Amina Goodyear,
Stasha, Nourhan Sharif, Carolena & FatChanceBellyDance,
and other top belly dancers. I was kindly provided a chance by Amina to tell
how popular belly dancing can be in a small Baltic country like Estonia. The
unforgettable magic of Middle Eastern dance is very noticeable in the Baltics.
up, I would like to give you a short overview of Estonia. It
is bordered to the north by Finland across the Gulf of Finland,
to the west by Sweden, to the south by Latvia, and to the east
by the Russian Federation. Estonia regained its independence
on 20 August 1991. We joined the European Union on the 1st
of May 2004 and NATO on 27th of May. The population is 1.3
million and the surface area is 17,461 square miles. We have
our own language - Estonian which is very similar to Finnish.
Although a small nation, we are strong and have enough courage,
faith and willingness to move on toward our dreams and goals.
Estonia is a civilized country with educated, hardworking and
very aspiring people.
dance has gained a lot of popularity in the whole wide world
. It´s a very graceful and feminine dancing style which
is gathering more and more fans every single day. In Estonia,
the first belly dance lessons were given in 1996 by Pille
who also opened the first Middle Eastern dance studio "Amrita" a
year later. I started to give regular lessons in 2004 and also
created a Middle Eastern dance troupe "TürküBel" at
about the same time. Belly dancing received more attention
after I was first interviewed in 2005 by a local magazine Kroonika,
after which press started to pay more attention to my activities
and with that, also to belly dance. My love and devotion to
Middle Eastern Dance is growing bigger with every single day
of my life. Other wonderful Middle Eastern Dance troupes in
Estonia are: Sisters Shahrazaís, Zahira, Sansaara, and Müstika.
Sisters Shahrazaís achieved a second place in the troupeís
category of the Nile Group festival that
was held in Cairo at April 2008. One of the professional Estonian
belly dancers, Amira, is currently living
and dancing in Las Vegas.
As in the
rest of the world, the Egyptian style of belly dance is the
most popular one in Estonia. Most of the instructors and dancers
are specialized in that style. The American Tribal Style Belly
Dance is also becoming more known each day. The general impression
of belly dance in Estonia is glamorous, feminine, luxurious,
modern and elegant. Itís a time where Estonian dancers can
truly say that they can be proud to be a
Middle Eastern dance artist in Estonia.
have many beautiful, talented and professional Middle Eastern
Dance instructors and dancers who see that to be a top performer
they have to develop all the time. Because of that dancers
and instructors regularly visit international dance festivals,
closest of which are usually held in Finland, Sweden and also
further away in Egypt. Other festivals that are held in Turkey,
Germany, USA and other places are visited more seldom. Several
International Middle Eastern Dance Festivals and belly dancerís
Hafla parties are also organized in Estonia 1-2 times per year.
In addition to local instructors we have invited them from
Latvia, Finland and Egypt to give workshops in Estonia. Most
notable instructors include Mohamed El Hosseny of
Egypt, Peppina Lindfors of Finland, and Juliana
Petersone of Latvia. Regular belly dance lessons
are given in almost every dancing studio in the capital city
of Tallinn and in many dance studios all over the Estonia.
As a fact,
all kinds of dancing is very popular in Estonia, but mostly
among females. Estonian men usually don´t like to dance
or donít feel open enough to do it, but hopefully they will
learn to enjoy it more in coming years. So when Estonian women
see local men dancing, they get quite excited about it.
As a professional
dancer I have the point of view that it´s very important
for a dancer to know how to give a perfect show and stay dignified
at the same time. In my mind it is essential if a dancer wants
to have a good reputation and the support of the community.
Any Estonian dancer who is currently supported by the local
community has worked hard on becoming a professional and an
acclaimed dancer. Itís a common understanding in Estonia that
you have to work very hard to get recognition and credit.
one day a lot more belly dancers from abroad will visit our
dance festivals to take workshops and demonstrate their dancing
skills on Estonian stages. Middle Eastern Dance is a wonderful
art that is cherished and loved all over Estonia and among
other things it is certainly enough of a reason to visit us.
Ines´s website www.inesdance.com/en/
a comment? Send us a
Check the "Letters to the Editor" for
other possible viewpoints!
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builds bridges, and in today’s world, bridges –between
individuals and between cultures, are becoming more and more
of an imperative.
Matrix: A Long Journey, The Belly Dance Scene in
Taiwan, by Lisa Chen
one might have to admit that learning only choreographies might
lead students and dancers away from learning the essential elements
of traditional Belly dance.
in Cairo by Peppina
is so strong and powerful and beautiful and intense. Even the not-so-stylish
costumes she used to wear didn't take anything away from her.
Nights Oslo Belly Dance Festival, The Show May 2 - 4,
2003 by Lunacia
festival began with a show at Oslo Concert Hall, and this year's
guest star was Lulu Sabongi from Brazil, who opened
this year's show.
in Yemen, Part I - Tafruta by Jalilah (Lorraine
A simple question
was all they needed to get them into motion!
again in Afghanistan By Qan-Tuppim
As I had suspected, Afghan women belly dance.
Dance in Brazil by Thania
...they are trying to organize a Code of Ethics
Fest 2008, Saturday May,17 2008, Sebastopol, CA photos
and video by Lynette
Produced by BlackSheep BellyDance and held in the Sebastolpol Community
Center, photos and performance clips of Hahbi’Ru, Unmata,
Sexy Scallywags, Romka, Tempest, Clandestine, Titanya, RockRose,
Complete Performance Bag by Anna
performance bag is that ONE practical and necessary accessory
that aids in the creation of that ideal performance environment.
Belly Dancing 1966: B.C. (Before Choreography) Schehera
of Ohio Interviewed by John Clow
censors didn’t want me to show my stomach because you couldn’t
reveal the navel on television back then. Keeping the veil on
was kind of hard to do, dancing with a snake.
Seif: The Moment of Eternal Shimmy by Stavros Stavrou
Karayanni photos by Samira and Masouma, videos by Lynette
is now an international phenomenon. And how wonderful that a
man from Egypt has taken to the West’s belly dance stages
establishing himself as one of the greatest belly dancers and
showmen today. Such development flies in the face of those American
belly dance instructors, students, and performers who have long
considered this art defunct in Egypt and dependent upon their
kind support and cultivation.