Egyptian Drum Solo
Choreography Video, Volume 1
Produced by Al Wahid Productions
Featuring: Jamilla Al Wahid and Reda Darwish on drum

by Gennevie Hebranson

When I first viewed Jamilla's Egyptian Drum Solo Choreography Video, I was expecting an instruction on how to design choreography for a drum solo to fit my own musical choice. In fact, Jamilla's video proved to be a breakdown of a routine she had previously choreographed, set to a drum solo performed by San Francisco based Egyptian drummer, Reda Darwish. The video begins with Jamila performing her drum solo in an attractive red costume. This specific routine is what she teaches the viewer in the rest of the video. After the demonstration or performance, she appears in basic black with a red hip scarf. Starting with the first few moves, she takes approximately three to six movements at a time and breaks them down to show each part in detail and how to transition between moves. Then she performs that series of movements, accompanied by the music played at full speed. Each time she adds a set of new moves, she pauses and performs the routine from the beginning, showing how all the moves flow together. She continues by adding three to six moves until the entire routine has been analyzed.

At first, Jamilla proceeded very quickly, and I had to stop, pause and rewind in order to keep up. However, as the routine progressed, and she repeatedly began the routine from the "top", I began to learn it. At the end of the analysis and dissection of the movements, Jamilla performed the routine again in the red costume, with the music at full speed.

I was hoping for more information about designing a personal choreography but the moves she taught were interesting, and I found that I ended the tape with some inspiration of how I might use independently the movements and combinations shown in different combinations.

The last part of the video shows Jamila performing a drum solo at the Rakkasah West Fesitval 2001 accompanied by Reda Darwish. It is a different routine than the one she teaches in the video, but the style is very similar. It is a good performance, which demonstrates the way in which many of the moves that were taught on the video could be used.

If you are looking for a video that will inspire you and show and how to create your own choreography, there may be more appropriate choices available, but If you are looking for a video that will teach you a specific routine and give you practice learning a choreography, Jamilla's "Egyptian Drum Solo Choreography, Volume One", may be a perfect choice of video for you.

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