Tribal belly dance workshop rekindles an authentic creativity and inspiration. Tribal is a modern dance, but the feeling is ancient. The interaction between the tribe of dancers provides the opportunity to empower a sense of female communion.
Tribal Style today represents a fusion of ancient ethnic dance techniques from the Middle East, North India, Spain, Africa and Polynesia with jazz, dance theatre, hip hop, modern dance and even styles from Byzantium, the Renaissance, and Victorian era. Tribal belly dance style is usually performed in a group, some times at community events, parades and festivals.
The beginning of the Tribal belly dance style was established by Jamila Salimpour, an influential american figure for over 50 years, who fostered a fusion of costumes and folklore dances styles and also was the first one to develop a format of terminology in belly dance still used today.
The first Tribal belly dance performances took place in 1970 at California style renaissance pleasure fairs. They quickly became famous defining themselves as wildly popular American style named "California Tribal", later to be called just "Tribal".
Carolena Nericcio with her troupe known as FatChanceBellyDance, created in 1987, spearheaded the later development of the American Tribal Style (ATS).
American Tribal Belly Dance performances may include snake dances or folk line-dances. Call-and-answer performance with other dancers or as a whole group are typical. Solos are uncommon.
A chorus provides a moving back-drop, while the featured duet, trio, or quartet performs as a front focal point. The dancers and the chorus work in an improvisational manner led by the leader dancer.
The tribal musical instruments include a variety of hand drums, miz mar, saz and zornas.
Tribal costuming is distinctive, derived from various traditional ethnic resources. Cloths are decorated with coins and a heavy layering of silver jewelry. Facial drawings simulate tribal tatoos. ATS dancers typically favor a look provided by wide-legged pants gathered at the ankles or full skirts, indian choli tops, tightly wrapped turbans or other hair decorations, camel tassels and Central Asia jewelry.
The workshop level and choreography are tailored for the dancing experience of the group members, so even the beginners can enjoy it. The class starts with a short warm up and includes three general parts:
- Typical tribal movements practice
- Dancing in groups of 3-4 dancers