Travel bug

So remember that post about how crazy I get before I travel?

It might be getting worse. I spend two hours yesterday sitting down trying to figure out what to pack and I didn't even open the suitcase. This was all pre-packing preparation. I'm losing my mind.

I discovered (just in time!) that Princess Farhana has the very best guide to packing for belly dancers, which has been indispensably helpful on this trip, and will be even more crucial next time I have to bring costumes with me.

However I have lots of exciting activities planned for my week-long adventure to Toronto. I'm gonna check out the Dead Sea Scrolls, chill with my wonderful friends, and of course, take Pewter, the last and longest of Audra's Dark Intensives. I'm really nervous, but I'm looking forward to it as an opportunity to throw myself into a really demanding immersion into technique and performance and choreography. I had a number of homework-y type assignments to complete up until now, and I've finished them all (except my journal, which is ongoing, and I plan to continue after the Pewter experience in light of how helpful it's been).

My goals for this trip are both technical and personal:

Technical goals:
  • Continue to refine posture through shoulder blades, hand positions and using my back less in hip work. This is a major challenge for me, and I know that this, more than any other single thing, will make me a belly dancer that people see onstage.
  • Cement some challenging technical concepts related to counting-- like the walking with two hip accents step, or the three-quarter shimmy that Mira taught in April (no hold on the fourth count and oblique powered).
  • Overshimmy. Enough said. It's not so hard to do a bad (m-shaped, uneven) overshimmy, but it's powerfully tough to do a good one. Powerfully.
  • Learn to choreograph more consistently. I need more tools for creating choreography less in bursts and more in a channeled, even way.
Personal goals:
  • Solidify my short, mid and long term dance goals. I'm still not sure who I want to be when I grow up. I know that my "dream" is to travel all over the place performing and teaching, and sure that's possible but I don't yet know how to get there. Is it luck? Work? Networking? I'm only 22, am I supposed to have this figured out already?
  • Work on "opening" my voice. I hear it every now and then when I dance, but it's a whisper, and I think other people still come out just as often when I dance. I'm hoping that more technical grounding and soul searching will lead to speak more confidently in my own way.

I also contacted a hip hop choreographer whose work I really like (here in St. John's, but he is back and forth between here and Toronto) to see about the best time/place for a private lesson so I'm hoping to hear back from him too. Hip hop is a major influence for me, but neither of the instructors that I've had have had either the depth of knowledge and experience that I could really use or any particular expertise in popping/locking which would be really helpful to me.

Ok, I'm going to try to get this packing thing on the go!

So all that's left to do is pack, pack, pack. One fortunate thing is that I don't have to bring any particular costume gear as I have no performance lined up. I love performing in new places, but it is definitely a challenge to cart that stuff around.


  1. Oh man, Mira's 3/4 shimmy blew my mind, I've never been taught it that way. Here's a question: So basically the only thing that makes it a 3/4 shimmy is intention, right? Because you're hitting every single beat and you're weight can be anywhere? Ack!

    Have a great trip!


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