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6
Mar

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ywdYS5MGfo[/youtube]

Yesterday, my great friend Reda sent me a clip of a belly dancer for my monthly feature all the way from Beirut. It was actually his father who had suggested her and even though she is pretty terrific, I felt she was a little vulgar for here. So, I trawled youtube looking for a more sober one but instead I came across a chorus of of mermaids belly dancing on the beach and luring men to their death with the sound of a derbakeh (or drum). The whole set up is preposterous and the dancers are not even that great; and if anything more vulgar than the one I spurned. Nevertheless, there is something irresistible about them in that seaside setting. Perhaps it is to do with my Sicilian plans that I warmed to them, or perhaps it is to do with the oncoming spring. Anyhow, I decided to go for them as my belly dancers for this month and I hope you will warm to this rather surreal choice as much as I have!


14
Feb

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b385hXI0fks&list=FL5fJhXHV9eoinhe_TCTi-Yw[/youtube]

I am very late with my belly dancer this month but it actually works out because I am going with today’s Valentine theme and giving you an incredibly charming Shammi Kapoor relating the story of how he fell madly in love with a belly dancer (Samia Gamal?) when he was very young. You don’t see any belly dancing in the video, just a couple of pictures of the belly dancer (?) and a delightful Kapoor telling the story of life really, and missed opportunities. The other side of Valentine!


14
Jan

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lt1XTPN-Pi0[/youtube]

I am a little late with my belly dancer this month. Must have been my Panama trip. Anyhow, my choice for this month is very sober and somewhat diluted by a singer, Huriyah Hassan, who seems to have the starring role, at least in this clip. I am not sure who the belly dancer is. I think it is Shadia. My mother would have know but sadly she is not by my side. Perhaps one of you will confirm it is her. I chose the clip because of the characters and the storyline. I love Huriyah who sings about her love for her neighbour downstairs, her decadent mother smoking the shisha surrounded by her friends or possibly family, the neighbours on the balconies, some of whom spring into dance when the music heats up, the lovely Shadia (if it is her) dancing beautifully and soberly and the drumming friend in pyjamas who is the cook in this hilarious clip which I posted last year. All in all a delightful scene even if not entirely devoted to belly dance. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did and happy new year!


7
Dec

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_bLEKuZ9Mo[/youtube]

There are belly dancers who are elegantly sexy and others who are brazenly so. And there are those who are cute and Kitty Fotsaty, who I have featured before and who is my choice for this  month belongs to this camp. She is just adorable. Her smile seems genuine and her movement is gorgeous even if her shape is a little too lean for a belly dancer. She still manages to seduce, even more so in this clip from Bint al-Balad (the daughter of the country or the country girl depending on who is translating) with a fantasy New York skyline as a backdrop. I love how her dance starts en silhouette before she is fully lit and revealed to her elegant and entranced audience!