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  • The self taught Path...

    You know... I paint, I do embroidery, I know a bit about music and video editing, I'm not too bad doing artsy stuff I even got paid for some of them, I try to know a little bit of everything, and yes... I made a career of dancing with no formal dance education. Today a saw an interview of Russell Crowe in which he was asked if he uses the Stanislavski Method of acting, to what he replied: "I use the Crowe's method" .Pointing out he never took acting classes. His response left me thinking about how many artists exists out there with no formal art education, yet they are good in what they do. ..." I guess with time and practice you become more efficient.." He added. I couldn't agree more! Learning about bellydance in the 90's and earlier years outside of the countries of origin was really hard. Not only because it was uncommon in those years but, the lack of resources and non- existent classes in some communities, created a lot of Self-made dancers who would be as good as the material they could get their hands on. Videos, music, books, visits to embassies etc. So, I'm not an isolated case of a self taught bellydancer. Nowadays as this art is gaining popularity. Schools, Dance studios and even gyms offers Bellydance classes so what I could achieve in 5 years, it will take only 2 years to the new generations of dancers. To make from your hobby a career (self taught or not) requires much more than just to be talented. Here are few tips that has helped me through my career and that I think it can be applicable to almost any other hobby or career. HAVE PASSION FOR IT... yes! but like a good old love, be with it in good and bad and worst. Passion will ignite the start up of your career but when you find obstacles in your path, you have 2 choices. To quit or to keep pushing forward, so love your process. ADDITIONAL LEARNING get to know the history, the why, how and when your craft was created and evolve until it reached you in its present form. It is fascinating! It will also show you as an informed and passionate artist. EXTRA MURAL LEARNING on my 27 years in Bellydance I had to learn so many other stuff I never thought I will need. From music and video editing, costume making, 2 different languages and marketing to create successful shows and events. Courses and video tutorials are not a bad idea to learn about all of those extra activities you might need. HEALTH is your most important asset, besides your diet, do physical activities that maintain your body supple. If you are in dancing, learn about your body and which complementary activities you can do to be stronger and avoid injuries. 4. DISCIPLINE. I read once "Discipline will take you where motivation cannot" And it is true, motivation (same as passion) will ignite the spark, but the days were energy is low, you take a break and then continue, or push through until inspiration finds you! Formal art education is important, not everyone had access to it, but it should not be a stopper for you if you have the passion, talent and discipline to pursue your art. Thank you for reading me... South Africa, 10/2023

  • The Failed book

    We all have stories to tell. Some are happy or glamorous, curious or funny, maybe sad or even cruel or catastrophic. We all experience life in a unique way, maybe not all is worth talking about even less to write about, because one start thinking : Is this story relevant to somebody? I mean, others than my family and friends? Long ago my mother said I should write a book ( ha! as if I was soo important!) I never said no, but sort of ignore her (or as we say in Mexico... " I gave her the airplane! "). Later on my husband said I should write about my adventures as a dancer as some of them are quite unique ( I guess not so unique if you ask other working dancers in Middle East). During the pandemic, I start drafting the beginning of what it will be "My book" but I left it because I was overwhelmed with my half ass english language, my non academic grammar in spanish and the fear of being harshly criticize in this cancelling culture of us for my poor use of language, or the irrelevance of my stories, you know, fear and self-doubt can invade you at any moment! I'm finding comfort in writting this lines to you, a little bit in the hidden, a bit more informal method of telling stories for whoever wants to read them as they sip their coffee infront of their laptop, not such a tall order as a book. So let this first episode be an intro to some of my stories as a dancer and non dancer, hopefully you find them entertaining and even identify with some. Did you ever thought about writting a book? El libro fallido Todos tenemos historias que contar Algunas son felices o glamurosas, otras son curiosas o divertidas, tal vez sean tristes o inclusive catastróficas. Todos y cada uno experimentamos la vida de manera única, tal vez no todo sea digno de contar y mucho menos de escribir por uno comienza a preguntarse: ¿Es esto realmente relevante para alguien? Es decir, otros aparte de tus amigos y familia. Hace mucho tiempo atrás mi mamá me dijo que debería escribir un libro (ajá, como si yo fuera tan importante!) nunca le dije que no, pero pues como que medio "le dí el avión" como decimos en México cuando queremos ignorar algo o a alguien. Tiempo después mi marido me dijo que debería escribir mis aventuras de bailarina ya que algunas eran únicas (supongo que si le pregunta a las otras bailarinas trabajando en Medio Oriente no tendrán la misma idea!). Durante la pandemia comencé a escribir lo que sería "mi libro" pero pronto lo abandoné pues me estresaba mi uso del idioma inglés a medio masticar, o mi español con mil faltas gramaticales. Me dió miedo ser duramente criticada en esta cultura de la cancelación actual, ya sea por mi pobre uso del lenguaje o mis historias irrelevantes, ya sabes! el miedo y la duda pueden apoderarse de tí en cualquier momento! Encuentro cierto comfort escribiendo estas líneas desde un lugar menos expuesto, de manera mas informal para contar historias para cualquiera que quiera leerlas mientra toma su café y abre su computadora, un blog no es tan aterrador como escribir un libro! Dejemos este primer episodio como una introducción a algunas de mis historias como bailarina y no bailarina con la esperanza de que las encuentres entretenidas y hasta te identifiques con algunas! ¿Alguna vez pensaste en escribir un libro?

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