Tribal Odyssey Bellydance - ITS
How Does Group Bellydancing - Without Choreography - Work?
Choreography's hard to remember sometimes... or doesn't work in a particular performance space... or someone's missing from the lineup and now your choreography's not gonna work right!
There IS another way for a group to dance together that's not only lots of FUN (like a bellydance game!) but looks great onstage!
It LOOKS Like Choreography... - but it's not - it's different every time!
HOW does a group of bellydancers dance together in sync, in step with each other, doing the same movements, without choreography?
Group improvisation is like "Follow the Leader" with bellydance moves.
- First your group learns all the same combinations. You learn to recognize them JUST before they start so you can follow along.
- Then you learn how to lead the group yourself, cueing the movements you want so the others can do them too.
- You learn special ways to give someone else a turn to lead (so you don't have to lead the whole time).
A Quick Look - Level One gives you enough material for a complete performance, including group formations and endings.
We use Tribal Odyssey Bellydance (TOBD) because it feels more Egyptian-style than ATS(R). Specifically, TOBD uses a more natural posture, as well as both sides of the body.
The format is extensive, with Slow Combos, Fast Combos, Finger Cymbal Patterns, and Specialties like Veil, Skirt, and Sword. Two or more dancers are all that's needed, but it works just as well for large groups of a dozen or more.
There are also several ways to change leaders, and create various group stage formations as well.
Beginners start with the Slow Combos of Level One. They're also introduced to the group stage patterns, from Center Dancers with a Chorus Line in back, to dancing with the entire group. They learn how to Lead, and of course, how to change leaders so no one has to lead more than they want!
Level Two features Fast Combinations; Level Three introduces more moves and staging, including Skirt and Veil moves. Level Four focuses on stage presentations, music interpretation, and Tribal Sword.
One of the best ways to help new dancers build confidence onstage is using the Chorus Line, and pre-arranged Duet partners, so that in a mixed-level performance group, all the dancers are comfortable dancing at their level.
video: "What is Tribal Odyssey Bellydance?" - View the Playlists of on-demand instructional videos on YouTube
Besides this quick intro to this beautiful, fluid, group bellydance format, see a sample of other topics including sword and skirt. These topics and more are featured in How-To videos available on-demand on Kawakib's YouTube channel, DanceEternal.
video teaser for Tribal Odyssey Bellydance
Beginning Blades - Tribal Sword Improv.
Lead-and-follow Skirt Combinations.
It's easy to begin finger cymbals with these slow combinations.
Info for Teachers and Troupe Directors - TOBD Topics for Beginner to Advanced Dancers
Each topic below includes lead-changing, group travel steps, and diverse group stage formations. The Slow Combos are best to start with, but each topic can be taught by itself.
- Slow Combinations, Cues, and Lead-changing Moves
- Fast Combinations, Cues, and Lead-changing Moves
- Specialties: Veil Dancing, Skirt Combinations, and Tribal Sword
Other ITS and ATS Bellydance Links - Teachers who specialize in Group Improv Belly Dance
Want to add another? Let me know.
- Tribal Odyssey Bellydance Website
Info, Classes, Videos, Teacher Certification, Links
- Black Sheep Bellydance
Kajira's adapted FatChance style group improv into her unique format
- FatChanceBellyDance in CA
Carolena began her style of group improv in the '70's
- Gypsy Caravan in Portland OR
Paulette's one of the early innovators of group improv format
- Mandala Tribal in Seattle WA
Group Improv, Tribal and fusion belly dance classes, performances, costumes, accessories
- Read My Hips Tribal Bellydance in Chicago IL
Tribal, Group Improv, Fusion performances and classes
- Miramar in Winchester VA
Miramar teaches an evolution of TOBD called "Tribelle Chic" in various locations around the Winchester area
- Anthea's site: Kawakib.com in Fredericksburg VA
Oriental and Tribal Odyssey in all classes. The best of both worlds!
- Rajni of QAMAR Tribal Odyssey Bellydance
Rajni teaches bellydance in Athens, Georgia.