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Overall Rating: (on a scale of 1 to 5 stars)
I would highly recommend this video if you're just starting out. If you don't have a local teacher and you're trying to learn to belly dance from videos, this one may will help you learn to assemble the moves you've learned from it and other videos into a completed dance. However, if you've had more than 6 months of instruction in a classroom setting from someone who teaches undulations (and other moves) well, you may find the moves taught on this particular video to be too elementary for your taste.
Have you actually watched this video yourself? If so, offer your own opinion in the poll below! Otherwise, click the "View Results" button to see what worldwide users of shira.net think of it.
The above poll includes responses submitted since October 28, 2002.
|Recommended Level||Total Novice|
|Formats Available||NTSC on DVD (VHS tape in NTSC and PAL available by special order with longer lead times)|
|Total Video Length||75 minutes|
|Performance Time||18 minutes (24%)|
|Teaching Time||52:15 minutes (70%)|
|Amount Of "Other"||4:45 minutes (6%)|
|Number Of Models||3|
|Cost Per Minute Of Teaching & Performing Time||47 cents|
|Cost For "Other"||$2.10|
The video that I reviewed was the revised edition of Tribal Basics Volume 1, which was published in 1999. I never saw the original edition of this video, so I'm not qualified to comment on how the new revised version compares with the original. All comments in this review are directed to the 1999 revised edition.
On this video, Carolena Nericcio teaches fundamental belly dancing moves. It's very appropriate for the total novice who either wants to learn how to belly dance from video, or wants to supplement what she's learning in the classroom with a video for home practice. Each move begins with an explanation of how to do it, followed by a demonstration. Each demonstration continues long enough to give you enough time to practice it along with the on-screen dancers. For that reason, there are not a large number of moves taught, but it would be easy to use this video for practice because you wouldn't need to rewind frequently.
If you consider yourself to be an intermediate or advanced dancer, you may find this video to be too elementary for your taste. Admittedly, it would be helpful for review of moves you already know or getting ideas on how to teach moves to other people by watching how Carolena explains them--the question is whether that's what you're looking for. If you already know basic belly dance movements and now you just want to learn the FatChance style of make-up, costuming, or group improvisation, then you should focus your attention on the other videos produced by this group.
Regardless of your belly dancing experience level, if you enjoy watching the American Tribal Style, you'll probably enjoy the 20-minute performance at the end.
The video is called Tribal Basics because Carolena Nericcio and her dance company FatChanceBellyDance specialize in performing the American Tribal style (also known as Tribal Fusion), and it teaches the basic moves that they use. (More information about the Tribal Fusion style appears elsewhere on this web site.) American Tribal was created in the United States in the 1960's. Today, the FatChanceBellyDance troupe are probably its best known performers. Despite the Tribal Basics name, the moves taught on this video are common to all belly dancing styles. The stomach rolls, pivot bumps, and other moves are just as likely to be performed by a dancer wearing beads and sequins as they are by someone in coins and turbans. So, regardless of your preferences with respect to style of music and type of costume, you can use the moves this video teaches.
Throughout the video, three dancers work together to demonstrate the moves. All three dancers executed the moves competently, and it was nice to see how the various moves looked on different bodies. For the instructional section of the video, all three dancers wore a common uniform: a choli (midriff blouse), a pair of leggings, and a hip scarf. The instructional section ends with a review section in which the trio, still dressed in their practice clothing, improvise using the steps that were taught. This could be very helpful to a beginning dancer who wants to see how to fit the moves together into a complete dance with transitions between them.
The video ended with a 20-minute performance by Carolena and her two associates. FatChance is known for doing group improvisation, in which one dancer leads and the others emulate what she does. They take turns in the role of leader. On this video, they performed this improvisation wearing the style of tribal costuming that they originated: full skirts, turbans, cholis, coin bras worn over the top of the cholis, and hipbands embroidered with mirrors in the Central Asian style.
If you'd like to read my reviews of other videos by Carolena Nericcio of FatChanceBellyDance, choose from the list below:
The following are opinion polls only for other videos by Carolena:
|Although I've had occasional brief conversations with Carolena Nericcio via e-mail and in person at belly dance events, I don't know her very well. My encounters with her have been quite pleasant. I respect her very much as a dance colleague and an astute business woman. The video that I reviewed was sent to me as a complimentary copy. It is standard practice in the journalism world for producers of books, music, and videos to send them to the media in hopes they will be reviewed, and that is why I received one.|
Contact FatChanceBellyDance as follows:
Phone (+1) (415) 431-4322
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