Belly Dance Your Way to Energy

A Video Review By Shira

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Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Summary

Overall Rating: StarStarStarStar (on a scale of 1 to 5 stars)

On this sequel to Belly Dance Your Way to Fitness, Amira Mor teaches attractive choreography to the popular Arabic song Habibi Ya Eini. It has enough repetition to be suitable for experienced beginner or early intermediate dancers, but enough variety to be used in performance. Amira's style comes across as a sexy blend of belly dancing with jazz dance.

Cover

To purchase this video from Amazon:

Item

Amazon.com in U.S.

Amazon.ca in Canada

Amazon.co.uk in United Kingdom

DVD Edition U.S.
NTSC
All regions
Canada
NTSC
All regions
Not offered
VHS Tape Edition Not offered Not offered Not offered

(Amazon's claim that the DVD version is Region 1 is wrong. Amazon doesn't offer a way for sellers to indicate that their DVD's support multiple regions, so they're forced to pick just one. I have personally tested this DVD and found it to enable all regions.)

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

What Shira.net Users Think

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.

 
1) How would you rate Belly Dance Your Way to Energy, by Amira Mor?
Absolutely fantastic!
Definitely would recommend it.
Good enough to be worth the money, but not special
Disappointing, but had at least a little value
Nothing good about it at all
 

The above poll includes responses submitted since April 19, 2003.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

The Chart

Recommended Level Experienced Beginner, Early Intermediate
Formats Available NTSC, PAL, SECAM
Overall Rating StarStarStarStar
Production Quality StarStarStarStar
Content Value StarStarStarStar
Packaging StarStarStar
Total Video Length 36:17 minutes
Performance Time 7:46 minutes (21%)
Teaching Time 27:10 minutes (75%)
Amount Of "Other" 1:21 minutes (4%)
Choreography Yes
Cultural Information No
Music Education No
Health Issues No
Number Of Models 5
List Price $19.99 for VHS tape
$24.99 for DVD
Cost Per Minute Of Teaching & Performing Time 57 cents for VHS tape
72 cents for DVD
Cost For "Other" 74 cents for VHS tape
93 cents for DVD

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Description

This is the sequel to Belly Dance Your Way to Fitness.

On this instructional video, Amira Mor teaches a 4-minute choreographed dance to the popular Arabic song Habibi Ya Eini. It uses moves simple enough for experienced beginner and early intermediate dancers. Normally, a 4-minute dance would be difficult for a beginner to learn, but Amira builds in enough repetition to overcome that issue. Amira's high-energy style is jazzy, with hair tosses, strong arm movements, and poses with feet set wide apart.

Four assistants help Amira demonstrate the dance. All of them have body types very similar to hers. The video opens with a performance of everyone in full professional nightclub style costume, with skirts arranged to show bare leg all the way up to the belt. In the instructional section, the assistants wear matching practice outfits, and Amira wears a practice outfit that coordinates with theirs. Although they are wearing skirts, the slits are arranged to make it easy to see what the legs and feet are doing.

The instructional section is divided into six segments. The first four segments each teach the next group of moves that come in the sequence. The choreography utilizes most of the moves taught on Amira Mor's beginner moves instructional video Belly Dance Your Way to Fitness, plus introduces additional new moves. In the fifth and sixth segments, Amira and her assistants lead a practice session in which Amira calls out which move to do next. When learning this choreography, it would probably make sense to focus on mastering one segment each session, then rehearse the dance up to that point.

If you have a DVD player, I would strongly recommend buying the DVD edition instead of the VHS tape, because the DVD chaptering allows you to begin with the instructional segment you want to work on, then jump to the fifth segment to practice what you have learned so far.

Generally speaking, I like the way Amira presents the choreography. The introductory screen for each segment displays a text list of the moves that will be taught in that segment, in the order in which they will appear in the choreography. This can be paused, and copied down to assist with memorization. Amira teaches each move in turn, then leads a couple of run-throughs of the moves taught so far. During the section, the song Habibi Ya Eini plays softly in the background to set the mood, but it's soft enough that it never overpowers the explanations. Throughout the instruction and demonstrations, Amira maintains a pleasant, smiling attitude. She breaks each move down into its component parts.

Following the four instructional segments, Amira then leads a practice session in the choreography, calling out what to do next for each move. She runs through it twice, and then the entire group performance in full professional costume from the beginning is shown again. It's convenient to have these three repetitions of it in a row, because it minimizes the amount of rewinding needed.

The production quality is excellent. The set is the deck beside a swimming pool in an attractive yard. Several cameras are used to provide varying angles, and the zoom level always shows what it needs to show. There are no annoying tight close-ups. I would have preferred that the editor linger a bit longer on each camera angle before bouncing to the next - it is somewhat distracting when trying to study the move taught to suddenly see a change of angle, but it isn't too annoying.

In Conclusion

If you're interested in using choreography to learn how to assemble basic moves into a finished dance that you can perform, this video is worth considering. The jazzy, playful style will probably appeal to most Western audiences, although people who prefer Egyptian Oriental or more folkloric forms probably won't care for it.

You Will Probably Like This Video If

  • You enjoy the jazz-influenced styles of Suhaila Salimpour and Kathryn Ferguson, with strong limb movements, hair tosses, and leg poses with feet far apart.
  • You're looking for beginner-level choreography to perform, either as a soloist or in a troupe.
  • You enjoyed Amira Mor's Belly Dance Your Way to Fitness instructional video or Behind the Veil performance video, and now you'd like to learn choreography in her style.

You Probably Won't Care for This Video If

  • You prefer folkloric dance or Egyptian Oriental, and you'd prefer to avoid a jazzier style.
  • You're looking for choreography with less repetition, aimed at a more experienced level of dancer.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Features of the DVD Edition

This review is based on the DVD edition of this video.

Summary

Feature

Available on This DVD?

Regions Available 1
Fast-Forward Through Introductory Screens Yes
Pause Yes
Chaptering Yes
Menu, Sub-Menus Only one top menu, with seven choices
Fast Forward  Yes
Skip to the Next Break  Yes
Rewind/Reverse Yes
Slow Forward Yes
Zoom Yes
Alternate Sound Tracks  No
Other Extras No

Chaptering & Sub-Menus

There is only one menu, with seven choices, one to "Play All", and six to play each of the six segments. The segments of instruction are well chaptered, so it is possible to find the desired chapter with a few taps of the "skip forward" button on the remote. The chapter divisions include:

  • Chapter 1 - Performance.
  • Chapter 2 - Segment 1, First Set of Combination
  • Chapter 3 - Segment 2, Second Set of Combinations
  • Chapter 4 - Segment 3, Third Set of Combinations
  • Chapter 5 - Segment 4, Final Set of Combinations
  • Chapter 6 - Segment 5, Run-Through With Amira Calling Out What to Do Next
  • Chapter 7 - Segment 6, Second Run-Through, Repeat of Opening Performance, Closing Credits

There was some room for improvement in the menu design - it would have been helpful to have a choice on the opening menu for the performance in full costume. The only way to see the performance is to "Play All". But this is minor.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

What I Liked, What I Didn't

What I Liked

  • I enjoy the choreography. It's jazzier than what I prefer to do myself, but it's well designed for its purpose, to assemble beginning moves into a finished dance.
  • The moves in the choreography match well with what the music is doing.
  • The choreography contains enough repetition to be manageable for experienced beginners, but is not too monotonous.
  • Amira has an enjoyable on-screen personality.

What I Didn't Like

  • Camera angles shift from one to another just a little too often, which is a little distracting when trying to study how Amira is demonstrating a certain move.
  • There are a couple of moves I don't care for in the choreography, though it would be easy enough to substitute something else in their place.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Movements Included

  • Hip Articulations: 3 moves (hip drop, shimmy pelvic, shimmy jazz)
  • Traveling Steps: 4 moves (walk backward, shimmy forward, snake arms right/left, yalla hip)
  • Rib Cage & Shoulder Articulations: 3 moves (accent, chest drop, chest lift)
  • Rib Cage Undulations: 3 moves (pull, push, shoulder back)
  • Head Moves: 2 moves (hair toss, sphinx)
  • Arms: 1 moves (champagne)

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Reviews of Other Videos by this Artist/Instructor

If you'd like to read my reviews of other videos by Amira Mor, choose from the list below:

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

In Conclusion

This video offers beginner-level instruction. I don't think the level is quite simple enough to serve as a "first video" for someone without a teacher, but it could work as a "second" video for such a student who is outgrowing her first. It could also help as a tool for home practice for a beginner who does have classes, and wants a framework for practice in between. The performance is energetic and fun to watch, and the closing "fun & fitness" section helps students begin to learn how to put moves together. The moves taught are definitely elementary - someone who has been belly dancing for more than 6 months would probably find this video too simple for her taste.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Disclosures

I have had only minimal contact with Amira Mor before reviewing this video. She sent me a complimentary copy to review for my web site.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Contacting The Producer & Ordering The Video

To purchase video from Amazon:

Item

Amazon.com in U.S.

Amazon.ca in Canada

Amazon.co.uk in United Kingdom

DVD Edition U.S.
NTSC
All regions
Canada
NTSC
All regions
Not offered
VHS Tape Edition Not offered Not offered Not offered

(Amazon's claim that the DVD version is Region 1 is wrong. Amazon doesn't offer a way for sellers to indicate that their DVD's support multiple regions, so they're forced to pick just one. I have personally tested this DVD and found it to enable all regions.)

Or, contact Amira Mor as follows:

Amira Mor International Entertainment Co.
P.O. Box 101
Closter, NJ 07624
U.S.A.

Phone: (+1) (201) 348-2126
E-Mail: contact@AmiraMor.com

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

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