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I would have expected a video titled Cabaret Bellydancing Floor Moves Advice to provide instruction in how to do various moves used in floor work. However, this one devotes only 18 minutes to that. The main body of the video consists of a 28-minute segment consisting of a man asking Cory interview questions about U.S. belly dancing interleaved with performance clips illustrating the points Cory makes in her answers. Although several of the interview questions are closely related to floor work, there are also some off-topic things such as a discussion of tip collection and dancing with audience members. There is also a 15-minute performance segment at the end showing an excerpt of a U.S. style belly dance show.
If this video had been titled and advertised as a documentary about U.S. style belly dancing, replacing the 18-minute segment that teaches floor work moves with more information about the elements that make U.S. belly dance different from Egyptian style, I would have praised it and given it four stars because Cory clearly knows the subject well and discusses it effectively. However, the video's title and advertising copy describe it as a video that provides floor work instruction. I'm afraid that with only 18 minutes devoted to teaching floor work moves, it doesn't offer enough actionable information to satisfy what a buyer is likely to be expecting.
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|Total Video Length||62 minutes|
|Performance Time||13:44 minutes (23%)|
|Teaching Time||18:31 minutes (30%)|
|Interview Time||27:40 minutes (45%)|
|Amount Of "Other"||1:14 minutes (2%)|
|Number Of Models||2|
|Cost Per Minute Of Teaching & Performing Time||62 cents|
|Cost For "Other"||40 cents|
From the title, Cabaret Bellydancing Floor Moves Advice, I expected instruction in how to do various moves used in floor work. That's not exactly what this video is about.
It opens with a 28-minute interview in which a man (who is never identified) asks Cory questions, interview-style, about U.S.-style belly dancing. Many of these are about floor work, but a few wander into other topics such as inviting customers to get up and dance and accepting tips. After Cory responds to each question, the video shows a brief performance clip illustrating the point she has just made in the context of a real-life situation. The questioner is well-prepared, asking the points that Cory clearly wants him to ask, and her informative responses offer both performance advice and a perspective on how traditional U.S. belly dancing differs from Egyptian. For this segment, she wears a dress rather than exercise clothes.
Following the interview, the scene moves into Cory's dance studio. Now clad in her leotard, Cory introduces her assistant Petra and begins the instruction in dance moves. Oddly enough, she begins this section by announcing she is going to teach the Turkish drop, which is probably the most difficult and most dangerous belly dance move there is. A full-speed clip illustrates what a Turkish drop is. Cory then says she will show the move in slow motion, and the clip that follows this statement shows something else entirely in slow motion. The video never does show a Turkish drop in slow motion, nor does Cory offer any words explaining how to do it.
Cory uses an assistant named Petra whose body type is quite different from Cory's to help her illustrate the various moves. I like this because it really does show how different moves look on different bodies. Petra's level of skill appears to be that of an intermediate dancer, so she doesn't do the moves as fluidly as Cory. This detracts somewhat from the value of having her assist.
Cory teaches three different ways to descend to the floor: slide, maya down, and figure 8 down. She explains the slide well, but assumes you already know how to do the maya and the figure 8, so for those descents she doesn't explain the basic move, just shows how to use it for getting down. Once down, she demonstrates the "ironing board", which is actually an exercise for building thigh strength rather than a dance move. Since thigh strength is crucial to successful floor work, it's useful to teach it.
Cory then teaches the kneeling backbend, and uses Petra to show an easier variation for people who don't have sufficient arch to do it the way Cory does. From here, she shows the roll-around as a move that can be done from this position.
In the next section, Cory talks about a somewhat more spiritual view of floor work: clearing your space of evil and preparing to go into trance. She teaches a couple of moves (tug of war, vertical circles with the rib cage, doing a simple knee walk to create sacred space, and hip circles). These moves are suitable for performance, and Cory says they are also helpful for clearing the space, clearing the third eye, and pushing evil away.
Cory also teaches the Cleopatra position (also known as side layout) done with stomach roll and leg figure 8, and the vibration where the hips arch off the floor and the entire body vibrates. The final move she teaches is one form of ascent back to standing position, including a cheat for people who need to brace themselves coming back up.
The instructional section ends with a demonstration in which Cory and Petra review the moves taught in a mini-routine. Cory calls out what to do next for each move. I like the way this review shows how the moves can flow from one to another.
The video closes with a 15-minute performance section showing Cory performing to live music in a club environment. It begins with floor work, followed by a drum solo, then tip gathering to medium-speed music (Habibi Ya Eini and Soode Soode), and ends with a karsilama finale to Rampi Rampi. Her costume is a retro 1970's-style circle skirt with slits arranged to show her entire leg all the way up to the belt and just a costume bra (no vest, sleeves, etc.) on top. The music, played by the band Mirage, is also representative of U.S.-style belly dance with selections from several different countries (Egypt, Turkey, Armenia).
If you'd like to read my reviews of other videos by Cory Zamora, choose from the list below:
|If you're considering this video because you want to learn floor work moves, you'll probably be disappointed because it spends only 18 minutes on that. However, if you'd like an education about what a traditional U.S. belly dance restaurant show is like and how/why it differs from Egyptian dance, you'll find it very informative and you'll probably enjoy it very much. It all depends on what you want the video to do for you. I enjoy this one very much and its affordable price makes it a good value for the money, but only if you're not expecting it to teach you how to do floor work.|
|I've never had any kind of interaction with either Cory Zamora or her assistant Petra. I borrowed the copy of the video used for this review from a fellow dancer.|
|I'd like to thank Lavonne for loaning me this copy of her video to review.|
To purchase this video from Amazon:
Contact Cory Zamora as follows:
Phone: (+1) (559) 241-0421
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