Belly Dance Lesson #2: Standing Moves

A Video Review By Shira

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Summary

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

On this video, Cory Zamora teaches elementary moves intended for beginning-level dance students. She concentrates on hip circles, figure 8's, and undulations. This is designed to be a sequel to the first video in her instructional series.

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
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Canada
NTSC
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
U.K.
NTSC (from U.S.)
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
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 except 9.)


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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 Lesson #2 - Standing Moves, by Cory Zamora?
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 November 28, 2003.

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The Chart

Recommended Level Beginner
Formats Available NTSC
Overall Rating StarStarStarStar
Production Quality StarStarStar
Content Value StarStarStarStar
Packaging StarStarStarStar
Total Video Length 45:30 minutes
Performance Time 6:55 minutes (15%)
Teaching Time 37:52 minutes (83%)
Amount Of "Other" :43 minutes (2%)
Choreography No
Cultural Information No
Music Education No
Health Issues No
Number Of Models 1
List Price $24.95
Cost Per Minute Of Teaching & Performing Time 56 cents
Cost For "Other" 39 cents

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Description

Cory Zamora has designed this video to be the sequel to her first belly dance instructional video (which I have not seen). She teaches beginning level moves, then leads a practice session to demonstrate how they can be assembled into a dance. Even though she intends it to be a follow-up to an earlier video, I find that her explanations for the moves taught on this one can stand on their own. The only section that really requires prior experience with the other video is the practice session, when Cory incorporates some arm movements that were taught on it.

After a brief 1-minute opening performance segment, this video moves right into teaching the dance moves. There is no warm-up.

In the 20-minute instructional section, Cory focuses on technique for doing assorted beginning belly dance moves, focusing on hip isolations such as figure 8, circles, and camel. Her explanation for each move is clear and easy to follow. She uses vivid imagery that helps understand how to do the move. For example, for one move she uses the image of a compass used to draw a circle on paper, where one foot is the point at the center of the circle and the other foot is the pencil tracing the outline of the circle. Her explanations for these moves are some of the clearest that I have seen on belly dance instructional videos, and beginners who have had difficulty learning them may find a breakthrough in Cory's descriptions. I wish this video had existed back when I was learning these moves many years ago!

After teaching the moves, Cory puts the moves together into a practice session, calling out which to do next. She then pauses to offer some comments, followed by a second practice session to different music for further review. These practice sessions feel like just about the right length.

Cory next spends a few minutes offering additional comments on finger cymbals, including advice on what type of buy, then closes the video with a 6-minute performance in full professional costume filmed in the studio. The music for the performance is the song Guardian from the Brothers of the Baladi CD titled "Hope". Her stage presence feels aloof, probably due to the lack of a live audience to dance for.

The production quality feels homemade, but it's definitely good enough. The camera usually shows what I want to see, zooming in for close-ups when appropriate but also having the good sense to stay back when it should. The lighting and sound quality are fine. The set is very simple. At times, there is a blank wall behind Cory, and at other times there is a striped curtain. Her leotard-clad body is always easy to see against these backgrounds. As a teacher, Cory projects a warm and likeable personality.

You Will Probably Like This Video If

  • You are a beginning dancer who would like movements such as figure 8's, camels, and other undulations to be clearly explained.
  • You would find it helpful to be guided through a practice session that puts the moves together into a dance.
  • You are a belly dance teacher who is looking for new ideas on how to teach undulations.

You Probably Won't Care for This Video If

  • You have already mastered beginning moves and you're ready for more advanced instruction.

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What I Liked, What I Didn't

What I Liked

  • Cory offers clear, easy-to-understand explanations of how to do each move. Her descriptions of how to do the camel are among the best I've seen.
  • Cory uses helpful imagery to make her points, such as imagining standing in a doorway or reaching to touch a hula hoop.
  • Cory shows how to play finger cymbals with each move.
  • The practice session provides a useful review of the moves taught, along with helping put the moves together into a dance.

What I Didn't Like

  • Only one finger cymbal rhythm, threes (which Cory calls longa) is taught, and I found it to be a bit monotonous after a while.
  • On the performance segment, Cory's stage presence is withdrawn, probably because she doesn't have a live audience to interact with.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Movements Included

  • Hip Articulations: 1 moves (shimmy with sway)
  • Hip Undulations: 5 moves (hip circle, hip circle pivot, vertical figure 8, back-to-forward figure 8, Arabic pelvic rock)
  • Traveling Steps: 2 moves (walking hip circle, flat-ball-ball-ball)
  • Finger Cymbals: 1 rhythms (threes)

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Reviews of Other Videos by this Instructor

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

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In Conclusion

Cory has managed to do something that eludes many belly dance teachers: she has offered clear, easy-to-understand explanations of how to do various undulating moves. If your current teacher hasn't explained these moves to your satisfaction, or if you just want a video that will lead you through a practice session that puts the moves together into a simple dance, this video is definitely worth considering.

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Disclosures

I've never had any kind of interaction with either Cory Zamora. I borrowed the copy of the video used for this review from a fellow dancer.

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Acknowledgements

I'd like to thank Lavonne for loaning me this copy of her video to review.

Bellydancing Bellydance Bellydancers

Contacting The Producer & Ordering The Video

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
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Canada
NTSC
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
U.K.
NTSC (from U.S.)
Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
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 except 9.)

Contact Cory Zamora as follows:

Dialogue International
408 West Indianapolis Avenue
Fresno, CA 93705
U.S.A.

Phone: (+1) (559) 241-0421
Fax: (+1) (559) 221-6323
Web Site: www.bellydancingonvideo.com
E-Mail: greatdialogue@yahoo.com

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