Two dancers submitted versions of dance educational flyers they use when they perform in certain venues. The flyers are to go on tables in restaurants, on audience chairs, handed out to the audience or conveyed in whatever fashion to the audience. The flyers are targeted at those with no familiarity with Middle Eastern dance and aim to put people at their ease by explaining a little about what the dance is and the tipping policy (i.e. how to and that it's not required).
Flyer Set 1
Finally, here are two versions of the flyer I have been promising to send for
a while. The first was written for a nice Arabic place with a pretty classy,
educated, multicultural clientale. The other was written for a greek place
which draws mainly a beach crowd -- a wide range of tourist type people, and
locals looking for a nice night out.
Anyone can adopt or adapt these however she pleases -- I hope they're useful!
Probably each venue will require minor changes -- you could write the Greek
one in a more "educated" way or the arabic one in a more fun way, for example.
Belly dancing arises from the culture of the Arab world, where it is
traditionally performed at weddings and parties, as well as in the best
nightclubs and theaters. Unlike western dance forms like jazz and ballet,
which concentrate on leaps and extensions, Arabian dance technique depends on
fine muscle control of the torso, arms and hips, and on interpretation of the
intricate music. Arabian dance is not a tease or a come-on. The dance is an
expression of feeling: joy, love, sorrow, friendliness, passion, contemplation,
and all the complex emotions of life.
Tipping: In Arab countries, audiences often participate in the entertainment
by tossing money onto the dance floor to express their appreciation of the
dance. If you wish to tip, feel free! But when the dancer visits your table,
she's not asking for money, she's just sharing the dance with you, for your
Belly Dancing Greek Style
In Greece, everybody belly dances -- it's called tchiftetelli, and at parties,
weddings, and even at the end of the week in a local taverna, you'll see men,
women and children up and dancing. Belly dance doesn't involve leaps and
kicks, like ballet or jazz -- instead it's all about using the hips, arms, and
torso to express the feeling of the exciting music. You'll enjoy the sounds of
bouzouki, oud (lute), drums, and also your dancer's zills (finger cymbals),
which she plays as she dances. Belly dance is also about everyone having a
good time! So if you feel like clapping along or calling out "OPA!", go right
ahead. You may even find yourself wanting to get up and dance!
Tipping: It's traditional to tip the dancer by placing bills into her hip belt
to express appreciation in the dance and to get more involved in the fun. If
you wish to tip, feel free! But when the dancer visits your table, she's not
asking for money, she's just sharing the dance with you, for your enjoyment.
Andrea posted two versions of table flyers in July- about the same time
our Guild was working on the same project. We have expanded on her
version and are giving these as table tents or menu inserts to the local
resturants. One of our members did a beautiful caligraphy border to
embellish the words "Belly Dance." A little "food for thought" to go with their dinner. We are hoping a more educated audience will be a more appreciative audience. Here is the text we used. Hope it will help others.
Oriental Dance is a beautiful and feminine art form, born on the shores
of the southern Mediterranean, nurtured on the Nile, and today
performed worldwide. The term "Belly Dance" comes from the 19th
century French "Danse du Ventre" and is a simplified term for a dance
that involves the whole torso, especially the hips. The Arabic name is
"Raks El Sharki", literally translated as "Dance of the East," hence
"Oriental Dance." Perhaps 5,000 years old, the dance traditionally
adorns celebrations and weddings in the Middle East.
Contemporary Oriental Dance contains elements from Persia, India, the
Middle East, and North Africa. It exists from Turkey to Morocco.
However, it is in Egypt that the dance has developed artistically. The
top dancers perform with 30-piece orchestras in five-star hotel night
clubs in Cairo. Films, recordings, and television have enabled a few
dancers to reach superstar status. Begining as children, Egyptian
women learn to dance from attending family gatherings, but few dance
professionally because dancing in public is contrary to traditional
Arabic music is the essence of Oriental Dance, and the drum is its
heart. The classical woman's solo is an improvisation in which the
dancer uses her body to create a visual and emotional interpretation of
the music. Though there are traditional steps and movements associated
with Oriental Dance, how the dancer uses them comes from her soul. The
dancer's spectrum ranges from vigorous and playful to subtle and
In Arab countries, audiences often participate in the entertainment by
clapping, singing, and tossing paper money onto the dance floor to
express their appreciation of the dance. If you wish to tip the dancer,
feel free to do so! But when she visits your table, she is not asking
for money--she's just sharing the dance with you for your enjoyment.
Oriental Dance has been an integral part of Middle Eastern culture. It
has been appreciated by both sexes and all ages for centuries. The
Guild of Oriental Dance would like to thank this resturant for
showcasing dancers dedicated to continuing this living dance tradition.
Last Modified: 15 Jun 1997