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Bellydance Egyptian Style - Modern Oriental
Bellydance Egyptian Style - Modern Oriental
Actor: Ranya Renee
Director: Ranya Renee
Genres: Special Interests, Educational
NR     2009     2hr 45min

The dance form known as Raqs Sharqi, or Oriental dance, has evolved over the past century, blending native elements of Egyptian baladi music and dance with Western artistic influences. Modern Oriental dance is shaped by ma...  more »


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Movie Details

Actor: Ranya Renee
Director: Ranya Renee
Genres: Special Interests, Educational
Sub-Genres: Dance, Self-Help, Educational
Studio: StratoStream - World Dance New York
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen
DVD Release Date: 03/31/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/2009
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2009
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 2hr 45min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 4
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Great Instruction for All Levels
Alejandra Vernon | Long Beach, California | 03/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This 165 minute "Modern Oriental" DVD is a marvelous way to learn the current Egyptian style of dance, with Ranya Renee, an internationally acclaimed performer and teacher, giving us a clear understanding of the technique, as only she can do. Ranya has a way of making her explanations visual, as in "your foot hitting the floor like your hand hitting a drum." Her depth of knowledge and expertise combined with this clarity makes this a valuable bellydance DVD to own.

It starts with a Welcome that explains Egyptian dance and its history in an overview of what will be taught on this DVD, and then you get the basic posture, alignment, and technique in detail, as well as a good warm-up.

The choreographed piece comes in 2 levels. #1 is for beginners and is much simpler and shorter, #2 for advanced/intermediate. Both include a demonstration, a step by step breakdown and "drills" for practice. Ranya has a nice habit of saying "left-right-left" etc., so our feet don't get mixed up in fast passages and weight changes. The DVD concludes with a gorgeous costumed perfomance.

Dramatic and dazzling with her mane of red hair, Ranya is a delight to learn from and watch. She dedicates this DVD to her longtime teacher Yousry Sharif, who must be so proud of her! Music is excellent and authentic, by Mohamed Ali."
Vivacious and knowledgeable Ranya Renee makes this so enjoya
Mala Bhargava | India | 04/16/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Right from the start of my short belly dance life, I've focused on Am Cab and tribal conditioning and practically ignored Egyptian style. But if anyone thinks that means I would resist Ranya's fabulous new collection of instructional DVDs in Egyptian styling, they can think again. As a matter of fact, I can already perform the beginner choreography on Modern Oriental, Bellydance Egyptian Style.

Well can perform it because it's not a difficult or complex choreo and it's very tied into the music, so when you hear the accents, you can't help remembering the moves you're supposed to do. But whether I can perform the 2 minute choreography Egyptianly or not, is another matter. That nuancing is going to take awhile.

Modern Orietnal has two choreographies on it: a 2 minute beginner finale and a longer 7-minute embelished advanced choreography. The choreographies are set to Layalina and the Finale on Wash ya Wash Vol 4 by Yousry Sharif - who happens to be Ranya's teacher.

In this preview, Ranya tells you about how Egyptian dancers have used and expressed themselves with Egyptian music. The clip may actually give the impression that the whole video is involved and complex and "talky". Not so. This is really a big chunk of the introduction. When one third of the clip is left, Ranya tells you what you'll find on the video. I'll say this: she definitely delivers on what is promised.

To begin at the beginning, Ranya first takes you through a detailed instruction (about 10 minutes of it) on posture and alignment, obviously with special emphasis on Egyptian style. Then you have a warm up combined with technique review. It's a warm up, not a hardcore conditioning workout. I'd recommend that anyone who's using this DVD go through it because you will become accostomed to the way Ranya moves and the terminology she uses. Anyway, you need to warm up and this is a gentle stretchy session of about 15 minutes.

Next thre's a unique 2-minute section with lots of tips on working with the step combinations. Where should you focus, how do you use the beat and stay on it, how to get over getting confused with the left and right foot.

And this leads straight into an explanation of how we will work with the choreographies.

A demo (in training gear) begins our work with the Finale to Layalina. Ths is a charming and perky piece of music and I really like it. The instruction follows a familiar World Dance format - learn with explanations and then dance along twice with music.

Ranya is a good instructor. Just the right mix of everything,r eally. She is very thorough and tells you about all the details, particularly which muscles to use for this style and how to interpret the music. The detail would be a lot to take in if she weren't so well-paced, so natural and vivacious. Even funny at various points. You instantly feel completely at ease with her. She has what I call good video presence: unself-conscious, relaxed and just like she's talking to you and you only.

The Finale has 7 combinations. There are repeated patterns but the choreography doesn't look repetitive. Can absolute beginners pick it up? Well, sure, probably. But it won't look the same unless there's been a few months of isolations. Nevertheless, no harm attempting it at all. If you need drills, there's a segment of drills of movements from the choregraphy after the instruction. Recommended. If you're not used to Egytpian, like me, you can do with repetitions of how to make circles and hip drops etc look way jucier and how to get the baladi bounce into it.

Ranya tells you all about the rhythms in the music as we go along and really makes it meaningful. Wonderful little choreography, in my opinion.

And then... we get to the meat of it all. The more advanced choreography. Same format, same detail. It's just that this is a longer choreography and full of layers and detail and nuances. Ranya mentions that you can choose to develop your dance gradually with this choreography. It's totally connected to the first choreography and some steps are the same but are made more complex now with decorations. Here you can see the inward moes and embellishments that make this dance different. After 14 combinations, we end up with the Finale, or the first choregraphy. But here the Finale is a little more layered and accented.

After the whole Layalina instruction, Ranya gives you an option for a veil entrance and she tells you how to modify movements to come in with the veil. Nice!

There are some tougher drills after this for the advanced learner. Six of the.

And finally, the Layalina performance in costume.

Ranya enjoys herself. And I think so will anyone who learns with her."
Great video for Modern Egyptian
Shara of Desert Dance | KS | 04/13/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a fabulous video on modern Egyptian belly dance! It is for intermediate and advanced students, but it would be good material for a beginner to watch in order to understand the music and the dance concepts. I'm really looking forward to the next video in this series. The whole series will be required viewing for my students! These DVDs are packed with information! I like to watch DVDs through, take notes, then go back and work with them. You may want to do the same with Ranya's videos, because they have so much information that you will want to remember."
Beyond Choreography
Shannon B Davis | Arlington, MA United States | 04/06/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Ranya Renee's "Modern Oriental" DVD is a single DVD focusing on Modern Oriental style of bellydance. The DVD is intended for intermediate dancers, or at minimum, beginner dancers with other classroom or DVD experience.

Ranya begins the DVD with a discussion of music for Oriental dance, and how it has changed over the years. These changes have affected how dancers respond to the music. The historical background provides the viewer with an understanding of what differentiates Modern Oriental from other styles of bellydance.

Ranya also includes a valuable section on how to best learn choreography. I put this into use already this weekend at a Yousry Sharif workshop (Ranya's dance mentor). This video, like her baladi DVD, includes a useful posture section.

Then Ranya teaches a choreography to Layalina by Yousry Sharif. First, she teaches the finale choreography, for beginners. Then she has an intermediate section with the entire song. Each section contains both choreographic instruction and practice, as well as drills to build ones skills. Ranya does not merely explain the movements, but she explains where your weight is, the "feeling" of the move, down to the angle of the head. Not only that, but she tells you why she wrote the choreography this way. She also discusses the music, and how the movements go with the music. The DVD is packed with so much more information than your typical choreography DVD, and Ranya's delivery is entertaining, never stiff or boring."