Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Bellydance Rhythms Workout|
Actors: Neon, Raquy, Liron
Genres: Special Interests, Musicals & Performing Arts, Exercise & Fitness
Awesome Must Have
K. T. Watkins | Carson, CA USA | 12/22/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am fairly new to bellydance. I have nearly a dozen dvds. From the first viewing of this dvd, I knew this was a must have for the beginner's collection. Why? Well, if you know the basic moves, you can use this dvd right away. Neon gives the student two levels, beginner and intermediate. For 36 minutes, you do 20 mini routines to 5 drum rhythms. 100% bellydance moves that make you sweat. Don't worry if some of the combinations seem overwhelming. Neon has the most useful and thorough tutorials for each combo that walks you through step by step. The more you do the combos, the easier it gets. And what makes this dvd a standout is the explicit way the drum rhythms are highlighted. Raqy does a great job of leading the dancer through the rhythms before you even attempt to dance. Neon reinforces the rhythms as she leads you through the combos.
This a dvd that you can use now and grow into. If you want a dvd that will last longer than the initial lessons, this is it. If you want a workout that is based on 100% bellydance moves, this is it."
Vivacious drum rhythms workout-drill-dance
Mala Bhargava | India | 11/21/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Come to think of it, there are many instructional videos in this sub genre. There's The Heartbeat of Belly Dance from the same producers, World Dance New York, there's Sonia and Issam's Art of the Drum Solo, the rhythms video by Saida with Mario Kirlis, and probably a few more I haven't bought. Each one brings its own format and combinations, style, and instruction type.
In this video, Neon, Raquy and Liron Peled bring vivacity and verve to drum solo technique. The format, specially if you go by the menu, looks very simple. But that doesn't mean it isn't thoroughly conceptualized. Neon, who looks like a piece of bottled sunlight, explains the entire concept of this instructional program (choreographed by her) in her five-minute welcome. She views it as a fitness program as well as a belly dance one. As she introduces the video, she stands in what I call her Andy Troy (fitness expert) pose. You can see the intro in the preview clip, so I won't get over-descriptive here. It's not an aerobic program, but it is very active (especially in the second segment of sharply percussive moves) and involves much muscle work. It is not about floating around leisurely - so you may well sweat and get washed out. Or head for a Mars bar, like I tend to do.
It seems that there are many "multi-level" videos being turned out of late, and this is another in that category. Half of it is for beginners, and another half for intermediate dancers. I'm beginning to like this format a lot because as intermediate dancers can easily use the beginner's segment to drill, sharpen moves, work on finer points like transitions, turning, changing angles, balance etc. And as a beginner, you have something to gradually work up to.
So... first, drummers Raquy Danziger (dumbek) and Liron Peled (base drum) take you through the rhythms featured here - just the most popular ones - chiftitelli, beledi, saiidi, maksoum and masmoudi. The famous Raquy has a very nice way of explaining them here - she breaks them up into "low" and "high". That also corresponds to the movements you can make, so it works very well. Neon later uses the high and low cues when working with each rhythm. There are no backgrounders on the rhythms and their cultural significance, etc. Just brief, practical, effective primers.
And then come the 40 drum solo combinations in two dance flows.
As has become almost standard with World Dance videos, there's a separate tutorial section which you can choose to do or not do. I choose to do because although I "know" the moves, they need both smoothness and sharpness. And speed. For those familiar with Neon's work, each combination is explained in total Neon style. For those who don't know Neon... she explains fully and demonstrates clearly. Explaining basic moves is her thing.
The combinations are short and easy for the beginner flow, Flow 1. You hear the rhythm and vocal cues through many repetitions (12) and that helps get the rhythm, both main beat and riffs, into your head. If none of this is news to you, use the music-only option to go through the 20 combinations as a workout or drill. It makes a great drill, in fact! If you're an advancing dancer, use the music-only part to start making variations as the drum pattern is repeated. I find this part very useful, in fact!
The intermediate combinations move faster and are obviously more complex. They're still not long though. This iothncreases their drill-worthiness. If you've been dancing already, try both flows consecutively for a longer drill.
The obligatory performance on this video is missing. But for this price, it's a giveaway. Everyone on the DVD looks as if they're having fun. I think learners will too!
Great Belly Dance Workout
Highbaugh Taxtamara J. Highbaugh | Indianapolis, IN | 02/18/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I love this dvd. I get a good workout that makes me sweat and I have already seen results in my abdominal muscles, hips and thighs. There is a beginner and intermediate level. I am mastering the beginner level before going on to the intermediate level. I love this DVD. I also would recommend Luscious. They both have an instructional section that will show you how to do the moves before you tackle the workout which is really nice."
Awesome Bellydance Video!
S. Gardner | Central Wisconsin | 02/08/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I have to confess that I own most of World Dance New York's bellydance videos. Some are great, some are less so, and of the bunch this rhythms workout comes out at the top. It's a great introduction for beginners, even better than Luscious - The Bellydance Workout for Beginners, with what seems to be a much more thorough tutorial section. Complete beginners will still want to try live instruction if they can, but this video can easily help them to build on those early lessons.
Some people may be leery of the lack of music, but you don't miss it at all; the drum rhythms are effective and beautiful. Everyone looks like they're having fun, which makes it almost impossible not to smile as well. The stage is simple, without distractions, and the camera only rarely focuses on anything but Neon's whole body. The moves also build nicely in complexity as you work through the different rhythms.
That being said, there were a few things that knocked a star off for me, mostly in the tutorial section. WDNY has a habit of stripping away backgrounds and leaving dancers in front of a CG background, which looks cheesy; a studio with mirrors would be much better suited to the tutorial section. There also seems to be a trend of having the instructor (Neon, in this case) dancing in the performance costume, which features a heavily-fringed hip scarf. It's lovely, but it badly obscures her knees - not a good thing when she's talking about how much movement originates there; you can barely see the front knee on some of the diagonal moves, and the back knee is completely obscured. Losing the hip scarf for that section wouldn't be difficult and would help beginners to better grasp the movements. In the flow portion, the voice over instruction works well, but the occasional singing of the rhythm gets to be a bit annoying. You're stuck with it until you know the routine well enough to perform it with the music only.
Overall, I think that this is my favorite of the WDNY videos, even with the slight flaws above. I still recommend Bellydance Basics and Beyond: Technique for a Solid Foundation (another WDNY title) for complete beginners for an extremely thorough introduction to the moves, but this video can stand on its own very easily. It's a great addition to any workout or bellydance DVD library."