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Sadie Belly Dance
Belly dance is a Western name for an Arabic style of dance developed in the Middle East. The belly dance is based on one of the oldest social dances in world history, native to North Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Much of the support for this theory stems from the similarities between poses in ancient Egyptian artwork and the modern dance.
In its native lands, boys and girls learn the dance from an early age. As with many social dances, it is learned informally through observation and imitation of their elders during family and community celebrations, as well as during informal gatherings with friends. Today, ancient belly dances are taught in classes offered throughout the world, and skilled belly dancers are able to share their knowledge that has been passed down from the indigenous peoples who created them.
Most of the basic steps and techniques used in belly dance are circular motions isolated in one part of the body; for example, a circle parallel to the floor isolated in the hips or shoulders. Accents using "pop and lock" where a belly dancer either shimmies or makes a striking motion in her shoulders or hips are common, as are feats of flexibility, rolling one's belly muscles, balancing various props like baskets, swords or canes, and dancing with chiffon or silk veils
A recent movement in the U.S. called American Tribal Style Belly Dance, or ATS, represents everything from folklore-inspired dances to the fusion of ancient dance techniques from North India, the Middle East, and Africa. Created in the early 1990s by Carolena Nericcio, founder of Fat Chance Belly Dance in San Francisco, ATS has a format consisting of a vocabulary of steps that are designed to be performed improvisationally in a lead-follow manner. Pure ATS is performed in a group, typically with a chorus of dancers using zills, or finger cymbals, as accompaniment. The music can be folkloric or modern, and the costume is heavily layered, evoking traditions of any or all of its fusion of cultural influences.