One Day I Will Rule the World

World Domination, Babies and Middle Eastern Dance

September 11, 2010


I am trying my hand at choreography. I have a number of songs that are my favourites, just waiting for me to choreograph something to them. And this one in particular, that I am starting with, has been tormenting me for a couple of years with the sense that it has a story that I need to dance to it.

Additionally, I harbour the suspicion that the mental exercise of designing choreography and fitting it to my own body and movements will make me a better improvisational dancer.

I remember when I first took this dance up that it was a challenge just to pick your feet up off the floor when doing a move. And then the big challenge was understanding how to transition from one move into another. Now the challenge is learning to mix it up and think of more than your default three moves when you’re put on the spot.

I figured that learning other people’s choreographies would give me a better vocabulary of moves and combinations to use. And it has. It’s also given me a more confident dance demeanor I think.

Three years ago I put together a choreography and performed it for my coworkers. There’s video somewhere, but I haven’t really watched it because it makes me cringe in self-consciousness. However, from what I recollect, the choreography itself was very, “then four of this move. then four of this move.” It fit the music, I was careful about that, but I don’t think it was very interesting.

I feel like I can probably produce something with more overall form and complexity these days. And then, hopefully, just spending more time pondering form and complexity, a little bit of it will find its way into my freedancing.

As of tonight, I am fourteen seconds through a 310 second song. Hah, that should be discouraging, but there will be repetition. Also, I spent all evening just repeating and repeating and refining those fourteen seconds. They’re the opening fourteen seconds, so they’re really important. But also, though I’ve had this dance in my head whenever I listen to the song (in the car. a LOT), in the real world, I’ve only just put the song on and improvised to it – where I am limited by my physical repertoire.  I can imagine great moves and transitions, but I haven’t taken the time to get up and step through them and make them a physical reality. Tonight, once I set my computer to loop fourteen seconds over and over and put myself to just dancing those fourteen seconds, I found that there were even more interesting things in my mind that I could translate into my body than I had even been envisioning back when it was all in my mind.

Anyhow, since we’re talking about dance, I’m going to embed another Port Said video. This one isn’t, strictly speaking, 100% Port Said* style but as it performed by young children it is 100% adorable. Interestingly, it is choreographed to the same song as the last video I showed you (although a different version of the song).

* I realized that if I just saw that written I would be very confused about how to pronounce it. It is Port (the english word) Sah-yeed.

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