Tribal Thursday – Last week we defined Ethnic and Folkloric according to The Tribal Bible. This week we continue with Theatricalized Folkloric and the term Tribal. Be sure to check out the video of the Reda Troupe from the 60’s at the end of the post!
Theatricalized Folkloric – refers to modern versions of folkloric dances that have been revised for stage. Some Theatrical folkloric dance companies rehearse daily and perform for governments, heads of state…and special occasions in the Middle East. These folkloric froups are often subsidized by their respective governments and via private support. Famous groups of this nature have included the Reda Troupe of Egypt and the Caracalla Dance Company of Lebanon. Sometimes “revising for stage” means fusing western dance forms such as ballet and modern with the traditional folkloric to create an amalgam that seems to fit better in the artificial atmosphere of a theater than would authentic folk dance.
Tribal – One hears the blanket term “tribal belly dance” more often than the specific name American Tribal Style Bellydance.” There have been – and are – other styles of belly dance that have enjoyed the use of the name ” tribal belly dance that do not employ group improvisational formats. This fact has been one of the main ongoing causes of confusion for folks when understanding what it all means, and which style we are talking about in conversation. People in different areas of the country can have different associations with the word “Tribal.” Be sure you understand the difference between the group improvisational form of Tribal and the choreographed form when communicating with others…. The two styles differ – often – radically – in the end result.
Next week we will cover the 4 types of expression that would be considered “Tribal”.