Taktaba Blog

Geek Out with Shahrzad Khorsandi

Posted by on Apr 11, 2017 in The Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse | 1 comment

Geek Out with Shahrzad Khorsandi

  Persian Dance Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse Episode 49: My guest, Shahrzad Khorsandi will talk about the history, aesthetics, and technique of Persian dance, and the similarities and differences between it and belly dance.     Get the recording     While NOT what we think of as “belly dance,” Persian dance has a long and rich history that can inform and inspire dancers of all genres. With flowing arm movements and graceful body lines, becoming more familiar with Persian dance is a beautiful way for us to...

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Geek Out with Dawn Devine

Posted by on Mar 28, 2017 in The Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse | Comments Off on Geek Out with Dawn Devine

Geek Out with Dawn Devine

  Finger Cymbal History Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse Episode 48: My guest, Dawn Devine, will talk about the history and manufacture of finger cymbals.       Get the recording   While the origins of dance are rooted in the mists of time, long before writing, there is one element of our dance that survives from antiquity – Finger Cymbals! Dawn’s book includes her research into the history of finger cymbals – conducted first from an art historian’s point of view but then delving into the...

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Geek Out with Alia Thabit – Again!

Posted by on Feb 16, 2017 in The Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse | Comments Off on Geek Out with Alia Thabit – Again!

Geek Out with Alia Thabit – Again!

  Opening Yourself Up to the Audience Belly Dance Geek Clubhouse Episode 47: My guest, Alia Thabit will talk about sharing your experience through dance as a gift.     Get the recording     Imagine a world with less fear and detachment. A world with more joy and connection. As artists and performers, we have the ability to share our emotional responses to the music with the audience, inviting them into our experience. Amid the glamour, the flash, and the hip drops, we have the amazing power to spread joy and cultural...

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The Muse Doesn’t Show Up Until You Do

Posted by on Jan 7, 2017 in Articles | Comments Off on The Muse Doesn’t Show Up Until You Do

The Muse Doesn’t Show Up Until You Do

  Don’t wait for inspiration One thing that used to keep me from practicing in my “feast or famine” days was waiting for inspiration. If I wasn’t “in the right mood” to practice, I didn’t.   And I wasn’t often “in the mood”. Don’t get me wrong. I was thinking about dance all the time: Listening to music Visualizing combos Tapping out zil patterns on my thighs Brainstorming costume ideas And I showed up for class like clockwork.   But I wasn’t showing up to...

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How Thinking Like a Toddler Helps You Practice

Posted by on Jan 5, 2017 in Articles | Comments Off on How Thinking Like a Toddler Helps You Practice

How Thinking Like a Toddler Helps You Practice

  This is my nephew Jack* Jack didn’t want any Christmas presents this year. At least, that’s what he told us at bedtime on Christmas Eve…     Jack’s Mom: “Santa can’t bring you presents until you go to sleep.” Jack: “I don’t want presents!” (Pouts adorably.)   Jack knows something that most adults don’t Goals – no matter how important they are to you – aren’t a reliable source of motivation. When it comes to making progress, the most...

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Could Your Dance Practice Survive a Zombie Apocalypse?

Posted by on Jan 4, 2017 in Articles | Comments Off on Could Your Dance Practice Survive a Zombie Apocalypse?

Could Your Dance Practice Survive a Zombie Apocalypse?

  Preparedness Plans They’re not just for the zombie apocalypse! If you live here in the US, you may have heard about the Centers for Disease Control’s zombie apocalypse campaign.     The short version: they created a campaign of videos, blog posts, and even a novella, teaching people how to prepare for a zombie apocalypse. It was an entertaining way to promote emergency preparedness education.   Zombies probably won’t threaten your practice habit But there are many other things that will: Injuries...

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How Themes Keep Your Practice Flexible

Posted by on Jan 2, 2017 in Articles | Comments Off on How Themes Keep Your Practice Flexible

How Themes Keep Your Practice Flexible

  Themes are Like Yoga for Your Dance Practice   They keep it flexible, yet focused.       My practice habit started with a panic goal. I had an important show to prepare for, and I was terrified that I’d embarrass myself. So I decided to practice my piece every day in the weeks leading up to the event. I got lucky. By the time the event rolled around, I noticed how much better I felt when I did a daily practice. After 14 years of feast-or-famine practice, I finally felt like a real dancer, just because I was...

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10 Trivial Things That Derail Your Practice

Posted by on Dec 30, 2016 in Articles | 1 comment

10 Trivial Things That Derail Your Practice

  It’s the Little Things That Get You…   When I ask people what keeps them from practicing, they often bring up the big things.       Family obligations, long work hours, no space…   But it’s the little things that really get you.   With the big problems, you start thinking about big solutions. Asking your partner to watch the kids, practicing before work, clearing out a corner of your living room… Then we have to face the little things, the tiny inconveniences that steal your...

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Embrace Your Excuses

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Articles | Comments Off on Embrace Your Excuses

Embrace Your Excuses

  Just don’t take them at face value…   When you’re trying to make practice a habit, a lot of excuses are going to crop up:     I don’t have the time… I don’t have the energy… I have to watch my kids… I don’t have a good practice space…   We’re used to thinking of excuses as the enemy. And for good reason: excuses will hold you back, if you believe them. But the “just do it” method of ignoring your excuses doesn’t work either.  ...

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Language Geek Corner: Aferin

Posted by on Dec 22, 2016 in Language Geek | Comments Off on Language Geek Corner: Aferin

Language Geek Corner: Aferin

  A New Column!   Besides being the Belly Dance Geek™, I’m also a language geek.       I speak 5 languages (although I’m incredibly rusty at two of them…), and I’ve been studying Turkish for just under 2 years. Learning another language opens doors. Besides helping you understand the music you’re dancing to, it lets you connect with the culture beyond music and dance. (Even if you’re not very good at it! Most people are thrilled that you want to learn their language.)   So I...

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