ARABESQUE ACADEMY — Dance FAQs
Q: What class do I start with?
A: If you have not studied before, we recommend trying a BODY class. If you have studied Raqs Sharqi before elsewhere, we recommend trying the BODY or HEART classes. If you are a professional dance artist, we recommend trying any of the three categories of BODY, HEART and SOUL CLASSES. Every school and artistic director has a different style, therefore even a well-seasoned pro will benefit from learning all aspects of the Arabesque style.
Q: When can I join classes?
A: Your first class is free. Most Arabesque classes run on an on-going, drop-in basis. You are welcome to join anytime, no appointment necessary.
Q: What do I wear to class?
A: Bare feet and anything you are comfortable and can move freely in. The teacher needs to see your torso isolations and your knee movement, so leggings or tight pants are good. You may bring a scarf for your hips but we also have a few extra in the studio to lend. It is not necessary to bare your belly unless you wish.
Q: How long does it take to learn?
A: At about the 3rd class, one movement usually sinks in and after that the rest seem to fall into place. After 3 months, students have enough under their belt to perform at the Student Gala or freak out their friend's at a party. Whether you are a fast learner or slow, whether you have accomplished 3 steps or 300, it usually takes about 2 years before the movements look natural on your body. Like any art-form, it is a life-long learning experience.
Q: How do I know when I am ready for the next dance level?
A: Some people like to perfect each detail and others prefer constant challenge. You may consult a teacher and are welcome to take multiple levels at the same time to feel out your transition. It is highly recommended you take a Skills Assessment and receive a written, thorough personal feedback every six months to a year. See more about Skills Assessment
Q: How do I know which teacher is appropriate for me?
A: : Each of the highly trained Arabesque Teachers has a different teaching style and personality but all teach the world renowned Arabesque technique and curriculum. Try all the teachers at your level and choose the one you feel most comfortable with. At different times in your training, you may find a different teaching style works better for you. In general, it is good to learn from a few different points of view in order to discover the commonalities.
Q: What is class etiquette?
A: To make class time a pleasant experience for everyone, we ask that you please turn your cell phone off before entering class, do not chew gum or wear heavy perfumes. If arriving late, please keep disruption for others to a minimum by going to the back of the studio. Feel free to ask questions anytime. That is what your teacher is there for!
Q: Do students have the chance to perform?
A: Arabesque Academy students perform with their classmates at Student Galas held three times a year and/or as a soloist at Al Khaima events with live musicians three to four times a year. After studying for a while, students may consider joining one of the other performing ensembles; Arabesque Student Troupe, Earthshakers, Allspice, or the professional Arabesque Dance Company and Orchestra as well possibly performing with Arabesque Entertainment Agency as a soloist or in small ensembles. .
Q: How do I become a professional soloist and/or teacher and/or join Arabesque Dance Company & Orchestra?
A: After completing all levels at Arabesque Academy successfully, you may audition for the Professional Course which can lead to becoming an Arabesque teacher and/or dance artist with Arabesque Dance Company & Orchestra.
Q: Where can I find Bellydance music and instructional DVDs to practice with?
A: : There is a collection of Arabesque CDs and DVDs for sale in the reception area. Many other items can be bought online . Ask your teacher or receptionist to recommend the appropriate CDs or DVDs for you.