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Oriental Dance History

The right word for belly dance is oriental dance. It is a mystery- it´s hard to say when and where oriental dancing started. Many experts say oriental dance is the oldest form of dance, having roots in all ancient cultures from the orient to India to the Middle East.

The movement vocabulary of oriental dance is a conglomeration of styles from many regions: Egypt, Leba/arn, North Africa, the Arabian Gulf, Turkey...

Orient dance is k/arwn in the Middle East as raks sharqi.  In USA as American Tribal or Middle Eastern Dance and in French as danse du ventre. For example in Turkey oriental dance is called dobek dans.

Oriental dance have developed a lot through the influence of many different cultures. Traditional oriental dance is preformed by both sexes.

America first encountered oriental dance at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, in the performance of an Egyptian dancer. Americans were enthralled by the dance, and the American belly dance tradition was born.
People say that french started to use the term danse du ventre, when they saw the the body isolations. But americans translated danse du ventre into a belly dance after the Chicago´s World´s Fair.

Oriental dancing is generally performed barefoot, thought by many to emphasize the intimate physical connection between the dancer, her expression, and Mother Earth.

The dance is usually done as a solo or improvisation dance. There are many different kind of dances: dance with the veil or scarf, dance with the candles or sword, dance with the vessels or Isis wings and so on.

Many orinetal dancers use the finger cymbals while dancing. In Turkish, finger cymbals are called zills (zils) and "in Egiptian sagat.

Oriental dance costumes are colourful and glamorous. Dancers usually use many accessories.

By /arw belly dance is enjoyed worldwide and is taught almost in every country. Oriental dance festivals, workshops, and seminars take place constantly. These attract large audiences which involves men and women.