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247 of 247 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most comprehensive bellydance instruction ever
How do you argue with almost two and a half hours of content on one little disk--at hardly any cost? In my collection, I have DVDs that offer one tenth the amount of content at an average of $40. This video has an incredible amount of instruction. More than I've seen on any other single video, in fact. It's an entire belly dance syllabus. The teaching is authoritative--as...
Published on November 20, 2006 by Amazon Customer

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52 of 57 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good instruction
I was a bit disappointed by the way this DVD was put together. The instruction is thorough and easy to follow. But this DVD is basically a reference material. She goes through each basic move slowly twice and then fast twice and then moves onto the next one. You must watch one at a time, pause it and practice it to music of your own to remember all that she teaches you...
Published on June 4, 2007 by Writerchick


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247 of 247 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most comprehensive bellydance instruction ever, November 20, 2006
By 
Amazon Customer (New Delhi, India) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
How do you argue with almost two and a half hours of content on one little disk--at hardly any cost? In my collection, I have DVDs that offer one tenth the amount of content at an average of $40. This video has an incredible amount of instruction. More than I've seen on any other single video, in fact. It's an entire belly dance syllabus. The teaching is authoritative--as it should be, coming from someone who really knows. It's detailed and thorough. Despite being such a long DVD, the pace is perfect and consistent throughout. There isn't any section where get disoriented with a sudden variation in style or pace. The relaxed and flowing feel of the whole DVD actually adds to the learning experience.

There are now dozens and dozens of beginner bellydance instruction videos. I've always wondered just how the market supports quite that many. Among them, this one now ranks among the top few because you find everyone in on e place, explained and demonstrated well. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to the next person who asks what they should have in their starter kit.

Unlike many of the other dvds, you'll find a section on traveling steps and layering. So it really does live up to its promise of basics and beyond. It has a sizeable practice section which is quite useful.

The only thing that could have added to it, in my opinion, is the choreography notes (perhaps even on screen) for the performance to Layla.

What can beginners get out of this? Everything in one easy solid package.

What can intermediate dancers get out of it? A good reference, and a workout plus drill.

It's unbelievable value for money.
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113 of 114 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best bellydance tutorial, February 7, 2007
By 
This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
If you are unable to go for a "live" class, this DVD helps you get the basics down and introduces you to bellydance with beautiful step-by-step tutorials. A major plus point of the DVD is that it contains a full 2.5 hours of material. Yes, two and a half HOURS.

It is set in a studio - with a wall-to-wall mirrors on the front, at an angle .. so essentially you the viewer can see the moves from the front and the back. You will miss nothing of the footwork or body and arm movements, and this is very important especially with bellydancing.

This setting is a major plus as it does make it feel like you are "in" the studio. The instructor, Jenna, also helps contribute to this, with her nice pleasing speech and manner .. so that it feels like a 1-on-1 class (but in your living room!). She is also not very intimidating - unlike most fitness videos or even bellydancing videos.

It starts off with the absolute basics - with each body part done individually - the shoulders, the legs, the hips etc. All the movements are done or should I say, introduced separately before combining them together as you move further along with the DVD.

I highly recommend this, especially since it seems like such a steal for the amount of content you get in the DVD.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars best beginner dvd!, January 15, 2007
This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
I love this dvd! Jenna is so clear and concise in her instruction. She stands in front of a huge mirror so you can see her at all times, including her feet. I have been taking lessons for 5 months but this is a must own dvd. As the title says she starts with the basics, such as posture and arm and hand positions. She takes it all the way through to hip drops,foot patterns and everything in between. She then has practice combinations with or without voice instructions. There are also sub catergories to choose from for even more practice and instructions. Jenna is pretty, very likable and has a pleasant voice and teaches real dance moves, NOT counting 1,2,3--1,2,3--which I dislike in other dvds. I have a couple other good beginner dvds, but this is the one I reach for everyday! If you want a REAL beginner teaching dvd that breaks down every move from A-Z then Jenna is the one!
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good For Beginners, December 21, 2007
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This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
This is the only instructional Belly Dance DVD that I own (as opposed renting) so I'm not sure how helpful my opinion will be overall. But from my perspective as a beginner to formal belly dance training, this DVD is an excellent supplement to my weekly classes.

What I like best about this DVD is that it really is like having a no-frills, personalized lesson with Jenna. My studio is much focused on clean execution of movements and proper body arrangement when you're a beginner and that seems to be Jenna's focus as well. As someone who is new to BD, but not new to the world of dance, I find that's the best thing to build a dance-foundation on. She points out common mistakes where beginners can go wrong, which is super-helpful. She also breaks things down very well so that you can understand exactly how your body is supposed to be moving, as well as performing the movements at different angels so you can get maximum benefit.

The DVD is also sectioned off well, which is great when you want to work on one small section. She also has a good amount of detail for each movement, which is nice. I never felt rushed or confused at to what I was supposed to be doing.

I saw some other review where people complained about lack of performance. I thought that was odd since this is an instructional DVD. If you want to see performance material, then I highly recommend "Bellydance Superstars", "Shake it Up: Exotic Bellydance Performances", or Salimpour's "Scheherazade". If you want to have a good foundation for belly dance, pick up this DVD.
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52 of 57 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good instruction, June 4, 2007
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This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
I was a bit disappointed by the way this DVD was put together. The instruction is thorough and easy to follow. But this DVD is basically a reference material. She goes through each basic move slowly twice and then fast twice and then moves onto the next one. You must watch one at a time, pause it and practice it to music of your own to remember all that she teaches you. Plus, she doesn't combine the legs, hips, moves, and arms so that you know how to put them together. There is no dance at the end where you can have fun putting the moves to music. Yes, she has five minute dance clips at the end, one for arms, legs, hips, movement, etc. but not everything she teaches is used. She also performs a five minute dance with her students, which is very basic and not long enough to really get anything out of it. My personal opinion, find a dance class where you have an instructor and mirrors to help you get the correct form. Once you learn the basics, then you could buy a dance dvd to practice putting your moves to work at home in a fun way.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great detailed workshop at your leisure!, October 21, 2006
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This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
Over 2 hours of great detailed workshop at your own leisure!. I love learning technique and I appreciate Jenna's very detailed instruction. Learn proper dance posture, which is truly the foundation for correct arm work, hip work- isolations, layering, undulating . Learn to layer simple moves, compound moves while adding travel steps! A choice of music only as you practice along, or voice and music as you enter the program initially. You can build your own workout sessions with all the combinations included. This was a great learning experience, a true workshop with very detailed, broken down instruction. This is a must have dvd for learning basics and more, also for future reference. A great variety of music as you learn the different moves. Jenna is pleasant, easy to understand, and her moves are defined clearly so it is easy to follow along. The setting is professional studio and shows Jenna utilizing a mirror for better visual aid.Excellent for beginner and enriching for those expanding their bellydance knowledge. Cooldown is included. Also a delightful choreography added as a bonus with Jenna and her students. The choreography is easy to breakdown and learn. This a great learning program!!!
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Value for the Beginner Bellydancer, December 27, 2006
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This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
For the dollar amount this DVD delivers valuable instruction without compromising quality. Full of valuable instruction it clearly covers basic foudation moves of bellydance- from undulations, hipwork, to arm movements, as well as a section on posture and a brief warm-up. You are able to clearly see what she is demonstrating from the front and the back, just as if you were taking a class with an instructor. This is helpful when trying to learn the move yourself.

Jenna also covers basic traveling steps, and shows you how to incorporate the travel steps with the isolations. She has a drill portion of the DVD that allows you to practice and layer the moves in different combinations.

Most professionally produced bellydance instructional DVDs can cost anywhere from $30-$40. I take bellydance classes and have bought countless DVDs for practice. I have paid $40 for a DVD by a reputable dancer and the production quality and clarity of the instruction of Bellydance Basics and Beyond with Jenna was far better.

If you want a good Beginner Bellydance DVD for practice or as an introduction, this is a great one to try for the price.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great content, a must for beginners BUT needs more fun/music!, June 18, 2007
By 
Skylur (Milford, PA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
The reason I bought this DVD was because many other reviewers said it was a very good basic to intermediate instructional video for belly dancing.

As per other reviewers, this DVD delivers. Jenna is very thorough when going over the different types of bellydance movements, and really takes the time to correct easy-to-make mistakes, something absent in many other dance/instructional videos. She also takes the time to go over correct posture which seems to be one of the most essential elements in making bellydancing look beautiful.

I was a student of ballet for 8+ years and this DVD views like a legitimate dance class all by itself. That is what I like most about the DVD.

The only reason why this loses a star is because I GET TOO BORED BEFORE THE VIDEO IS OVER!

There's so much instruction to get through that i have never made it straight through the DVD. I wish there was at least some music or SOMETHING while Jenna is going over the basic moves, but there's nothing.

This product definitely has a lot of value, but I absolutely need another video that's just a little more fun.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent excellent Belly dance tutorial!!, January 25, 2007
By 
This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
This is my first tutorial DVD and I think it's excellent, I've seen other "free" clips online for various moves but Jenna makes it easy!!

I love the studio surroundings with the large mirror, and in most shots Jenna is facing away from us, I find that I can easily become confused the other way around when the instructor is facing me on the TV. Here I feel like I'm practicing right behind her. I've only had the DVD for one day and I'm managed to cover almost all the moves, it just takes practice gals, don't give up, it will come to you with time, I honestly thought I'd never be able to do a shimmy and just today for my second day practicing with Jenna I'm almost there!

This DVD is fun and it's a great workout, also the warmups and arm movements segments are really nice stretches and will make you feel better overall.

I highly recommend the DVD, if you're a beginner like myself and not sure what to choose from all the DVDs out there I say go for this one, also because Jenna has a second choreography DVD "The heartbeat of belly dance" and just like the first it's a really helpful tool to piece together what you've learned and smooth it together to make a beautiful dance.

Both DVDs are wonderful!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great starter!, March 24, 2007
By 
Neddie Ludd "Neddie Ludd" (Central Florida, USA, Earth) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique (DVD)
This DVD gives you a very good basic, one on one instruction. It's just you & the instructor in her studio. She stands in front of a mirrored wall for the most part, and does each step slowly, so you really get a good feel for what she's doing & how it should look from all angles. Her instruction is careful and patient, & I understand exactly what I should be doing. This DVD really focuses on very basic movements, then puts it all together in combinations so you have something to look forward to (so you actually get to belly dance, even as a beginner!). Her clothing is attractive & exposes her belly & waist so you can really see how the muscles work. It's just like having a personal lesson! I'm really motivated to keep practicing and learn more.

Addended May 9, 2007 from original March 24, 2007 review:
Again, this is a **starter** DVD & it's not a work-out. I have moved on but I'm glad I started **here**. Once you have the moves down pretty well, you can move on to more extensive instruction, such as "Sacred Bellydance" by Jehan (GREAT), or more workout-oriented titles. This one will teach you the basic movements so you can practice & start to develop the "muscle memory" that will later allow you to incorporate them into actual dance. By the way, if you're not used to it, these movements will make muscles hurt that you didn't know you had. It's great "core"/abs/lowerback/arms work. If these areas are weak, I'd suggest you practice often to strengthen them. I'm no expert, but from my experience starting this after birthing 3 kids & long after my days of "work-out" glory, it's hard to do these movements gracefully with weak muscles. Muscle strength = muscle control. The grace of any dancer belies the strength that most styles of dance require.
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Belly Dance Basics & Beyond, with Jenna: Belly Dancing Classes for a Solid Foundation - Bellydance how-to, belly dance technique
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