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Instant Belly Dancer: A Crash Course in Bellydance, Vol.1 - Curves

3.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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(Jan 20, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

INSTANT BELLYDANCER is an innovative intensive program, a fast-track how-to source for adding bellydance moves to your club and party dance repertoire, as well as a solid starting point for a systematic study of belly dance.

The INSTANT BELLYDANCER DVDs present dance moves as trajectories following geometric shapes. A consistent system of animated onscreen graphics superimposed on the Neon's moving image effectively interprets movement angles and directions, promoting accelerated learning. Grouping of movements into clear-cut categories enables easy recall of dance patterns when improvising. In addition to basic steps, the DVD features moves and combinations that go far beyond the basics.

The INSTANT BELLYDANCER Curves DVD explores moves based on smooth, curvy geometric patterns: Vertical and horizontal circles, semicircles, and infinity loops; the movements that give bellydance its serpentine, fluid look.

As bellydance sweeps the worlds of pop music and fashion, the INSTANT BELLYDANCER DVDs interpret this art from a modern, trend-aware perspective: Bellydance as a source of sophisticated grace and exotic flair that both honors and transcends its origins, encouraging freedom, creativity and individuality in combining dance moves.


I would highly recommend this DVD, not only for its stellar production quality, but also for its excellent dance instruction. -- Mara al-Nil,

Neon's explanations are detailed and clear, and her on-screen graphics augment her descriptions very effectively. -- SHIRA, Dance Critic, Historian, Instructor

The most outstanding feature of this DVD is the geometric rendering of the moves...An excellent encyclopedia of dance moves. -- Ann "Roxanne" Sabin, "Discover Belly Dance"

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Neon, Ayshe, Zafer Tawil
  • Directors: Neon
  • Format: Color, Digital Sound, NTSC
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: WorldDance New York
  • DVD Release Date: January 20, 2004
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001GD9OW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #269,084 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

This DVD is perfect for its target audience. This is a wonderful video for a non-belly dancer who just wants to add some belly dance flavor to their dance floor moves. The DVD is professionally done and well laid out. I especially liked the diagram overlays. I wish the overlays were used more in other dance instructional videos. The video is almost worth having for those alone.
The only suggestion is that the special features section of the video should be watched first.
Please note *this is NOT a video for belly dancers or student of belly dance *. This video teaches moves differently than Neon teaches in her regular instruction. However, this video was not created for belly dancers; it was created specifically for people who are not interested in investing years to learn the dance. It is created for someone who wants to learn some basics to spice up their social dancing.
Summary: Perfect for people who want to add a belly dance look to dance floor moves..... which is exactly who she is marketing to.
People that are serious about the art of belly dancing should not judge this video harshly because she is not teaching "real" belly dance. She is teaching the lay-person the concepts of belly dance.
Hopefully having fun with her instructional DVD will spark an interest in belly dance that will lead you to taking classes and learning the full version of the dance.
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The instruction on this video is top notch! The instructor, Neon, has chosen a set of bellydance movements that all have a foundation in circular movement. The order in which she teaches them builds one movement upon the last. It is much easier to learn the movements when they all have the same foundation instead of bouncing around from one type of movement to the next. This helps to cut down the learning curve and make your proficiency more `instant.' This also allows Neon to pack many, many more dance moves into her video. You will find a large amount of instruction and value for your money.

The production value is great! Neon is set against a black background which makes it very easy to see her movements. Neon's instruction is very clear. Although English is not Neon's first language, she's of Russian origin, she is extraordinarily articulate and elegant in her speech. She's one of the few instructors who does not require a voice over. One should have no problem understanding her clear and concise instruction.

One of the hallmarks of the two videos in her series (this one and the "Instant Belly Dancer: Hipwork Plus" video) are the geometric overlays used to help explain the movements. The computerized geometric overlays are placed directly on Neon's body during instruction to help the viewer better see the angle and direction of each movement. These same overlays are also used on a figure in the background as a constant reference point. It cannot be stressed how helpful these overlays are in bellydance instruction. These overlays are very useful to explain the difference between movements that may look similar to the beginner but are actually done with different muscles in the body and are foundations for more intricate moves later. What a fantastic idea! Bravo Neon!
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Neon recently sent me a wack of dance DVDs, and the first one I watched was Instant Belly Dancer: A Crash Course in Bellydance, Vol.1 - Curves. I have to admit, I was a bit put off by the title. Instant bellydancer? Ha! I get prospective students who expect to be professional dancers by the end of a six-week course, and that's just not going to happen. I mean, would you expect to be a professional athlete after nine hours of training? I hope not!

In any case, the DVD will not be churning out thousands of professional dancers, but it will be giving plenty of people a much better understanding of core movements than will many other videos. The best thing about the instruction in this particular video is its use of simple computer graphics demarcating circular movements.

I've often used similar shapes to explain movements in my own classes, but with gestures drawn by my hand rather than with overlaid images. This video makes me wish I could have similar special effects for my classes! The graphics make it obvious where the pelvis/head/ribcage ought to be at any given time.

Another good thing about the video is the way Neon explains posture and movement. In many tapes, certain safety elements are glossed over (e.g. the importance of not hyperextending your joints), but Neon makes note of these points which are particularly crucial to novices.

Although I disagree with Neon on certain nuances within the dance, I chalk that up to a difference of style. She is a kooky woman, but in a very charismatic sort of way. I found myself laughing at her earnest facial expressions and turns of phrase, but not in a negative way. She looks like a really fun chick. Heh...
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After taking a bellydance class by Kaeshi (who does the "Bellyqueen: Bellydance Jam" dvd), I thought I'd get this as a supplement for in-between the weekly classes. I'm glad I did. I also got her second dvd Hipwork Plus, which is just as good.

This dvd will hold your hand while you learn each of the authentic bellydance movements. She then shows how to put each of the different moves together and how it all works fluidly and gracefully.

However--this *is* "instant" can easily practice all the different moves w/o the dvd and just do them while watching tv or something. But, as w/most dance forms, your "achievement" comes from practice practice practice. Not from playing a tape or dvd.

Yes, there's the graphics besides Neon to help show what's going on w/each move (as described by the other reviewers here), but even w/o the graphics (which I mostly ignored anyway), Neon is excellent in explicitly describing each move. She's a lovely teacher who is easy to follow--perfect for beginners who've *never* done bellydancing, or those who may have learned *incorrectly* at first!
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