When most people think of a Belly Dancer, it is usually this type of Belly Dancing that they are picturing. Also known as American Cabaret Belly Dance, this style is based mostly on Turkish Belly Dance, and was popularized in the 1960s and 1970s by dancers taking the best of all the Middle Eastern Belly Dance movements and developing a rich, lively dance often performed with live music. A typical American Cabaret set usually includes at a minimum a lively entrance, a slow number performed with veil, and a drum solo, and is almost always performed with finger cymbals (zills). You will often see the audience favorites such as belly rolls, floor work, and props such as swords or Isis Wings. In a nightclub or restaurant setting, the dancer may move through the audience, interacting with patrons and possibly accepting tips. This is the style of Belly Dance most often found in Greek restaurants in the United States.
Cabaret style Belly Dance costumes were originally made by the dancers themselves as there were no commercial suppliers as there are today. Later, the Turkish style costumes, which feature lots of beads, sequins, and long fringe (see photo above), became more available and were widely used by American belly dancers. In the mid to late 1990s, this ancient art form was noticed by the mainstream thanks to public media, highlighting such exciting personalities as the "Belly Twins" Veena & Neena and pop singer Shakira. Since then, Belly Dance costuming has evolved and expanded, with Cabaret style not only using the popular Turkish costume, but incorporating ideas and pieces from dances around the world. Today's cabaret costumes may include multiple layers, Spanish style ruffle skirts, East Indian jewelry and bindis, African tribal pieces, and more.
The music used for Cabaret Belly Dance can range from old traditional folk music from the Middle East or Mediterranean regions, to modern pop or rock music. However, it is still most common for American Cabaret Belly Dance performances to be based on music made specifically for Belly Dance, whether from the old Middle Eastern classics or current pop pieces from American musicians. The Cabaret style is arguably the most diverse style of Belly Dance in movements, music, and costuming.
Here our some great items that can help you get started with your American Cabaret Belly Dance library and wardrobe:
|Some of the most popular Cabaret style Belly Dancers include:
Ansuya, Sadie, Kaya, Aziza, Delilah, Bozenka, Suhaila, Tamalyn Dallal, Aradia