Dianna DwyerDianna started studying the beautiful art form of middle eastern dance in 1994 and made her first stage appearance in 1996. She has participated in professional shows in Honolulu, New York City as well as Baltimore. She performs five nights a week at Casablanca restaurant in Old Town Alexandria and also at La Kasbah in Reston. Thursday nights she teaches at Fitness First in Tyson's Corner. One of the highlights in her career was winning the title of the duchess of dance and Peoples Choice winner in the 2003 East Coast belly dance classic competition. In 2006 she was selected to attend Hadias 10 day professional training program in Montreal Canada. In 2007 she traveled to Cairo to further her studies. She has also traveled to her home in New Zealand and taught workshops at the annual middle eastern festival. In August 2007 she was on the cover of the Northern Virginia magazine.
Diana: Hi! My name is Diana, and I am a Middle Eastern belly dance instructor and performer in the Northern Virginia area, and I am here today, with my beautiful partner, my beautiful veil, and you can, I am going to cover. This section is going to be on veils, using your veil to dance with and generally the veil is used when you enter, when you come in and you enter with your veil, and you dance with it, and I treat it as my dance partner, and generally, you want about three and a half yards of fabric, and you can either use, polyshiffon makes a very good veil, and also this one is so, and it might be even a little bit, it might be four yards, but usually, about three and a half yards, you want a little bit on each side. The big things to remember with the veil is you don't want to stand on it while you are dancing, because it's like ice, you go flying on the floor.
So, you always have to be aware and keep your arms up, it's a great, tool, and it adds a lot of effect and drama to your dance. How you hold your veil, you have to remember to hold it, don't grab it, that doesn't look very pretty, but hold it between your thumb and your index finger, and keep your arms up. This is a great way of having a good work-out for your arms, and what you want it to do, is treat it as a partner, and there's no really right or wrong way, but I am just going to teach you few little basic movements. One is just to lunge, and you bring your arm, down and out, down, and out, good, down and out, down and out, and see how I am circling my arm around, great. It always looks so pretty and dramatic. Another one here is a circle, and what I am doing is I am crossing my hands, see how I am crossing. You don't want to look like you are hanging out the washing or something, you just want to make it look nice and light, good, and you always want to practice with your veils because, the different fabrics will act differently. So, I am doing it one way, and then I am doing it the other way, great. Very good, and then we do the lunge again, lovely. And you can walk in, and we can do butterfly, which is up and down, you can walk in to a room, using your veil, lovely, and then we can go down, and down, down, down, in a circle, great, and that way. So, let's start, we are going to do, walk forward, we are going to flip our veil forward in front of us, we are going to walk back, and we are going to flip it up round our neck, great. If it goes on your nose, it doesn't matter, but we'll pull it again, flip it down, walk back, and flip it up, walk forward, flip it down, walk back, and flip it up, good, walk forward, flip it down, walk back and flip it up, great, walk forward, flip it down, and then flip it up, good, and we will do that one more time, we'll walk forward, flip it up, good, and we can flip it down, then we can bring it up, pull it right here, and then looks very dramatic, and very pretty. Then bring it forward, and then bring it up, great, good, and then up, back, forward, one more time, and then up, and you can walk forward again, and then bring it up, we can flip one arm up, and we can turn, great, and we can flip that arm back, and we can flip the other arm up, and turn.
Then flip that it up, flip that one down, and turn, and this very dramatic, very pretty, good. Then you can flip it up, and back, you can flip it behind you, you can bring it around again, you can flip it over, over, over, and then you can bring your hands around like this, so we can bring it around, down. And there's no, there's a lot of variations with it, you can bring it around your head, and dance with it like this, and bring it down, and around. The main thing is to try and belly dance with the veil, not against it. So, a lot of a time, whatever the veil wants to do, sometimes I just follow it as well. I treat it as my dance partner, and as I said, it adds a lot of drama, a lot of effect in your belly dance, and is a very beautiful, beautiful prop. And that concludes the belly dance section on veils.