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Belly Dance Time Line
. . . continued, page 5 of 5
1954 Jamila Salimpour (known as the Mother of Belly Dance in America) begins teaching belly dance to women with a 78-phonograph album of Cheftitelli music. Another early dancer and teacher of this time is Jodette in Sacramento (originally born in Jordan).
1950-1970s Eddie the Sheik Kochak begins releasing the famous Strictly Belly music dance series.
1958 Alaska becomes a U.S. state
1959 Castro institutes a communist dictatorship in Cuba.
1959 Reda Dance Troupe is founded in Cairo.
1959 Hawaii becomes a U.S. state.
1961 Morroe Berger publishes a scholarly and sympathetic report on Danse du Ventre in Dance Perspectives, volume #10
1963 Little Egypt (AKA Lorraine Shalhoub of lebanise/Syrian ancestery) appears on the Steve Allen Show. Also produces with Sunny Laster the album "How to Bellydance for Your Husband".
1963 November 22, President Kennedy is shot and killed.
1964 Algeria achieves independence from France and becomes intolerant of prostitution and the customs of the dances of the Ouled Nails.
1966 Catholic Church abolishes the Index of forbidden books issued by Pope Paul IV in 1559.
1966 Suhaila Salimpour is born to Jamila Salimpour. She follows in her mother's footsteps but cultivates her own style. She marries Andre Koury, the son of Antoinette Koury, (a accomplished Middle East dancer in Hollywood). Their daughter, born in 1999, began performing as soon as she could walk, marking 3 generations of the dance.
1968 Oil is discovered on the Arctic Coastal plain.
1968 Birth control pill is invented.
1969 First man on the moon
1968-1969 Ozel Turkabas dances on Johnny Carson Show
1970 Womens liberation movement members, claiming belly dance treats women like sex objects, picket Jamila Salimpours students in Berkeley while other womens libbers burn their bras and sign up for belly dance in droves. A renaissance is underway for the art called danse oriental, danse du ventre, belly dance, Raks el Sharki, and Middle Eastern dance.
1972 Vietnam War is over, though involvement continues until 1976
1972 Bob Zalot in Mountain View, California, founds Habibi Magazine, devoted to the trade and betterment of belly dance. In later years is taken over by Shareen el Safy.
1973-76 Early books are published on belly dance techniques.
The Complete Belly Dancer, by Marta Shield and Julie Mushkin Russo, 1973
Serena Technique of Belly Dancing, 1973
The Art of Belly Dancing, by Dahlena, 1975
The Belly Dancer in You, Ozel Turkabas, 1976
1973 CID Council for International Dance is set up by UNESCO as a non-commercial, non-governmental entity to network dance across the globe.
1974 Biggest belly dance contest ever is held at the Orange County fairgrounds. Contest lasts 3 days and contestants compete for new car. Regis Philban is the MC. Winner Meleah appears on the What's My Line? television show afterward.
1967 Morocco (AKA Carolina Dinicu) writes an extraordinary firsthand account of a Berber birth and dance ritual observed near Casablanca. Twins are delivered into a shallow pit in the ground while woman sympathetically undulate and chant.
1975 Ibrahim Farrah founds the publication Arabesque.
1975 Composer Doug Adams releases an album called Dream Dancer with a new fantasy sound for American belly dancers.
1975 War breaks out in Lebanon
1976 Dalila of Las Vegas arranged one of the first study tours for American dancers to study with the Egyptian great, Tahia Carioca, Soheir Zaki, Bert Baladine, and the young Delilah were among the guests.
Tahia Carioca, second from right, printed in the Cairo Times, 1976
1977 The oil pipeline is completed in Alaska.
1977 MECDA, Middle Eastern Culture and Dance Association, is founded in Southern California. It is dedicated to unity, communication, providing educational resources and continuity of the arts. Sponsor of many events, workshops, a magazine called the "Cymbal" and a members newsletter. 11 Chapters across the U.S.
1979-1981 American hostages are taken in Iran.
1979 Bert Baladine begins teaching belly dance to the wives of American serviceman stationed in Germany and gives rise to a fast growing popular interest in Germany.
1980 Rakkasah, an annual week-long dance festival takes root in California. Produced by Shukriya, it continues to this day for more than 20 years. Eventually it spreads to other seasons and locations, supporting the growth and preservation of the art of belly dance.
1981 VCR s in both BETA and VHS formats are popular items in American hoseholds
1982 April 29 is proclaimed International Dance Day by CID Council for International Dance (established in 1973). It is hoped to bring greater awareness and support to dance arts. In more than half of the 200 countries in the world, dance does not appear in legal texts (for better or for worse!). There are no funds allocated in the state budget to support this art form. There is no such thing as dance education, private or public.
1983 The age of the home video begins. The first belly dance instructional videos released by Atea of Magical Motion, Raja of Rose productions, Delilah of Visionary Belly Dancing Videos, Dalena, Veda Serene. . . and eventually hundreds more to come.
1984 Goddess belly dance evolves as an artistic evolution of belly dance derived from women's studies, belly dance, and Jungian psychology.
1985 Dance to the Great Mother; a belly dance performance by Delilah (Visionary Belly Dancing Productions) in the third trimester of her pregnancy is recorded on videotape. The dance is a testament to the spirit of universal feminine beauty and creativity.
1987 Carolena Nericcio gives birth to "American Tribal" style of belly dance that spreads like wildfire. She develops a unique, spontaneous choreography approach where a lead dancer gives signals to a tribe of dancers. The name of her group is known as "Fat Chance Belly Dance". The costuming is heavy ornamentation of camel tasseled belts, on top of full gypsy skirts and pantaloons. Indian chole style tops are worn and Afghani chain and coins jewelry are adorned on tightly wrapped turbans. Skin is often tattooed or hennaed.
1988 Music: CDs replace LPs
1989 Seatrack releases many popular modern Egyptian recordings for belly dance.
1989 Home computers are beginning to be popular in the American household.
1989 Laurel Victoria Gray instigates a performance piece promoting artist cultural exchange through the Seattle Sister City with Tashkent, Uzbekistan (in the former Soviet Union). She brings dance, theater arts, and fine arts to Tashkents Ilkhom Theater. Directors, actors, singers, playwrights are among the mix of artisans. The dancers include: oriental dancers, Kathy Balducci, Delilah, Helen Noreen, Sharlyn Sawyer, dance historian Selma Jean Cohen, Russian dancer Tavi Kapolov, and Laurel Grays Uzbek dance students. The women of the contingent stage an unprecedented women-only concert which drew a standing-room-only audience. Two months later, the Berlin wall falls, marking the end of separation of the cultures. In 1999, Laurel Gray's delegation reciprocates by bringing a 30-member dance and music ensemble from Tashkent to Seattle for the Good Will Games events.
1989 Gaby Oftring of Germany works with midwives, belly dance instructors and pregnant women to encourage reinstating belly dance as a preparation for childbirth. She releases the program Belly Dancing During Pregnancy.
1990 America goes to War with Iraq in the Gulf War
1991 Belly dance becomes popular in Japan.
1992 Book release; Serpent of the Nile, by Wendy Buenoventura,
1992-to present Delilah begins her Visionary Belly Dance retreats and pursues concentrated studies with dancers of all ages and perspectives, from all over the world, stretching the boundaries of artistic exploration of belly dance. Each retreat features a study of Middle Eastern music, as well as a specific style of belly dance for 10 days. In addition, over the past decade, Delilah has persued a study of how the basic building blocks in the worlds oldest dance connect and are derived and inspired universally by the natural environment and its dynamics.
1995 Book release; Looking for Little Egypt, by Donna Carlton, in oversized paperback. Also, the Middle Eastern Dance Video Source Book begins an annual cataloging of video programs dedicated to the art of belly dance.
1997 First IAMED (International Academy of Middle East Dance) featuring awards and concerts in Hollywood, California. Delilah of Visionary Belly Dancing is voted First Belly Dancer of the Year.
1997 DVDs players hit the market in March and immediately become the fastest selling electronics.
1997 Dolly, the sheep, is born. First large cloned animal using DNA from another adult animal.
1997-1998 The first Middle Eastern music and dance Conference is held at OCC (Orange Coast College in Southern California) sponsored by Angelika Nemith, Sahara Saida, and Shareen el Safy (editor of Habibi magazine). The conference features lectures, papers, workshops, and performances by international performers.
1997-98 Bellydance web sites begin to proliferate on the web as does everything. See learn-to-belly-dance.com/Links.
1999 The "Euro" becomes the common currency of the EEC.
1999 The belly dance world is devastated by the sudden death of Ibrahim Farrah. Mr. Farrah had been hugely influential of the growth of belly dance in America and was the publisher of Arabesque magazine, an internationally recognized magazine devoted to the art of Middle Eastern dance.
1999 Sausan opens Al-Masri Egyptian Restaurant in San Francisco, a dancer-run establishment featuring food, belly dance shows.
2000 One of the first pioneers in video belly dance instruction back in the 1980's is the first to release instructional belly dancing programs that utilizes the new medium of DVD's technology ; Delilah and Visionary Dance Productions. "Absolute Beginning Bellydance with Delilah" (wins a Giza Award for " Most inspirational") and "A Retro Choreography with Fire at the Iao" (2003) (wins an IAMED Award "For best Instructional".
2000 Pop singer Shakira uses belly dance in her performance; belly dance gains a new degree of popularity in pop culture, especially in the Latino population around the globe.
2000 America Election The out come for President of the United States is in limbo for over a month in the race between Al Gore of Tennessee (Democrat) and George W Bush of Texas (Republican). The election vote counts are in question. Gore wins the popular vote but the election is decided by the Supream Courts decision not to allow a recount of votes in suspect districts in Florida. George Bush wins by way of Florida's 25 electoral votes while Al Gore won the popular vote. Any way you look at it by a very narrow margin with much criticism.
2001 September 11th terrorists hijack planes and attack the Trade Center in New York City, and the Pentagon. U.S. takes military action in Afghanistan.
2001 October, Patriot Act is passed by the 107th Congress.
2001 December America attacks Afganistan's ruling Talaban in a search for Osama Bin Laden
2002 Iris Stewart releases a book Sacred Woman, Sacred Dance, also Kajira Djoumahna releases her first Tribal Bible, and earlier Taz Richards releases The Belly Dance Book.
2002 DNA is mapped
2003 March 19th, Iraq War Begins; World Nuclear Proliferation rises.
2003 The Belly Dance Superstars and The Desert Roses is created by record mogul Miles Copeland as a touring act to promote record sales for his new record company ARK21 specializing in Middle Eastern recording artists. Among the dance cast; Ansuya, Jillina, Rachel Brice, Amara, Rania, Sonia, Amara Gamal, Tamalyn Dallal, . . . . . .
August 2003 Egypt bans foreign dancers from dancing in Egypt! One of the worlds most famous and respected Egyptian dancers, Nagwa Fouad pleads with government to reconsider because there is not enough talent in Egypt to fulfill the 5,000 tourist trade jobs. The government stands firm.
2004 April Habibi Magazine changes it's newspaper format to glossy bound and is sold on popular news stands for the first time.
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