05 April 2010

help me write my book

Dear readers,
This blog is intended as a sounding board/sketch pad for my book, "FatChanceBellyDance, the making of American Tribal Style Belly Dance."
I'm trying to get used to organizing my thoughts and putting them to the keyboard on a regular (well, sort of regular) basis.
I'm having fun dallying around with topics, but I really need to get more focused.
Here's where you come in, as the potential readers of said book, what would you like to know?
Remember, it's not a how-to about steps and dancing, it's about my crazy life and how I ended up creating ATS.
So, let me know what you are curious about, what topics are of interest to you, whatever comes to mind.
This post can serve as the first outline, we'll all work together. You give me a topic, and I'll write and essay in response.


Ryan Russell said...

Who is the audience? People who dance and know a lot about it already? Or people like me who are interested as a spectator, and don't have a lot of background. Difference being... if you're going for the latter, then a certain amount of background info is appropriate.

Carolena Nericcio said...

Ryan, can you expand on your idea? I don't totally grasp what you are asking for?

Pica Maloria said...

I'd be interested in your take on what ATS has spawned in addition to your history.

Lisa said...

Hi Carolena,

my curious brain wishes to know all about the Puja. Why you included what you did and the significance of each step.

Would also like to know about the transition period between dancing with Masha Archer and getting a group of women together and becoming FCBD. Whether you had an ultimate goal in your mind or whether you had to let it flourish and bloom.

Inara said...

Hello Carolena, I've been dancing tribal fusion for about 4 years now and have just been introduced to real ATS. (ie, yours!) I saw a clip of a video where you mentioned members of the audience being surprised about the tattoos on you and your troupe mates being real, as opposed to the ones we painted on your faces. I would like to know more about your background, about what makes the way you live your life "alternative" and what you find about the women that are drawn to this dance style. How are the women that are attracted to this similar? How are they different from "the norm"? And finally, what has this alternative lifestyle and love of the dance done for you and the women you dance with?

I hope all that makes sense!

marctaro said...

Of course the background about how you became first exposed to tribal influences would be fascinating - but I'd be very interested in hearing what the reaction has been like from the Middle-east. What do they think of the western adaptations, and what's become of the art form, now that you have brought it (close to) the mainstream of our culture...

Shimmygirl2008 said...

Hello Carolena,
Im currently finishing my MA thesis on belly dance and I am always interested to know how dancers feel about the origins of the dance, and in your case what dances let to your creation of ATS. Also what are your feelings on how belly dance, particularly ATS, expresses Orientalism? Do you think that ATS removes itself from othering Middle Eastern culture?

Carolena Nericcio said...

Lynn K. Fletcher commented on your link:

"Ok, I couldn't figure out how to post my comment on your blogger account. So here it is:

Oh wow! You don't even know what you're going to write and I'm already excited to read it.

I think it would be nice to know more about your early life. I liked dance as a child but my family didn't have the funding to put me into dance schools as a little girl.

When I came to belly dance it was to improve my health but I had no dance experience whatsoever.

So what kind of experience did you have? Did you take ballet lessons as a child? Did your family have a background in dance? Were you always exposed to music and dance or was it something you came to on your own after you grew up? Maybe as a teen?

As a reader I would love to know about your early years. The way back to the beginning story.

Hope this helps!!!"

Lilith said...

The roots of Tribal from your point of view - when and where it started, why, how it changed, ... I am really interested in the "genesis" ... you standing there and what you saw looking back , around, forward ...

Lilith said...

The roots of Tribal as we know it now. From your point of view. Where it started, who, how , why ... ? I'm really interested in the "genesis" ... you standinf there and what you see looking back, around you, forward ...

Etoile des Sables said...

Hello Carolena,
That's a wonderful idea and I'll try to help from Paris. :o)

What was the idea at the beggining? Did you want to create a new style or return to the original bellydance?

How ATS has changed since 40 years. Was it only your choice or discussions with the troupe? Who choosed/created the movements and with what criteria?

Had you expected that ATS had exceeded the boundaries? How do feel that so many people dance ATS now all around the world? Is there a 'message' behind ATS, behind some movements?

Alyce said...

I'd like you to speak to the idea of dance as an evolving art form, specifically in the realm of ATS. How has it changed, within FCBD, and how has it stayed the same? What areas do you see emerging evolution? What is the role of tradition in this evolution?

Estelle-Ruby said...

I have enjoyed watching bellydance for many years. On a trip to San Francisco last year I made a bold move and decided I would take a class and boy was I terrible. From then on I vowed not to dare take another bellydance beginners class until I mastered the basics in private. What better way to do that by buying a DVD. Not only do I not have to worry about my shyness but I could practice in private. I discovered Carolenas’ bellydance DVD, Learn to Bellydance. This is a fun DVD and I learned so much about style, movement and being patient. Getting the basic techniques was the most important to learn to really get into it.
Carolena thanks so much for this exciting DVD. It makes very well for practice and I would recommend it to anyone wanting to learn this sexy artform.

Aline Oliveira said...

I would like to know who were the first ladies to join FCBD,how the experience with this first group of people helped to mould the group improvisation that works until today. And the transitions between diferent group formations, how they influenced the hole process?

MizzEinstein said...

I would love to know how you feel when a person, be it man or woman, expresses how amazing this dance is and how it changed their lives...I mean...literally changed their lives and makes the universe a much happier place to exist. How do you feel when a person tells you this through tears. Because...well...that's how I feel about ATS and if it wasn't for you and your beautiful creation, I truly have no clue where I would be at this stage in my life :)

Shadows of the Fire Students said...

I know some of what you have contributed to the belly dance community - especially American Tribal Style (ATS). I would like to know what dance has done for you? When you started, at different times in your life and now. I know that dance brings me joy and acceptance of myself and playfulness and motivation. I'd like to know what it has brought to you in the past, present and what you expect in the future. Because you are psychic...right?!?!

Ginney said...

What is your experiences validating your dance form? I know that you have faced difficulties. What are your feelings about fusion? I mean there seems to be an explosion where everything under the sun is being called belly dance. What are your thoughts about this explosion? Also selecting steps. What is the process? I think you writing a book is a great idea!

Jenn said...

This may be a strange question. But how do you stay motivated and grounded? I know the first and only time I have met you, I was very nervous, I didn't know what to expect and I didn't want to say something wrong or offensive. With a reputation that proceeds you, fans and admirers around the world and this dynasty that you have created,you are truly a celebrity in your own right. How do you manage to stay professional, grounded and motivated?

Mariana Quadros said...

I'm with Lilith on this one...

There is a lot going around about the beginning of tribal, I would love to know how it came to be from your point of view. How much were you influeced by Jamila's tribal style (and if it was really considered as such at the time) and exactly how it led to the creation of ATS.

natt said...

Dear Carolena!

It's great to know you're about to write a book!
I wish I have the oportunity to buy it as I'm far away - uruguay.

Here ATS is not popoular, though bellydance is very known.
I have a little group with two more girls and we try to transmit a little of what you transmit us from dvds, etc.
We are very proud of having known this style and we wish one day we can meet you.

I'd like to read about personal anecdotes about what people around the world had said to you about ATS. and like the other reader: How do feel that so many people dance ATS now all around the world? and also:
what the reaction has been like from the Middle-east.

Big hug from uruguay!

Ryan Russell said...

I don't dance, I've been to a dozen or so performances because my wife dances. I gather she does Egyptian style. I can identify something as roughly "tribal" by movement, or more often, clothing style. Any subtlety beyond that is largely lost on me. I have a tiny bit of the recent history with Jamila Salimpour.

So I don't know dancing, but I have done a little writing.

Would you want the book to appeal to me? If so, I'd need a bunch of history and explanation about the different styles. Or the book could easily not be "for" me, and there's nothing wrong with that.

So who is your audience? Who are you writing it for? Who do you hope would read and enjoy it?

The audience for the book makes a big difference in how you approach it.

JoY said...

wow--- good question. I'd love to hear what you want for the future of ATS and what you don't.
Anecdotal experiences that you share are always lovely, and you have a nice way of writing- anything you share I will enjoy, for sure.
From an ATS teachers stand point, any business insight is always appreciated, but that may be too specialized of topic for a wider base, nor do I think it is best revealed in a book ... yet?

Your inspirations--- love to hear.

Ayche said...

I think it would be cool just to hear your favorite stories from over the years - experiences, things that made you laugh, things that made you think, things that inspired you.

Carolena Nericcio said...

Ryan, thanks for the clarification about "who is the audience." I was thinking about the audience for a show, as we just had a class where I talked about the audience's experience when watching ATS. But I see now you mean who is the "audience for the book." I hope it will be appealing to more than just dancers! Thanks for your comments.
Everyone else, keep those ideas coming!

Flissy said...

Already so many fantastic questions! I so look forward to your posts and your book!

Learning and dancing ATS has been a powerfully transformational experience for me, and that makes curious about how your spiritual beliefs or life philosophies may have shaped the creation and development of ATS. Is there a connection there? Do you feel like there is a deeper meaning or possibility for deeper meaning beyond just dancing with your partners?

Ryan Russell said...

Ah, see? That's how much of a dancer I'm NOT. I didn't even realize the ambiguity I created by using the word "audience". :)

katie said...

Hi Carolena,
Great comments and questions so far. I'm interested about the your personal experience and evolution through the intersection/meeting/clash/cross-pollination of feminism in the Bay Area and ATS. I came of age as a Womens' Studies major in Santa Cruz in the early 80s ... need I say more? I look at some of the things that ATS has brought into my life decades later (makeup, dress-up, showing my body) or the words we use ("Ladies") and I know that this would NOT have fit in with my life then. And yet somehow there is a connection and a common ground. This is not well-phrased but perhaps you catch my drift.

elley said...

I would love to know more about you growing up, your family life (siblings?), school/college experiences, if you were raised a certain religion, when & how you chose Buddhism and how it has affected your life, when you realized your orientation and how you came out. I'd love to know stories of how you met- and the relationships you've formed with- past and present members of FCBD over the years.

Chruszhet's Closet Confessions said...

Hello Carolena,

I'm curious to know why the word, "American" as in American Tribal Style was picked to describe this beautiful style of dance? To me, "American" symbolizes 'modern' or 'new' but the dance style, costume attire, the comraderie of a tribe of sisters dancing together seem very authentic and old world.

Also while in the beginning stages of your creation, do you remember what was going through your mind at the time? Did you have any doubts that this style may not fly with the general public? What was your purpose for creating ATS? Was it mainly created for you and your troupe?

Thanks so much!

M. Harlequin said...

As an ATS dancer in Thailand (still waiting for the day I get to train with you...), I'd love to know your thoughts and comments on international ATS dancers and the workshops that you conduct overseas.

Peace and blessings!

Alison said...

tell us about your early gigs - what,where, who etc. How did you decide on your costuming? Where did you get those pieces as they were probably not as easily available as they are now? Ill keep thinking.
Oh tell us some of the t\experiences you have had while travelling to teach ATS in other countries.

Foodycat said...

Carolena, you could write a book about what you have for breakfast and I will buy it! But I've been reading your blog for a while, and the most fascinating thing to me so far has been your story about the square dance and that unworthy boy. That insight - that ATS means you don't have to depend on a boy asking you to dance - was very interesting to me. I would hope to read more about those threads of inspiration that you have woven together into ATS.

Herbatka said...

So many good questions :-) Everybody is asking about the past and present and I'm also interested in the future - what is your vision of ATS in the future? How you would like it to evolve? What kind of ATS development you would like to see in the future? Do you see any threats for ATS? Should ATS be rather open for new influences or do you see it as "completed work"?

Kylie Andrews said...

Carolena, I would love to know about what you intended to create when you created ATS.

New and familiar spectators are quick to note how a non-dancer is as intrigued by the 'concept' just as a dancer appreciates the existence of both technicality and simplisity of the moves within your ATS format, that continue to evolve! and is woven from all over the globe now into this fabric of ATS.

I am also facinated at the positive impact this danceform has (apart from the obvious fitness aspect)
ie: body image, etc, list goes on.

I think it is fair to say a sports phsycologist would have their work cut out to design a sport that ticks so many boxes yet relies on non-verbal communication!

ATS is so well thought out, your tallent is limitless from where I am sitting! but did you set out for this to eventuate as it has?

And from a developmental perspective, since ATS is reaching more countries, has geography played a significant part in defining how ATS is evolving now?

Ancient Moon said...

I'm curious about your personal creative process for both creating moves and for creating the whole ATS fabulous-ness. When and how did the vision of ATS begin to form? And when/how did you realize, "Wow, I really have something here!"

Like MizzEinstein said, I'd love to hear your response to the fact that this dance has literally changed peoples lives! Perhaps you could share some stories that other dancers have shared with you.

And maybe include stories about how specific moves evolved. I imagine hilarious anecdotes about when you're experimenting with a move and it turns out that it will not fit into the format. (If they don't work, is it hard to let some moves go?)

Your book is so exciting!
Thank you for being willing to share even more of yourself with all of us!

Andrea said...

Hi Carolena, I`m a german Tribal dancer and know already things about it. I believe, that ATS is a great chance for every dance troup because of the improvisation- system. I`m also psychologist and psychotherapist and I book classes in dance therapy, since I dance ATS. What I try to use for my depressive and traumatized patients, are the postures, which occure in different moves, such as little breaks in turns or slow movements. They arouse physically a certain "body-feeling" and go on to self-awareness and self-protection. What I like to know, is if someone like you can describe emotions, whick may occure in different dance positions and the question, if this circumstance has lead to more developement in ATS. sorry for beeing little "psyhcological". More sorry for my english, haven`t got another one at school. Send you my regards and would love to meet you in germay one day..

Carrie said...

How exactly does an introvert succeed as a business owner?
Did your original business plan map out what it has now become or did anything change?
How does one achieve a neutral face?
What are your views on a real definition of 'prostitution' or making money for your family?
Was there anything in your life that had to take a backseat to your career? Or maybe there was no backseat, was everything you wanted up front?
How has your vegan Ayurvedic diet changed your health for the better?
That's all I have off the top of my head.

Smooshy said...

I'd like to hear your theory on why belly dance is so life changing, because we all know it is! I'm trying to work out 'the why' for me personally but I'm even having trouble doing that. I could say it's the physical activity that's affecting me positively but I think it's something more than that, something more spiritual or mental that I can't quite put my finger on.

Over the years I'm sure you've been inundated with comments from women thanking you for creating the dance and stories about what it's done for them so I was just wondering if you had formed any 'why' thoughts in the process.

Jasmine said...

Carolena --

I have a deep personal connection with ATS that is hard to describe, even to myself. I was wondering, how do you envision your connection to ATS? I've heard you mention the "philosophy of American Tribal Style" a few times, and so a major question for me is, what is that philosophy? How would you describe it in your own words?

I also wonder how the cues and transitions system was born. How did it start? Were you participating in its evolution, or did you watch students doing it unconsciously and then run with the idea?

ATS utilizes a very ornate costuming aesthetic that combines the wares of various cultures from around the world. How do you maintain a respectful synthesis of these cultures both in your dance and your dress? Do you ever consider the possibility that you might be objectifying these cultures for the benefit of the dance, and how do you try to avoid doing this?

I love the fact that ATS attracts women who I connect with so well because we all seem to be something like kindred spirits. I'm sure you've experienced this in your troupes as well -- I'd like to hear why you think ATS attracts certain women of a particular mindset and personality. Granted, each woman is different, but there are many similar undercurrents.

Lastly, and most importantly to me, although other people have already asked this -- what do you see for the future of FCBD and ATS? I live in a place where ATS is scarce to the point of non-existence, and you have no idea how sad this makes me. Is it a goal of yours to see ATS spread to these far-flung places? Is there a plan to expand the "ATS Network" as it were, using any other means than your traveling General Skills and Tribal Pura workshops? What would you recommend to women who want to have an ATS community in an area where none yet exists?

Thanks so much...whatever questions you decide to answer, I'll be the first in line to pick up the book. Hopefully, before that time comes, I will have taken a GS and met the author in person. :-)

The Millers said...

I've always wondered how you feel or what you think when you watch other troupes performing ATS. Do you have a critical eye or???
Also, just as a fan, I would love to have photos and personal anecdotes spread though out the book. Maybe some recipes, things like that. :)

la_miller said...

I would love to hear your current thoughts on all the topics discussed in, "Tribal Talk: A Retrospective." Perhaps a renewed or final perspective? There are things you discuss at ATS: General Skills that people would not hear otherwise. For example, your connection with your tattoo and the image on the FCBD home page. Your thoughts on the whole ATS phenomenon. What started as How-tos videos was the catalyst for something so much bigger. Plus, your struggle with the identity of ATS. (We need to hear your thoughts/struggles. You, afterall, are the creator of ATS. I struggle every day using the acronym ATS because it means so many different things to the uneducated. I find myself always having to use "FCBD-ATS" which feels like I'm using the FCBD name in vain.) Another topic is your journey with being diagnosed with MS and becoming vegan. You started something on your website awhile back called, "Carolena's World" or something like that.

ariandalen said...

Hi, Carolena!

Everyone else has given most of the questions I would like to see answered. Obviously, I do have one or I wouldn't be commenting.

Have you had any lean times while teaching? Any times when you didn't have enough students to have a class? If you did, how did you get through those times without thinking about giving up?

Thank you for all you have given the world. I attended Tribal Pura in Bedford, TX back in 2005, but didn't have the courage to talk to you. :)

Britta Bandit said...

Hi Carolena,

I am a History/Anthropology/Dance BIS student. My integrated studies have been on the history of dance anthropology i.e. the importance of dance to human culture. Through my research, I have found no other dance to survive and carry the immense power of invocation as belly dance.

Whether it has come from the Middle East, India, Malaysia, Polynesia, South America, even Eastern Europe, it seems that wherever there are women, there is some form of women's dance.

As a student of history, I have realized, that in trying to piece together the hidden female story, one HAS to go to the dance. Most of our rituals were either not written down or destroyed by male-dominated religious institutions.

It is the history of belly dance that inspires me. I am also intrigued by how belly dance still taps into something very deep and primordial for women. Even if we have lost the context of the original meaning of the dance, there is something...sacred about it. I would love to see this mentioned in your book.

A great research tool I have been using is "Sacred Woman, Sacred Dance," by Iris Stewart. If you do not already own this book, I highly recommend it!

Good Luck! And thanks for being an inspiration ;0)


ProtoClone said...


What keeps you creative and able to create?

Fulvia said...

I'm writing to you from South Africa, Carolena. here, Tribal Fusion and ATS are just starting to take hold (and we have a number of addicts already- myself included!).

Maybe because I am so far from you (and from the home-land of ATS), I want to know everything about it, and about you.
How did you get into it, and why? What and who inspired you? How did you evolve the movements and visual cues? Why did you develop troupe dancing? What spiritual factors have the greatest influence, for you, as a dancer? What was your vision for this dance form, and what is your vision now? Where do you want to be, as a dancer, in the next few years? What is the significance of your every dance move?
yup- I wanna know it all! There's just not enough info out there, for my dancer's soul....

Barbara said...

I would be thrilled to read about the spirituality behind ATS. What is your take on it? I imagine that the women in your group are from all spiritual backgrounds - how does that mix?

And how did you come up with that stunning moving meditation as the beginning of the dance?

Thank you for what you did for me wth ths form of dance.

Ottavina said...

Dance and body image, and your experience. I've found the dance at times to be a boost to my self-esteem, but also a catalyst for bringing some of my own body image and eating disordered struggles to the fore.

Amy said...

You have mentioned before how you started bellydancing. I would love to hear about what it was like being in Masha's troupe, and in SF, a slice of life picture. Also, how you took what you were doing as part of someone else's troupe and how it changed when you started teaching and running your own troupe. I really enjoy hearing about our dance history, since I'm too young (and far away) to know about it first hand.

Also, thoughts on the work of previous FCBD dancers and how they have changed and evolved the current bellydance world.

And also, I'd love it if you delved into the why and how of ATS, the dance (and your personal) philosophy. Everything from angles and using space and presentation to intention, energy and what have you. I think that kind of information can really give people a deeper sense and understand of what is happening in the dance.

Thank you for asking for our input, the project sounds very exciting!

Charlottio said...

I know it already has been said but definitely lots of anecdotes... In Finland last summer you told one or two about your relationship with Mark Bell - I found these to be extremely entertaining and interesting, and so well-told. I am very much looking forward to reading the book!

Satu said...

I would like to know about the spiritual side of the dance and also about the message you want to send out to the world with ATS.

When I dance ATS it's one of those rare times when I truly feel beatiful and empowered, and for that I'm forever grateful to you Carolena. :) Was empowering women one of your "goals" also?

Twisted said...

I would love to know how Black Sheep & Gypsy Caravan came to break away & how you feel about the way ATS has morphed into such an amazing variety of dance styles. I am also interested in the costuming and how it has changed along the way. How did it start, why did it change, etc. How did the sister troupe thing get started? OK, that is all I can think of now.

JoY said...

Holy Crow--- Now we have enough for 4 novels! YUM! And I totally ditto what Carrie said...

xoxo- Joy

leah152 said...

In Kajira Djoumhana's 'Tribal Bible' I read that you were not aware of other styles of bellydance for quite a while after you'd been studying with jamila. How did you feel when you discovered other styles? did it add to the movement vocabulary?

Anonymous said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................

Liz said...

In my anti-racism activism, I often encounter people who consider belly dance inherently appropriative when danced by Westerners, and that tribal style is especially offensive because it picks and chooses and/or lacks authenticity. I have formulated my own answers for those who confront me with this idea (I always mention the wonderful teachers who tell me where each movement comes from as I learn it), but I am sure that you have encountered some of the same naysayers over the years. I am interested in your response to "the authenticity argument" in belly dance generally and especially as it applies to ATS.

Susan said...

I was interested in how you researched any historical aspects that went into ATS, and how much of it was created by you. I remember a class I took in SF years ago through FCBC in which you had an Algerian woman (I don't remember her name) who knew a lot about the history of belly dance in that area. I travelled to Morocco and realized how hard it would be to find historical information there as most women there don't dance or talk about dance or even aknowledge that it exists there. How did you find people that know about the history of dance?

Susan said...

I know that part of the inspiration for ATS was your imagination, thus the American part, but how much of it was inspired by historical research and how did you do that research. How did you find the films, people, art, or other historical information that inspired you? Did you travel? If so, where, and what did you see there? Some of the countries where belly dance comes from, information about dance would be hard to come by because of the influence of Islam.

Monique said...

Hello Carolena,
I'd love to hear stories. Funny stories, sad stories, stories about things that changed the way you interpret the world, and challenged your ideas and ideals. Stories about people who have had an influence on your life and dance, people you have met briefly but left an imprint, encounters with fuzzy, furry friends that have changed you. I'd also love to hear about the other parts of your life, such as being a vegan, and a knitter! What pieces of wisdom have you learned that you would like to pass along?

m said...

re: "it's about my crazy life and how I ended up creating ATS."

There are many facets of ATS just like there are many facets of your own life. It seems you have successfully tied in the loves of your life to this one dance, and that is very inspiring.

At a Pura workshop I was fortunate to talk briefly with you about your creating the signature look and, the icing on the cake, a Folkwear pattern. As a costuming nerd I'd love to hear more about your inspirations for the look, how it enhances the dance, and whether or not you knew from the beginning that it would be flattering to female body types across the board. Also did the look evolve much, aside from the turban becoming optional?

However, when reminded of your goals in the writing of this book, it would be more appropriate to ask what aspects of yourself, your past, your goals, and your work in textile arts lead to the creation of the look, culminating in the Folkwear pattern.

Aside from that, I'd love to hear what your hopes are for the future of ATS.

Carolena Nericcio said...

For m,
I could really structure the whole book around the Folkwear pattern. It really was the thing that tied it all together for me. I think it's the look of folkloric textiles and the display/view of the female body that defines ATS.

m said...

Ah! Fantastic to read that from you. I agree completely re: the textiles, the female body, the posture defining the dance. Without that combination, I myself would not have been so drawn towards bellydance in general at all [a glimpse of ATS being my first experience with wanting to be involved in any way, and it is the only bellydance-related format in which I have ever danced]. I hope it pleases you to know that the same things that drew you to create the whole package continues to draw in like-minded people to share in the final organic product of your work. Cheers!

Queen Bat said...

I would love to hear more about the things that defines ATS besides the vocabulary in steps - like the look/costume, the posture, the music and other things that are not as obvious to the spectator or the beginner just starting to learn the basic steps. Also, it would be interesting to learn about the creation of the Pura/GS/TT formats and your decision to "go on the road" with ATS.

t said...

the words are the ashes
from the fire within
arising again and again
to clarify
the spin
the turn
the phrase
of form
we are the dancer
of the galactic dna
brought forth
for what purpose
on this

KathyTheGreat said...

I've been studying ATS now for about 1 1/2 years. I don't think a how-to, step by step would be a good book. The dvd's already have that information. What I would like is a history lesson. How did ATS start? Who were the pioneers? Where are these pioneers now? Is it possible to elaborate on how the creative process works?
ATS and tribal are such a radical ( imho ) change from egyptian and turkish style bellydance. Just being radical and different isn't enough to keep people interested in the dance. I'd like to read more on what happened in Carolina's life that propelled ATS's creation and how it has evolved via Carolena and all the other tribal people. It's a great story and I sure hope to be reading it soon.

Makeda said...

we´d love to know how was Carolena as a child, and to see pictures of her :)
how was you first approach to dance? how you felt?
and who is Carolena the woman, besides the dancer


Anonymous said...

Hi, Carolena,
I was recently rereading old issues of your newsletter and was reminded of the health difficulties you've faced. I would love to hear more about your relationship with your body and how dancing has related to challenges like MS and eating disorders.
Looking forward to the book!

Cree Norquay said...

Hi Carolena
Knowing all historic details of the evolution and development of ATS is certainly very interesting to me. But I wonder if you could expand into the present moment as well. In particular, I'm curious about what a typical FCBD rehearsal is like? Is there a regimented structure to be followed? Also, how do new moves come about? Is there time set aside on a regular basis to create and develop them, try them and adjust them?

Christy said...

Creative people have processes-- how they seek inspiration, how they practice, how they find balance-- I would love to read a description of your own processes. I'm thinking of the enlightenment I got from Twyla Tharp's book "The Creative Habit," which combined creative exercises with memoire-worthy stories.

Not that I'm suggesting a duplication of her approach, but I think an exposition on how you practice your dedication to your art would be inspirational.

shellybelly said...

From your perspective, who are the students of ATS? Despite the international community that makes them up, what kind of people are they, what is similar about them? What draws them to the dance you created?

Also, what do you hope happens with ATS once you are no longer here? What do you hope doesn't happen.

Lastly, for the person interested in a full understanding of ATS, what do you suggest they read/study (besides your book of course :)

Katharina said...

Dear Carolena,
ATS is often compared to a language. You did it in one of your latest blogs too. I really love this allegory! As I studied Linguistic, first of all I loved the Etymology of words: Where did they come from, how did they develop, what are related words and how did they change by time?
Exciting questions I think. The same curiosity comes up to me dealing with ATS. We have the "Arabic Vocabulary", the "Turkish Variations" and so on.... Do you think you could also give the readers a kind of "ATS etymology-lexikon?"
(Sorry, I'm not a native speaker, but I hope to have expressed my idea understandable)

Best Wishes from Munich / Germany