eStudio: Online Classes

Welcome to online belly dance with Delilah and friends.

The Power Belly Show is Delilah’s weekly workout class, video taped in Seattle, Washington. Now you can belly dance weekly from any location on your laptop, desktop or even plug it in to your large screen TV.

You can watch it as many times as you like during the week. Each week will be a new experience. In this way we hope to create a motivational factor to keep you belly dancing, improving your skills, having fun and staying in great shape. See video clips, samples and promotional videos about the Power Belly Show here.

Power Belly Show Update 2010
Power Belly is filming only once a month for the Summer. We have at least 3 episodes on line for your enjoyment!

Pssssst ? New DVD in the making.

Who is The Power Belly Show For?

Belly dancers of all kinds and from all places!
From beginning, intermediate and advanced dancers who are using belly dance to stay in shape and evolve as dancers. All ages, shapes and sizes of women who love belly dance (men can too). Hobbyists, dance troupes, professionals, and even instructors who need more workout hours. It’s something you can do from the privacy of your own location but have the support of your eStudio friends.

We believe in being real, not too pretentious and we know we are a bit corny sometimes. We just like to have fun. We are serious about our devotion to art of belly dance and truly appreciate everyone’s interest and efforts. It’s all in the family.

What are the Technical Requirements to download The Power Belly Show?

At this time the Power Belly Show downloads must be viewed with Windows Media Player and downloaded with Internet Explorer. Downloads will give you unlimited ability to view, rewind, and fast forward for up to one week. You must have an Internet connection for the video to play during this week. If you would like a permanent copy, you may contact Visionary Dance Productions to buy a DVD of a particular episode. Remember though, this is an ongoing weekly class. We are excited to present to an experience of currency. Downloads may not be shared to other computers, hard drives or other back-up media. Please download the episode you wish to watch onto the machine you will actually use the program on.

We here at Visionary Dance are avid Apple fans and users. Unfortunately, for our first foray into online classes, The Power Belly Show will only be available for Windows users. IF YOU ARE AN APPLE USER: The Power Belly Show downloads will NOT work in Apple operating systems. If you are able to dual boot your machine with Windows and run Internet Explorer and Windows Media Player, you may be able to watch The Power Belly Show. However, Visionary Dance is unable to provide any technical support towards this endeavor. In the future, we would like offering The Power Belly Show in a format more Apple friendly. Please email us if you are an Apple user and are waiting for The Power Belly Show to become available to your operating system. We will be sure and let you know if we expand our platform availability!

DVDs of particular episodes, as well as Special Edition DVDs aimed at fundraising to support this project, are available through Visionary Dance Productions. Please contact us directly for availability.

Drop in on the class!

What style of Belly Dance is this?

Delilah’s Power Belly style is a wide mix of moves, information and inspirations. We aim to include a wide birth of styles on the show. In this way we can unite more dancers in support of the variety and creativity that makes up the world of belly dance. Visionary Dance is dedicated to all belly dancers everywhere and in all its guises! We see belly dance as a jewel with many beautiful facets. We support all genres and perspectives from the traditional, folkloric, ethnic styles, American Tribal, nightclub cabaret, concert theatrical, and world fusion performance art! We also recognize the non-performance values of belly dance as fitness, movement therapy, sacred dance and self-discovery.

What Is The Powerbelly Show?

It’s a recording of Delilah’s weekly class in Seattle!
It’s an invitation for belly dancers to come dance with Delilah and her class.
It’s an opportunity to become a member of VDP Studio from any location!
Its goal is to be a weekly motivational tool to keep YOU belly dancing!

It’s a simple reality show. A window from the sky into our actual Power Belly class we hold each week in Seattle. The first part is the Power Belly Dance Workout is hosted by Delilah with live music directed by Erik Brown. An extra featured tutorial segment is tacked onto each weekly episode. These are taught by Delilah or featured guest instructors. VDP Staff: Dahlia Moon, Ruby, Laura Rose, Tayissa, Bella Jovan and future special guests.

The Power Belly Workout is about 50 minutes of constant belly dance with Delilah. Erik Brown accompanies her on drums instruments and sampled music of his Middle Eastern music ensemble, House of Tarab. The workout is popularly done utilizing Delilah’s Power Belly weight belts. They are worn on the hips for extra challenge, but it is not mandatory for participation with this program. The work out is different each week (occasionally may even be taught by a guest dance instructor). It does not break all the movements down because its goal is to provide a continual moving workout.

For comprehensive instructional breakdown of techniques we advise you purchase some of Delilah’s classic series of instructional DVDs we sell in our store. They feature break downs of shimmies, isolations, rhythm and zill patterns, traveling steps, as well as performance demonstrations and much more. Each program is 3 hours in length and also includes various eBooks. So many belly dance techniques are explained on these DVDs makes them a valuable and comprehensive resource for years to come. After all these years of dancing, even Delilah uses them to remind, refresh and review. They are her visual notebooks. We will not be putting them online for download because of the length of each program and the useful indexes that rare and unique feature to Delilah’s Belly Dance Workshop series VOL I, II, III.

Each episode of the Power Belly Show will feature an extra tutorial element of belly dance brought to you by Delilah, members of VDP teaching staff or visiting guest artists. These extra lessons can be on any belly dance style. It might be a breakdown of a dance move or concepts, drum or music lesson, costume or makeup demonstration, health or performance tip, or maybe a philosophical interview…lots of things. We are excited about the possibilities. If you have something you want to share on our show, contact Delilah.

eStudio Classroom Style
The camera is mounted and manned from above. It stays mostly focused on Delilah in the center of the room so you can follow her workout. Mirrors are used optimally. The students in class can be of all different level. Out of respect of personal space, they are in the shadows and periphery and are not emphasized unless we know they don’t mind. We are glad to focus on any dancers that like being on camera! Some classes during the year are lead just for the eStudio audience because of student breaks and holidays.

We have chosen a darker theatrical lighting style for most of the Power Belly Show instead of bright commercial light setting. We feel this holds an emotional dimension and drama of belly dance (must be all those nightclub years). However we take our tutorial segments to different places, angles and atmospheres.

The Production Support
This has to be a very simple production in order for us to bring it you each week. We are not corporate funded or commercially based. We are working artists dedicated to the art of belly dance for many years. We are so independent, it’s not funny. Of course we gotta ask for you for your weekly financial support to be successful. Please buy some of our fun products to help us continue to bring you online classes. We offer a selection of colorful camisoles with the Power Belly logo of the Uterus and Ovaries, Power Belly Weight Belts, Classic Instructional and Performance DVDs, CDs, costumes and accessories and Neighborhood Temple Priestess product line.

Class Dates
We shoot on either Monday or Tuesdays during the year and put it by Friday. We leave it up for student access for 7 days and then replace it with the next week’s episode. This is to give it the most current feel of having you join us for class each week. Very challenging agenda don’t you think? We occasionally will put up a repeat episode due to illness or schedule conflicts, but 6 out of 8 will be current.

VDP STUDIO is at 4128 Fremont Ave N Seattle, WA 98103. Doesn’t look like much from the outside, as we’ve reserved our hard earned dollars for the inside. See photos collage. You should have seen it in the beginning! OMG… we are proud of our dance temple today! Beautiful decor with lots of mirrors, high ceilings, stage lights, dressing room. Located 5 minutes from downtown in the artsy Fremont Neighborhood of Seattle, Washington. We are on a bus line and a famous landmark tavern called The Buckaroo is across the street. Sometimes you will may hear rain, a motorcycle or the boys raising a beer or two on our soundtracks.

How It’s Shot
There are only 4 production staff members on the Power Belly shoot each week. Stage manager, camera woman & editor, musician/sound man and Delilah, The show has 2 audience perspectives; the Seattle students in class each week and YOU the eStudio dancers joining in via electronic medium.

The logo for the Power Belly is our Uterus and Ovaries design. Sportswear available in our store. (see philosophy)

VDP Has Been Around a While
Visionary Dance Productions has been around since 1985 but the exclusive studio location was opened in 2004. It is the home of Visionary Dance Productions shipping and receiving offices, a small retail shop and VDP Studios that host classes, concerts, parties, and now in 2009 the Power Belly Show!

Yearly Schedule
Our schedule goal is to bring you 6-7 new episodes in a 2-month period. We will repeat the “Best Of” past episodes on the other weeks in the year. When on extended tours and our Hawaii Retreats we may leave an episode up for longer than 1 week (we’ll cross that bridge when we get there). The goal is to make our show as current as possible. We shoot on Monday at 6:30 and put that show up by Friday. Optimally each episode is up for 7 days. Dancers can access it any day or hour during those days.

eStudio Interaction
We want to involve the eStudio members by way of encouraging contact and interaction. This can be done through email, phone and having guests appear on the show; maybe even send us your video footage in the future (see future plans). Our job is to keep our show as current as possible so if you have a question we maybe able to answer it on the next episode. Hint hint!

Do I need a weightbelt?

The Power Belly class is popularly participated in with a weightbelt. Adding extra weight evenly distributed around your hips can be a great way to get a harder workout, and gain muscle memory of the moves faster. You do NOT have to use a Power Belly Weightbelt for the entire class or even at all. If you are not already an active dancer, we recommend consulting your doctor before using a weightbelt. Read more about our Power Belly weightbelts and their uses here.

Is this going to step-by-step teach me the basics of belly dance?

No, this is a belly dance workout aimed more at strengthening, movement transition, recognition and endurance. It’s for all levels beyond the brand new beginner. If we started at the beginning each week, it would be boring. For tutorial breakdown of belly dance moves and steps, Delilah has many classic instructional DVDs that we have worked hard over the years to produce, preserve and keep them available. See our store. Many of our programs are 3 hours each with extensive indexes. They are jam packed full belly dance moves, concepts, including finger cymbals, veil dance, belly rolls, rhythm breakdowns, makeup tips, interviews and inspiring performances to enrich your belly dance experience.

What will I see on The Power Belly Show?

  • The Power Belly Workout with weight belts (or not) 45-55 minute workouts with Delilah and friends. Live music directed by Erik Brown.
  • Spot Light; featured point during the work out. This might be a basic dance element, costume tip, energetic, health or performance concept, and philosophy. These tutorials do not necessarily connect or relate to the workout they are on.
  • Shout Outs are plugs about products and events in belly dance world.
  • Drop-bys: we want to invite and encourage dancers from around the globe to drop into the Power Belly Show. We will be glad to introduce you and you can do your own shout out. Maybe even do a short drum solo with Erik Brown. See our current calendar for shooting schedule.
  • Dancer’s Notebook “How To Do Stuff” At the end of each show we feature a lesson on a different aspect of belly dance taught by different instructors of all styles and perspectives as well as levels.

I am a total beginner. Can I still participate?

Depends. A total beginner and beginning level are different. To successfully participate you need the following basics:

  1. A sense of the basic belly dance core body alignment for belly dance.
  2. An overview of how the dance is constructed.

However, you do not have to know how to do everything from the very start to have fun and learn a lot with the Power Belly Show. We feel strongly that Power Belly is for all levels, beginners to professionals because the goal is conditioning and weekly experience that will cumulative builds to make you a super belly dancer. We do distinguish between the total beginner and beginner level.

We recommend that you get with a local teacher to get hands on training to help you establish the two goals of your body’s basic alignment and overview of the dance. Power Belly can always add to your weekly belly dance experience. Write or call and we are glad to help find you a local instructor in your area.

The idea is by repetitive viewing, the nickel will drop. Give it a try for at least 4 weeks before passing judgement on if it’s too advanced for you.

Please see our free download of basic belly dance core body alignment. (need link)

This is to be thought of as home base so you have proper balance requirements to move in any direction from the your center. You can get into other alignments but know this strong stance and always be able to return to it. This alignment is optimal for body isolations because we create pockets of slack in the body so we can move parts while keeping other parts still.

  • Imagine a pole through the top of your head, passing through the middle of your head, upper body, waistline, lower body, between legs, feet and into the ground.
  • Your weight is distributed evenly on both feet.
  • Shoulders are down and out.
  • Rib cage is open and level. Imagine an umbrella was opened in your chest.
  • Your tummy muscles should be engaged and you will be utilizing your butt.
  • Line up the front of your rib cage so it is positioned directly over your front hipbones.
  • Drop straight down by the core line using your knees and sitting ability.

Exercise: Stand in a mirror. Practice moving from heels up, to heels down with out changing your height. This is how you know you have slack built into your alignment.

One perspective to learning belly dance is to see the process as distinctive stages:

1st stage. You learn to create isolated body movements by way of internally focusing on drawing shapes and patterns with different body parts. These patterns are drawn on different planes. For example, drawing a full hip circle on a parallel plane to the floor or a figure eight (on its side) is drawn on the parallel plane to the walls in front and back of you. Left hip draws left loop and the right hip draws right loop. A circle can be drawn like a wheel is drawn parallel plane to the walls to each side of you from the center of your ribs or hips.

2nd stage. You strive to add dynamic textures like lifts, drops, snaps, shimmies, swivels, vibrations, quivers, locks, pops, bounces on top of the patterns you developed. You do this in expressive response to the music. You build a repertoire of your favorite steps and moves and this becomes your box of tools to create your dance. Recognition comes with repetition and watching carefully.

3rd stage. Next comes learning to combine and layer different patterns and confidently dance to music. It’s really fun.

Belly dance may seem challenging at first because you most likely have not been asked to move in these patterns ever before in your life. Have patience with yourself. What hooks people on belly dance is that these challenges are quickly met and we feel such a sense of personal accomplishment for having learned to have independent power and control over our bodies. Belly Dance teaches us so much about our bodies. This is exciting and makes us want more!

Other parts of the dance include playing finger cymbals; dancing with silk veils, drum solos, floor work, specialty props and adding folkloric repertoire.

This program is brought to you buy the artists themselves without any corporate funding. Thank you for your support and enthusiasm towards this belly dance workout with VDP Studios from your laptop in your home, office or on the road.

Who creates The Power Belly Show?

Each week our faithful staff brings our Power Belly Show to you.
Erik Brown on sound and music
Laura Rose Flynn on video production, also instructor & performer
Beven Flynn Studio Stage Manager, Student
Your Host and Dance leader, Delilah!

Delilah’s style is eclectic. Schooled in the heyday of belly dance inception in America, she worked with all nationalities; Egyptian, Iraqi, Lebanese, Greek, Palestinian, Turkish, Armenian, Israeli, Moroccan, Uzbek… During her lifetime she has been a major player in contemporary belly dance evolution as she fused her deep love for the dance through her American bones. She is known for her famed series of instructional videos that continue to speak directly to the spirit of belly dance in the hearts of women. Thus she has influenced many of the top dancers of today. She has also influenced thousands at her annual study her retreats where she teaches as well as hosts an array of genres and styles of belly dance as art. Dancers in Seattle have been enjoying Delilah’s live Power Belly Dance Workout twice a week for the past 6 years and this gave way to the project of putting the active work out online for women who love belly dance. Dancers do Power Belly with or without their Power Belly Weight belts on. They dance, sweat, get their heart rates up, loose pounds, enjoy Erik’s live music, connect with each other, rejuvenate and have fun all at the same time.

Sincerely devoted to the spirit of art, creativity, health and the love of belly dance, Visionary Dance has been an avid supporter of fellow dance artists and musicians in the evolution of the rich and multi-faceted culture of belly dance. Delilah sponsors annual retreats in Hawaii rallying around different styles, perspectives and artists.

Featured instructors on The Power Belly Show:

  • Dahlia Moon
  • Tayissa Blue
  • Ruby
  • Bella Jovan
  • Christine Hamby
  • Laura Rose
  • Guests: House of Tarab, A Middle Eastern Band (6 members; Sallah Ali, Stephen Elaimy, David McGrath, Jane Hall, Erik Brown, Andy Zadrozny), Freyah, Amy Sigil and Unmata, Neighborhood Temple Priestess group