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Bellydancing workshop pushes limits of creativity… and fun

by Kenny Lindsay

On July 8 the Space on Tate Street held a free bellydancing workshop with Faun Finley, one of many events that were part of the ‘“FireFlies: The Art of the Possible!’” six-day festival held throughout Greensboro last week. The festival was geared towards artists and anyone interested in pushing the limits of creativity as well as sharing new, unconventional ways of expressing their work and ideas.

Faun Finley, who has a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and 20 years experience in the art of expression and dance, enthusiastically shared some of the basic movements and techniques of belly dancing with the people who attended the workshop on Saturday. She used a variety of music ranging from the traditional Middle Eastern style, to the not-so-traditional Rolling Stones, to .38 .45 Theory Corporation, one of her favorites, that is a more modern drum-and-bass style.

‘“I like to keep a few traditional-style songs in because of the historical and cultural value,’” she explained. She used one to show the snake movement and included a traditional Arabic rhythm called ciftelli that was slow, mesmerizing and complementary to the alluring charm of the dance. Finley also went into detail about how belly dancers move their hips in such a seductive way. By contracting and relaxing certain muscles in the abdomen and backside, the end result ‘— if performed correctly ‘— will be the trademark movement that belly dancers are known for.

After the session Faun described not only the importance of expressive movement, but more importantly the mental and spiritual benefits that the practice has to offer.

‘“The ultimate attraction to the expression of movement is that the mind is set free; you forget about the stresses of everyday life, such as paying the bills, and it is something that everyone can benefit from. It’s also about the joy of expression.’” And joy is definitely an emotion Finley expressed during the workshop. She was very interactive with the group with a bundle of smiles and laughs that created an extremely relaxed and fun atmosphere.

Faun is also a certified yoga instructor who owns SoulFlower Studios in Greensboro and holds an array of workshops both in and outside of the studio. Her students range from ages 7 to 60 and include men, women and people from all walks of life. Her goal is to share the importance of dance, expressive arts, yoga, her deep passion for music and to encourage health, inner focus, physical movement and, most importantly, fun.

For more information about Faun Finley and how to attend visit soulflowerstudios.com

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