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This article requires authentication or verification by an expert. Please assist in recruiting an expert or improve this article yourself. See the talk page for details. (January 2010) This article may be written from a fan's point of view, rather than a neutral point of view. Please clean it up to conform to a higher standard of quality, and to make it neutral in tone. (January 2010) Tempest, Gothic belly dance performer/instructor, USA Gothic Bellydance is a recent and rapidly growing dance art movement, currently becoming very popular in both the amateur and professional dance communities of the United States and Europe. [1] Contents 1 History 2 The 21st century 3 See also 4 References History Originating in the Middle East, South Asia (India), and North Africa,[citation needed] the art of belly dance arrived in the West with the trend of Orientalism.[dubious – discuss] Exotic to the Western eye and mysterious in its roots, belly dance has always attracted interpretive dance artists who have woven it into many trends of Western culture. The new millennium brought a revival of popular interest in Goth subculture and Gothic art motifs in dance, and a new interpretive style, Gothic belly dance, was propelled to prominence. Dance publications started exploring this new phenomenon,[1] thousands of Gothic belly dance enthusiasts have subscribed to online discussion groups dedicated to this genre,[citation needed] leading artists started traveling across the US and overseas with workshops and tours, DVDs[2] featuring Gothic belly dance performances,[3] and instructional materials have appeared on retail shelves. Gothic belly dance was born in the 1990s in US urban centers as a blend of Goth and world music, the movement vocabulary of belly dance and other dance forms, and Gothic fashion and aesthetics. Performing at Gothic-theme events and Goth clubs, dancers started to explore Goth music and adopt costuming styles incorporating Victorian, vampire, dark cabaret, silent-movie vamp, industrial, and other visual themes related to Goth subculture. Although the concept of 'Gothic belly dance' may have originated in the US it is not just a US phenomenon. The UK has had Gothic belly dancers for many years as in Goths who are also belly dance teachers and performers and have been 'dancing darkly' at haflas and other events for a long time.[citation needed] These dancers didn't have as much of an outlet for their styles as they do now and perhaps not even a label for what they did. Partly thanks to links through the web and the Gothla festival, Gothic belly dance is recognised in many countries.[citation needed] The 21st century As a modern and versatile world dance genre, belly dance has yielded an array of interpretive dance sub-styles compatible with modern music and imagery. Dancers performing Gothic belly dance usually retain their preferred technique — mostly modern cabaret and tribal fusion belly dance — but also bring new emphasis to the dramatic and theatrical features of their dance to match the intensity and vibe of Goth music. Gothic belly dance discussion groups hosted by, MySpace, and other online community sites connected dancers from around the world, making possible workshops and tours, and helping this new genre to solidify and gain recognition within the larger dance community. In addition, the rapidly expanding global access to free online video resources at YouTube and similar sites has allowed artists to unify and combine their efforts in promoting and developing their genre — unconstrained by national borders, scarcity of funds, or lack of support from their local communities. In 2007 Southern California-based dancers and instructors, Tempest and Sashi, launched the annual Gothla, described by the L.A. Weekly as "a 'gothic hafla' that combines weekend-long workshops with a Saturday festival featuring twelve hours of performances and merchant booths where dancers can find costumes and accessories."[4] Gothla US 2009 took place March 6–8 at Cal Poly Pomona. Gothla UK was also first held in 2007 in Leicester, England and is now a highly successful festival covering three days, usually in July. International teachers are joined by UK teachers such as Her Royal Hellness Lucretia (Christine Emery), Fulya (Lynn Chapman), and Akasha (Heike Humphreys) to offer a range of themes not often covered by general belly dance events from Steampunk and 1920s to Zombie and Vampire Belly Dance. See also American Tribal Style Belly Dance Improv Tribal Style Belly Dance Tribal Fusion (dance form) References ^ [ Dancing Darkly: Laura Tempest Schmidt, "The Phenomenon of Gothic Belly Dance"] ^ Gothic Bellydance (2006) ^ [ "Shades of Goth Fall Upon Belly Dance; Gothic Bellydance: The Darker Side of Fusion produced by WorldDance New York" DVD review by Amulya] ^ Ohanesian, Liz. "Dancing 'the Dark Side' at Gothla US 2009," L.A. Weekly. Retrieved 2009-03-10. Interview: Gothic bellydancer Jeniviva (NYC) The Hip Circle magazine Dancing Darkly: The Phenomenon of Gothic Belly Dance - The Gilded Serpent magazine Interview: Gothic bellydancer Isis (NYC) The Hip Circle magazine Linux Journal - Included in types: Bellydance & Software Morbid Outlook Magazine Review: Raks Gothique with Tempest Ohanesian, Liz. "Dancing 'the Dark Side' at Gothla US 2009," L.A. Weekly Retrieved on 2009-03-10.