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Article: What's New in the Israeli Forums November 2010?

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What is New this month? Summary of the November Forums
Written by Givaa Tlula; Translated by Maxine Cohen

Preparations for Hannukah are underway; the Festival of Lights is celebrated this week; it’s a festival full of light, festive dance sessions, as well as – donuts! Yum! The Irgun HaRokdim site has gathered the information about all the special dance sessions and listed them in one organized table. Our thanks go to Florence and Dror Shalom. Instructors wishing to add dance sessions to the table are invited to do this via the website. Link , Link .

The Irgun HaRokdim site has been translated into English in order to keep in contact with overseas dancers. The main points of the articles on the site are also being translated for them. Translations include summaries of the folkdance forums. The reactions of the overseas dancers have been warm and encouraging. Link .

In the same vein, foreign dancers have complained about the weak English language ability of Israeli instructors at dance camps abroad. Several foreign dancers abroad participate in folk dance camps which costs them a lot of money. Who is responsible for the instructor using a clear and professional language? Dancers in Israel have suggestions for improving communication, such as: adding a “preparation for dancing abroad” class to the "Folk Dancing Instructors' Course," and equip Israeli instructors with a dictionary of useful terms to help them teach in a different language. The instructors going to the camp should be chosen on the basis of their ability and not on the basis of their acquaintances. Link .

Translation work takes a lot of time, therefore we are asking dancers who can assist in translation to contact us via the website. Thanks!

Channel 2 broadcasted an item about folk dancing! The program was recorded at the Tel Aviv University and was hosted by Gadi Bitton. Once again we ask ourselves, “Is it possible to choreograph a dance to every song?” Gadi once again proved that, “Yes, it is.” But is it really necessary to choreograph a dance to every song? Wouldn't it have been simpler to answer, “No?!” Link . The link to the item itself: Link .

An interesting and multi-faceted question was posed on Tapuz. Can anybody be a dancer? Or, just as not everyone can be a scientist, not everyone can be a dancer? The question is complex. Everyone answers as he feels, according to his own experience. The thread began with questions such as, “Is it possible and necessary to develop a dance technique?” Subsequently, the thread developed into a discussion about the repertoire of the special dance sessions and marathons. Should there be a place in the marathon that would not be only for "dance doctors," but also for the general public? On the other hand, should special dances also be integrated into the dance session? Link .

On the subject of the recommended repertoire in marathons, the question was asked, “Should marathons contain dances which are danced at ordinary dance sessions?” Should there be dances which all the dancers know or special dances which are neglected at ordinary dance sessions, “dances for wolves?*” Every decision is legitimate; however, notice of the nature of the dance session should be given in advance. This issue was discussed in various threads. Such as: Link .

And there was more on the same subject. One of the dancers stated that if you do not know the dance, you can improvise, known as free style dancing. Is this really possible in folk dancing? The opinion of the majority of the dancers was that this is a delusion and an undesirable idea. Link .

The Horatenu forum also addressed the issue and there they distinguished between couple dances, where it is impossible to improvise, and circle dances, where it is possible to round the edges. Link .

We began this November Review with a discussion of folk dancing abroad, and we shall conclude it with my recommendation to read an article about folk dancers in Australia, titled "Folk Dancing in Exile," by Stephanie Glickman. It is about dance sessions where some of the dancers are not Jewish and even some of the instructors are not Jewish. The article emphasizes the nature of the dance session abroad: a common language for everybody, unity of the dance, etc. Link .

*At the very end of the session when the Markid plays old and unique dances.