To add to my driving angst, last night as I drove home a dog ran out in front of my car. Stop jumping in front of me, animal kingdom! Luckily I'd already noticed the unleashed dog bouncing around on the side of the road and was prepared to stop. Pretty angry at the owner for letting the dog be off-leash alongside a busy road (Route 3 in Winchester).
But in happier news, I got exactly the music I wanted for Moksa next month: Tamra Henna, clarinet taqsim and drum solo. Tamra Henna and the clarinet taqsim might not flow one into the other all that well, but hey, that's the band's problem, not mine ;-) I actually really like the version of Tamra Henna that they do, their timing is pretty tight and it has more dynamics than one might expect from a predominantly non-Arabic style band. It's one of my favorite pieces of dance music.
Ended up going on another two hour walk after work last night. Still didn't see any owls, but I heard them calling to each other as they began their evening activities. I do think I found where the red-tailed hawks will be nesting this year. I watched one hawk fly up into a nest in a white pine and proceed to do some nest construction behavior; they do tend to visit a few different nests before settling on one to use for the year, but I think by now they should have made a final choice. I'll keep checking it out and hopefully we'll get to see more baby hawks this year. Randomly I also found a pile of entrails on the side of one of our roads. Looked like bunny or woodchuck from the size of it. Fascinating, if a bit awful.
For some reason, LJ won't post entries that I compose on my work desktop, using Chrome or Firefox. Is this just me, or are other people having problems?
I did end up with sun poisoning by the end of my work on Sunday, with big itchy rashes all over my arms and neck. I wore sunscreen all weekend; I didn't get burned on Sunday but I guess whatever it is that triggers the rashes isn't stopped by sunscreen. I'm still bumpy today but it's going down. I need to look for some long sleeve gardening shirts.
We watched John Carter on Friday night. I guess the movie was a box office flop, but it wasn't a bad film. It wasn't a great film, either, but it was a solid piece of mid-summer hot night escapism. The aesthetics were really perfect. The set design and costuming looked like real labors of love of the original source material, because Barsoom and its inhabitants looked exactly as one would have wanted them to. The character of Dejah Thoris was really well done, so much so that it occurred to me as I watched that I wished the story could have been told from her point of view instead of John Carter's.
Saturday we binge-finished The Fall, the police procedural set in Northern Ireland starring Gillian Anderson. As I think I've noted before (if not here, then certainly in FB), it is very difficult to watch in parts, but it is truly a feminist crime drama, something really pretty unique. The Prime Suspect series showed feminist thought in its portrayal of the life of Jane Tennyson, but The Fall extends that line of thinking from observations about Stella Gibson's life to the situation of women in society as a whole, with Stella clearly using her own experiences with the power struggles in the police hierarchy to understand what is going on in the killer's mind. As much as Scully will forever hold an important place in my heart, this is by far the best work Gillian Anderson has done. The rest of the cast is also very strong. I was astonished to discover that the evil, bad, bad, bad murdering man is played by the same actor who played the Huntsman on the tv show Once Upon a Time, in which he was so nobly doomed. It's been renewed for another series, which is great because there is not exactly closure at the end of this one.
I have heard that there is a deer and her fawn hanging out in the Cemetery. It wouldn't be the first time, but it's unusual. I'm sure they are hunkered down somewhere for the day, but it would be sweet to see them on my lunch walk...
Sunday, August 12, 5-8pm: The Shimmy Shack in East Berkeley, MA, with the music of the Mitchell Kaltsunas Ensemble (Arabic style) and featured dancer Chantal, a fabulous professional dancer and entertainer. Several other performers from student to pro will be featured (including me :), there will be open floor dancing and excellent shopping opportunities at Alimah's Closet, importers of belly dance goods from around the world. Refreshments will be available. For more info, see the Ancient Arts Studio website.
Sunday, August 19, 6-9pm: Live@ the Red Fez featuring Jemileh Nour, 1222 Washington Street, Boston MA, with the music of Hagop Garabedian, Dwayne Green, Costas Maniatakos, Ron Sahatjian and Bill Ferguson (music styles from around the Middle East). Jemileh Nour is an exquisite and dynamic performer, and several of her students and colleagues will be performing along with her (including me :). There will be open floor dancing, and other musicians are invited to sit in with the band after the performances. The Red Fez is a full service restaurant featuring Middle Eastern delicacies and a full bar. For more information, see the Facebook Live@ the Red Fez event page.
Both of these events are run by dancers who do this for the love of music and dance, and the desire to share that love with others and build community among dancers, as well as provide opportunities to hear and perform to live music for dancers who might not otherwise be able to do so. Both events are worth supporting for those reasons alone--but the biggest reason, of course, is the wonderful quality of the shows you will see at both events, highlighting the skill and diversity of styles that can be seen within Middle Eastern dance. These are great learning opportunities for students just learning about different styles of traditional music, or for dancers who have come to belly dance from a less traditional route who would like to know more about their dance's roots. Good times are guaranteed!
Raks Spooki VI: A Gothic Belly Dance Event
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Club Oberon, 2 Arrow Street (Harvard Square), Cambridge
Tickets $17, available at http://www.cluboberon.com/
From the jagged and angry to the mournful and elegaic to the silly and sublime, the troupes and soloists of Raks Spooki will explore the many facets of gothic music and culture through the artistry of belly dance. Dancers--and a few live musicians--from across New England and beyond will join together to haunt and thrill you. I am extremely pleased this year to present Raks Spooki at Club Oberon, an elegant and atmospheric cabaret-type venue right on the Red Line in Harvard Square and featuring a full bar*. Proceeds from the event will as always be donated to Women for Women International.
Featured performers include:
Alizah Afet and Mahira
Aria Beth Michaels
Selcouth and Stephen Carpenter
Sybil and Dr. Druesome
and me, your hostess Badriya
There will be no Raks Spooki in 2012, so get your gothic belly dance fix now to tide you through the times to come...
*Please note that each individual under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult over the age of 18. Additionally, performances and music may contain, as they say, strong thematic content.
Flyer behind cut:( flyer )
And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, revelling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us - listen!
All the long echoes, sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Putting the pagan back in the season--happy holidays to all, whatever you may celebrate!
The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books here. How do your reading habits stack up? Bold the ones you've read. Italicize the ones you've partially read. Strikethrough the ones you've never heard of.
( all them books )
Take that, BBC! I'm a bit embarrassed by how many I haven't heard of, but hey, at least you can't say I'm not well versed in the classics...
( it's so predictable I don't really need a cut tag, but just in case )
So all in all, even though this was a very simplistic, heart tugging film with some serious unbelievability issues, in some ways it was a really nice representation of what is best about horse racing--and it was actually a good movie. I recommend it to anyone who likes racing, and to anyone who just wants something that will make them happy for a couple of hours.
Wow, Zenyatta's at 3-5 for tomorrow. My heart starts beating faster every time I pause to think about it.
Me at Raks Spooki V, performing to "Bad Things" (Theme from True Blood), photo taken by Najmat!
We were afraid we weren't getting any trick or treaters this year, but surprisingly they all started showing up after 6pm. Some really adorable costumes have been coming though :-)