For many, male belly dancing is a hard idea to stomach : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread

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For many, male belly dancing is a hard idea to stomach

Beirut: It is nearing 2 am when a cloud of blue smoke rises from the nightclub stage and the music switches abruptly from the usual salsa to the lugubrious melody of an old Arabic song.

Out slithers a tall broad-shouldered man, his eyes rimmed with black powder. He does a little shoulder shimmy and teasingly flicks one hip audience-wards.

"Please welcome," shouts a hidden announcer, "the one and only Mousbah!"

It is belly dancing night in the Amor y Libertad nightclub. And Mousbah Baalbaki, quite possibly the only male belly dancer performing regularly in public in the Arab world, is about to tweak tradition to the delight of his adoring fans and the discomfort of many others.

"Anybody can shake his body and get money," said Baalbaki, 28. "But to me dancing is an art."

What he does is not a drag show or a striptease. It is more like Saturday Night Fever meets The Thousand and One Nights.

"If he wasn't an artist, he would have been arrested long ago," said Michel Elefteriades, the nightclub owner and Baalbaki's promoter.

There is a long tradition of male teachers of belly dancing in Arab countries. (Baalbaki learned his moves by watching dancers in old Egyptian movies.) But men who perform the flirtatious movements, at least in mixed company, are rare.

Not only rare but bogus, said Fifi Abdo, the leading lady of Egyptian belly dancing.

"A man belly dancing?" she exclaimed. "It's impossible for a man to dance real belly dancing. The phrase itself describes the part from the hips to the waist and a man lacks the energy there that a woman has."

Baalbaki's public gyrations seem a step beyond the pale even for Beirut, where European designer boutiques are interspersed among buildings damaged in the 15-year civil war.

"This is a real taboo," Baalbaki said.

"In our culture, people look down even on women who dance professionally, so they look down on me even more. Every weekend I struggle with the audience."

The New York Times


No matter who you are - calamity and sorrow means different things. Some would say a daily forum visit the see Manny stoop to incredible dullest heights is merely self-flagellationary tinfoil drama. Belly dancing in Beirut is preferable. At least the Arabs have a sense of humour these days...The Yanks are loosing theirs...

Regards from OZ - shake baby shake

-- Pieter (, May 05, 2000



I'm beginning to think that one knows they've lived too long when they have a story for almost everything, but I'll relate mine anyway.

After high-school, 3 or 4 of my girlfriends and I took a Hawaiian Tribal Dancing class at the local YMCA. Our instructor was male, and [by design] Hawaiian. The more lascivious of us couldn't help but say, "Can you imagine?" We said, "Imagine WHAT?" "Imagine him in the sack....Have you SEEN how loosely his hips move?"

I'd guess that there's more than one patron in Beirut who would agree with my friend.

-- Anita (, May 05, 2000.

Stop! You folks are killing me. LOL! 8-)

I had a 50-ton housemate (okay, he was 5'10" and 425 lbs or there abouts). The night before our graduation, he got blitzed at a street party and was wandering in his tie-dyed undies with a blue hoola skirt over the top. Talk about stupid looking! The kicker was when he tried to do the hoola and he ended up showing a lot more of himself than any of us wanted to see. I think that I became instantly sober.

-- (, May 05, 2000.

Everyone -

I provided this link the other day. You must have missed it.

Pieter -

Us Yanks still have a sense of humor and I can prove it with our very own male belly dancer!

Anita -

How's this for loose hips? Got some energy going there or what?

kb8 -

I say him! I saw him! Undies and all!

Yank Male Belly Dancer Turn on your sound!

-- Debra (!!!!@!!!!.com), May 05, 2000.


LOL. Do you remember when Scully and Mulder had a cameo on the Simpson's? Homer was asked to perform a test wherein his abdomen rolled and rolled. Scully remarked about how it had a sortof hypnotic effect. I had the same feeling when I viewed your link. LOL.

Our Hawaiian Tribal Dancing teacher was of "normal" weight, BTW.

-- Anita (, May 05, 2000.

Very droll Debra! Very droll indeed...:O)

-- Pieter (, May 05, 2000.


Get me to believe that Arab males would allow men to belly-dance?

You might as well try to convince me that Gloria Steinem would admit that women fart.

-- Chicken Little (, May 06, 2000.

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