sunnuntai 15. joulukuuta 2013

Total Belly Dance day

On Saturday the 14th December I had a real belly dance day. In the morning we had the great Christmas Show to children at Leppävaara Sport hall in Espoo. It was my first public performance as a belly dancer. Our training group at Luhtavilla dance studio.  Our dance number was Makina by a Turkish singer Emir. It tells about a woman without feelings and behaving like a machine. However our message for the children was just a dance of the Northern lights.

We had to be ready quite early in the morning so I decided to be practical and dressed to dancing outfit at home, adding only a cardigan and my winter coat for freezing weather. In this case it was rather easy because we had only black leggings and black shirts with scarves on our hips in various color symbolizing  the Northern lights. And consequently it was easy to get ready in dressing room, just brushing my hair and finish the makeup. The latter contained rather strong eye lines and heavy lipstick and blush. Unfortunately I totally forgot the mascara, but it didn’t seem to make any harm.

There were five brave dancers in our group who dared to dance publicly. In the other group there were only two who seemed to be quite advanced as basic group members – or at least very fast learners. They also had awesome dance costumes.

I have planned not to dance in front line so that no one would watch only me and not the whole group. My plan failed because there is a transition in the choreography where the back liners will change to the front line. Fortunately it happens just in the end of the dance so I think I didn’t catch too much attention.  Our performance was taken very positively though it was not a first class take. I noticed much uncleanness in my dance and in the end we lost the walking lines which lead us too close to each other and made my dance very confused for a while. Anyway it was so fun to be there as one of the belly dancer ladies.


One nice thing was there were so many little children performing their dances and it seemed my appearance didn’t wake any confusion in their minds, at least in their behavior. So it seems the kids have no precautions toward people like me – as far as someone is teaching them the opposite.  

I returned home to fix something to eat. Actually I had made a delicious lunch of Baltic herring in a cheese sauce on Friday evening. After that we prepared to go to big belly dance show organized by the Helsinki belly dance studios together. It was the Oriental Bling show in Helsinki East City. The show contained many different styles of the oriental dance and even the cross over styles. I must say I prefer the “clean styles” that have some cultural history behind them. Anyway we saw the nice show and my teacher Marinka dancing among others and my band percussionist Asta playing the dara buk drum.      

                                         At the Oriental Bling show. This was the first time 
                                         Anukatariina had pants and she wore a dress.

There were a tiny market place for oriental dance costumes and accessories so I took an advantage and bought a rather heavy black coin belt, shown in the picture two days later. The belt also reminds me how much I still have to learn: When doing shoulder shimmys the belt should be totally silent but it isn't... 


sunnuntai 1. joulukuuta 2013

The Political November

In November I took part to two political events. The first was TransHelsinki happening, especially the working life seminar organized by our organization The DreamWearClub. 

We had high class guests, including the Finnish Ombudsman for Equality, the president of the Equality Advisory Board of the Finnish Parliament and people from trade unions and national employer organization. The issue was the discrimination at workplaces, especially concerning the right to express one’s inner gender. 

In Finland it is already forbidden to stop an employee to wear clothes that feels best for the gender he/she feels, except it is somehow regulated in a certain dress code. In Sweden even this is forbidden, which was realized last summer: The train personnel was not allowed to wear shorts even though it was too hot for long pants so they decided to wear pants. The Finnish employers say there are certain reasons the customers may not like personnel wearing “wrong clothes” but they seemed to be reluctant  to specify the cases. The legislation that is in preparation is approximately the same that is already applied in Sweden. The employers  try to remove these issues the law which has less stringent sanctions than the equality legislation.

After the seminar we went to snack in a pub. We were lucky to get one, because it was  Pikkujoulu (“Little Christmas”) time and the restaurants were crowded. After that we went to movies  to see some trans shorts. The Movie Theater was the one Kaurismäki brothers once owned and the feeling was still there…

            At the Cinema with Hanna-Maria and Aija Salo, 
                           the head secretary of Seta

 After the movie we still went to “L-world club”  to have fun just among women.

The other political event was the representative assembly of the Finnish LGBTIQ organization Seta. There were both the official part and less official workshops. I chose the group leader and transgender support centre workshops and think the choices were rather good. And while it was a weekend, Saturday evening there were sauna evening, of course. I skipped the sauna but had nice and interesting discussions with numerous different GLBTIQ people.

The busy reperesentative