What do you get when you combine a serious passion for art with many years of teaching and learning experience? Well, a wonderful teacher and advocate of the art, of course.
When you watch Anubis Nirvana perform, you would want to get up and dance alongside her, such is the grace and elegance on display. This Belly Dance exponent has performance in her blood. She has worked tirelessly all her life to hold up the culture of passion for this art form that has been passed on to her by her family.
Born and brought up in Venezuela, Anubis started her journey by indulging in Ballet. But her lively Venezuelan spirit always longed for something fierier than the softness of that dance form. When she moved to the United States of America and discovered Belly Dance, she finally came face to face with her calling in life. Today, 21 years later, having learnt from many legends of Belly Dance and having taught the dance form to others, she remains hungry to explore further. Her mission is to spread the beauty of her beloved art form throughout her life.
Anubis has not only been tutored by big names in Belly Dance but has also imbibed the form’s many local flavours belonging to different towns and cities that claim its origin and growth. She has lived in fifteen countries, and has been exposed to all the unique contributions they have made to Belly Dance. This combined wisdom allows her to dabble not only in Belly Dance but many folk dance forms like Saidi and Dabke from Egypt and other regions as well.
About the evolution of Belly Dance, she has much to tell. It is disheartening for her to see people today learning dance forms that can only be mastered through dedicated practice and perseverance off classes on the Internet. Many of these dancers then foray into teaching dance. “There is no shortcut to respectfully learning a form of art,” she says. Her lament is justified given the fact that she is aware of Belly Dance’s power to transform
lives and change perspectives, and how its current watering down diminishes that power.
In this interview with RJ Anagha, she tells us about the lessons she has learnt from living in many different countries. It has often been difficult for her to adjust to foreign lands and the people inhabiting them, but she succeeded in accepting their beliefs and customs wholeheartedly and living alongside them. Travel has taught her compassion and acceptance like nothing could have.
Listen in to hear her talk about her colourful life of Belly Dance…
Written by Anagha Bharadwaj.