News from Jill Parker: Instructional DVDS & Upcoming Travels
by Madame Onça
Jill Parker was recently in Richmond, VA, my new base of operations, filming for an exciting new project. She was gracious enough to have me join her on the filmed panel discussion, and we have made time since then to discuss some details of her videos and her exciting year. Read on, dear reader!
Onça: You've got instructional DVDs coming very soon. Some of us have been waiting for fifteen years to bring some of your magnificent dance mojo to our home studios and living rooms, so that is great news! What can we expect to see, hear and learn from the DVDs?
Jill: I do have instructional DVD's coming very soon and I cannot tell you how excited I am to finally put this material out in the world! My intent in filming these was to give tons of original content and material and loads of drill time for maximum absorption. I think (hope) I achieved that. The drills DVD clocked in at about 3 hours so far.....(editing isn't finished just yet!)
Onça: What events coalesced to make this the right time to release this material?
Jill: For a long, long time, I had a mental block about creating the DVDs regarding music rights. Then as I thought about it more and more I realized that I have all these great friends who are awesome musicians. Finally it occurred to me the music rights issue doesn't need to block me putting this material out! Looking around for people to work with on the project, I couldn't believe the rates I was hearing for filming and editing. I was daunted! Finally, I met David and Aela Lee, and felt that David was just the right person to work with on this project.
My intuition was right, and it came together very nicely!
Onça: I imagine there has been a lot of international enthusiasm for the project! How has the response been so far?
Jill: People seem supportive and excited - and that makes me very happy!
Onça: Can you describe how your art has evolved as you transitioning from a troupe focus in UltraGypsy, FoxGloveSweetHearts, and into the present?
Jill: I am focusing a lot more on my own solo dancing while I travel and tour. It is just more financially viable. There are some very lovely and exciting aspects to working alone and it has its challenges. I find my work is more narrative when I dance with others. Dancing alone lately I have been exploring more and more my connection to belly dance roots.
I love working in group, collaborating with musicians, artists and dancers. I sill do a lot of that and it feeds my soul, and I especially love working with live music: that's where it's really at for me creatively!
Onça: What are some of the bigger events are you doing on the national and international circuits in the next 6 months?
Jill: Well, there's the Tribal Massive: Las Vegas, Brazil and Taiwan. There's also Tribal Fest 12 Sebastopol California.
My absolute Favorite is the Middle Eastern Music and Dance Camp in the Mendocino Woodlands, California.
Onça: You are headed back to my festival, TribOriginal, in North Carolina in the fall. Your tour schedule was already very full when we approached you about teaching, yet your assistant said you were really excited to come back to TribO. You see a lot of events across the world: why is this one special to you?
Jill: I love a belly dance festival where there is a lot of emphasis on live music, family, diversity, healthy culture, learning, joy, healthy food, and friendship. TribO has all of that. It's located in a gorgeous spot and I'm looking forward to seeing old friends, such as yourself!
Onça: Well, we are of course delighted to have you. It's going to another AMAZING festival, with MORE hours with masterful instructors such as yourself and the inimitable North African source, Amel Tafsout. Between your upcoming 2012 adventures, the DVD release, and your travels, we will have a lot to share at TribOriginal that last weekend of September. For folks wanting to see more of what you are doing in the meanwhile, they can visit you online www.jillparkerbellydance.com.