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I was pretty good. I didn't buy anything costumey, despite there being a beautiful Mandy baladi dress, that I managed to avoid trying on, although diva_c did, and I enjoyed vicariously through her.

As planned, the only thing I got was music.

I bought Belly Dance: Yalla Bina Yalla, it's one of the old 1960s Daniel der Sahakian productions. It was recorded live, so may not be the best for performing purposes (although I quite like using live recordings for performing, it's nice to bring your own appreciative audience with you when you dance!). I can definitely use it for teaching though, and it's fun to listen to. It is quite cheesey, and we all know how I do love a bit of cheese!

The second CD I bought was a new one, Bellylicious Raks, by Aleya, the American dancer working in Cairo, and much appreciated provider of excellent and inspiring YouTube clips. It's got good music on it, but it's all a bit dominated by the electronic org/keyboard sound. It may take a little while for it to work for me as much as I want it to.

The third CD, was Eman's workshop compilation. They're mostly old recordings by Farid el Atrache, very beautiful and romantic. She's also included a Leila Mourad number, and a more modern number, Ma Aarwak, by Nabil somebody-or-other. It's all lovely danceable music. I'm not sure yet how I can use it, but I'm sure I can, and it's definitely gorgeous to listen to.

As for DVDs, I was very lucky on the Friday (competition night). There was a raffle for Just Because, and I bought a couple of strips of tickets. I was lucky enough to win a prize very early on in the draw (and there were *loads* of prizes on offer). I picked a dvd, of Asmahan in 1994. Having had the good fortune to win a prize on my blue tickets, I offered my yellow tickets to diva_c, who hadn't been able to buy any tickets, because she was busy stage-managing the evening. And blow me down, she won a prize too- hooray! And then my remaining blue tickets won *another* prize! But obviously I wasn't going to claim it, so I said to draw another ticket, so that someone else could benefit.

artemisia_danst and I watched the DVD last night, when we got back to mine, and it's FAB! It's one of the ones where she comes out of an Aladdins Lamp. I am now determined to perform a vintage Asmahan melaya piece. Maybe I can persuade Natalie to let me do *that* for the Vintage Night... I'll need to get onto her soon about that, it's not very far away now!


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