Finger Cymbal Workshop with Karim Nagi

April 30, 2012 , , Tina Kapp
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I got to attend Karim Nagi’s Sagat (Zills if you’re Turkish) Dance workshop. I’ve wanted to improve my sagat playing as it’s such an important part of Belly Dance. It’s a true instrument and being able to play while dancing takes a lot of skill and is spectacular to watch.

We learned the ‘Dum’ and ‘Tak’ sounds as well as the (new for me) ‘Tik’ and ‘Tok’ which was great fun I also learned how to drum roll for shimmies which was easier than I thought as you make the sound by holding your Sagats down with one edge lightly touching and making fast circles with your wrist.

Then we listened to the music we’d be dancing to and Karim did the most amazing air guitar demonstrating every featured instrument in the song and which parts are played by the orchestra which is the only part you should be playing on and never during the taksim (which is an improvisation of a solo instrument such as a violin, guitar, keyboard, accordion etc..) as the composer features it for a reason and you playing finger cymbals on top of it will detract from the music.

We then took a break from the sagats and learned dance steps to the music. It was the first time I learned a Belly Dance routine from a guy before and he was a fantastic teacher, had great style and flair and gave me lots of new ideas for improv moves I hadn’t explored before, which is exactly what you want to take away from a choreography. Then to make it even more complicated we added in all the new sagat rhythms we learned and coordinated them with the movements.

On top of a great day I got a shiny new set of sagats which Senta brought me back from Egypt. Yay! I already sewed the elastic on and got the bright idea from Astrid to sew a bead on either the middle finger or thumb cymbals so you can quickly see which is which when you have to put them on mid show. Smarty pants.

Here’s a clip of a Sagat solo which is something I want to master one day. 🙂

Or create an amazing group choreo like this:

Tomorrow…Bozenka workshops! Yippee.

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