This is a concept that she started to created a long time ago as a necessity and also because of her passion for African Dances. Whether traditional or commercial. Weather from North or South of Africa. Weather for male or females.
This is a fusion between the different elements in Africa Dance culture. This is a dance form that brings together elements from the oriental part of Africa with the rest of Africa and is supposed to be about unification rather than segregation.
In terms of necessity, we can say that they were 2 types of them. One type was the fact that at the time she was already living again in Mozambique, and the lack of possibility to have the kind of same clothes that people were wearing as costumes, the lack of possibility to have the same kind of accessories and jewelry, the lack of possibility to have access to the lecture classes and workshops where was possible to make sharing of music and movements, and the lack of money to buy those things or even travel to get access to those things made her adapt for the reality she was in.
The second type was the fact that she always had some kind of difficulty to absorb certain movements. For her was always about this African vibe that the dances, it doesn’t matter where they are practice, they are free. Free from specific forms, and rules (like the rules apply on ballet), free from posture obligation and mainly are dance forms very related to the spirit of the communities, villages and tribes.
So this 2 points made her somehow want to connect the dots and adapt. Starting on the textiles, only use made in Africa as for example Assyut from Egypt, print textiles from countries like Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Ivory Coast and many other countries, and many other different possibles textiles that exist in Africa. Another adaptation was on the music. Africa, it’s a continent with 55 countries, why not only use music from the continent. They are so many great artists, musicians, instrumentalists, composers and of course singers. So, she decided to only use African music. Last decision was about the jewelry and accessories for the dance. Also, only hand made by locals in Africa. She starts to become more simple in terms of what to use in the body so people could notice more the beauty and message on the fabric, the nuances of the movements (African one´s especially) and do not have so much weight on the body so could be easy and safe for her to jump if need, or even shake, or move the arms in such fast way. African dances are very vibrating, full of joy, energy, love, passion, and of course they are very vigorous, free, high and strong at the same time.
After a while as she started to study the different dance forms and Africa history, and the language between the fabric, the beads, the colors, the symbols, the power of wheeling, the power of the people, the villages, the tribes, the communities, more passion she became with the continent and of course her country. At that point, she decides that it was her duty to inspire more people to know about the culture and history of Africa. So, she decides to create a portfolio of movements that could be used on Bellydancing. Movements from traditional dances in Africa that could be adapt or use as they are but fusion on Bellydance. That´s when the word Afro urges. She didn´t know how she was going to call. Some people said listen could be Afro Tribal Fusion, or others said that could be Afro Tribal Style, but at some point, it seems fairer to be Afro Fusion Bellydance. Because it’s a fusion between Bellydance movements from “Africa Oriental” with the rest of Africa.
From that point on Afro Fusion Bellydance was official born.
For this Style of Dance, it is to first implant the seed of curiosity about African culture in a way that dancers will have to keep doing the research to keep educating themselves about African Dances, whether commercial ones or traditional. Because this is just the beginning of a process that probably will never end. Another mission is to give the tools and principles to the dancers so they can make their own path in this Dance Style with complete respect, honesty, integrity and honour for the culture, history and traditions.
Well, first would be to see more people dancing this Dance Style with total awareness about it. Were it came from, why exist, what are the roots and with that the complete understanding, respect, honesty, integrity and honour. Her aspiration is to elevate African Dances to such a respectful level that anyone who wishes to perform something related to African dances they would have to feel obligated to travel to Africa and study with masters, to feel the energy, go to the villages, speak with elders, understand the essence. Even if you are already an African living in Africa, you feel obligated to travel inside of the continent, to study more. Because in her opinion there is no such thing as “I am from Africa I know all about it”. That is a lie and can be sold very well. So resuming she can say that her vision is to make Africans and not Africans so passion and curious about Africans Dances that more schools for African Dances would be built, more African Dancers Teachers will be formed and the dance will grow to such respectful position that no one would dare to teach if they won’t have a certification to be an African Dancer. International Certification for African Dance is the key is my ultimate vision.
Her main principle is that if you don’t know if you can use it, don´t use. She is talking about fusion movements from African Dances (traditional or commercial) with anything. Wait, study more, make some interviews, try to speak with locals or people that know the dance or movement until you decide if you want to used or not. Even on music, or jewelry, accessory and etc. The Second principle is respect. As Aretha Franklin always said R-E-S-P-E-C-T. You cannot pick something just because you like even it means disrespect someone else´s culture. We have to honour our traditions and history, while we are growing and discovering our path. Especially when you are becoming a teacher. You have to know very well what you are teaching so the students will keep the values. Also when you will be performing, so the people who are watching totally understand the concept and see how respectful, authentic and how you are honouring the traditions and history.