Caravan of Dreams
It’s all about the journey. The path one takes in life, in creation, in movement, in being. Not the end destination, but to follow one’s calling, one’s dreams, one’s heart and soul. To be present in the moment, to embody the path of one’s vision. And enjoy the ride.
And what a ride the road has been on with this Caravan of dreams, the poetic, exotic, divinely inspired road of dance and sisterhood and creation, co-creation, evolution, and revolution. The road that was named Gypsy Caravan 30 years ago, and hundreds of years ago. Tribal bellydance was born, a dance of the world, a dance for all women of the world, to come together. Yes, that was the idealistic vision back before internet possibilities. A dance of the soul, a dance to connect to each other, a moving meditation. A dance that unites all cultures, all races, all the women. Basic, tribal, circular, and feminine. Spiraling through the body, a dance that feels good on all bodies of all ages. Safe, gorgeous, physically rewarding. A dance to feel alive, to feel connected within oneself, to be in the moment.
A dance that was all the things, inspired by the ancients, by different healing modalities, within different countries, adding assorted layers of a multicultural mish-mash of fabrics and stylings and gracefully laden baubles and beads and tassels. A romantic notion of wandering gypsies, of gathering tribes, circles of expression, the traveling caravans of yesteryear combined with the life of today, the past made modern, reflections of made-up visions of barefoot stomping down dirt roads taking over city streets, with heartbeat rhythms of drums and wailing zurnas and swaying melodies to move the heart.
Intuitively inspired movements became the foundation. Women flocked to be part of this connection of something more powerful than the one, the union of hips and eyes and wrists circling in collective unison, with swishing skirts and lipstick-covered smiles. Glitter and bindis, turbans, and feathers covered the curvaceous bodies. Gypsy Caravan Dance Company was born of all of these things, with the unknown future, but to see the light of years of determination and love and passionate soul connecting and sharing.
Sharing the glory of the dance, the sisterhood, the feel-good moments turned lifestyle of living to the fullest, of shimmying with the dream of the early vision of connecting women of the world. Gypsy Caravan Tribal Bellydance spread across the city, then the country, then the world. And the early dream was coming true. Wandering gypsies, traveling in dreams of caravans, like in the old movies, ready for adventure, for exploration.
And this was not only an exploration of the travels on the road, of the mapping out of different cultures, from India to Africa to Spain, to Morocco, to Turkey, to the United States, and all places, encompassing the little girl dreams of being a dancer, of dancing, not the strict ballerina pointed-toe dances, but the stomping feet and thrusting hips of defiance and womanliness and freedom and individual ideas of beauty, of flying freak flags of tattooed glory, of fitting in when there was no other place to fit in, of finding something unique but collectively gathering, soulmates, heartmates, creativity allowed. All bodies, all ages, all sizes. Of experimentation and flowing bodies, improvising with the collective language. Dances of healing, of celebration.
Those early dreams were coming into fruition, uniting women, and men, with the dance and the music that the Gypsy Caravan musicians made, also from the same cloth, giving other inspired reasons for joining the tribe. That dirt road expanded around the globe, with the amazing tech age allowing those connections, through film and video and photographs and music, and now Zoom!
Others, too, came and learned and became part of the whole, building on their dreams too. Ways of life, creating accouterments of the dance, making music, teaching and spreading the love, with excitement, the thrill of the ghawazee, the romantic notions of the wandering gypsies turned into reality and glory and new paths to be forged. Variations on a theme, yet always connected by the inner landscape of the memories of those early soul-driven dreams.
The caravan has gone viral with beauty and joy, what was once a little girl dream, through the phases of motherhood, sharing the gifts of the dance, raising children around the world. Circling around the globe through the years leading to the leadership of the crone, the quiet acknowledgment of what has become. With pride, heart-opening shares, the crone changes paths, as a continuously prolific creative one does, from years of creation, from the body to the page, and back to the body, from the studio to the stage, from the dirt road of the early wagon wheels, to the to vintage trailer rolling along, to the roaring engines of the soaring planes, from the rustic nomadic dreams to the inspired global connections. The journey continues.
The spokes of those early wheels have spread far and wide in a glorious burst of creation, new creation, continued creation but remembering to keep alive the rites and rituals of the divinely embodied early visions. Newer visions abound. The bodies continue to flow and sway with more far-reaching sisters and brothers, creating joy, touching souls, sharing dreams, living life with the abundance of all this dance has given.
Because of the growth and expansion and evolutions of the times, and with the glorious possibilities ahead, the Global Caravan, with the new phases and the desired evolution of a name change from the Gypsy Caravan, has been born from the soul and the hips of a mother has evolved from those early dreams and travels on, always growing and creating and spreading the connection of life, and continuing on a road well traveled! Latcho Drom. Safe journey to all…