in case you were interested in the opportunities that may have played into the delay of the us tour for the bellydance superstars… here’s a clue.
His present project is intriguing. Copeland will take a handful of Arab performers to New Mexico and film them while they perform for a U.S. audience. Sometimes they’ll be paired with American performers. “My brother [former Police drummer Stewart Copeland] is gonna get me musicians – Carlos Santana hopefully. The lead singer from Incubus is really interested in doing something.”
The camera will follow some through their American adventure. He will start filming sometime between November 2005 and January 2006. As the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is funding the two-hour documentary, it will broadcast on the U.S. public broadcasting network, PBS. Copeland then wants to distribute the film in the Middle East.
and he’s good… grant money for production and pbs money for distribution, and
“For me, since I put all these records out there, I’m sort of blatantly ‘Look, if I can get Arab music on the TV, I’m gonna sell a lot of records. Everybody’s gonna be happy.’ Underneath that there’s this subliminal message: ‘Wait a minute! These people aren’t just all terrorists. This is great stuff!’ When the movie comes the people will go ‘Well you know, Americans aren’t just ‘F**k you, let’s buy Macdonald’s. They like some of our stuff.’
let no one say he doesn’t take notes.
“It’s not an ethnic phenomenon,” he says. “It’s American women’ve adopted this art form as a way to empowerment, self-expression, ‘Be proud of your body whatever size and shape you are.’ Which is interesting because you have this impression of the Middle East as being suppressive of women. In America belly dance is an expression of women’s liberation. In a way.”
and a glimpse into the future
After making a number of small budget feature films, he migrated back to a music business in turmoil. “I tend to think in a broader spectrum now. I’ve got the belly dance show, which means we sell tickets, and we can clone it, in effect. There are five Riverdance troupes. Cirque du Soleil, god knows how many there are. Lord of the Dance, there’s four or five of them.
“So you can create a brand, then clone it. We’ve spun off with a very successful apparel line. We’re gonna be into perfume by the end of the year. Instructional CDs, DVDs, films. Then there’s the potential of advertising and sponsorships.
“These days … what with all the Internet piracy, the minute you create [a CD or DVD] the public has it for free. That’s just scary. We need to have more non-digital things. So I don’t look upon us anymore as a ‘record company.’ I think more as a manager, but because I own the belly dance project – I built it. It’s my idea – I feel more like a proprietor.
by the way, there are five fixed productions in the cirque du soleil tent, plus six touring companies.