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Saturday, April 12, 2014

Belly Dancing at Karoun Restrurant

On the weekends when I don’t work I am always looking for something new and exciting to do or see. This past weekend a small group of us decided to give Karoun in Newton, MA a try. On Friday and Saturday night’s they have a pre-fixe menu and entertainment. The restaurant is Armenian and Middle Eastern and features a great ethnic menu.

We started off with a Meze platter of various appetizers such as Grapeleaves, Olives, Feta, Hummus, Baba Gannoush, and other similar tasty treats I had never eaten before.

For our entrée we had several options from Lamb Kabobs (which they are famous for) or your choice of beef, chicken or mixed kabobs. There were more options but I don’t recall since I immediately honed in on the Lamb Kabobs.

While we enjoyed our Meze platter and cocktails the lights dimmed and Melina our entertainment for the night was introduced. She swirled onto the floor in a colorful and shiny ensemble. As she hypnotized us with her choreographed routine accompanied by similarly themes music from the 3-piece band behind her we all watched in amazement. She paired her actions with the beat and used tiny symbols on her fingers to accentuate her movements.

Our meals began arriving as she started her first trick which was to balance on three carefully place candle sticks and demonstrate both her control and flexibility. We enjoyed our perfectly cooked and tender dinners as her rhythmic routine continued. With each she slowly disrobed until she was down to shimmering and sequined attire that caught the light and reflected like a mirror ball.

Once down to her barely their outfit she treated us to a visual splendor as her body (particularly her belly) proved she is a master at her trade. How so skinny a lady could cause her stomach to wave like rolling water was impressive. She immediately engaged the audience paying particular attention to an older gentleman who was enjoying one of his many birthdays.

Next she selected a middle aged man who had a trick of his own. When dragged up on stage he lifted his shirt and showed off his skills as a belly dancer which got a big applause and a shocked Melina to offer him a tip for his spirited participation.

Little did I know that I was next and I too had to perform. After the previous guy I looked perhaps a bit pedestrian and well white. My gyrating hips and chest shaking was hardly a money maker and after a good time with her I returned to my seat.

After my participation she brought out a few more props. First it was a large sword which she balanced on her head while belly dancing. Next she up’d the anti by adding a dagger which she placed in her mouth and then carefully balanced the sword from its tip. It was amazing to see how much control she had and I couldn’t help but applaud.

After putting away the sword and dagger she began a trip around the restaurant tour gyrating and flirting as she went earning tip for the many admirers in the audience. She returned her barely there outfit was stuffed with bills as we all cheered as she entertained us more. Next she began inviting more people on to the floor to learn her skill and at one point there was close to ten ladies all getting a lesson on how to move their hips to the music.

After that quick lesson she treated us to one final rhythmic routine that had us all enthralled as she gyrated and shimmied her body all the while using the symbols on her fingers. As she wrapped up her performance she invited everyone to dance.

The audience took over the dance floor ans as mysteriously as she appeared Melina was gone. She truly is an impressive talent and her skilled routine had us all in awe and impressed.

While some danced Baklava and a chocolate cake were served. We enjoyed our desert and more drinks before finally deciding it was time to go. The restaurant had definitely gone up in temperature and it was time for us to make our exit.

I would recommend Karoun not just for the amazing food but for the entertainment like no other. Both left us satisfied and wanting for more. Special thanks to Wende for the suggestion and making all the arrangements for us to have a perfect seat.

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