Melanie TilchDancing into a different world
Melanie Tilch transports people to exciting foreign cultures at her MERHABA dance studio. The native of eastern Bavaria demonstrates in Steinsdorf that dancing is a sophisticated art – but one that other people can learn.
The range of teaching courses is very broad: the major focus is on oriental dancing, but gypsies’ dances from all over the world are part of the repertoire too – as are Bollywood and Balkan folklore dances. Relatively new dance movements like American tribal style, tribal fusion and a combination of salsa, tango, flamenco and a great deal more appeal to people too. Melanie is also an enthusiastic fan of the burlesque style: women moving in a sexy and erotic manner and enjoying their femininity.
“Melanie Tilch’s Centre for International Dance and Movement Training is the largest studio offering these kinds of courses within a broad radius,”
she says. Workshop participants often travel to her centre from Dresden, Leipzig or Erfurt.
“The world of dance is huge and interesting and the cultures behind the dances are so diverse and exciting too. Dancing is a good opportunity to engage with them,”
Melanie Tilch says. She originally came from the Upper Palatinate region in eastern Bavaria and completed her degree as a translator for Spanish and French. Her husband’s architecture firm was the reason why the family moved to Plauen. She began to teach languages and dancing at the adult education centre in Plauen at the end of the 1990s.
“Oriental dance has fascinated me for a long time. This interest made me an absolute outsider in the Vogtland region.”
She had gained an enormous amount of knowledge about this form of expression through her intensive teaching.
“At some stage, I had more than one hundred pupils – and oriental dancing alone is unbelievably varied.”
The pupils learn a great deal when they dance into this new world, including muscle strengthening and exercises so that they are able to move parts of their bodies independently from each other. “We work with many accessories – veils, cymbals or fans. You can express your feelings in an excellent manner because the dances are so varied. Sometimes I start and the movements just pour out of me,” says Melanie Tilch, who not only accepts bookings for teaching and outside workshops, but also for local events like birthdays and company celebrations and even for international shows. She has now gathered a team consisting of various teachers around her.
The architect family Tilch have now created an impressive dancing studio at the site of the former manor in Steinsdorf. As many as 130 guests fit into the main room with its mirror wall during events. People can enjoy the view of the Erzgebirge Mountains through the large windows. The centre is also used for readings, shows and yoga or pilates courses: