Shelina The GracefulFriday, March 12, 2010
Shelina was a wondrous dancer at the Number 5 Orange Street establishment of Powell and Main in the late 70s. The D.J. at the joint had insisted she take ballet and dancing lessons as the D.J. himself was a prominent Vancouver jazz dance choreographer at the time. Shelina danced with grace. She danced like a slippery cat. Her body was lithe, and with no fat. Her curves were just right. She had a soothing voice and the only defect that made her pleasantly human was an ever so slightly prominent nose. I took some pictures of her at Wreck Beach sometime around 1979. I was experimenting with a red sensitive film called Special Order 410. It made skin look like porcelain. These pictures were my early crude examples of nude photography. Shelina was a patient subject, a delight to photograph.
Some years later there was a reunion of the circa late 70s and early 80s dancers at the Number 5 and I was invited. While enjoying the company of these wonderful women and reminiscing of old times when “dancers” danced I looked at Shelina and thought hard. She must have read my mind because she said, “I will dance for you right now if you like.” She climbed up on the stage and this she did. And for the first time and most probably the last time I felt like a real king as she danced just for me with her trademark grace.