I fell in love with belly dance when a friend dragged me along to a class in college. After shimmying, circling, and twisting for an hour to fun, fascinating music, I was hooked. I love exercising my body and brain to express joy through dance. The variety in belly dance is endless – music, styles, props, costumes … it’s impossible to be bored.
I am part of the grassroots belly dance scene in Northern Ireland. I enjoy performing for local belly dance events, organising informal performance opportunities, and attending local and international workshops when I can.
I try to highlight resources from indigenous Middle Eastern dancers and musicians in my blog pages, to amplify voices from the cultural home of belly dance. Please get in touch if you have more resources to suggest or share. It is difficult to find online or written dance training material from Middle Eastern dancers. There are few who manage to break the Arabic-English language barrier. I’ve listed some who do below.
Zara Abdel (British-Egyptian dancer in Cairo) regularly features workshops and haflas with Egyptian dancers via Zoom: https://www.zaraszouk.com/zara-workshop
Farida Fahmy (Reda folklore troupe founding member) has a selection of written articles in English: http://www.faridafahmy.com/articles.html
Shining Peacekeeper hosts a website with learning materials from Khyria Mazin (traditional ghawazee dancer): https://www.banatmazin.com/
Sahra Kent hosts an archive of research videos of traditional Egyptian dance: https://archive.journeythroughegypt.com/