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A HUGE thank you to the lovely yoga instructor and belly dancer Krystle Hope! Her class on back bending is AMAZING. A great back bend can take your performance to another level *imo*, but it’s easy to do it wrong – as I’ve learned the hard way haha. Krystle gives perfect instruction to help you increase spine flexibility and core strength to execute the perfect back bend!


First a bit about Krystle:

“Krystle Hope is a belly dancer, certified yoga instructor, and dedicated practitioner committed to promoting empowerment through achieving mind-body-spirit wellness. Passionate about health and wellness, Krystle has received her Life Coach and Holistic Nutrition Specialist certifications through Southwest Institute of Healing Arts in Tempe, Arizona, and offers Holistic Health and Wellness Coaching as a member of the International Association of Health Coaches. Krystle is also a certified Hypnotherapist and utilizes her mind over matter technique to facilitate long-lasting lifestyle changes. Join Krystle on a journey to wellness and create change in your life.”

For more information about Krystle Hope and Serenity Haven, visit

Thanks again Krystle!!! <3

ATTENTION TRI-STATE BELLY DANCERS: It’s time for another of Anahid Sofian‘s amazing ateliers, Atelier Orientale – New Voices!

The legendary Anahid Sofian has put together a roster of amazing dancers to perform at her studio (29 west 15th street, 6th floor) on November 9th from 5 – 7 pm.

This show will shine a light on performers/choreographers that are really pushing the boundaries of Middle Eastern Dance. The performances will range from traditional to contemporary to experimental. Each piece will be an original work, full of depth and spirit.  It’s going to be very inspirational and who doesn’t need some #BELLYDANCESPIRATION???? 😀

Check out the featured performers!

Brenna Crowley/ Zilla Dance Ensemble


Brenna is always full of energy and personality – she’s so much fun to watch!

Calixta Starr

here is a piece that Calixta was a part of 🙂

Kaitlin Hines/ Raqs Uncommon


The Kandake Dance Theatre for Social Change


I’ve gotten to see Nisreen dance a couple times and she’s great!

Tatianna Natalyja

btw Tatianna also reads Tarot cards – so cool!
Uza Mitra

Uza is just the coolest- check out TBB’s interview with her here!

Oh, and remember, Doors open at 4:30 pm and there will be a wine and cheese reception following the show – YUM! 

Updated Atelier Flyer-2





This past weekend was Rakkasah East! I didn’t get to go, but my awesome friend Lili Zayda did and she took some pics for me. Rakkasah is a belly dance festival that features vendors, performances, and workshops. If you missed Rakkasah, mark your calendars now for Spring Caravan in NJ – May 2nd – 4th.

Did anyone get to go to Rakkasah this past weekend? How was it???


So what’s crazy about this TBT  is that last week I posted about Soraya Melik.

While researching Fawzia ,I  read an article from the Ottawa Citizen, which you should all read because it’s really cool. The article is an interview with Fawzia (click here to read) and the author is describing his settings etc. He starts to talk about how a dancer performed as he and Fawzia were talking and then, as Fawzia went to change for her number, the dancer introduced herself, and guess who she was???? Soraya Melik. How awesome is that?

Anyway…. here’s the deal with Fawzia Amir.

Fawzia was born in Cairo, Egypt in 1930.  She began her career dancing for King Farouk of Egypt from 1945-1947. Her father was a film producer and her sister, Amira Amir, an actress. Fawzia came to the US when she was 17 and married a U.S. marine who had been stationed in Egypt.

While in the U.S. she performed in places like Las Vegas, opening for Eartha Kitt and others. Eventually, after her first marriage ended, Fawzia moved to Canada in 1957. She performed in the Latin Quarters and El Morocco in Montreal as headliner alongside dancers such as Ozel Turkbas and Samia Nasser. This led to her opening her own nightclub, The Sahara Club, with silent partner and manager Harry Ship. Fawzia was all about authenticity and she wanted her club to be comfortable for her Arabic patrons. The waitresses all wore harem costumes and those who weren’t Arabic looked as if they were. The club was finished in grey stone like the cellars of Cairo and she always had great authentic musicians like Lebanese oud player George Sawaya.

Fawzia had a couple run ins with the law. In 1960 she was charged with presenting an immoral dance. In 1961 she danced in a Montreal courtroom to prove her point that belly dancing was not inappropriate.The charges were dropped. The same year there was a brawl in her club and she was punched in the face. Needless to say none of that stopped Fawzia – talk about a tough girl.

In 1963 she was convicted on charges of staging an obscene dance at her club. She was fined $200 and ordered to be deported. Luckily the deportation part of the conviction was never carried out. Instead, the mayor at the time implemented an old zoning law that prohibited her club from selling liquor in order to shut her down and driver her out of town.



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