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What is Bellydance
In a very, very broad definition, bellydance is a dance with its roots in the Middle East that is characterized by torso articulation. The type of dance I do and teach is Fusion Bellydance. Fusion is a form of bellydance that blends a variety of bellydance and non-bellydance dance forms together to make something new.
These definitions are woefully inadequate, but a good starting place.
Where can I learn more?
Please check out my resources page!
Is belly dance hard?
Not necessarily, but also yes. Like with anything else new, there is a little bit of a learning curve. A lot can be done with simple movements, so don’t worry about the super hard stuff. We’ll start with the basics. That being said, I aim to make classes challenging! Trying something hard is the first step to being good at something hard! There will always be something new to learn or try with belly dance.
I want to hire you.
Great! Please use my contact form to get in touch.
Who can dance?
Anyone who wants to!
I have limitations, can I still dance?
Yep! Fusion Bellydance is a low impact dance, which has really turned its focus to longevity and variations. If I don’t have a modification for you right away based on whatever your limitations may be, I will do my utmost to find one. One of the coolest things about Fusion Bellydance is how many different bodies can do it!
I’m worried I’m too old.
You’re not! One of Fusion Bellydance’s perks is that it aims for longevity, unlike some other dance forms, where retirement can take place as early as one’s mid 20s. Many folks come to belly dance later in their lives. It’s a great way to keep your body and mind active!
I’m a minor
Unfortunately, I am unable to teach minors at this time. I wish you all the best, and I’m so happy you’re interested in the dance!
Do you only teach women?
Absolutely not! Everyone is welcome, regardless of where they fall on the gender spectrum. I also do my best to (lovingly) enforce correct pronoun use in my class.
I don’t want to show my belly. 😦
That’s completely fine. If you are performing, we can arrange your costume so your belly doesn’t show. You may find that over time, you become more comfortable with the idea of showing your belly, but I will not force that decision on you. This is your journey.
Where are classes?
Pre COVID-19, they were at Expertease Fitness in NorthEast Minneapolis, but are now in your home, via virtual classes!
When are classes?
Beginner Fusion Bellydance is at Tuesdays and Thursday 5:30PM CST.
Conditioning using Fusion Bellydance is on Fridays at 5:30PM CST.
See ExperTease’s website to keep up to date on the possibility to resume in person classes, or to register for virtual ones!
How much do classes cost?
Virtual classes cost $10 per class, but your first class with ExperTease Fitness is free using code EXFITFREE
What Should I wear to class?
For in-person classes, most folks opt for leggings, a tank top, and a hip scarf (preferaby without coins, please!) Anything you can comfortably move in is fine, but it helps me if your clothes are tight-fitting so I can see your movements clearly. Don’t worry if you don’t have a hipscarf!
What if I have to miss class?
Please refer to ExperTease Fitness’s policies.
Can I observe a class?
No, sorry! Please book a drop in class if you’d like to check it out.
Can I bring my kid with?
No, sorry! ExperTease Fitness is an 18+ environment.
How do I register?
Go to Expertease Fitness, and click “Booking.” The website will walk you through the rest of the process, but feel free to reach out if you have trouble.
Can I take bellydance with you and another instructor at the same time?
Yes, absolutely! Training with different teachers will deepen your knowledge of the dance.
Where to start
What if I’ve already done some belly dance?
Great! If you’ve been dancing for some time, you may want to jump straight into Candelora’s intermediate/mixed-level class. On the other hand, beginner belly covered basic movements, some layering, history, professional etiquette, improv, and more. It’s never bad to revisit the basics!
I want to perform!
Great! Once the studio opens back up, sign up for an 8-week session course, which culminates in a Student showcase on the spacious, wonderful Minnsky Theater stage. The drills class is a great way to polish your skills before taking them on stage.
I do not want to perform!
Great! You and either sign up for the 8-week session and learn the choreography without performing, or come to Drills, to focus on just technique.
Where can I get costuming bits?
I’m in the works of compiling a list of all of my favorite places. If you’re in class, I’ll give you recommendations specific to your needs.
What Can Bellydance do for me?
Can I make money as a belly dancer?
Yes, but for most of us, it’s a side-job that we pursue for love of the dance.
Is belly dance good exercise/can I lose weight?
Yes! Bellydance is a low impact activity. It can do wonders for the joints, and for building up muscles that you may not be used to using.
As far as weight loss goes, some folks have had success with losing weight with bellydance if that is their goal. Please keep in mind that bellydance, and my class in particular, is a body-positive atmosphere, and I will lovingly, but firmly shut down any negative body-talk. As per always, nutrition has a great deal to do with weight loss, and how bellydance effects each body will be different. I’m happy to chat with you after class about some great belly dance workout DVDs that are out there!
The Nitty-Gritty / Sitri’s Opinions
Do I have to have a stage name?
Nope! I do, but it isn’t a requirement. I like to keep different parts of my life separate, which is why I’ve opted to have one.
Do bellydancers strip?
No. Bellydance has fought a long, hard battle to be seen as a non-sexual, family friendly danceform. While some people fuse burlesque and bellydance together, I, personally, prefer to think of those performances as burlesque with bellydance influence, rather than as bellydance with stripping. While I encourage sex-positivity, and do not tolerate slut-shaming, it is important to respect the boundaries that the bellydance community at large has set, and the struggle that past bellydancers have made to give current dancers access to family-friendly stages.
Is belly dance expensive?
Technically, no. You can do bellydance with no money. On the flip side, one can spends LOTS of money on costuming, intensives, and instructionals. The cost is entirely dependent on what the dancer decides they are willing to spend. (Don’t ask me how much my costuming closet has cost, I may cry if I ever actually total it up…)
What do you do as a gogo dancer?
My job as a gogo dancer is to keep the energy going at your event by dancing and encouraging patrons to have fun! Plus, when your patrons want to sit down and relax, gogo dancers provide them with ambient entertainment to watch.
Can I hire you to strip?
What types of music do you dance to?
I’m versatile! My gogoing experience is with heavier and darker music, but I enjoy dancing to music of many types! If you want examples, please visit my Facebook page. I switched to virtual gogoing while my resident club, Ground Zero nightclub, closed due to COVID. You can get a feel for me there from past streams!