What is Bellydance
In a very, very broad and incomplete definition, bellydance is a dance-family with its roots in the MENAT region (Middle East, North Africa, Turkey) that is characterized by torso articulation. The type of dance I do 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?
Email me! I’m happy to point curious folks to resources to learn about this rich, beautiful, complicated, dance form.
Is belly dance hard?
From a movement standpoint, 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. If you’re taking classes with me, 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. Becoming a well-rounded dancer is a life-time pursuit.
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 can be a low impact dance, and many folks have really turned their focus to longevity and variations. Instructors can usually find variations to work with whatever your needs are. One of the perks of Fusion Bellydance is how many different bodies can do it!
I’m worried I’m too old.
You’re not! Fusion dance, at least how I work within it, has longevity built in as a feature, unlike some other dance forms, where retirement can take place as early as one’s mid 20s. Many folks come to different forms of belly dance later in their lives. It’s a great way to keep your body and mind active!
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 classes. If you are someone who does not fall in the cis gender binary, or is otherwise part of the LGBTQ+ community and need help finding an instructor who will respect your identity, please reach out to me.
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 and WHEN are classes?
Virtual! I’m currently taking a break from teaching fusion, but once I return, classes will most likely continue to be virtual.
I am currently teaching Zumba virtually. Check here for dates and times: Sitri’s Zumba Instructor Page
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 your instructor if your clothes are tight-fitting so that they see your movements clearly. Don’t worry if you don’t have a hipscarf!
CAN YOU reccommend a bellydance teacher?
Yes! Email me!
Can I take bellydance with MULTIPLE instructorS at the same time?
Yes, absolutely! Training with different teachers will deepen your knowledge of the dance. Any instructor worth their salt should be happy that you are cross-training.
Where to start
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 in the West to be seen as a non-sexual, family friendly danceform. It is, in its origins, a family-friendly folk and social dance. Fusing it with overtly sexualized danceforms or acts can read as really disrespectful to the origins of the dance and the people who have fought for it’s family-friendly status. 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. I also, personally, would not create or perform an act that blatantly fused the two. 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!