Frequently Asked Questions
What made you decide to try belly dancing?
I wanted to get in shape without going to the gym. I ordered videos to try it out at home and it was so much fun that I decided to pursue it in a studio environment. I’ve been hooked ever since. Now I go to the gym anyway to cross train, hah!
What do you love most about belly dancing?
The music! It touches me in such a way that it can many times give me chills or bring me to tears. The only way I can describe this feeling is through the German word, fernweh- a consuming longing to be somewhere you’ve never been. The intricacies of the compositions and haunting melodies are what keeps me listening over and over. Of course with the music comes the expression of what I’m hearing through dance. I want you to hear what I hear!
About the Dance
Where did you get your costumes/music?
I used to make my own costumes way back when. It’s a ton of work though and I gave that up. Costumes and music can be found at conventions, studios and online. Some of my favorite places to purchase these items can be found on the Favorite Links page.
Is it okay to tip a belly dancer?
Tips are an expression of appreciation for a job well done. It’s always a good idea to ask the dancer first. Some dancers will not accept tips tucked into a costume. Many dancers put out tips jars or baskets at their performances instead. I accept tips in the form of money showers,included with payment, tip jar, or tucked into a hip belt, arm band or shoulder strap. Please don’t ever tip in the front of a belly dance top!
Why are your rates so high?
When you hire a professional belly dancer you are hiring a high quality entertainer with the experience to create memories for years to come. Before the performance ever begins, a professional dancer will have spent a significant amount of time and money on music, professional costuming, advertising, props and equipment, continuing education and practice. Dancers do not get vacation or sick days, bonuses, insurance or other benefits. But that’s not what you’re paying for. My rates reflect years of hard work learning and perfecting my art. You are paying for my time, expertise, experience and peace of mind knowing your choice is reliable, professional and polished. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for.
What if you’re already booked on the date that I want for a performance?
I can perform several shows a night with some planning and flexibility. If it looks like I’m already booked on my performance calendar, ask anyway, I may still be able to accommodate. If I am not available, I may be able to find another dancer for your event.
Can anyone learn how to belly dance?
Yes! Belly dancing is for all ages, shapes and sizes, dancing ability or fitness level. You will make new friends, learn about the music and culture of the Middle East, and learn beautiful, graceful movements. Belly dancing improves posture, co-ordination, self confidence and body image. Research has shown that dancing is good for your brain and can even make you smarter!
I want to take a belly dancing class! What should I wear?
No need to run out and buy a costume, comfortable work out clothes are great! While you don’t have to expose your belly, it is helpful (to you and the instructor) so that you can clearly see the movements on your body. Using a hip scarf can help you in this way as well. Choose one without beads or coins, the noise can be distracting.
Where did you get your________?
Bellydance.com– belly dance costumes, music, props and accessories
Dahlal Internationale– belly dance costume, music, props and accessories
Gypsy Caravan– Playing authentic live music including Greek, Turkish, Armenian, Jewish, Jazz, Latin, Arabic, Gypsy, Slavic and World favorites
John the Greek Restaurant -Delicious Greek food
Karavan Studio– Live and online belly dance classes in San Antonio
Mina & Dimi’s Greek House Restaurant– Authentic Greek food, belly dancing on Friday & Saturday
Shira.net– All sorts of really great belly dance info-costuming, lyric translations, tips