Sahara Dance

Workshops

We offer special workshops and master classes in addition to our regular instructional and performance classes. Workshops are selected to help students and experienced dancers alike broaden their dance training.

Upcoming Workshops

Secrets of Stage Makeup

Shahrzad You have your sweet dance moves, choreography, costume, but what about the makeup?! Proper makeup puts the finishing touch on all of your hard work and enables you to shine on stage as the fabulous dancer you are.

Shahrzad will be sharing her personal makeup techniques and tricks for applying stage ready makeup all by yourself, even those pesky fake lashes!

Please bring your own make up and fake eyelashes.

Date(s): Saturday, April 19

Time(s): 1:30-3:30 pm

Teacher(s): Shahrzad

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35, on-site registration available

Long, Slow and Deep: Stretch to Realign Your Body and Mind

Lisa Johnson Move deeply into your body with a combination of static stretches, breathing practices, massage ball work and energetic healing techniques.

Cultivate an attitude of gratitude naturally as your spirit is restored through the application some serious self-love skills that are easy and effective.

Please bring a mat, blanket and strap for optimal comfort.


Lisa is a yoga, dance and Pilates instructor with a health and wellness career spanning three decades. She is trained in Anusara and ISHTA Yoga, Balanced Body Pilates, Thai Yoga massage, Polarity Therapy and La Ho Chi bodywork.

As a professional modern dancer, Lisa is fascinated by the integration of western and world dance, healing movement and functional anatomy. Fitness and Pilates have greatly influenced her approach to conditioning the body and she currently teaches classes on the reformer and chair apparatus. In addition to her private and public classes, Lisa facilitates the anatomy component of 200/500 hour Yoga Teacher Training programs and offers workshops and retreats locally.

Date(s): Sunday, April 27

Time(s): 1:00-3:00 pm

Teacher(s): Lisa Johnson

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Introduction to Belly Dance

Introduction to Belly Dance

Belly dance, or “raqs sharqi” is a Middle Eastern dance form based on one of the oldest social dances in world history, originating in North Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.

As a social dance, belly dance is part of creative, joyful expression at festivals, weddings and celebrations. Belly dancing is a beautiful dance form and a great way to exercise. With movements stemming from the torso, hips and legs, it helps develop a strong core and contributes to an elegant and upright carriage. Belly dance is a timeless art form is practiced by people of all ages from all walks of life. At Sahara Dance, we dance to share in the transformative power of an ancient art form embracing femininity.

Discover the timeless beauty and joy belly dance in this introductory workshop. Students will learn basic technique including lifted stance and posture, shimmies, isolations, undulations and traveling steps. Class will also include a brief introduction to the history, context and philosophy of belly dance.

Celebrate femininity through an ancient, life-embracing art!

All levels are welcome. No prior experience necessary.

Date: Monday, April 28
Time: 7:00-8:00 pm
Teacher: Rachel
Location: Sahara Dance Central
Cost: $20
Free for “Under a Desert Moon” ticket holders! See details and sign up here.

Meet the Teachers Workshop Series:
Saharabesque Carnival Preview

CarnivalPhoto credit: Toscana Photography

Try out fresh and favorite combos while getting a preview of summer class material!

Designed as a light way to sample different teaching styles and signature moves, enjoy an hour of fun-to-dance combos followed by tea and treats. Meet the teachers, ask questions or placement advice and mingle with fellow students. Each teacher will briefly share their vision for summer classes and Saharabesque Carnival!

This series is a great way to learn more about Sahara Dance resident companies, classes and the community. Please join us!

Each workshop is $20


Wednesday, April 30

Romani Fusion Tribaret Combinations with Ami
6:00-7:15 pm


Intermediate / Advanced East Combinations with Rachel
7:15-8:30 pm


Thursday, May 1

Intermediate / Advanced Naima Combinations with Shahrzad
6:00-7:15 pm


Sunday, May 4

American Tribal Style (ATS) Combinations with Eugenia
1:30-2:45 pm


Tribal Fusion Combinations with Gabrielle
2:45-4:00 pm


Tuesday, May 6

Low Intermediate Samia Combinations with Melissa
6:00-7:15 pm


Beginner I / Beginner II Combinations with Kelly
7:15-8:30 pm


Wednesday, May 7

Beginner II / Low Intermediate Badia Combinations with Brianne
6:00-7:15 pm


Intermediate Reda Fusion Tahia Combinations with Omoladun
7:15-8:30 pm


Thursday, May 8

Intermediate / Advanced Nadia Combinations with Jennifer
6:00-7:15 pm



Check out highlights from last year’s Carnival:

Master Class with Zoe Jakes

Zoe Jakes

A to Zoe

Just like the name implies, plan on strong belly dance technique fundamentals heavy on Zoe’s signature stylization.

Flow drills make up the first half of the class, with focus on layering, arm work and travelling.

The second half of the class will be rounded out with Jamila-format movements, Indian fusion inspiration, and contemporary dance movement. And of course, the Zoe-style pops, locks and spins you have come to expect from her will be included throughout!

Bring a towel, water and a love of adventure with you to class!

At least a year of consistent belly dance is recommended.

Date(s): Thursday, May 1

Time(s): 12:00-4:00 pm (New time!)

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $130

Cinco de Mayo

Julie

Join us this Cinco de Mayo as we celebrate by learning a fun and energetic Latin fusion choreography.

We’ll explore several Latin rhythms, including meringue, salsa, cumbia, cha cha and bachata. Each rhythm will be explained and broken down, then built up into a sizzling choreography!

After the workshop, let’s head over to Guapo’s for some celebratory margaritas! (optional, not included in workshop registration)

This workshop is recommended for dancers at the Low Intermediate level.

Date(s): Monday, May 5

Time(s): 7:30-9:30 pm

Teacher(s): Julie

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Master Class with Karim Nagi of Turbo Tabla!

Karim Nagi of Turbo Tabla

Karim Nagi is a native Egyptian drummer, DJ, and folk dancer. His workshops and performances boast a dynamic concoction of live drumming and dance. Because of his proficiency in both music and dance, his workshops deliver students to a new physical understanding of the connection between these two disciplines.









Saturday, 12:30-2:30 pm — Dabka (Arabic line dancing)

Dabka (a.k.a. Dabke, Dabkeh) is a traditional form of unisex line dancing found in the Eastern Arab World. The dance is based on rhythmic stomping, stepping and jumping, completely synchronized to the drummer. This folk dance is used for both amateur social settings as well as stage performance.

This workshop will focus on the social and stage Dabka found in Palestine and Lebanon. Students will learn the steps by name, the corresponding rhythms, the leadership roles and the attitudes.

Karim learned Palestinian Dabka from Lena Harami (the lead dancer and trainer of Serreyyet Ramallah Dabka troupe) and Lebanese Dabka from Hassan Harfouchi (America’s essential modern Dabka authority in LA).


Saturday, 2:45-4:45 pm — Sagat (“Zill” finger cymbals)

Karim has developed a comprehensive zill method that utilizes drum techniques and an ambidextrous approach. He uses the Egyptian Sufi Zikr aesthetic with multiple sounds, open and closed, sizzle and rapid combinations. Students will learn the Arabic rhythms by name and how to play them while dancing. Dancers will learn to use the cymbals to communicate rhythms to a band and accent solo dancing and body movements.

Karim will also share dance combinations and solo patterns, train the dancer in musicality, and teach when-and-when-not to play within an Arabic song. Karim promises to transform dancers into musicians with his finger cymbal teaching approach. Dancers and percussionists of all levels are welcome.


Sunday, 12:00-4:00 pm — Complete Music Literacy for Dancers (Movement Class)

For anyone who performs or teaches, this class will give you all the tools to be a literate, knowledgeable, and legitimate practitioner. In this 4-hour workshop we will review all the major Arabic rhythms (Iqaa, Iqaat), learning their name meanings, origins, how to speak and clap them, and one movement combination for each rhythm.

We will also cover all the major Arabic music scales (Maqam, Maqamaat) found in the most famous dance songs, learning their names, how to sign each maqam, and how to use movement to invoke the specific emotion of each. This class combines movement and music to help each dance professional (or hobbyist) be fully aware of how to identify, utilize, and perform to rhythm and melody.

This workshop is recommended for students at the Intermediate level and above.

Saturday: Dabka

Date: May 17

Time: 12:30-2:30 pm

Cost: $65

Location: Sahara Dance Central*
4433 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016

Saturday: Sagat

Date: May 17

Time: 2:45-4:45 pm

Cost: $65

Location: Sahara Dance Central*
4433 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016

Sunday: Music Literacy for Dancers

Date: May 18

Time: 12:00-4:00 pm

Cost: $130

Location: Sahara Dance Central*
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

 

Package Pricing (Saturday & Sunday workshops): $250

*Out-of-town workshop participants may be interested in these nearby hotels: Days Inn or Marriott Courtyard

Master Class with Rachel Brice: Week-long Intensive
* *SOLD OUT* *

Rachel Brice, Photo by Trinette ReedPhoto by Trinette Reed

Intermediate Intensive with Rachel Brice: Level changes, Spins, and Floating Footwork

Learn Rachel’s newest sequences and approaches to conditioning and movement in this intensive geared toward the intermediate belly dancer. After a strengthening practice, we’ll delve into the tribal fusion approach to isolations, carefully learn combinations, and end with a deep stretching practice. Combinations will include back-bends, level changes and spinning practices, but participants are encouraged to go at their own pace in a challenging, yet supportive environment.

*Out-of-town workshop participants may be interested in these nearby hotels: Days Inn or Marriott Courtyard

Date(s): Wednesday, June 18 - Sunday, June 22 (5 days)

Time(s): 1:30-5:30 pm each day

Teacher(s): Rachel Brice

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $650 **SOLD OUT**
Sign up for waiting list

Tribal Belly Dance Retreat with Rachel Brice in Bali
**SOLD OUT**

Bali Retreat with Rachel Brice:
The HeART of Belly Dance
Desa Seni, Bali
August 23-30, 2014

Rachel Brice

Immerse yourself in an intensive yoga and dance retreat designed to rejuvenate your love for belly dance and re-connect with your heart.

Don’t miss this unique tropical all-inclusive belly dance retreat, complete with:

  • All-inclusive week-long retreat (room, meals, workshops, yoga)
  • 20+ hours of daily technique, combination, choreography and yoga classes
  • Balinese Opening Cleansing Ceremony
  • Q & A with Rachel Brice
  • Wi-fi throughout the resort
  • Optional excursions including surfing, white water rafting, cultural Balinese dance performances, sight-seeing tours

This retreat is suitable for all levels, with individual attention to modify movements for beginners and/or challenge advanced dancers. A basic foundation in belly dance and/or yoga is strongly suggested.

Master Class with Sahra Saeeda

Sahra Saeeda

Friday, 6:30-8:30 pm:
Journey through Egypt Review

Join Sahra for a lecture review of JtE material, along with new information and updated research from her recent travels to Egypt. We’ll have refresher handouts for all participants and questions are welcome!

This workshop is for students who have previously completed Journey through Egypt.




JtE Review
Date: October 17
Time: 6:30-8:30 pm
Cost: $55 through Sept. 15 / $65 after Sept. 15
Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW


Saturday, 1:30-3:30 pm:
Light and Lively Dances, Sa’idi Style!

Learn lively, new Sa’idi combinations from Sahra’s June trip to Upper Egypt! Enjoy an afternoon full of happy new music and movements drawing upon her latest research.

This workshop is designed for students with at least 1 year of belly dance experience. Assaya (cane) optional.

Saturday, 3:45-5:45 pm:
Tarab and Transcendence through Belly Dance

Masters of Tarab have shared that while part of them was soaring on a high of expression, another part was observing themselves and their environment. In tarab moments, there is a heightening of awareness of the stage and the lights, the unseen conversation with the audience, the feeling of flow and line within the body. The sense of time suspends and lengthens.

Join Sahra for exercises and methods to contact and create this experience for yourself. After a short introduction to the concept of tarab, dance to discover your own personal flow, experiencing tarab and saltanah from the inside out. The workshop will end watching videos of Cairo’s dancers and how they embody tarab.

Some previous belly dance experience recommended.

Sunday, 12:30-4:30 pm:
Bringing Belly Dance to the Theater Stage

Join Sahra for an experiential workshop in Theatrical Belly Dance.

We’ll bring concepts and ideas to life through belly dance! Learn about story telling, plot clarification and character development. Discover tips for stage placement and lighting effects, as well has how to bring to life the strongest moments in your piece. Designed for dancers who wish to deepen and expand their performance range as soloists, troupe dancers and choreographers.

Some previous belly dance experience recommended.

Light & Lively: Saidi

Date: October 18

Time: 1:30-3:30 pm

Cost: $55 through Sept. 15 / $65 after Sept. 15

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Tarab & Transcendence

Date: October 18

Time: 3:45-5:45 pm

Cost: $55 through Sept. 15 / $65 after Sept. 15

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Theatrical Belly Dance

Date: October 19

Time: 12:30-4:40 pm

Cost: $110 through Sept. 15 / $130 after Sept. 15

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

 

Package Pricing: Saturday & Sunday: $200 through September 15 / $250 after September 15

*Out-of-town workshop participants may be interested in these nearby hotels: Days Inn or Marriott Courtyard

Tribal Belly Dance Retreat with Rachel Brice in Costa Rica

10th Annual Tribal Belly Dance & Yoga Retreat with Rachel Brice Blue Spirit, Costa Rica
February 14-21, 2014

Special 10-year anniversary promotion: the first 3 dancers to register get a $100 discount!
See retreat page for details

Rachel Brice

Costa Rica Retreat with Rachel Brice: The HeART of Belly Dance
Put the world on pause to immerse yourself in an intensive yoga and dance retreat designed to rejuvenate your love for belly dance.

Don’t miss this unique tropical all-inclusive belly dance retreat, complete with:

* All-inclusive week-long retreat (room, meals, workshops, yoga)
* Daily technique, combination, and choreography classes
* Morning and afternoon yoga classes
* Evening discussions with Rachel Brice
* Optional excursions including horseback riding on the beach, zip-lining, jungle adventures, surfing, Howler Monkey sanctuary
* LOTS of sunshine in February!

This retreat is suitable for all levels, with individual attention to modify movements for beginners and/or challenge advanced dancers. A basic foundation in belly dance and/or yoga is strongly suggested.

See details and register

Private Lessons

For private lessons, workshops or parties, contact us.

Sahara Dance also offers other Special Topic and Brush-up Series Workshops. Find out more about our other upcoming workshops…