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

Dedicated Flexibility: Improving flexibility for performance and everyday health

Alyssum

Yoga is great, but what about when you don’t have time to go to a yoga class?

This class will be open to ALL levels of flexibility, and will concentrate on things you can take home with you.

We will specifically cover hamstring stretches, how to safely work on backbends, and stretches to keep your back safe for a long time to come. There will also be discussion on how to improve flexibility over time (ever wanted to get into those splits?).

Students will need to bring a yoga mat or towel, and note-taking materials are encouraged.

Date: Saturday, October 4
Time: 1:30-3:30 pm
Cost: $35
Teacher: Alyssum
Location: Sahara Dance Central


Flexibility Feature: register for Developing Flexibility (Oct. 4) & Flexibility from the Inside Out (Oct. 11) for $60!

Kazaxe Dance Party!

kazaxe Kazaxe is a PARTY WORKOUT! Using international music you can feel rush through you, Kazaxe blends dancehall, reggae, hip hop, soca, samba, axe, Brazilian funk, southern line dances, and even some tinikling. Created in DC, Kazaxe will get you MOVING!

This boutique Kazaxe experience will have you sweating and smiling in a “house party” setting. Get a taste with this video.

Supportive, non-marking dance shoes or sneakers are recommended (no black-soled, street or hard-soled shoes please).

Date: Sunday, September 28

Time: 12:00-1:00 pm

Teacher: Dee Dee

Cost: $20

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Flexibility from the Inside Out

Lisa Johnson

Reboot your digestive system, improve your mood and extend your spine in this active workshop based on the wellness principles of Ayurveda. This “science of longevity” is the 5,000 year old healthcare system related to yoga.

Join Ayurvedic Lifestyle and Yoga Consultant, Lisa Johnson, and Holistic Health Coach, Nicole Barrett, to learn both how and why simple daily changes can create a powerful effect.

Take home new strategies for more flexibility in body, mind and spirit using food and herbs plus specific breathing practices and stretches to stimulate good digestion. Dress for movement and bring a yoga mat and notebook.

Date: Saturday, October 11
Time: 1:30-3:30 pm
Cost: $35
Teacher: Lisa Johnson and Nicole Barrett
Location: Sahara Dance Central


Flexibility Feature: register for Developing Flexibility (Oct. 4) & Flexibility from the Inside Out (Oct. 11) for $60!

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: $65
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, 1:00-5:00 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: $65

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Tarab & Transcendence

Date: October 18

Time: 3:45-5:45 pm

Cost: $65

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Theatrical Belly Dance

Date: October 19

Time: 1:00-5:00 pm

Cost: $130

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

 

Package Pricing: Saturday & Sunday: $250

Cancellation policy: Master Class registrations are nonrefundable. If you are unable to attend, you may sell or transfer your registration to another person. Please send us notice of your registration transfer.

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

Parking: Street parking is available in the neighborhoods around the studio:
Fort Drive, Alton Place or Yuma Street (behind St. Ann’s Academy)
Please check parking signs for hour or zone restrictions

Feel the Music Intensive

Shahrzad

Friday, October 24

Entrance with Veil

Enter with drama and captivate your audience! In this fast-paced class, Shahrzad teaches a brand new entrance choreography with veil work.

This workshop is designed for Low Intermediate level dancers and above.

Saturday, October 25

Fun and Flirty Shaabi

Shaabi is the ever-evolving dance and musical style popular in the streets and clubs of cairo. High energy, flirty, and fun, this is the belly dance you would most likely see at parties and celebrations.

With lots of big hip and chest movements and playful gestures that relate to the songs, shaabi will inspire you to smile and laugh—the most important expressions for a belly dancer!

Exploring Emotion in Dance

Explore deeper and darker emotions with modern and classical Arabic songs. The lyrics of these musically intricate songs deal with complicated emotions such as longing, loss, deep love, and sadness. This class explores movements, gestures, and expressions dancers can use to convey these emotions through dance.

Entrance with Veil

Date: October 24

Time: 6:30-8:30pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Fun and Flirty Shaabi

Date: October 25

Time: 1:30-3:30 pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Exploring Emotion in Dance

Date: October 25

Time: 3:45-5:45 pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Thriller!

The Sahara Dance pumpkins

It’s that time of year again!

You have your costume.

You’re ready for candy.

But are you to get out on the dance floor to join … the Thriller?

Come zombify your belly dance and learn this iconic Halloween choreography with some belly dance twists! And yes your body will start to shiver — right on cue.

All levels welcome — no mere mortal can resist!

Date(s): Sunday, October 26

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

Teacher(s): Brianne

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Introduction to Belly Dance

Introduction to Belly Dance

Voted the Best Dance Class in DC!

Discover the timeless beauty and joy of 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.

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 and find out why Sahara Dance was voted Best Dance Class in DC for the 5th year in a row!

All levels are welcome. No prior experience necessary. This workshop is designed for students new to belly dance or new to Sahara Dance. Current students are welcome to bring a friend new to belly dance and join as well!

Date: Sunday, October 26
Time: 3:30-4:30 pm
Teacher: Rachel
Location: Sahara Dance Central
Cost: $20

Ditch the Dum-Tek 2.0

Gabrielle

Take a break from traditional belly dance music and channel your inner ‘Dark Horse’ in this Tribaret-style workshop!

We’ll learn a slinky, sultry choreography to a hit song, with emphasis on expression and feeling. Get ready for pops and locks, combos, isolations, and even some hair-flipping!

At least one year of belly dance is recommended, with modifications for those with more intermediate/advanced technique.

Date(s): Saturday, November 1

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

Teacher(s): Gabrielle

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

The Shimmy Workout II

Dellaneira

The Shimmy Workout II is a fun, high energy, cardio class for students of all levels to learn/revisit shimmy techniques from lowest to highest difficulty.

A total of eight shimmy techniques will be broken down step by step. After each technique has been learned, they will be combined into a workout routine, which will increase in tempo after each repetition has been completed.

After returning from a five minute break, students will learn a dance combination to provide a perspective on how techniques can be used within a choreography

The Shimmy Workout II offers the same fun and cardio exercise as the original Shimmy Workout. Breaking down new and challenging techniques, this workshop is fun for students of all levels.


Dellaneira is a multiethnic award winning belly dancer based in Pennsylvania. Her training in Middle Eastern Dance began in the Egyptian Cabaret style of belly dance. She currently focuses on performing Fusion style belly dance, to bring her unique touch to her performances.

She is recognized for her highly dynamic movements and theatricality. Dellaneira is fearlessly creative and constantly exploring new ways to further enhance her skills and the entertainment level of her performances. She thoroughly enjoys using her skills as a dancer to combine sensuality and aggressiveness, while preserving the noble essence of belly dance.

Date(s): Saturday, November 8

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

Teacher(s): Dellaneira

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Master Class with Donna Mejia

Donna Mejia, Photo by Emmanuel Adero

As a transnational fusion dance artist, Donna Mejia’s distinctive aesthetic explores the secular dances of North Africa and the Arab World with American hip hop and sub-genres of electronic dance. Donna also teaches the Brazilian Silvestre Dance Technique and is a primary representative after twenty years of practice.

In October of 2011 she was selected by the Fulbright Association to present the 2011 Selma Jeanne Cohen Endowed lecture for International Scholarship in Dance, notably for her paper “Digital Diasporas and Transnational Dance Communities: The Effects of the Internet on Identity Formation and Collective Cultural Memory.”

Donna has been guest artist in residence for twelve colleges, and received her Master of Fine Arts degree from Smith College on full fellowship. She joined the University of Colorado at Boulder’s dance department in 2012 as the first Assistant Professor of tribal fusion dance globally. She balances her time teaching and touring internationally to teach, lecture, and perform for private sponsors, festivals and community organizations.

Friday, 7:00-9:00 pm

I DARE YOU DONNA… MOVE ME!
Perpetual Motion and the Thrill of Music Immersion

I suppose you could describe this workshop as a workout… it certainly will be. Perhaps you could also identify it as a double-dare… although our goal is not bravado, nor competition.

What this will be is two hours of perpetual “tribal” or transnational fusion dance to the best music in the universe! Alternating between chapters of vigorous athleticism and smooth lyricality, we will not stop our indulgence of dance until the music ends. No lectures or verbose lessons will be offered, but laughter will be abundant. Our playlist journeys through the popular and underground music scenes of India, the Arab world, the African continent, the U.K. and South America.

Please come hydrated in comfortable clothing, and be ready to let yourself flow for a marathon celebration of our remarkable community.

 

Saturday, 1:30-5:30 pm

Swelling to the Surface: Breath and Body

I have a deep love for fantastical theatricality and great dance production. Alternately, I have a profound respect for the inherent intelligence of the body when it is freed from the bounds of showmanship. This workshop steps away from the focus on performance and skill acquisition to engage the domain of bodily truth.

We will begin with breath-work, and proceed gently towards a movement session rooted in tribal fusion vocabulary, but unconcerned with counts, phrasing, sequencing and structure.

I will offer theoretical highlights from my 25 years of study in sacred and transcendental dance traditions (North Africa, Central and West Africa, Caribbean Islands, Brazil, Louisiana).

We will also discuss current understandings of why our brains and neurological systems respond to movement in such specific ways. Deliberate breath work will serve as the barometer for integration and the touchstone of expanding the senses.

I offer my pledge of a thoughtful, conscientious and carefully guided passage… an invitation to let dance move through you and bring you to a broader sense of self.

This will not be a workshop about any specific beliefs or dogma. Rather, it will serve as an intentional laboratory for one aspect of dance celebrated by over half of the world’s cultures… dance as a technology for expanded consciousness.

Comfortable clothing will be very important for your best experience. All experience levels, body types and gender expressions will be embraced and welcomed. Class will begin with a deep and thorough warm up.

 

Sunday, 1:00-5:00 pm

Loaded Soul - Twisted Funk (AKA “I Eat Beats for Breakfast”)

Some would define power as the ability to produce large and dramatic movements of virtuosic prowess. I define power as the ability to channel tremendous force but not be removed from one’s center; the strength to metaphorically “swallow the hurricane.” This requires steadiness in one’s core, nuance, a grounded way of moving through space, and, above all, courage to face forces stronger than oneself.

In this class, we are going to take the thickest, hardest and crunchiest beats I could locate and translate them into our dancing bodies. Some big moves are on the menu, but I aim to also build intricacy and rhythmic clarity in our movement through remixed hip work. With music and hardcore beats as a guide, your drill practice is about to get juicy.

Please note that this workshop will feature music with adult lyrics and themes. (This is the “R” rated version of Donna Mejia). Come ready to play hard.


Date: Friday, November 14 - Sunday, November 16 (3 days)
Cost: $325
Location: Sahara Dance Central*
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Cancellation policy: Master Class registrations are nonrefundable. If you are unable to attend, you may sell or transfer your registration to another person. Please send us notice of your registration transfer.

Parking: Street parking is available in the neighborhoods around the studio:
Fort Drive, Alton Place or Yuma Street (behind St. Ann’s Academy)
Please check parking signs for hour or zone restrictions

 

Combined 7-Day Tribal Intensive Package — $100 Discount

Donna Mejia (Nov. 14-16) & Zoe Jakes (Nov. 17-20)
$100 discount:
$875

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

Master Class with Zoe Jakes: 4-Day Intensive

Zoe Jakes

Intermediate Intensive with Zoe Jakes:
Framework for a Beautiful Spine

Think of this as a general overview of Zoe Jakes stylization, technique and foundations.

This intensive is comprised of comprehensive flowing technique, including musicality, solid technique, and skills for building your own training and drilling personal practice.

We will begin each day with Pilates and yoga inspired strength and flexibility training, mixed with solid technique drills based around Zoe’s belly dance flow drills.

Each afternoon, we will move into a deeper focus on Zoe’s foundational styles (her background), involving a basic knowledge of Jamila Salimpour and Unmata Hot Pot ITS (improvisational tribal style) format. We’ll cover spin technique for belly dancers, drills for stronger abdominal control and better belly rolls, and hip drills and upper body flexibility stretches.

And for a fun bonus, we’ll also learn an Indian and Balinese fusion-inspired combo and basic finger cymbal skills.


Dates: Monday, November 17 - Thursday, November 20 (4 days)
Times: 12:00-5:00 pm each day
Cost: $650
Location: Sahara Dance Central*
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Cancellation policy: Master Class registrations are nonrefundable. If you are unable to attend, you may sell or transfer your registration to another person. Please send us notice of your registration transfer.

Parking: Street parking is available in the neighborhoods around the studio:
Fort Drive, Alton Place or Yuma Street (behind St. Ann’s Academy)
Please check parking signs for hour or zone restrictions

 

Combined 7-Day Tribal Intensive Package — $100 Discount

Donna Mejia (Nov. 14-16) & Zoe Jakes (Nov. 17-20)
$100 discount:
$875

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

Triple Feature with Žana: Modern Egyptian, Veil, and Improvisation

Žana

Saturday, November 22

Modern Egyptian Technique: How to Make It Your Own

Don’t be a copycat! Learn what makes it “Modern Egyptian” and how you can incorporate your own personality in this technique-based workshop. Once you have grasped the technique, you will learn a short choreography, making sense of what you have learned.

This workshop is designed for Low Intermediate level dancers and above.

Double Veil Delight

Learn the elegance of double veils and how to incorporate them into your belly dance routine! This is Žana’s most frequently requested workshop and she has recently produced a Double Veil Instructional DVD.

This workshop is open to all. Some previous belly dance experience is recommended.

Sunday, November 23

Improvisation Station

If the mere thought of improvisation terrifies you, then this workshop is a must! Learn the tips and technique of improvisation all while dancing with grace and self-confidence. You will surely never fear improvisation again!

This workshop is open to all. Some previous belly dance experience is recommended.

Modern Egyptian Technique: How to Make It Your Own

Date: November 22

Time: 1:30-3:30 pm

Teacher: Žana

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Double Veil Delight

Date: November 22

Time: 3:45-5:45 pm

Teacher: Žana

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Improvisation Station

Date: November 23

Time: 1:00-3:00 pm

Teacher: Žana

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Women’s Ritual Dance

Women's Ritual Dance

You are invited to dance with the community in traditional Balkan, Greek, Rom, Armenian, Near Eastern and modern sacred circle dances.

Throughout all ages and cultures, traditional circle dances are used to honor the divine, heal, affirm connections to the earth and each other, build community and celebrate rites of passages and life transitions. Many of the dances originated in European cultures embodying a world view which honored the earth, the body and the divine feminine.

The danced patterns illuminate the web of these connections and with conscious practice align us with all from the cellular to the cosmic level. We all have the capacity to transcend ourselves and reconnect with the web, to attune to the cosmic vibration of the divine feminine, and to transmit our embodiment of this sacred energy as healing force into our lives and into our world. This is where personal and universal healing can occur.

We will seek guidance both from the dances and the ancestors who created the dances. The wisdom of the ancient ones are held within the dances. As we attentively dance and plug into this wisdom we reweave ourselves into the time-honored web of life.

The dances are joyful, meditative, mournful, full of beauty, longing, life, and celebration!


Nada Khodlova Nada Khodlova, MA BC-DMT LCAT, is a Board Certified Dance Movement Therapist and Licensed Creative Arts Therapist. She has danced/performed with the Duncan Dance Collective, Rina Rinkewich/Return of the Sun, PURE, Lauren Raine in “The Masks of the Goddess”, and the Thais Mazur Dance Company. Nada has facilitated Ritual Dance for wonderful venues such as “Celebrating the Mythic Life” conference, Dance New England Camp and weekend, Deborah Roth’s New Moon Sister Circle and Chapel of the Sacred Mirrors (COSM), The Goddess Festival, and The PURE Bellydance Conference in NYC. Nada has trained with Laura Shannon in a 2-year Women’s Ritual Dance intensive program and received a certification.

Nada is of Czech-Croatian heritage and has experienced many gifts of homecoming through these dances. She hopes to honor the wisdom and potency of these dances and to pass this on to others.

Date(s): Saturday, December 6

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

Teacher(s): Nada Khodlova

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Spanish Gypsy Skirt Dance

Nada Khodlova

In this beautiful ancient Gypsy “Gitano” barefoot flamenco dance form, the Spanish Gypsy Skirt dance, we will experience the fanning of the skirt, the closing, opening, flicking, throwing of the skirt as the cascading pulsation of our internal sacred sexual flame as only known and expressed by a living goddess.

The power and sensuality undulates throughout our bodies and emanates out through the skirt waves. This power is rooted in the earth and flows up to the sky. The container of the dance and skirt allow the full glory of goddess to be expressed, knowing, giving, yet nourishing and protecting.

As taught to Nada by Puela Lunaris, founder of Dances of the World Society, internationally acclaimed performing artist, workshop leader and speaker, Puela is on a mission to rescue dances in danger of extinction.

This feminine dance flamenco form will include exploring sensual arms, exotic hand gestures, undulating hips and a proud torso. You will learn braceos, floreos, palmas sordas and palmas claras. Be a part of the lineage of women to carry on this dance which is on the verge of extinction.

Come and learn a dance that has its roots with the gypsy grandmothers of Spain.


Nada Khodlova, MA BC-DMT LCAT, is a Board Certified Dance Movement Therapist and Licensed Creative Arts Therapist. She has danced/performed with the Duncan Dance Collective, Rina Rinkewich/Return of the Sun, PURE, Lauren Raine in “The Masks of the Goddess”, and the Thais Mazur Dance Company. Nada has facilitated Ritual Dance for wonderful venues such as “Celebrating the Mythic Life” conference, Dance New England Camp and weekend, Deborah Roth’s New Moon Sister Circle and Chapel of the Sacred Mirrors (COSM), The Goddess Festival, and The PURE Bellydance Conference in NYC. Nada has trained with Laura Shannon in a 2-year Women’s Ritual Dance intensive program and received a certification.

Nada is of Czech-Croatian heritage and has experienced many gifts of homecoming through these dances. She hopes to honor the wisdom and potency of these dances and to pass this on to others.

Date(s): Saturday, December 6

Time(s): 3:45-5:45 pm

Teacher(s): Nada Khodlova

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Show Flow How-To

Khalima

Have you ever wondered about the formula Orientale dancers use to create dynamic, interesting performances?

In this workshop, we will explore construction of a Fusion or Theatrical Bellydance performance based on the principals of a classic Oriental performance, and find out how to create an energetically and visually dynamic show that will keep your audience entranced.

We will also delve into the idea of using musical changes to help tell a story, and guide your audience to understanding the intention of your piece.

This workshop involves both lecture and movement, and is appropriate for all levels

photo credit: Pixie Vision Productions


Khalima’s foundation and training in Orientale belly dance informs her unique approach to dance and performance. A natural teacher, Khalima’s dance instruction is inspired by studying with masters such as Sahra Saeeda and Suhaila Salimpour, training in prenatal yoga, and years of working with and educating clients in the body modification world. With a penchant for thinking outside of the box and an insatiable drive to create and inspire, Khalima opened lllumination Dance Studio in Richmond, VA.

Date(s): Sunday, December 7

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

Teacher(s): Khalima

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

Bootcamp Intensive

Shahrzad

Friday, December 19

Saidi with Assaya (Cane)

Have cane, will shimmy! Shahrzad presents a brand new Saidi choreography with Assaya (cane).

This workshop is designed for Low Intermediate level dancers and above.

Saturday, December 20

Technical Perfection

Perfect and polish your belly dance technique by bringing awareness to every part of your body, starting with the base muscles and working all the way up to advanced movements.

Killer Drills

Shahrzad reveals her personal drills for staying in tip-top dancing shape. With layering, level changes, turns and moving steps, you’ll move up down and all around. Get ready to drill till you drop!

Saidi with Assaya (Cane)

Date: December 19

Time: 6:30-8:30 pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Technical Perfection

Date: December 20

Time: 1:30-3:30 pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Killer Drills

Date: December 20

Time: 3:45-5:45 pm

Teacher: Shahrzad

Cost: $35

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Egyptian Belly Dance & Yoga Retreat
with Sahra Saeeda, Shahrzad & Rachel Kay Brookmire

Egyptian Belly Dance & Yoga Retreat
with Sahra Saeeda, Shahrzad & Rachel Kay Brookmire
A New Year’s Retreat
Maya Tulum, Mexico
January 3-10, 2015

Egyptian Retreat
Design/Illustration: Jessica Inouye

  • Week-long tropical belly dance and yoga getaway!
  • All-inclusive, including room, meals and classes
  • Daily technique, folkloric and choreography training
  • Daily yoga classes
  • Evening discussions and presentations
  • Closing party and performances!
  • Personalized performance feedback for each participant (optional)

Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in our hair… ~Susan Polis Shutz

Put the world on pause to immerse yourself in an intensive dance and yoga practice. Enjoy the beauty of Mexico, while studying with leading artists in Egyptian-style belly dance and folkloric dance. Replenish the mind and body with daily mindfulness and movement practices. The week-long intensive will include daily dance and yoga instruction, delicious and wholesome food, beautiful accommodations and a stunning beach front setting for reflection rejuvenation.

Outside Magazine named Maya Tulum Resort one of the top “spirit-recharging escapes” for 2013!

Gayot: The Guide to the Good Life named Maya Tulum one of the Top 10 Yoga Retreats Worldwide.

USA Today named Maya Tulum one of the World’s Best Wellness Resorts, “among the most highly rated health and wellness leisure destinations on the planet.”

This retreat is suitable for all levels, with individual attention to modify movements for beginners and/or challenge advanced dancers. We offer a full schedule of training for professional dancers and teachers, however, all students may choose the intensity of their training. Dancers are welcome to partake in all of the daily programming, or just participate in portions of class and relax at the beach, enjoying the resort at your leisure! Each day you can design your own training and dance journey to best suit your personal inspiration and rejuvenation!

* Additional information and registration details *
Developing Unusual Footwork

Rin Ajna

Learn unusual foot patterns designed to provide a fun challenge!

This workshop will focus on developing awareness of the entire body while moving, and maintaining technique and stage presence while performing traveling steps.

Bring home a new set of steps for your dance practice and spark new ideas for your own unique movement! Prepare for a good fun challenge!

This workshop is open to all levels. Basic belly dance training is strongly recommended.

Photo by Neï Mad


Rin Ajna’s unique fusion belly dance style is inspired by over eighteen years of diverse dance training in jazz, contemporary, ballet, hip hop, and several fusion styles of dance. Rin credits much of her technical growth and evolution in style to instructors Rachel Kay Brookmire, Ebony Qualls, and Rachel Brice, with whom she has studied intensively. Since 2012, Rin has toured internationally with Bellydance Evolution, gathering and sharing inspiration from her travels and experiences through instruction, performance, and discussion.

Date(s): Saturday, January 17

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

Teacher(s): Rin Ajna

Location: Sahara Dance Central

Cost: $35

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, 2015

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 *
Master Class with Yasmina Ramzy

Yasmina Ramzy

Yasmina Ramzy is a visionary and a highly acclaimed choreographer committed to the presentation of belly dance as high art. Since 1981, she has performed over 10,000 times often for royalty and heads of state and throughout the Middle East. Yasmina has had the unique privilege of performing for several years in Syria with the famous master musicians of Allepo.

Yasmina received her key training from leading masters in Egypt and Syria including Aida Nour of the Reda Troupe and Mohammed Khalil, director of the National Folklore Troupe of Egypt. Her unique and highly creative choreographies have won numerous awards and commissioned by many dance ensembles internationally including the Bellydance Superstars. As a mentor to many, she is well known for revealing the authentic, organic structure of Middle Eastern dance and its relationship to Arabian music.


Friday, March 6
6:30-7:30 pm: Lecture: Belly Dance and Feminism, Sexuality,
Self Esteem and Spirituality

Discover the essence of belly dance and give meaning and purpose to the movement in this lecture that focuses on spirituality, feminism, sexuality, and self-esteem.

8:00-9:30 pm: Workshop X

The development of this unique workshop was sponsored by Ontario Arts Council, designed to unleash the inner ancient life force of belly dance and the creative joy it embodies. It is an experience that one gets the most benefit from if one has no preconceptions.

Taking place behind locked doors, the participants are sworn to secrecy after the workshop. All do so willingly as they do not want to ruin the experience for anyone else.

Any level can participate as it has nothing to do with technique. All levels.

Lecture: Belly Dance and Feminism, Sexuality, Self Esteem and Spirituality

Date: March 6

Time: 6:30-7:30 pm

Cost: $20

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Workshop X

Date: March 6

Time: 8:00-9:30 pm

Cost: $40 in advance / $50 on site

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Saturday, March 7
1:30-3:30 pm: Heavy Hitting Hips Technique & Transitions

The synthesis and core of Yasmina’s approach is a new way of teaching technique at all levels. Producing more power with less effort, this workshop directly addresses how to achieve the Arab nuance in belly dance movement.

Heavy Hitting Hips addresses the common ground for all levels of technique that differentiates Middle Eastern movement from Western movement.

3:30-5:30 pm: Nuance, Style and Emotionality

Description coming soon!

Heavy Hitting Hips: Technique & Transitions

Date: March 7

Time: 1:30-3:30 pm

Cost: $55 in advance / $65 on site

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Nuance, Style and Emotionality

Date: March 7

Time: 3:30-5:30 pm

Cost: $55 in advance / $65 on site

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Sunday, March 8
10:00 am-12:00 pm: Folklore Realms

Yasmina teaches the well-known steps, history, musical genre and costuming for many styles of dance from different regions of the Middle East. Folkloric styles include saiidi, khaleegy, assaya, tahtiib, milaya, hagallah, Port Said, dabki, Mohamed Ali St., shaabi, falahi, zaar, tannoura (Whirling Dervish), and Nubian.

She puts a heavy emphasis on cultural context, nuance and character development. Many belly dance steps have their origin in the folklore styles!

1:00-3:00 pm: Choreography

Topic and description coming soon!

Folklore Realms

Date: March 8

Time: 10:00am-12:00pm

Cost: $55 in advance / $65 on site

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Choreography

Date: March 8

Time: 1:00-3:00 pm

Cost: $55 in advance / $65 on site

Location: Sahara Dance Central
4433 Wisconsin Avenue NW

 

Package Pricing: Friday, Saturday & Sunday: $250 advance / $300 on site

Cancellation policy: Master Class registrations are non-refundable. If you are unable to attend, you may sell or transfer your registration to another person. Please send us notice of your registration transfer.

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

Parking: Street parking is available in the neighborhoods around the studio:
Fort Drive, Alton Place or Yuma Street (behind St. Ann’s Academy)
Please check parking signs for hour or zone restrictions

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.


SAVE THE DATE: April 11 & 12

Stay tuned, details coming soon!

Tribal Belly Dance Retreat with Rachel Brice in Bali

Bali Retreat with Rachel Brice:
The HeART of Belly Dance
Desa Seni, Bali
August 22-29, 2015

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:

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.

**SOLD OUT**
Click here to join the waiting list

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…