What exactly is “Fusion”?

The subject of “what is Fusion” has come up several times for me recently. It’s been a topic of discussion with other Fusion dancers, and a topic of debate with dancers of other styles of belly dance. I don’t think that there is a single answer, but I would like to address some of the […]

Finale – or not…

We finished our run at the 2016 Minnesota Fringe Festival last night with our show The History of (my) Dance. There are still 2 days left of the festival, and I will be relaxing, and enjoying shows during both. I’m sitting here, enjoying my lunch and a little down time, and trying to process a […]

The Choreographer Equation, or Process

Recently, the subject of my process has come up a couple of times in conversations with others. I thought I would ponder on this a bit and share the results here. I wrote this thinking about the works that I’m proudest of: Dancing with Death from 2011, and The Forgotten Angle from 2015. My guess […]

Transnational Fusion Music

Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to have a conversation about my upcoming Fringe Festival show with a remarkably intelligent and analytical woman. She is from Turkey, but has been living in the US for quite some time. As such, she is both familiar with bellydance in her home culture and has seen it in the […]

Request for support

I am hard at work on my next show, History of (my) Dance. If you’ve spoken to me about the project, you know that it is something very new for me. I am combining 3 separate threads: academic lecture on the origins and development of American belly dance, personal storytelling narrative about how I found […]

The dirty little (not so) secret…

This dance form has a rather sordid past. Borne of the Orientalism and sensationalism of the late 19th century, transnational dance (more commonly known as belly dance) is rooted in colonialism,  cultural appropriation, and the sexualization of others who were “lesser”. But today’s dancers try to ignore this. We study Arabic rhythms while tuning out […]

Containing the madness

And I’m back. “Just like that.” After an awful fall of feeling incredibly burnt out, and a couple of months of hibernating and creating space, I am fully engaged in my art. I’m taking 2-3 classes a week, rehearsing with Smiling Lune, and working on my personal practice at home. I’ve got a couple of […]

Tree of (my) Art

Coming back from burnout is a hard road. I’m coming to terms with the fact that my art and “enjoyment” of it had become intrinsically tied only to external measures of success. And in my head, only near sellout shows would qualify. Never mind that I choose to work a day job so commercial success […]

Redefining sexy

As I continue to work on The History of (my) Dance, I keep coming back to this image. It is a sketch of a dancer at the Algerian Village  from the 1893 World’s Fair. If you are a belly dancer, especially an American one, you should be familiar with this Fair in particular. It is […]