Penny Collins and I met up at Cairo Caravan last year after her workshop “Dancing from the Inside Out”. She’s a resident of Julian, California where she dances with Mountain Tribal Gypsy, an American Tribal Style® dance troupe. She talked about her early beginnings in American Tribal Fusion® or ATS® style bellydance that “captivated me … Read more

Backstage at “A Taste of Los Angeles Bellydance”

Last Saturday January 21st, was the premiere event for the new Los Angeles chapter of MECDA (Middle Eastern Culture and Dance Association).  It may have been called “Taste of Los Angeles Bellydance” but we all left satiated.    There was over 8 hours of performances and workshops by Devilla, Heather Shoopman, Mandala Danceworks, Princess Farhana and … Read more

“We take who we are out onto the floor”

One of my favorite dancers at Tribal Fusion Fest was Trish Shannon.  She is a captivating story teller who created a performance, not based on cool dance moves, but on specifically chosen movement based on its history, intention and how it fit with the greater story.  She invited the audience to come along with her for the … Read more

“This dance was made for me”

This May at Tribal Fusion Fest 2011 I had the pleasure of meeting Heather Thompson of Tribal Moon Belly Dance.  I conducted a very off the cuff improvisational interview while she worked the Performer’s Registration table.  We discussed many dance topics including: American Tribal Style (ATS), ATS vs. freestyle dance, ATS vs. Ballet, underground or … Read more

“You have a sisterhood of other dancers out there”

 “You already have a shared experience, you already have a shared language and it doesn’t matter where you come from or how long you’ve been dancing.  If you understand the vocabulary you can dance together.  I love that.  I think that it’s the tribal aspect of dancing: the fact that you have a sisterhood of … Read more