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Dance Links

last updated Jan. 31, 2016

Near Eastern Music and Dance Links:

My Teachers (with whom I have studied at some length, in chronological order):
Alexandra King (Santa Barbara, CA)
(Miami, FL)
  (Santa Ynez, CA)
Dunia (San Jose, CA)
John Compton and Rita "Rebaba" Alderucci (San Francisco, CA)
Malia de Felice (Half Moon Bay, CA)
Workshop Goddesses (teachers from whom I take workshops whenever possible):
Elizabeth "Artemis" Mourat (Silver Springs, MD)
Eva Cernik (Denver, CO)
Helene Eriksen  (Seattle, WA and Göttingen, Germany)
Robyn Friend (Los Angeles, CA)
Laurel Victoria Gray (VA)
Aziza (Montreal, Canada)
Suzanna del Vecchio (Denver, CO)
Aziza Sa'id (Los Angeles, CA)
Fahtiem (Los Angeles, CA)
Dalia Carella (NYC, NY)
Leila Haddad (Paris, France)
Cassandra (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Dancers - Friends and Favorites:
Alcina (SF Bay Area, CA)
Amaya (Santa Fe, NM)
Azura (San Jose, CA)
Baraka (CA)
Elizabeth Strong (San Francisco, CA)
Hala (Santa Clara, CA)
Janette (Monterey, CA)
Jizan (San Jose, CA)
Kajira Djoumahna (HI)
Khajulah (San Jose, CA)
Lizzy (SF Bay Area, CA)
Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan (Los Gatos, CA)
Miranda (LA area, CA)
Monica Berini (San Francisco, CA)
Rachel Brice (Portland, OR)
Rebekah (Santa Cruz, CA)
Saundra Sarrouf (San Luis Obispo, CA)
Stasha (Berkeley, CA)
Yolanda (Palo Alto, CA)

Dance Troupes (troupes with which I have danced and personal favorites):
Seher (Santa Barbara, CA) - folkloric, Oriental, and classical dance under direction of Alexandra King; dancers for the UCSB Middle East Ensemble
Hahbi 'Ru (San Francisco, CA) - Middle Eastern folkloric dance troupe, best known from Northern CA Renaissance Faires, with LIVE music!; now on indefinite hiatus but with great memories for members and audiences alike
Yöre Folk Dance Ensemble Stanford, CA) - Turkish folk dance ensemble which keeps growing in fame -- now performing internationally!
Danse Maghreb (San Francisco, CA) - Algerian berber dances; frequent performances with Algerian musician Moh Alileche
Ballet Afsaneh (Berkeley, CA) - an exquisitely beautiful troupe, directed by Sharlyn Sawyer, performing Persian and Central Asian dance
Neri Senti (LA Area, CA) - directed by Miranda, noted for their virtuosity, sheer daring, and humor
Mavi Dance (Boston, MA) - a fascinating modern take on traditional folk dance from Turkey, the Balkans, the Caucasus region, and Central Asia
Dark Heart Dance (SF Bay Area, CA) - Dark Fusion Bellydance directed Lizzy - dark music, dark costumes, and (mostly) dark humor -- all awesome

Musicians (personal friends and favorites) :
UCSB Middle East Ensemble (Santa Barbara, CA) - a 60+ member scholarly ensemble that tours through California and the US; musicians under the direction of Dr. Scott Marcus, dancers under the direction of Alexandra King
Tobias Roberson (Sebastopol, CA) - "Boy Wonder" drummer of ever-growing talent and fame
Eliot Bates (UK) - a superb oud player, talented composer (of Middle Eastern and other genres), and PhD ethnomusicologist
Peter Jacques (San Francisco, CA) - extremely talented clarinetist, playing Turkish, Klezmer, Greek, Balkan....
Jonathan Kessler (Boulder Creek, CA) - drummer, basist, philosopher, and all-around great guy
Farabi  (CA) - a great band with a diverse repetoire; now disbanded, but their CDs are still available from their website (and well worth it!, IMHO)
Souhail Kaspar (Los Angeles, CA) - THE master drummer and master dumbek teacher on the West Coast
Nejad (Campbell, CA) - Persian master musician - ney, daf, violin, santur...you name it, he plays everything as a master; offers classes in Campbell

Near Eastern Dance and Music Info and Resources:
MECDA - perhaps the premier organization for Middle Eastern dancers in the US, based in LA but with chapters elsewhere (including SF Bay Area, of which I am a member); organizes Cairo Carnivale each June in Glendale
SF/Bay Area MECDA - tireless organizers of many excellent haflas, shows, and workshops in the Bay Area
ME Dance Resource Guide - lots of information, well-organized (but no longer maintained, so some info may be out of date)
Shira.net - fabulous compendium of a lot of information
Bhuz.com - great place to locate dancers, teachers, and events through a good search engine; discussion boards and a store as well
Lennie Clark's Arabic Song Translations - a great resouce for Arabic song lyrics translated
Gilded Serpent - on-line magazine with good articles, interviews, and, everything archived (as far as I can tell)
Belly Dance Classes - a huge resource listing of Bellydance classes from around the world

also see Amanda's links for Venues Offering Middle Eastern Dance, Music, and/or  Cuisine

Events:   (for more events, see the Calendar page)
Rakkasah (Richmond, CA) - (March) the big Mama of all the dance festivals and an annual tradition for me since 1994
Carnival of Stars (Berkeley, CA) - (July) another great festival, always with an excellent line-up of performers - and a twist: comic authors and costume competition (think ComicCon mashup with Bellydance)
Middle Eastern Music and Dance Camp
(Mendocino, CA) - (August) complete immersion among the best ME musicians and dancers in the world...that plus the rustic redwood camp create a week of absolute Paradise!

Adira Dance and Costume (San Jose, CA) - the delighteful Adira offers belly dance apparel and accessories (and Ren Faire and Square Dance garb), with monthly dance events through the warm months
Artemis Imports - something of everything, including clothing, books, CDs, and videos
Sugar Petals (East Bay, CA) - great selection of body stockings, unitards, belt forms, and lots of decorative sequin appliques
Turquoise International (Los Angeles, CA) - costumes, beaded fringe, and tours to Egypt
Saroyan Mastercrafts (Los Angeles, CA) - finger cymbals, balanced scimitars and a couple really great CDs
Esau's Belly Dance Boutique (Santa Ynez, CA) - costumes, clothing, and music direct from Turkey and Egypt
Ganesha Bazaar - pretty costuming pieces (skirts, tops, veils) made from Indian fabrics
Scheherezade Imports (VA) - Lucy Smith's comprehensive bellydance emporium, and sponsor of annual tours of Egypt
Aruba's Oasis Sandals (Santa Cruz. CA) - comfy sandals in a wide range of colors, made by a truly wonderful person and dancer

Photographers and Videographers:
Carl Sermon/Reel Sound and Light Productions (Los Gatos, CA) - Photography and Audio/Video Engineering
Michael Baxter (Bay Area, CA) - Photography
Raymond Van Tassel (San Francisco, CA) - Photography
Newman Media Services (San Jose, CA) - videography

Vintage Ballroom Dance Links:

Friday Night Waltz - 1st Friday of every month in Palo Alto (3rd Friday in East Bay), a casual and comfortable place to dance and learn
PEERS - a monthly gathering with a theme, for dancers who also like to play dress up -- although costumes are always "admired but not required"; some of the best costume-watching in the Bay Area
Gaskell Ball - fine live music by the Brassworks and finely-dressed dancers; an elegant affair every two months in Oakland
Dickens Christmas Fair - by the same folks who produce the Heart of the Forest Faire, but set in Dicken's Victorian London
Fezziwigs - at the Dickens Faire, Fezziwigs Warehouse is the place to dance between Thanksgiving and Christmas
Stanford Ballroom Dance Club
Danse Libre - a vintage ballroom performance group showcasing dances from the mid-19th to early-20th Centuries, producing an excellent show about once per year

Other Dance and Music Links:

San Francisco Ballet (SF, CA)
Ballet West (Salt Lake City, UT)
Cal Performances (Berkeley, CA) - Cal-Berkeley oftens sponsors some of the best dance companies from around the world
Stanford Lively Arts (Stanford, CA)
World Arts West - sponsor of annual San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival
SF World Music Festival
Ashkenaz (Berkeley, CA) - world music and dance community center; a large variety of cultures are represented and a large floor
Discount Dance Supply - great prices and selection of dance shoes and attire

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