Q: Is belly dancing hard?
A: Belly dancing is harder than most people think. It uses muscles you’ve probably never consciously used before. With proper instruction and patience, the challenge is part of what makes the dance so much fun! Plus, we are always available for extra help if you need it.
Q: What body type is best for belly dancing?
A: Unlike many other forms of dance, belly dancing is truly open to people of all shapes and sizes. It’s important to remember that your body type will also determine the way the moves look on your body, so no one move will look the same on any two people.
Q: Do men belly dance?
A: Yes! There are many famous male belly dancers around the world. Men are always welcome to come give it a try at one of our classes.
Q: Do you have to have prior dance experience to belly dance?
A: The posture, arm positioning, and moves used in belly dancing differ from many other forms, so you don’t have to have any dance experience. However, if you have danced before, you may find it easier to learn, especially the choreographed dances.
Q: What areas of the body does belly dancing work?
A: Belly dancing does not just focus on the stomach muscles as many people believe. It’s a low impact total body workout that isolates various muscle groups all over the body.
Q: What should I wear to class?
A: Comfortable workout clothes and a hip scarf are recommended. We normally dance barefoot, but socks or appropriate shoes are fine. A bared belly is not required for class, but it does help both you and the instructor to see if you are doing the moves correctly.
Q: How long will it take before I’ll be able to perform?
A: That’s a question that has no one answer. It depends on the dancer’s natural ability as well as how much effort they put into learning the dance. Dori tries her best to provide performance opportunities to the students who wish to perform. However, the Egyptian Sun belly dancers who perform regularly have been studying the dance form for years.
Q: I’ve already taken some belly dance lessons. Can I come to your intermediate or advanced class?
A: We have all newcomers go to the beginner class at first. That gives you a chance to see if you like our teaching style and us a chance to see what you know. Advancements to the intermediate or advanced class are by invitation from the instructor only. If you feel you are ready to move into a more advanced class, please tell the instructor before class begins. Once the Winter Semester begins, switching between levels is not allowed because we are learning choreography, ordering costumes for those specific dances, etc.
Q: What is the difference between the levels?
A: The beginner class is for learning the basic moves. You will learn belly dance vocabulary and will gain exposure to Middle Eastern music, culture, and dance history. Performance opportunities do exist but are rare.
The intermediate class is for those who have reasonably mastered the basic moves. In the intermediate class, you will learn layering of moves, technique for many props and finger cymbals, and an intro to performance skills. You will have occasional performance opportunities.
The advanced class is for semi-professional to professional level dancers. In this class, you will learn advanced layering and prop techniques. It is heavy on choreography and is meant as training to becoming a professional dancer. The dancers in the advanced class have many opportunities to perform.
Q: What is the right age to start taking belly dance lessons?
A: As with any other kind of skill, the sooner you start to gain experience, the better. But don’t be discouraged by your age! From 4 to 104, belly dancing is great exercise for all ages.
Q: There are many belly dance teachers in town. What makes Egyptian Sun stand out?
A: Individuality! Egyptian Sun prides itself on each dancer having their own personal style, rather than having everyone look exactly the same. Our troupe has a very free, laid-back, supportive atmosphere in which dancers are allowed to explore their own style. Our two hours of class each week are enough to provide our dancers with the skills to please a wide range of audiences, from critical Middle Eastern eyes to the crowds in Baltimore’s popular music venues.