Introducing your bright & bedazzling beginner bellydance teacher for Maidenhead and Wokingham: Sandy!
Read on for a free on-line bellydance tutorial!
So Sandy, what's your bellydance story? Oh dear, where to begin? I have always been a person who loves to try out new hobbies. In my opinion, you cannot dismiss anything unless you’ve tried it yourself.
It’s funny how things work out. A colleague of my friend and housemate invited us to watch her perform at the Summer Spectacular Student Show in 2011. We went to support her and watched such a variety of bellydance; I had no idea there were so many different styles! I was fascinated by that and was so keen to give it a go that I went to the very first lesson available after the show, which was a drop in class taught by Cherie Leigh Marshall coaching under the Santa Maria Bellydance Academy in Reading. I attended every class during that summer and had my feelers out for other classes in and around Reading to keep on learning and practising and to gain as much experience as possible. Then in 2012 I plucked up the courage to do my very first Bellydance performance with the Divas from Giza, coached by Cherie.
I would never have thought Bellydancing would be for me. In fact it is amazing to see how misinformed people are in general about Bellydancing. Very often I am asked what type of dance I do and my response “ Bellydance” is very often misunderstood for Ballet. I guess the way I am built reflects my Ballet influence. During my school years I took up Ballet/classical dance lessons, because of a famous TV series about a Ballet dancer “Anna” in Germany. I recently found out that my Ballet teacher from back then is also teaching the art of Bellydance. So there is a connection after all ;) And who would have thought that I would become a teacher myself? You never know what the next chapter brings in life. I am absolutely delighted to continue my Bellydance Story with the RBSB.
Do you have any special areas of expertise? To be honest, my main objective is “Fun”; I have to enjoy what I am doing. So that's reflected by the music I choose mostly for my own choreographies. I want the audience to be part of it. I want them to enjoy the music and dance within, whilst enjoying my performance. Click here to see what I mean!
The same goes for teaching. I believe that you learn quicker and best when you enjoy the process. Of course it is said that dedication and hard work will make you an expert, but it often goes hand in hand with losing yourself in the joy of the art itself.
So, in short, I specialise in fun. It is very rewarding watching your students enjoy class as well as performance. When you enjoy what you do, you tend to invest more time into it and practice makes perfect after all. Having said that, I am very creative and have a wild imagination, which helps with choreographing, of course!
What training and qualifications do you have? By the time I start teaching at the RBSB in September 2015 I will have over 4 years of intensive Bellydance experience. I hold the IDTA Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards, all completed with honours and I also completed the Drumzy Foundation Course back in 2013. I graduated from my Teacher Apprenticeship with SMBA in March 2015 and have since then provided free online tutorials for beginners which are available on my YouTube channel. (Link below)
What's your top bellydance learning tip? Choose the music that speaks to you and do not be afraid to express yourself. This is your moment to do what you love and don’t be shy about it and just enjoy it. Again, fun would be my main ingredient here.
Which Bellydancers inspire you? I remember watching America's got talent and Sadie and Kaya were performing together. What a wonderful and dynamic duo. They inspired me big time!
What's your favourite costume? Does any bellydancer have an answer to this? I love all the different costumes, especially if they sparkle and make lots of shimmy noises :)
What's your secret skill? I smile or laugh even more at a performance when I get a move wrong :)
My favourite part of my body is..... my tummy. I have always liked to bare my tummy and also got my belly button pierced.
In my bellydance bag, I'm never without.... From experience I learned that a bottle of water and plenty of safety pins should be in it....but I cannot say I am very consistent in having that on me, but I know I should.
How do you boost your confidence? The way I see it: when you are on stage, you are performing for the audience. It's important to come across as confident and that you enjoy the dance, because otherwise the audience may feel awkward on your behalf as they pick up on your uneasiness.
What's your happiest memory? Too many to mention. Happiness is part of my daily routine....let's see...ok, too many flashbacks right there....there is one though where I laughed hysterically for joy and that was on a husky sleigh ride in Lapland. I think, that was pure joy! Oh...actually...seeing a falling star (" Sternschnuppe" in German), right after having noticed the star consolation "big bear" in the sky for the first time just came to mind.
What's your greatest ambition? To be happy and stay healthy. Although I have ambition, I have never really been a competitive person.
What's the last bellydance song you listened to? I have a problem remembering bellydance songs names, I am afraid. But I love "El baston" a saidi piece.
My favourite food is....Chocolate and ice-cream, and lots of it :)
You can find out more about Sandy at:
Facebook: click here
YouTube: Learn a bellydance move in 3 mins! & watch Sandy perform
Twitter: click here
Sandy will be teaching our Maidenhead & Wokingham beginner classes - sign up now and get fit, fun and fab with us! Click here
Photo of Sandy by Nadia Bargir
So who's teaching the Windsor beginners?
All will be revealed in a forthcoming newsletter!