Tag Archives: bellydance lessons

And It's September – time to get dancing again!

Yes, thanks, I have a wonderful holiday!  And now it’s time tog et back to work with both my sewing and dancing!
Have you signed up yet for your class of choice?  If not, please head over to my Schedule page and find one that works for you! I’m mainly offering belly dance through the City of Ottawa and Bellywood is being offered privately through me!
And register – details are with each class!!
Pushy, eh?
Well, I know I want to get creating some new fun stuff and I need lovely dancers to play with, so I hope to see you in a couple of weeks!

Some of my recent students in action!
Some of my recent students in action!


Back to work – well for some of us!

I completely envy the folks who chose this week to head off to warmer climates for a sojourn. Good call.
– 15C <Canadian> with a windchill of -24C means the snow pants and extra inner layers come out for any walkabout I do today.
But January in Ottawa, what do I expect?Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 6.46.48 AM
And now it’s also time to look ahead to both my week < tis Monday morning pre-7 a.m. after all> plus being the first Monday of January 2015, there is a little symbolism there since I pretty much follow the Gregorian calendar. Thus the “new year” begins.
For me, the new year actually starts in the fall, when classes resume and so this feels more like Second BreakfastSecond breakfast.
But French toast with jelly made from Campbell’s Bay wild plums < thanks Laura and Todd> will make second breakfast do just fine…
( In case you were wondering, Elevensies comes around April)
Annnd…back to work, oh yes.
So classes start in a couple of weeks – depending on enrolment, so of course here is where I poke you to be sure to sign up – take someone’s classes – get dancing!
Or sewing, as yes, I also have sewing classes on Saturday mornings and Monday evenings …
Print Me-SewingClubPromo2015
And I’m already booking custom sewing appointments this week so I hope you will keep me in mind if you have any design needs this coming year – weddings, costumes, anything pretty and fun will always catch my interest!
Happy first week back to work – or first week on holidays depending on your situation!
See you soon!

Come dance? Summer Playtime: half class/half practice

The idea:
Drop in for bellydance time in a studio space with mirrors.
It is Air conditioned- though we don’t always feel it.
I would teach a bit, and then you would have free time to play. And if you just want to practice on your own, that’s fine too – the fee is to cover the room rental fees.
You’ll have room to practice your own thing with veils, wings, zills stick, almost anything!
Tuesdays from June 17 to July 22
-6:30 to 7:30p.m.
Location: 172 Guigues – Free parking < entrance off Cumberland just north of St. Patrick>
$65 for 6 weeks 
Drop ins $15/ personTo Register for the full session:
Send me an email at halyma@bellydancingforfun.com and an email itnerac or Paypal payment of $65.  Or pay me in cash the next time you see me 🙂
 join the Facebook event
Link back here if you like this poster!

Wow- I’m so uncoordinated…I could never do that.


When I tell people I belly dance, that’s one of the “admiring” statements I hear.

And my brain says, “WHAAT?”

and my heart says, “sigh…”

I would love to write an inspiring post that would lift up the self esteem and belief systems of everyone who says that to me, so that they can see how belly dance is SO MUCH MORE than just dancing.

I would love to flick that switch in everyone who says, “I can’t do that”, to ” hmm, I want to  see how I can do that”.

The most I can do is continue to share my love for this dance form, educate those interested in learning more, and flash a small smile to those who might be on the fence and encourage you to give it a try.

It’s okay if belly dance is not your thing.  Maybe you are a runner, maybe yoga touches your heart, maybe walking is your happy place – and to all of this I say “YAY. you go!” And the best way to find “your thing” is to try out all of the potentials – when the right activity comes your way, you’ll feel it!

My approach to this dance form began with the phrase, “Belly Dancing For Fun” and I still use that to describe our performance group of rogue dancers, the nature of my classes and my general philosophy.  If it’s not fun, why bother.

Belly dance can be fun – when one chooses to:

  • accept that it’s a journey
  • smile and laugh with classmates/troupe mates/audiences
  • slow down { journey, remember}
  • no really, slow down
  • take that time to explore what CAN be done
  • revel in those moments of achievement – you are learning!
  • breathe
  • go within and focus on what you are doing, ignoring the grocery list
  • BE THERE –  in class, in the performance, in the moment
  • Slow down.

Belly dance saved me.

It brought me into a group of whacky women with whom I could not have found myself.

It brought me the courage to leave a deadend situation for a much better one { married to the AWeSOME @WTL since 1998!}

It allows me to play! Halyma has fun sparkly  costumes, has fabulous long hair, a sense of feminine empowerment that permeates all of my life!

And while I never considered myself uncoordinated { except for those moments when I am taking a workshop with a master teacher and trying to figure out, What the heck?!? – then I slow down…} I never thought I would be dancing for an audience….

Ad it’s so cool now that I do it for a “job”!


Another dance season winds down….

As I sit amongst a slew of costumes, paperwork, leftover bottles of water, and general mayhem after a night of barely sleeping { don’t have a burger at 10 p.m., just don’t}, I am grateful to read a slew of Facebook comments and emails that have been coming in since last night.

The simplest was:

Thanks, Tracey.

Great show.  It was a lot of fun.

And others include kind words of  support for a job well done { by more than me, but I’ll get to that}, awe at my costume { thanks to Shibori Borealis who created the skirt fabric}, and this snippet:

Just wanted to drop in a word to let you know that your performance yesterday was absolutely spectacular. The precision and the swiftness that you play with those bells (the ones you wore on your hands) is beyond me. And I have to make an additional comment to let you know that the best part I loved about your dance were your expressions and the way you connect with the audiences.

Makes me wanna take up belly dancing 🙂

And yes, a super duper congratulations to you for yet another successful event! D

And to everyone who was confused by the postcards with the dog on them – this is Sprocket and she was the dog on the postcards:

Check her blog at sprocketminpin.com
Check her blog at sprocketminpin.com

So there’s gratitude to be expressed.

Specifically: Erika, Megan, Linda, Laura, Michele, Tom, Katheryne, Emilie, Donna, Annie, Catharine.


My students – you all did your best and I hope had loads of fun!  Hope to see many of you in 2014, if not in my classes, dancing somewhere at least!

The teachers: Safiya and Anna, Antonina, Marina, Siddiqah, Eurika, Zamira, Lois, Jalilah, Suhani, Niki – thank you all for helping make this even happen by encouraging your students to perform and spending the time and energy getting them prepared to show up and show off!

The Sponsors { and the ticket winners – email me if your number is below – I have these prizes as yet unclaimed!}:

Eco-TAV – Claimed by Siddiqah on behalf of her student!

Live2Dance – Claimed by Loulouh for her student!

Kalyani- prize claimed

Leila – Prize claimed

Eurika- Prize claimed

Zamira – Prize claimed

Anna & Safiya – ticket # 225

Jalilah – Prize claimed

And the guests:

Without your support, coming out to see these dancers do their thing, there would be a much smaller event happening with a lot less energy and desire to be the best we can be. We all get into this for ourselves, and only some of us move into performing, but when we do, it’s because we want to see the look on your face when we do our thing.  so thank you for honouring us with your presence and allowing us to glow a little brighter with your positive feedback!

There is a business aspect to these community events that goes beyond having an amazing crew of people who donate their time and energy. While I choose to invest time and money into creating this opportunity for all of my students and those of other teachers to be showcased, sometimes the numbers are very close to the line.  Thanks to some very wonderful people who gave more than their ticket price in financial contributions, this show, though we did not sell out, did cover it’s expenses and allow me to look at donating a little bit to some of my favourite charities.  Thank you- a LOT.  I hope it’s okay that I am not going to single them out, but I know who you are and you know who you are, and my gratitude to you is immense as you helped reduce the burden so much that I can in turn pay it forward.

I have also created an invitation only flickr.com group where I am hoping folks will share any great photos they took last night with respect for each others wishes on public sharing { it’s not public unless you want it to be}, and you can message me { halyma@bellydancingforfun.com} if you would like to join.

Thanks again – and remember to SIGN UP FOR THE DANCERS’ NEWS :


Simply send an email to news-subscribe@bellydancingforfun.com and within a minute you should get an email asking for you to confirm that you want to sign up to the mailing list. Just click reply and then send! Thats it!


Send your text only information to: newsletter@bellydancingforfun.com with “Belly Dance news” in the subject line [or something equally creative!].

And CLASSES start in about a month!

Time to get dancing!

I just took some time to check in on registration for my Byward Market location classes and hey – there’s still room for some new dancers to come on out and start learning this fun dance form!

NEWBIES WANTED: Bellydance Level 1 and Bellywood on Thursdays!

Here’s the deal – over 12 classes for $97.75 at the Routhier Community centre on Monday evenings from 7-8 p.m. or if you are looking to dance with a bit more high energy , join the Bellywood classes on Thursdays from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

You have time to go home and have a light supper, but not get too comfy, and come on out and get moving – gently but powerfully!

Everyone  who comes that first night leaves marvelling at the workout!  From just gently isolating those body parts, laughing, shimmying and playing with a lovely piece of fabric, you get a fun head to toe adventure in cultural immersion!  Well, at least a few anecdotes, exposure to really interesting music and loads of silliness and learning how to move in new graceful ways!

So, feel welcome to join me this fall in  any of my classes – and there’s room in all, but I really hope to see some new faces this session 🙂


Do I have to bare my belly?

NO.  Wear comfy clothes that you can move in, sweat in, stretch in and feel good in.

I have no co-ordination, will I feel awkward?

YES – but so does everyone else!  So don’t worry about it!  And every week, your muscles take over and allow those movements to feel more natural and elegant!

Do I have to perform?

NO – but you can if you want to.  Over the 12 weeks, i teach techniques first, and choreography only towards the end of the session so that you feel comfortable with the moves. then you can either join us for the December OCCP as a dancer or audience member!  or if you cannot attend, at least you’ll have learned a fun dance to  show your close friends and family on your own time!

Do I need a jingly belt/ coin belt/veil/costume?

NOPE!  I am happy to see folks with or without the coin scarves/belts/etc.. I want you to feel comfy and relaxed and take it at your own pace!

Of course,if you have one already and want to wear it, you are most welcome to – pretty skirts, fun tops are great – but I want you to break a sweat, so don’t wear your full on performance costumes!

I do organize the Dancers’ Bazaar in October so that you can come out and see the full wealth of pretties you can partake in, if you so choose, but again, do it your own pace!

Any other questions?

Leave me a comment below and I’ll be happy to let ya know anything you might need to.  

Classes start Monday the 12th, so if you can come out to play – please check my class listings for registration info – and come play!

In the meantime, here are some samplings of past fun:

Bellywood :

Thanks to my students who gave me permission to use theses clips of them from the spring 2011 session routine!

And Halyma [ that’s me!] doing some belly dancing :

Note: the music is obviously not arabic. I have always liked to dance to a variety of music, but especially music with which I already have a connection.  I have loved this song since I was a teenager, and with the white and blue silk pieces designed for me by Shibori Borealis, I was really moved to just be floaty and as graceful as possible for this piece… this is me – not too worried about being sharp on the tech moves, more about the feeling…