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Styles of Belly Dance



Belly dance encompasses more than a single dance form. As a centuries-old art, it has evolved and grown and now includes many different styles and aesthetics. A comprehensive list can be found at shira.net . Here are some of the most common:

1. Egyptian & Turkish

2. Americal Tribal Style & Tribal Fusion

Egyptian and Turkish


"Egyptian belly dance is one of the most classic dance forms, Egyptian dance is elegant, and rather demure. The moves are very focused on the body, and moves tend to be unweighted. ... Turkish belly dance is very earthy, and tends to have more weighted moves. On the whole, it is more flashy than Egyptian. Costumes tend to be on the revealing side." - Maria Trogolo, featured dancer
"Egyptian raqs sharqi is characterized by soft, floating movements, an economy of motion, and an effortless appearance. ... Turkish belly dance is a bit like Egyptian raqs, but with the moves amplified and the energy level turned up a few notches." –Shantell Powell, featured dancer

Raqs Sharqi is the Arabic term for belly dance and generally brings to mind the classic Egyptian style. According to shira.net, the Egyptian style gained popularity in the U.S. in the late 1970s.
Examples:
Yasmina Ramzy
Hadia

American Tribal Style (ATS) and Tribal Fusion


"American Tribal... incorporates a lot of the basic oriental dance moves in a more earthy and snake-like manner than its Egyptian sister." –Maria Martins, featured dancer
"American Tribal Style includes urban tribal, gothic tribal, and other tribal fusions. The posture is quite different from traditional dance. Stylistically, it is a very different approach; in general it is darker. Costuming is dark and busy." –Maria Togolo, featured dancer
"ATS is a recent belly dance fusion style developed in California which relies on group improvisation. ... Tribal fusion is ostensibly a fusion based on ATS, but many current tribal fusion artists have never actually taken lessons in ATS, so the title is rather erroneous." –Shantell Powell, featured dancer
Examples:
Rachel Brice
Sharon Kihara

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