Teachers & Workshops
Workshops With Lebanese Simon
Classical Sharki A la Simon-aise 💗: starting with a series of drills focusing on technique and times in execution, Simon will then cover classical vocabulary presented in an energetic yet elegant way for this classical choreo. This Choreo is rich in Lebanese stylization, framing some legendary names, travel combinations, Simons personal style and soulful moments.
We start with the folk, and from the folk dabke line dance we’ll evolve slowly to cover more intricate dabke combos and drills focusing on light transitions and some elevation change to highlight showmanship and artistry in execution. The dabke class will feature essential dabke combinations essential for bellydancers, helping to elevate the art form. Folklore is a must!
Workshops With Zahra Zuhair
Zahra’s Technique Lab This workshop not only focuses on clear, dynamic precision and refined movement, but also nuance. We start with the basic fundamentals of bellydance, clarifying those shapes, playing with them, and exploring their dynamic possibilities in a drilling format that will challenge your body and mind.
Combo Collective à la Zahra Whether you love to improvise or choreograph your dance, every dancer should have a vocabulary of combinations readily accessible. In this workshop, Zahra delivers a package of combinations ready to become building blocks for your original dance performances. Traveling combos, combos combining hips, turns, shimmies and more, will be explored. Zahra is known for her deep flowing undulations and silky smooth moves. We will explore nuances of the music, and learn combinations featuring, ooey-gooey moves, layering, accents, flourishes and pauses. We will add our combos into a Romantic pop choreography.
Balady - Our combo collective continues with cute and sassy Balady combos and improvisation.
Spirit Dance - Let Chandara be your guide on this magical, mystical journey through your heart and mind to release the inner beauty of your spirit through dance! You’ll start with visualization exercises which evolves into an ancient circle dance to create a feeling of connection and community. Then we’ll use that energy to lift our spirits and dance together, hafla style! Tap into your inner spirit of dance and let it soar! Bring your drums and other instruments to fill the air with the heartbeat of the Dance!
Chandara Gamal was first introduced to Greek "Bellydance" in 1981 at a restaurant in Bamberg, West Germany where she was touched by not only by the music and the graceful movements of the dancer, but by the joy on her face as she danced. Chandara took her first lesson in 1982 and has been in love with the Dance ever since.
After returning to the United States, Chandara continued her study with Patti Lyle (Iowa), and Simone's 7th Veil Dance Company in St. Louis, Missouri. About 1988, Soraya Al Musri, founder of Aalim Dance Academy, took Chandara under her wing and became her mentor, helping her grow into an excellent performer and caring teacher. She began teaching at Aalim Dance Academy in 1989, and later created Raqs Al Dounya World Dance Ensemble, and co-founded Desert Moon Dance Academy in St. Louis. Upon relocating to Columbus, Ohio in 2002, Chandara created Bellydance Columbus to continue to share her love of this ancient, beautiful art form.
Over the years, Chandara has attended countless master classes, seminars & workshops with some of the greatest names in Middle Eastern Dance. She has taught workshops across the Midwest and has performed in a variety of venues - including television, schools and universities, state and local fairs, restaurants and nightclubs.
Yoga with Andi
Andi will keep us energized and focused in Body, Mind and Spirit with Morning and Evening Yoga!!
Andi first discovered yoga in 2006 as an undergrad studying dance and ancient history. Yoga was the perfect marriage of fluid movement, philosophy, and wisdom that she had been searching for.
In 2007, she began instructing yoga as a student-teacher for the dance department at a local college in her hometown of Dallas, Texas. Years of seminars, in-person classes, and self-study eventually led Andi to meet her Guru, Swami Mukundananda, whom she continues to study yoga and mindfulness with.
Andi has obtained Kundalini yoga training and sport yoga training through ASFA. In 2014, yearning for a deeper understanding of alignment and anatomy in her practice, Andi completed personal trainer certification through the nationally accredited NESTA program.
Andi is currently in her 6th year as the resident yoga instructor for the Mount Vernon YMCA and a guest instructor at several studios across Central Ohio. She has a lighthearted approach to teaching and infuses joy and laughter into all of her classes.