Coffee Talk – History of North American Belly Dance

What an awesome night we had together! Thank you to all those who came out to our first official Coffee Talk with Scarlet Lux! We had fun with our first theme for Coffee Talk – History!

There were just enough seats (and snacks) for everyone, and we want to give a special shout out to Wendy Harrison for finding such a beautiful and comfortable space for us to have our first community gathering!

On a rainy evening November 4, our first group had a great time exploring the history of Belly Dance in North America, starting with the wave of immigration that brought so many different cultural arts to the continent. Our talk covered several of the outstanding figures of the first & second generations of dancers – like Serena Wilson on the East Coast and Jamila Salimpour on the West Coast – who continued the work of their teachers to build an amazing foundation for present-day artists and performers. We talked about the classic neighbourhoods and clubs where these dancers learned from each other and started their own schools, we discussed the composition of the classic 5-part set, and shed some light on the “why” behind the differences in style that we see in dancers today.

The people who brought their music and culture with them from overseas left an indelible mark on the minds & hearts of artists here. Our exploration of how these dancers and musicians combined these multi-cultural influences into what is now regarded as the classic “American” belly dance set was a great way to spend the evening. We hope you were inspired to continue researching the various elements that came together to create that unique style and presentation of the dance!

Scarlet Lux looks forward to providing more opportunities for Vancouver Belly Dancers to connect, learn, and inspire each other. We will be announcing the date, location & topic of our next Coffee Talk soon! Thank you again for coming!

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