fall 2021

welcome to your class page

Congratulations! You’re taking classes with Magpie Movement. Below are some resources that can help you with your home study. All of the information is voluntary and is not required to prepare for classes, it’s just for your enjoyment.

  • Classes will be held on Sundays @ 7:45 – 9:00pm on Nov 07/21/28 and Dec 05/12.

  • Your instructor is Vanessa Matthews. She is best reached by email (vanessa@magpiemovement.com) or by text (709-693-9259). Facebook messenger is NOT a reliable way to contact her.

  • Class is held at Lynn Panting Dance, 30 Harvey Road in Studio #1. Please press the buzzer and wait to be admitted.

  • Sun Nov 14 = No class this evening because Vanessa has mild cold symptoms and has a COVID test scheduled just to be safe. We’ll add 15 minutes to the end of each class for the rest of the session to make up the time. Fundamentals class will be 6:30-7:45p on Nov 21/Nov 28/Dec 05/Dec 12.

choreography notes

Here you’ll find all the information you could possibly need to learn our class choreography including music tracks, structure and mapping, steps with counts, and a video breakdown.

This term we’ll be learning a choreography to “Ana Fintitharak” by Ali Saad.

music resources

I’ve compiled a page with all of my favourite resources for general music theory to train your mind and ear to be a more musical dancer. I’ve also added resources for Arabic rhythms. There are LOTS of resources here, so take a peek at your leisure.

NL Belly Dance Group

Come join this group on Facebook to connect with local dancers, musicians, producers, and teachers on the island. Lots of posts about classes, workshops, and costuming for sale! Plus it’s nice to connect with fellow dancers.

silk and chiffon and georgette, oh my!

how to find the right sized dance veil

A veil is a large piece of fabric that is held between the fingers and is used by the dancer to frame themselves and add a dynamic “dance partner” (catching some big air during turns).

The fabric/colour of your veil is up to you, but you should look for a semi-sheer and light-weight fabric. Chiffon is a little heavier and easier to predict. Silk is lighter so it floats, but does have a mind of its own (a fun game!)

Your veil should be:

  • Rectangular (not circle or semi-circle for this class).
  • Wide enough to cover from your collarbone to the tip of your middle finger. About 1.0m to 1.5m wide (45″ is standard width).
  • Long enough to hang over your extended arm and almost touch the floor with both short-edges. About 2.5m to 3m long (105″ is standard length, but they’re available up to 144″ if you’re a tall mermaid).

Your instructor will have some veils for purchase or you can buy one online from any retailer you’d like. You can even get creative and cut/make your own so that your veil can be as unique as you are.

There will be a very limited number of veils available to use for the first class. 

class #1

Petite Jamilla from the Unveiled DVD (2009) dancing to “Elokainu”.

Vanessa Castro at Phoenix Belly Dance 10 Year Anniversary (2021) dancing to “The Chosen One”.

Victoria Teel at Best of the Best Judges Showcase (2014) dancing to “Raksa and Sound of Darbuka”.

suggested reading
covered this class
  • veil sizing
  • grips
  • catching air
  • float vs pull
  • matador
  • throws

class #2

Aziza at Oriental Night Spain (2014) dancing to “Lonely Star by the Sea”.

Belly Dance Adelaide (2014) dancing to “Ancient Ruins”.

Ruby Beh at JamBallah (2017) dancing to “Reina de la Noche”.

suggested reading
covered this class
  • “Ana Fintitharak” choreography, Intro (0:00-0:36)

class #3

Andalee at Zamani World Dance (2017) dancing to “Ahlam”.

Sahira at Bayou Belly (2017) dancing to “Dansöz Dünya (Enstrumantal)”.

  • “Ana Fintitharak” choreography, Chorus A (0:37 – 1:13)

class #4

Fleur Estelle Dance Company (2018) dancing to “Howa Habibi”.

Aziza at Eilat Festival (2010) dancing to “Salome’s Seven Veils” and “Shimmabulous”.

  • “Ana Fintitharak” choreography, Taqsim A (1:13 – 1:36) and Taqsim B (1:36 – 2:03)

class #5

Laura Selenzi at Serpentine Circus (2010) dancing to “Crying Angels” and “Khatwet Serena”.

Victoria Teel’s Fan Style Demo (2021) dancing to “Briel”.

  • “Ana Fintitharak” choreography, Chorus B (2:03-2:39) and Sultry (2:39-2:48)

class #6

Farasha at THE ONE Bellydance Festival (2015) dancing to “Voyage to the Orient”.

Linda Gamberini’s Dance Class (2015) dancing to “Breaking Free”.

  • “Ana Fintitharak” choreography, Finale (2:48-3:32) and polishing.

don’t stop, keep up the great work!

dancing at home

Below are great online classes that you can sign up for, and continue dancing at home between dance classes and sessions! The teachers, and their content, style, and approach to learning cannot be recommended enough as supplemental studies to your regular classes.