Tribalog 2015

Tribal Sleepover – 27th – 29th November, 2015
Ingestre Hall, Stafford – hosted by Pauline & Asif Qu

As Mike was away in Congo I had a few dance friends to stay who had travelled down for my Kalash Panache Master class. After a few glasses of wine they had convinced me that I really needed to travel to Stafford the following weekend for Pauline and Asif’s tribal Sleepover with a Time `Traveller theme. Fortunately Pauline was an absolute star and managed to squeeze me in and even re-arranged the dorm so I could muck in with friends – not least Deana Lawman. Deana was teaching workshops for the weekend and was due to perform albeit solo until she suggested I join her for a duet – but I had’t take a costume as I wasn’t thinking I’d be performing. In true tribal spirit each of my dorm mates lent me something and we managed to persuade Steve Miknenas to play

ATS Bootcamp – Deana Lawman
Back Through the Mists of Time – Angela Noble
New Skool ATS – Deana Lawman
Why not spice it up with skirts – Deana Lawman

Jesse Stanbridge, FatChanceBellyDance – 10th – 11th October, 2015

A great weekend in London starting off with a delicious Peruvian dinner in Covent Garden and catch up with two of my children. Then off to the ISTD Studios in Shoreditch the next morning which brought back memories of Tribal London from a few years ago. This time the workshops were with Jesse Stanbridge who used to teach in London before moving back to her home country to teach and dance with FCBD in San Francisco. After a full Saturday of thoroughly enjoyable workshops we all headed off to the Tower of London for the ATS Worldwide flashmob. A fabulous setting with Tower Bridge and the Thames behind us caused many a passer-by to stop and photograph us as we shimmied and zaghareeted along to Elila Farh.

Another full day of workshops and then on to the Firewater show for a spectacle of wonderful dancing including ITS performance by Jesse with Alexis Southall and Catherine Taylor. Apart from seeing Jesse and Philippa re-united I think my favourite performances were La Zingara’s interpretation of the Zar ritual and Samantha Valentine and Catherine Taylor’s North African fusion piece

2 days of workshops
Under the Microscope: ATS® Technique
Formation Station – from duet to stagger, duet to duelling duets
Mindful Musicality – mapping a fast and slow song from the ATS® catalogue and explore how best to express them.
Crafting a Set: presentation – from facial expression and curbing nervousness before hitting the stage, to proper presentation and putting together an exciting set within a given time limit.

Advanced Teacher Training – 15th – 26th June, 2015
FatChanceBellyDance, San Francisco

Kelley was so honoured to have been selected as 1 of 10 teachers to undergo intensive advanced teacher training

Wine tour fun on our one day off

Kae Montgomery –  Didcot, Oxfordshire  20 – 22 February 2015
hosted by Ashnah and Maho






I usually travel to workshops by train as it’s a much more relaxing homeward journey than driving after a gruelling weekend of workshops. Sadly I had no choice but to drive as the train lines were having major track works on Sundays. So I packed my bags and headed off up the M5/M4 only to get stuck for an hour in a roadworks traffic jam. At least I had time to listen to my playlists and decide what tracks I might use for upcoming performances. I eventually arrived in Didcot where I’d booked a little shed to stay in and was pleasantly surprised when the owner showed me the little cooker and breakfast supplies all laid on. Either side of me were more little sheds and I could espy various dancers doing their hair and makeup ready for the evening’s dinner and show at the local Indian restaurant. The owner very kindly offered to take us all down to the restaurant once we were ready. Both food and entertainment were great and it was  lovely to meet up with friends from both Germany and Switzerland.

Fortunately the workshops weren’t due to start until 10.30 the following morning so we didn’t have to rush to bed too early.
Kae soon had us up and running though – literally – we jogged and stretched and rolled around the floor, high kicking, doing one armed press ups and crawling on all fours. She’s certainly hard core!
After a fabulous day of workshops we met for dinner in the local pizza restaurant, shared a few beers and put the world to rights before crashing out ready to start all over again the next day

Forever Beginner – Slinky Slows
A prerequisite class for master classes which used fun combinations, basic movements and their correct technique from the tribal slow vocabulary
FatChance Favourite Advanced Steps
Kae chose her personal favourites from FCBD® Vol 9 DVD!
Kae’s Drum Solo Choreography
The drum solo section of a set is always one of the most exciting parts where dancers show off their techniques and skills with playful musicality. In ATS® this section is usually performed by two dancers as a Power Duet and it is the closest thing to a solo performance. So we learned a choreography created by Kae and how to interpret music and play with the ATS® form between two dancers.
Musicality in ATS®
Great ATS® dancers must not only master the moves but also feel the music and make the audience feel it too. In this workshop we focussed on:
• Music interpretation and expression
• The vast music library compiled by Carolena Nericcio and FCBD®
Formations for Locations: ATS® Rush Hour!
We learned how to communicate with the audience and fellow dancers using formations but focussing on the Rush Hour concept in the Duelling Duet formation using both tribal fast and slow vocabularies.

ATS® Homecoming, Burlingame, San Francisco
9th – 11th January

The first ever dedicated ATS® event hosted by FatChanceBellyDance, Inc sandwiched between General Skills and Teacher Training was an absolutely wonderful few days. It was so good to catch up with many previous GS and TT buddies like the Manhattan Tribal girls and Janet Taylor who is now teaching at the FCBD studio.  I was also very thankful to meet some of the other teachers in the flesh who I will be meeting up with again in June this year for the Advanced Teacher Training – it’s going to be really exciting.








Friday night kicked off with a performance by all the UK participants under the name of Troupe Britannia. I’d come up with the idea of getting us all to dance together and we’d managed to meet up only once to decide who would dance with who and to which section of the 9 minute track mixed especially for us by Phil Thornton. It wasn’t until we arrived in San Francisco that we were able to run through things with our two additional honorary Brits – Jesse Stanbridge and Kristine Adams of FatChance. So here’s the end result:

There was a second show on Saturday night showcasing all the teachers and it was wonderful to see both Jesse and Janet performing with FatChanceBellyDance® – although they had both danced with some of their teachers before  this was extra special as it was the first time all the old troupe had been together – it was magic.

There were many highlights to the weekend – not least meeting and having a long chat with Masha Archer. Masha was Carolena’s teacher and former pupil of Jamila Salimpour. She was absolutely charming and I just loved that no photos could be taken before re-applying her lipstick.

Another favourite was dancing in flow for one whole hour with Carolena. Just imagine a huge room full of dancers who do not talk or communicate with each other for a whole hour. Each person just immerses themselves in the dance in their own duet with Mama C. It was an incredibly emotional and spiritual experience resulting in many of us hugging each other and breaking down in tears – in a good way of course.


The workshops were great but I think my favourites were dancing to 9/8 rhythms with Mimi Fontana and Dramatic Slow, Slow and Fast with DeAnna Padron Freeman.
Needless to say I’ve already started saving to go back next year


3 days of Workshops:
Yoga for ATS® bellydancers – Anita Lalwani
Energetic Body and Quiet Mind – Carolena Nericcio
Dramatic slow, Slow and Fast – DeAnna Padron Freeman
ATS® Props – Fans – Elizabeth Fish (Super Beth)
ATS® meets 9/8 rhythm project – Mimi Fontana
Best Seat in the House – Anita Lalwani
Exploring Themes and Emotions in ATS® using Vol 9 moves from Ghawazee Caravan – Kristine Adams
ATS® for the soloist – Cyndi Cyreigna Elliott
Nandana’s Movement Dialect – Dawn Ruckert
Dancing in Flow – Carolena Nericcio