Great Lakes Belly Dance Convention

Sponsored by the Belly Dance Divas

Ann Arbor, MI


November 7, 8, and 9, 2008


Mirah Ammal will be a featured instructor at the Great Lakes Belly Dance Convention in Ann Arbor Michigan. Mirah and the Al-Bahira Dance Theater performance troupe will also each be performing in the Gala Show on Saturday evening at the convention.


There are several instructors at the event and many workshops/seminars to choose from. Below are full descriptions of the workshops/seminars Mirah will be teaching at the GLBDC as well as additional instructor information about Mirah and links for those interested in learning more and attending the event.

Mirah's Workshop/Seminar Descriptions

   Mirah's Workshop/Seminar Descriptions   Interested in Joining Us at the Convention?   Info about Mirah the Instructor

(Note: for the most part, I did NOT name these--the BD Divas named the sessions, and in some cases, there may be seem to be slight differences between the descriptions on the GLBDC website and mine. The discrepancies are the result of words inadvertently dropped or added when in their materials editing process--these are my full descriptions of the seminars. Feel free to contact me if you have questions about what I intend to teach. ;-)

Saturday Nov. 8 10:00-11:00 a.m.

"Tribalusional" (Advanced Beginner and Intermediate)

Blending Orientale and tribal fusion technique for beautiful impact and hot combinations. “Hey! You got your tribal in my Oriental!” “You got your Oriental in my tribal!” These two tastes really *do* go great together! In this technique-focused seminar, we’ll work on various tribal-oriental fusion movements and dance steps, with special emphasis on the upper body (ribcage, shoulders, arms, and hands). Explore smooth movement, isolation techniques for pop-lock, i, and connection techniques, and learn variations in styles and movements that will allow you to take the best from both worlds—tribal and Oriental—and use them both in your own dance performances.


Saturday Nov. 8 1:10-2:10 p.m.

"Shock Factor" (Intermediate and Advanced)

Use dramatic shifts, subtle surprises, and exciting variations to create super accents and memorable moments in your dance. In this workshop, we’ll explore combinations and techniques—ways of using muscle contractions, facial expressions, movement textures, layers, and more—to draw your audience in and leave them begging for more. We'll also work on how to use layering and accents effectively, peppering just the right amount into your performance without overdoing it.


Saturday Nov. 8 3:30-4:30 p.m.

"Rock Your Raks Assaya" (All)

A fun and lively workshop on the beautiful art of raks assaya (cane dance) and earthy Saidi dance style. Learn contemporary contemporary and traditional elements you can incorporate into folkloric, Orientale, and even fusion style performances, from spins and holds to elements of Saidi style (and what differentiates it from "Orientale" style.


Sunday Nov. 9 11:10 a.m.-12:10 p.m.

"Haggalla!" (All)

Earthy yet delicate and often youthfully energetic, Haggalla comes from the Western Desert region of Egypt, along the Libyan border. It is unique from many other forms of Egyptian dance or belly dance in movement and costume. In this workshop, you’ll get brief historical information about the dance, learn basic Haggalla dance elements and stylization, and learn some of the common stylizations and techniques used to bring this disappearing dance form to the stage.

Sunday Nov. 9 2:20-3:20 p.m.

"Lucious Layers"

Whether you’re looking to add a spice to a tribal performance or dramatic emphasis in an Oriental dance, or working on an eye-popping drum solo, spectacular layers are key!  In this workshop, you’ll work on techniques for beautiful layering—sumptuous shimmies over juicy movements, intense vibrations in delicate movements, “meta-shimmies”,
and more using the upper body, hips, and torso. We’ll explore how to make good use of various layering effects in different dance styles and combinations. Plus you’ll learn tips and tricks for keeping your shimmies/vibrations and movements smooth, getting past “stuck” spots, and avoiding the “spaz” factor.
We'll distinguish different shimmy and vibration variations and work on building technique with each of these types of shimmies, and cover exercises to help you improve your technique to differentiate and even combine different shimmies and vibrations in performance while still keeping each distinct.



Interested in Joining Us at the Convention?

   Mirah's Workshop/Seminar Descriptions   Interested in Joining Us at the Convention?   Info about Mirah the Instructor

Several dancers from the Twin Cities area will be traveling to the Convention in Ann Arbor by way of I-94 through Milwaukee/Chicago, and some may be looking for car pool companions or roommates at the Convention. If you're interested in connecting with other dancers who are looking to travel to the convention, email with the subject line CONVENTION and we'll guide you to ways you can connect with other dancers headed to the GLBDC.   

If you know Mirah or the Aalim School/Al-Bahira or if you found the information here helpful, please be sure to mention on your registration form that you were referred by Mirah Ammal. Thank you!

Here is the link to the GLBDC page on the Belly Dance Divas website where you can download registration forms, or you can get one from Mirah at class:


Information about Mirah the Instructor

   Mirah's Workshop/Seminar Descriptions   Interested in Joining Us at the Convention?   Info about Mirah the Instructor

Workshop-specific biography coming soon, in the meantime, here is the link to Mirah's general biography.

Link to Mirah's Video samples page.