Continuing my favorite top twelve list of the best websites for Oriental and belly dancers, I delved into websites that inspire me. They inspire my dancing, my passion for Middle Eastern culture, and for music, costuming and makeup, all part and parcel of being a true Oriental dancer. (Check out Part I if this article if you missed it!)
- The Casbah Dance Experience: Morocco, one of my favorite dancers, is the end all, be all original Oriental dance ethnographer, and her articles on the subject are considered academic gold. She writes reviews on other books and dance videos and posts occasional articles focusing on different dance traditions and styles, such as Oriental floorwork or dance traditions in Morocco or on the business end of the dance, like pay. If you find her writing informative, invest in your dance education and buy You Asked Aunt Rocky, the Oriental dance bible, all written in an engaging get-to-business voice and colorful anecdotes in a way only a long-time New Yorker can.
- She’s Got Hips: A wide-ranging blog covering everything from translated popular song lyrics from Arabic to becoming a better dance student, teacher, or performer. Well worth bookmarking! Mahin, the author, is an American dancer and author of Daily Belly Dance Quickies, another fabulous dance resource, and an email newsletter worth subscribing to!
- Belly Dance Geek: The name says it all, a podcast and collection of free and paid-for resources for the serious Oriental dancer on all the bits you might not have learned in class, like how to give and take constructive dance critique or how to build a belly dance marketing plan.
- Project Belly Dance: An American belly dance reality show at its finest! Watch online episodes for free as some big regional names in belly dance in the US compete for the top prize. Unlike other reality shows, though, there is a serious lack of backstabbing or mean-spiritness, and that makes watching both the dancers and their dancing a pleasure. You will want to root for each of them!
- Belly Dance Events: The website may be basic, but this is an invaluable list of dance events, such as festivals, intensives, and competitions, listed for 2015, and it is updated often. Most events are based in the US but occasionally international events are listed.
- Yasmina’s Joy of Belly Dancing: A carefully curated set of articles, tips, tricks and media related to belly and Oriental dance. Here, you can look up the lyrics to popular Oriental dance songs, a listing of belly dance magazines, articles, vintage pin-up postcards and Orientalist art featuring dancers, and costuming links. You might get lost in here! A good way to spend a lazy hour.