validated, challenged, humbled. I am much more confident of what
I perceive and can create myself. I am not a huge "touchy-feely-tell-us-all-how-you-feel"
kinda person, HOWEVER, I found that the exercises led me (and
all of us) into deeply experiencing/feelingwithout any of the
usual associated drama/embarrassment. Emotional work that was
very intellectual (?) At any rate... whatever the correct word
is, the work was very integrative for me. No feeling of "some
of this and then some of that"...it flowed and built and
had a certain stealth learning to it. The change I experienced
between Friday and Sunday was actually quite large, but it was
in some part of my head and perceptions that I don't normally
access for dance. That caught me by surprise and i s probably
the hardest part to describe yet what left the deepest impression
weeks later. On a COMPLETELY non-dance note: I found that I went
back to work making things for my gallery show with a completely
changedapproach. I created 4 peices in rapid succession that were
unplanned originally but tht i liked so much I included in the
show. My felt work had taken a completely new direction and I
really think that this is the result of the inner changes that
came out of the intensive. I can't spell it out very clearly,
but it's like I grew into another part of my brain..." -
"I would love the chance to do another intensive with you...I
think you will be really happy with my progress. (I hope! lol)
I found the intensive this summer tremendously helpful with my
development as an artist and performer, rather than just a dancer
(drilling moves only, etc). I'm doing much better with use of
stage and my stage face. " - Molly
Bellydance Artistry DVD:
Review by Sarah Schneider Koning 11/09/11
bought this DVD from Tempest at Tribal Revolution and was super
excited to get it home to watch. I've been a fan of her approachable
teaching style for years and when I saw that this video was about
digging deep into the right brain, I was eager to learn Tempest's
creative process. Tempest's style of performance is highly unique.
She builds fantastic and whimsical imagery using music, costume,
stage presence and form. In this DVD, she leads you through the
cerebral processes of creating your own work of art, as well as
giving you some fun Nouveau Noir and Steampunk inspired combinations
to play with.
over 2 hours of content, this DVD is *full* of information! The
video begins with a warm up that leaves one exhilarated, not exhausted.
Then Tempest breaks down 10 arm positions and 15 combinations,
with clear and precise coaching on "giving good face",
proper form, and traveling steps. After the instruction of each
combo, there is a short run through with music and there is also
a lengthier segment of the DVD that allows the viewer to follow
Tempest and two of her students in a review of all combo material.
favorite part of the DVD is when Tempest addresses the viewer's
process of creation. She encourages the viewer to consider what
they are communicating to the audience and offers advice on finding
inspiration, building a foundation from the dancer's talents and
developing a story using music, concept, costume and movement.
She then walks, step by step, through two of her performance pieces
from concept to creation, culminating in a performance of each.
believe dancers of all levels will find this DVD useful. Whether
a beginner looking for movement training or a pro searching for
her next theatrical inspiration, Tempest covers all the bases,
from concept to creation.
Sarah Schneider Koning
Boheme Tribal Belly Dance
Review of Bellydance Artistry by
Released in 2011, Tempests instructional DVD Belly Dance
Artistry with Tempest explores a bellydancers relationship
with movement, music and the creative process. Tempest guides
the viewer through warm-up sections, movement vocabulary and creative
steps with the intention of enabling the viewer to create a full-fledged
performance. The benefit of this DVD is that all of the exercises
can be broken up into sections and paused at the students
leisure or they can taken as a whole, equivalent to a full-length
Belly Dance Artistry begins with a warm-up section in three parts,
divided from slowest movement to fastest. Again, these can be
taken individually or mixed and matched for a warm- up of varying
intensity. Then begins the Foundation Flow/Elemental Energy
this portion of the DVD, Tempest uses the four natural elements
(Earth, Air, Fire, Water) to build movement on the body in four
parts, from the ground up. Here Tempest establishes the importance
of grounding and posture, subsequently layering on arm movement,
torso movement and travelling steps. Her explanations of posture
and placement are detailed and helpful without being too wordy.
As the DVD transitions to the Fusion Finesse section,
viewers can see how these elements become the building blocks
that make up the following combinations. Fusion Finesse
makes up the meat (or tofu) of the DVD. I especially
enjoy how Tempest draws in multiple influences from the early
Modernist era, from 2-d to 3-d art, mentioning Ruth St. Denis,
Theda Bara, flapper movement and Steampunk fantasy. The larger
section begins with a smaller selection of arm position descriptions,
broken up into even smaller sections for easy navigation. Then
follows the Combinations section, with more full-body
and travelling combos that incorporate layered movement. I also
enjoy how Tempest breaks down the description of each combo and
then subsequently dances it up to tempo with Nathaniel Johnstones
music. Some of my favorite movements were the Charleston Strut,
Charlies Hip Turn, the Egyptian Hot Stepper, Global and
Berber Flap and the Ghawazee Grilled Cheese. Many of these catchy
combinations are inspired by Tempests technique base in
Turkish bellydance and also North African dance.
I was enthusiastic about Tempests detailed notes on arm
positions with each combination, since arm framing is such an
important component of bellydance. The extended practices following
the combinations are both an effective movement review and aesthetically
pleasing performance, complete with assistance from Tempests
students. The From Concept to Creation segment of
Belly Dance Artistry articulates helpful steps in the creative
process, from finding inspiration to allowing self-reflection
and critique in after arriving at a complete product. In order
to draw a parallel, Tempest summarizes her own creative process
for the two dances that conclude the DVD. Those familiar with
Tempests bellydance blogs may remember familiar concepts
in this portion as well.
Tempests Belly Dance Artistry DVD provides a formidable
amount of practice material for the bellydance student. I would
recommend this more for somewhat experienced dancers and above,
though the beginning dancer not intimidated by the breadth of
material on the DVD will gain an early start if they wish to advance
their creativity. Original music by Nathaniel Johnstone provides
a custom fit of music and movement, allowing Tempest
(and students) movement on the DVD to look and feel more
organic. A pleasure to watch; a challenge for mind and body.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
"I just wanted to let you know how much I'm enjoying
the DVD! The format is great, and I love how laid back feeling
it is! All the sections are great, but I think my favorite is
the Foundation Flow/Elemental Energy. I think the lack of that
connection was holding me back. It is really helping me take my
dance to a whole new level! There is so much fantastic information
packed in that I know I'll be turning to it for a long time and
get something new from it each time." - Christina Steeves
"I got my copy of Bellydance Artistry with Tempest,
by Tempest & Med'Devi Ink with music by Nathaniel Johnstone,
in the mail today. I've worked through the first 45 minutes, and
am loving it! I am a complete beginner, and even though I have
a long way to go I find it much more accessible than the other
bellydance DVD I'd tried. It seems like experienced dancers would
find it useful too. She demonstrates a lot of creative techniques
and ideas." - Ruth Duncan
Star Reviews on Amazon.com
Check out the review of the DVD by Alexandra Lancette in the Fall
2011 issue of Fuse
November/December 2011 issue of Zaghareet!
The 2012 issue of The
Tribal Bellydance Guide + The Bellydance Chronicles
(Indiana) "Our group hosted Tempest for a weekend
of workshops in April 2010. All the participants thoroughly enjoyed
Tempest's teaching style, which is very mellow with lots of humor
and conveys a lot of information! Yet, somehow, we retain the
information extremely well. There was a good balance of theory
and exercises. Some of the participants were a bit hesitant at
first with the exercises but Tempest helped them work through
that fear and they ended up enjoying doing them. Tempest is also
very generous with her time and advice giving. She did two fabulous
numbers that showcased different aspects of belly dance. I'm really
looking forward to hosting Tempest again, hopefully in the near
future!" - Celeste, Black Rose Caravan
(Spring Caravan) "I really enjoyed taking your workshop.
I was afraid that I would get lost at some point, as I am pretty
much a beginner and find it hard to follow along with instructors
at times. You went at a nice pace though and were very clear in
your instruction, which I really liked. I wish I lived closer
to you, as I would love to take the regular classes that you offer.
Maybe someday :-) For now, I'll keep an eye out for any more workshops
that come my way. Oh, and I just started working with your instructional
dvd and am enjoying that as well. Hope to see you again sometime
soon." - Jess
(Tribal Fest 10 & Tribal Treffen Germany) (compiling)
Tour 2009 / 2009 General
(North Carolina, passed on by Sara Beaman, event sponsor):
Tempest was funny, informative, and taught wonderful new
moves and combos. Thanks to the Devoted for such a great workshop!
It was wonderful and Tempest was an awesome teacher. So
full of life and just plain fun. I was excited about the new and
different things I learned and loved it very much!
I had a fantastic time. Her personality was wonderful!
Plus shopping was a bonus as well! :-)
Tempest was GREAT! Very knowledgeable about the history
of the moves she was teaching....She was super nice and made the
workshop alot of fun.
(Iowa) "Thanks for coming to Iowa. That was a blast!
Coming to see you and Tim was a great experience. I will use your
ideas in my home and my dance. It was good to have the message
reinforced to get back to the 'roots' of the dance. And the idea
of dancing with live musicians, you were SO preaching to the chior
honey! It was great being with you tonight. Thanks again!
Peace, Love, Happiness," - Becky
(Minneapolis)" I wanted to write you as I am very
impressed with your talent which is more than technique. Your
sheer charisma, creativity AND technique make you a dancer one
has to stop all to sit and watch." - Medea
(Nebraska)" I just wanted to say thank you for
bringing the Durga Tour to Lincoln. We very much enjoyed both
you and Tim Rayborn. And we love the music we picked up from you!
Again, Thanks, Michele Schuler
Assoc. Director, Benu Dance Company / Dancers Oasis Studio, Co-ordinator
Tribal Dreams Festival
(Cinncinnati) "I wanted to take a few minutes to thank
you all for coming to Cincinnati during the Durga Tour. Not only
was it great to see you again (and meet you, Tim), but I really
enjoyed working and dancing with you! Everybody had a great time
at the workshops and the show. They especially liked Tim's solo
(which we seldom get the opportunity to enjoy), and the way that
both you & Asharah danced to a recorded piece and Tim's drumming.
It was generous of you all to dance/play for us so late at night
(especially after all your travels and Golden Corral! haha!),
and we all loved it! If you're planning a stop nearby and would
like to do something in Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky in the future,
I'd love to have you back (separately or in any combination)!
Just drop me a note, and we'll start working on it. Blessings"
(Arkansas) " I want you to know it was
such an uplifting experience for us all, and since your time here
we have gained some new dancers to our troupe and they will definately
be long term spice to our future endevores THANK YOU for all of
your hard work for us :) - Always DeAnna
PS when you have recouperated I would like to ask you about possible
workshops for "teaching the teachers" perhaps we would
come to you? I loved your warm up and would like to use it for
a base to do something similar for my own classes, but naturally
I'd have to learn the "Tempest system" first."
"Hello! Just writing to say that I enjoyed taking your workshop,
both for the combos as well as the new perspectives on the steampunk
genre. And I also was quite relieved to see you allowed a little
dorkiness to creep into your teaching technique--too often I've
been to workshops where a teacher seems too self-conscious to
really be herself ^.^ Looking forward to future workshops and
performances," - Sandhya
"Hi, Thanks for the Reading workshop, It was truly inspiring.
Ruth and I are still buzzing from it. We've just spent 2 hours
discussing your aesthetic. For me your workshop was an epiphany.
I haven't been bellydancing long but I was already feeling restless.
I've always felt slightly alienated by the Egyptian and tribal
styles- they were roles I put on rather than inhabited. However,
your dancing moves me. You have great geneorsity when you dance.
Not only do you capture the expressive beauty of the dance of
the fin de siecle you also invoke the pioneering spirit of its
artists." - Melanie (UK)
(from review on bhuz.com on Gothla UK)
"My next workshop was with Tempest on "Dancing
on the right side of the Brain". I have to say that of all
the workshops this probably had the greatest impact on me, not
on a technique level but certainly with having the confidence
to use expression in dance. I loved Tempest's honest and down-to-earth
approach, and her lack of yoga, drilling, or running about (after
6 hours of workshops with another 4 to go, I really needed a break).
We did some great exercises on improvisation, considering storytelling,
character, mood etc and some very different styles of music. I
came away feeling very much the artist, and looking forward to
my formerly dreaded improv sessions in regular class." -
Thanks again for the inspiring workshop - I have to stop myself
from doing the various poses/movements at work, as the customers
already think I'm crazy and I don't need to add fuel to the fire.
What, doesn't everybody turn around and make a cheeky face every
third step? :)
hope to see you again next year!
I hope you reached home stresslessly. If I make some mistakes
in my english expression, please forgive and remember "fledermäuse"
and "wackeldackel" :-)))
Both of you I like very well, and I have learned a lot. I like
this kind of bellydance, for I can really express myself in diffenent
ways. I enjoyed it very much to have some time with you. So, I
think I have to stop it now, otherwise you could think "what
does this lady want from us? Money? Or anythingelse?" Nononono!
Your workshops have been impressing to me, and I always remember
the "bunny"-jump of tempest. Haha, you wanted to see
how far we would follow, eh?
I wish, here in Hanover were people like you, but all I see here
is either the correctly clothed employee or boring other stuff.
Here´s no one really crazy like you. Maybe I should be the
aahhrrgh I have to use my dictionary for the second mail, so that
I could use marvellous and exciting words to explain all I want
to say. Now I end this mail, put my stuff and money, and walk
out for a shop to buy a vinyl skirt that I do not need.
Please come to hanover again, before we all are old and grey and
stiff and ugly and poor and and and. But WE will never be!
- clarissa (Germany)
was really great to have you here :-)
Your workshops and performances were excellent and we all loved
them! And some dancers stil regret that they could not make it
your workshop..And I enjoyed every minute we spent together...
(San Antonio) "Hello ,..my name is Sharon..I experienced
your classes on Saturday in San Antonio...I just wanted to say
a very grateful THANK YOU.. I'm just a bit shy and it is a wee
bit intimidating to talk to someone of your esteem..of course
you don't come off as someone unapproachable but what do I say
without sounding dumb! Loved your wit... your humor and all those
double entendres...you are a riot...3 of us dancers in the class
are military wives...you gave us a day of distraction (looming
deployments for our guys to Iraq) and it was great to just be
me...If you have any notion of how you affected me..just know
that you are a moment in my life I will never forget...(of course
I am trying to not sound cheesy)....so as a sound off thanks for
the "Meow"...hope the Egyptians get their balls back..and
I will keep the hot lava in mind..and naughty veils deserved to
be punished...Goodbye and Thanks" - Sharon
Thank you for the wonderful workshop yesterday...it really helped
me with a focus for my upcoming solo. (I am the lady with the
gray hair). I have been studying for about four years with Vikki
at the Hipnosis studio. I also really appreciated that you didn't
use up any workshop time with yoga or an extreme warm up. I admit
that I am intimidated by workshops because they are usually geared
toward very young bodies, and at 60, I have trouble keeping up.
But yours was a great pleasure and truly a spiritual dance experience.
and, by incorporating what we learned into the opening ritual,
you took us full circle. The energy was palpaple.
Thank you so much again,
* * *
I wanted to thank you for an awesome workshop!
Gothla was the first gothic belly dance event for me, and I was
just amazed! If I could dance without looking at the audience
I would, lol. Oh and Collide's cd that I bought from you, Amazing!
I love it. By the way, I'm a Gemini too (^_^) ( could u tell by
the way I dart from one subject to another)? I look forward to
taking more workshops with you! - Monica
* * *
(NYC - Nouveau Noir workshop)
thought you'd like to have some written feedback about your new
workshop. Please feel free to use any of this text as a testimonial
in your promotional materials--I know how important participant
feedback is when you're promoting a new workshop.
especially appreciated the organization of the class, how it was
organized into upper body and lower body movements, and how each
of those categories also included the options of strong and soft
movement. Organizing the class in this way made it easy to follow
and absorb so much new material.
taken a few of your workshops, and I believe you are an articulate
and generous teacher, gifted in being able to translate the hallmarks
of your personal style and imagination in the way they affect
movement. Plenty of people can tell you that gothic bellydance
is all about attitude. It is. Not so many teachers can say how
gothitude translates to gesture and movement, and that is where
idea that "sass" can come from strong postures and a
reversal of expectation is very gothic because it calls on energy
manipulation; where are you directing your eyes? what kind of
arc is your body making, and are you hoarding your energy, withdrawing
from the audience, only to spring on an unsuspecting audience
a few beats later in the piece?
also enjoyed seeing how the Art Deco aesthetic affects movement,
as far as the off-kilter geometrical shapes to be made with the
hands and arms. Personally, I have a hard time with arms; I never
know what to do with them, and I learned many practical postures
for arms that I will be utilizing in my choreography.
had a marvelous time yesterday. Thanks for a great workshop!
I truly enjoyed the workshop and was surprised to be able to retain
some movements. I've attended workshops before but unfortunately
it was hard to retain information because there's so much to know.
I also liked the fact that this workshop introduced me to the
concepts of gothic bellydance as being more than just spookiness.
I'm not a goth per se, just another poor schelp trying to get
by in this world. Not to mention that I found most goths to be
intimidating! That being said, I found the workshop and the gothic
concept to be very approachable and I thank you for that.
Even though cabaret is the basic format where all forms of bellydance
originate, I'm constantly amazed and interested that there is
always a cabaret movement out there that I always wanted to learn
but was never exposed to it in my classes. I'm referring to the
3-step tightrope, spooky tightrope, and some of the arm movements
in conjunction with a hand holding the head. I would not object
to any future cabaret movements in your workshops because they
maybe movements that I never encountered before. Thank you for
(Tribal Fest 8)
the chick with the purple hair who took your workshop on Friday.
I wanted to thank you for a great class! if you're teaching in
the area again I will make it a point to attend.
and I also got a TON of compliments on the little peacock hat!
thanks again! I hope you have a safe trip home and that our paths
cross again soon.
WA - Hosted by Nadiyah - November 2007 - Workshops & Show
reviewed in Zaina Hart's Bellydancer Magazine by Nazana
First, I gotta say, for those who didnt take the workshops,
you missed out!!! Tempest has a wicked sense of humor, and was
just a hoot. They were two very enjoyable and entertaining chunks
of time that were well spent. I came out of these with all kinds
of fun stuff. Handouts were provided in both classes, something
I always appreciate. Tempest brought core values and principles
to the class, but embellished them; hence, Raqs Gothique. The
first workshop, Belly Dance and Dramatic Body Language
was an intro to Gothic Belly Dance, using cabaret and tribal movements,
and adding a Gothic flair. This was an informative class, with
twists on old movements, making them fresh and new. She broke
down the dramatic body language into four sections, starting with
the head and neck, moving down to shoulders, arms and hands. Next
were the ribs and stomach, and hips, and finally legs, knees and
feet. We did traveling and in place moves, and drills to music
to apply them. There were interesting names assigned to these
movements, such as Zombie Bride, Innocent Virgin
and Serpent Kisses. She also shared some insight into
the Gothic culture.
The second workshop was called Between the Veils,
and some things I had learned elsewhere and had forgotten about,
so were nice refreshers. Others were brand new takes on ways to
use your partner, not your prop. I SO appreciated
that she told the attendees how and how NOT to pick up your veil
off the floor. Tempest went over wraps, different ways to use
your veil, and different types of veils and what they are best
used for. There is at least one new wrap I am taking back to the
troupe! I also will remember a couple of new veils tricks, and
speaking of, Tempest had some great tips for getting out of tricky
dance situations with grace and class. see
the whole review here...
3rd Coast Tribal Festival, Texas
*I know everyone has been saying "Thank You"
but really Thank You for your insightful and entertaining workshop.
I am so glad that as my first ever workshop it was yours that
day. I just wish I hadn't been so nervous in front of you, that
I couldn' t think when we were dancing on the stage. Anyhow, YOU
ROCK!. Thanks also for letting people know about the "music"
issue for GBD, it annoys me some times what people actually think
is Goth music. I am trying to make plans for Tribal Fest, hopefully
all works out and I can be enlightened once again. One more thing,
I know we are the same age, but will you be my mom? Hahaha. MY
*Hello there Tempest.
First of all your performance was just astounding. Everything
you explained in the workshops came through and put a lot of things
in perspective. I would have to say my favorite was the first
one which was just adorable, dark and silly all rolled up into
one. The second was awesomely hard and captivating. I think some
ladies from Houston didn't know what they were in for. I'll keep
this short since you ARE a very busy woman. Thanks for coming
to Texas and showing us the darker romantic side of bellydance.
Please come back and maybe come further south to Houston, wink
wink. Best of wishes. - Jessie
Thanks for 2 super classes! I'm blown away by the talent of the
young dancers in your generation and inspired to keep trying new
things. It would be easy to get into a rut after 33 years. I know
that my students really deserve an up to date teacher and even
though I would never claim to teach "Gothic Belly dance",
I can use many of the ideas you presented in my lessons. -Meleea
(Lady of the Feather Fans)
From the Durga Tour:
Thank you for coming to Minneapolis - it was absolutely wonderful
to have you here.
sure you hear a lot of things on tour - there must be compliments
and wonderments and fawnings and (hopefully not too many) pawings
... the reality of being a celebrated artist on the road amidst
I want you to know that I wasn't kidding when I told you that,
by your very arrival in town, you heralded a new age here in dance.
This is a strictly raqs sharqi town; we have one queen bee (Cassandra
Shore) who has been the reigning shiznit since the 70s ... and
another queen - once Cassandra's right hand - who is too magnificent
to hide in the shadows although she was unable to usurp the throne,
so she formed her own school ... Margo Abdo O'Dell. Glorious dance
learned from incomparable women, but it's cabaret and nothing
else here. We are belly dance's eastern block country! We have
one tribal group ... allowed to live because their roots in community
ed make them easy to dismiss ... and now, Mischievous Djinn -
the Twin Cities' first fusion group.
Oh, I never intended to be anybody's first anything in the dance
world, but I had grown tired of being sidelined in student choreographies
for being a large woman - off to the side or in the back next
to the tall girls and the girls with glasses. I began to wonder
how much power The Island of Misfit Toys could wield if the dentist
elves and polka-dot elephants had their own group ... where talent
and stage presence and passion were the requirements for participation.
There seemed to be nowhere to go with the art when you weren't
being groomed for prancing in sparkles in a Middle Eastern restaurant.
I was that productive kind of angry you get into when wanting
to scream "Fuck you, I hate cutesy choreography with no goddamned
teeth!" turns into a plan ...
I wrote to you about your Durga Tour, I just desperately wanted
something different to see and do; I wanted to /go /to the thing
... hosting was the furthest thing from my mind. And then ...
there you were - just like that. And we were scrambling to launch
MDjinn a year before we were truly ready - just to make it legit
and host the thing properly. It was not perfect, but it was better
than I could've hoped for ... 33 people came to a class where
12 were anticipated. And more arrived for the gothla. Lemme tell
ya, we took no end of shit when we announced the tour - pot shots
and digs and disparaging remarks ... mostly, I think, for the
sheer audacity we showed in not asking anybody else for guidance
or ... permission to have an event. 33 people plus, and everyone
was on their very best behavior suddenly. Hmmm. Go figure.
couple of Saturdays ago, I went to a hafla with Hypatia to cheer
on a fellow dancer trying her hand at group choreography. The
emcee was a woman who had intended to perform at the gothla, but
had an emergency meeting at work pop up that night. She announced
that she was going to perform her solo at long last and talked
about Mischievous Djinn and The Durga Tour and Tempest ... the
whole place erupted into shouts and applause and zaghareets. We
just sat there and smiled and shook the hands that were extended
to us. A gothic minx from the West Coast, 33 people plus, and
the world is changed.
are having a belly dance fundraiser this Saturday for a local
animal sanctuary; we wondered who would perform and who would
come to see us the weekend before Thanksgiving ... but what the
hell; it seemed like a good idea so we ran with it. The dance
roster filled immediately and, from all accounts received, we
will pack the place to the rafters and beyond. The president of
the Guild of Oriental Dance asked if she could participate (we
said 'yes'). We are looking for a studio space to make our lives
easier. A local television station wants to interview us.
gothic minx ... 33 people ...
am grateful to you for sharing your beauty and talent with us.
And I am grateful to the powers that surround you for their blessing
of space and act in our town. Do we want you to come for a weekend?
Oh, hell, yes! 2007 or 2008 - whatever might make sense with your
impending move back to Philly and our budget for the year. Now
that we have changed the world, Ms. Tempest, it is probably high
time to make history.
to you, to Keith the Music God, and Da Mischief*
- Lee (Mischievous Djinn, Minnesota)
Thank you for such an awesome workshop! We've got to have you
back to Raleigh-Durham again. I'm sure if we could ever do something
on a weekend, we would have a much better turnout, because since
the Durga Tour I've gotten a lot of feedback from people in neighboring
cities who would have liked to come. I know you're already booking
for Durga Tour NW but if you ever have the time and interest we
would love to host you again.-Sara Beaman
*We loved having you out! Thank you so much for taking the time
to come through. I'd love to host you again if you end up coming
through please let me know and we'll make it happen! - Gypsy Raihana
*Tempest! Just want to say thanks again for the fantastic workshop
on Friday. I found it so helpful during my performance that night.
Except you could see the part when my left brain kicked in; my
choo-choo shimmy stuttered and died! I have to say the things
I've learned from you this spring and this past Friday have really
expanded my mind as a dancer so thank you so much for coming to
Chicago twice this year. -Lisha
* I just wanted to say that you rock! It was nice to meet you
in person! I loved your workshop, a lot of what you said hit a
lot of points in my dance and non-dance life. You are an awesome
person and dancer. -Meg
*I want to tell you (somewhat) personally, that I really was glad
to make it up to your workshop in Knoxville. I've used much of
what I learned in my performances and teaching since then. You
are a hoot and really fun to learn from. Thanks again. -DeLacey
*Hi Tempest, I went to your workshop when you were at the studio
with Sashi in O.C. I just heard what a great workshop you guys
put on in Minneapolis from a friend I met on the Ensenada cruise
last weekend. They really enjoyed your workshop! See, good news
does travel fast! -Zahira
*Loved the workshop and I have your artwork in my dance room.
Thanks for all the great tips, and good luck with the rest of
your tour! - Zahara (Ohio)
*Tempest, Just wanted to say thanks again for a great workshop
with you and Sashi. Bringing the Durga Tour to Columbus was a
real treat! You both brought great stuff to the class and you
offer a nice balance between the two of you and your different
styles. Also, thanks for the recommendation on the compilation
CD- I love it. I've been listening to it constantly and I've been
working on the techniques you shared- it's stuck with me (a great
sign of a great class!) So, thanks again, and I hope to run into
you again one of these days. -Adhira
*Tempest,I just wanted to thank you for the DC workshop. I have
always been pretty troupe/choreography dependent and you have
inspired me to step outside my comfort zone and make an attempt
at solo/improv. I left with lots to think about. :) You and Sashi
were both amazing in the show!-Danielle
*I just wanted to take a moment this morning to thank you again
for coming out to visit us after your fabulous workshop. I know
you were tired, but everyone really enjoyed meeting you both.
We sat around and watched your Beautiful Freaks afterward, the
production looks really nice, and I like the Victorian/burlesque
performance you have on there very much! It is my favorite of
the performances I've seen you do, just thought I'd mention it.
- Zebeebah (Tenessee)
*hello tempest, I just wanted to say thank you for all that you
had to share today, both in the workshop and performing. i'm a
pianist and i've always had to learn things in a very left brain
way and then make that side lay down while the right brain took
over when actually getting a piece "up to snuff" thinking
of casting a circle and telling a story while dancing sounds like
the perfect way for me to make that switch when dancing! thank
you so much. it was a joy to meet you. - lucinda (Chicago)
*Thank you, again, for helping to make my first hosting of a bellydance
workshop such a smashing success! We thoroughly enjoyed your workshop
and performance--I received many positive comments from everyone
involved. You have a fun and informative teaching style that really
shone with your personality. - Zivah
Red Moon Tribe, Springfield, MO
Thank you so much for coming to Springfield! You really inspired
me. I love your passion for the dance and your awesome sense of
humor. I felt like I was hanging out with an old friend at dinner
last night. Thanks again. - . Ananya, from the Red Moon Tribe
Hipnosis would like to thank Tempest for her excellent workshop
was very well organized and covered a great range of topics that
all fit together into a cohesive whole. It was clear that she
had thought a lot about creating this workshop - very professional!
There was plenty of time for dancing and practicing what was covered...
we did group and solo dancing, streching into the nervousness
of soloing for some, but that was good!! It was also really really
FUN !! Some workshops almost seem like work, or a chore. This
was not the case at all!! Tempest was fun and engaging (humm....
does she have to give up any goth cred because of this? .... nah!)
and really took the time to explain and demonstrate. I highly
recomend this workshop to all who have the chance to take it at
any other location!
(Vikki, Jess, Maeve and Diana)"
The following review was published in the
August 2005 issue of SAMEDA's newsletter, "The Papyrus"
Gothic Belly Dance
by Maha Hadi
April 24, Tempest conducted what may have been San Diegos
first workshop on Gothic Belly Dance aka Raks Gothique. This exciting
fusion was bound to happen within alternative culture. Belly dance
and the gothic lifestyle share the expression of an ultimate fantasy
and feminine ideal, high drama accompanied by a range of moods,
as well as elaborate forms of make-up and costuming (many goths
create their own costumes or have them custom made which can cost
several hundred dollars). Middle Eastern dance rhythms have long
been used in gothic music for their evocative qualities, exoticism,
and beauty. Yes, the gothic subculture is not well understood,
but for some of its participants, goth represents a precious lifestyle
choice that reflects and reaffirms their interior beings, their
Tempest's workshop was not only fascinating but one of the best
workshops I've attended to explain some of the basic principles
behind belly dance. She emphasized the importance of first learning
traditional belly dance techniques which of course takes time
and practice. Only then can the two styles properly merge.
also addressed how some dancers in the community believe that
belly dance should remain "pure" while on the opposite
end there are dancers doing purely experimental dance...with a
continuum existing in between.
explained that Raks Gothique is separate from Tribal. Tribal is
performed as a group interacting as a harmoniously flowing unit.
Gothic Belly Dance is about the individual and expressing gothic
moods such as a dark elegance, mystery...with perhaps a sense
of danger. It can be very dramatic. Gothic Belly Dance can be
more classic one day and more Tribal the next. It is a fusion
incorporating dance moves from India, Flamenco, Tribal, as well
as moves seen at gothic dance clubs around the world.
prepare for a performance, Tempest demonstrated breathing exercises
to relax the mind and improve performance. She commented how some
dancers perform with an "I hope they like me" attitude.
She said it's more interesting if the dancer presents herself,
and the audience has to figure it out. When she dances, she tries
to tell a story. "This is an art. You don't want to be in
your left brain....Make it a story rather than thinking about
movements." "Goth is all about class." Standing
with back straight up and shoulders back yet relaxed relates confidence.
explained the importance of having a persona and direct eye contact
with the audience. Eye contact is key to connecting the audience
to the dance and making them feel involved. This can be utilized
to create drama. Wherever the dancer lookswhether at her
sword, hand movements, etc.the audience will be looking.
She demonstrated by looking toward her hip while doing some hip
movements and then lifting her head up to look straight at the
audience to bring them in.
dancing is slow, intense, and drenched in drama. The audience
can see every move and she knows how to take advantage of this
added concentration. The pause is used for drama, suddenly stopping
in relation to the music and then moving her hands ever so slightly
while all else is frozen. I loved one movement while she was doing
floorwork. On her knees, she suddenly fell back as if fainting.
Gothic Belly Dance, a dramatic entrance and exit are key. Never
run off stage. She demonstrated by leaving the stage with her
back toward the audience, slowing stepping away and then slowwwwly
glancing at the audience over one shoulder and then the other.
Pick up any props with elegance as well.
Gothic Belly Dance costume reflects the gothic aesthetic. The
predominant colors are black (the base color of most costumes),
red, scarlet, blue, wine, purple, silver, and other metallics.
Actually any color can be used mixed in with a little black, of
course. No bright, cheery pink or yellow costumes here. Other
costume elements may include fishnet, lace, antique jewelry, PVC,
leather, satin, medieval or Victorian designs, and metal accents
such as chain maille or spikes. Tempest was wearing one of her
own creations, a Corset Belt. (Another creation is the Skorset.)
Near the end, Tempest reiterated the need to have a solid background
in classic belly dance. At our request, she graciously accepted
to dance for us which is I think the true test of any instructor.
She danced slowly, intensely. At times, a tremble overtook her
body as if in seizure, a compelling sight. The most dramatic moment
was when she suddenly, almost violently swung her veil in a circle
perpendicular to the floor and crashed it against the floor, leaving
it there as she slowly danced away. I think Gothic is always a
little scary with a bit of unease to it. "It's not about
shocking but making people think in new ways," she stated.
did a marvelous job. I appreciated her well thought out, comprehensive
explanations along with her sharp, witty personality which put
everyone at ease.
is from the Bay Area and can be reached at her website www.gothicbellydance.com
New York 2005 (hosted by Chovexani)
& Article on MorbidOutlook.com by Mistress McCutchan
Review by Willow
Gothic Bellydance Workshop in NYC" -review and article
by Neon/The Hip Circle
Feedback & Praise for "Bellydance
for Beautiful Freaks":
I'm sure you get messages like this all the time, but I had to
send one to you anyway. I rented Bellydance for the Beautiful
Freaks, and just got done doing part of it. I love, love, love
it! I'm about as far away from being "goth" as you can
get, but I had heard such wonderful things about you and about
the DVD that I had to try it for myself. You seem like such a
sweet, fun person. Like I said, I'm sure you hear these things
all the time, but hopefully you won't mind hearing it from one
more person. :)
I just recently purchased your Darker Side to Belly Dance and Beautiful
Freaks DVDs and am amazed by the breadth of your talent - especially
after exploring your websites! It is such a relief to hear someone
express that dance isn't just about grace and beauty but drama,
stories, and enjoyment. Not only are you incredibly talented and
graceful, but it is also clear in your performances and teaching
that you enjoy dancing - something I think a lot of professional
dancers and teachers forget to express. Personally, I much prefer
to see a amateur having a great time than a technically perfect
professional bored to tears - and you combine both the joy and expertise.
I have been planning to come out with a more gothic line of jewelry
and your work is a huge inspiration!
bought Beautiful Freaks through Amazon. Im a
waaaay amateur dancer, but I love to dance in my home alone so
dance dvds are really important to me. Keep making them!
Ill keep buying them! J
see that dark, or goth, or tribal dancing styles are meshing and
becoming available is fantastic. I know you are a big part of
am a painter, and I find dance to be part of a healthy way to
release creative expression and energy without feeling the need
for perfection. I know that lots of artists usually focus on one
or two kinds of art they need to focus on and take seriously,
which means sometimes it feels like hard work. For me, that is
painting, and maybe for you it is dance. Music appears to connect
the two. I use music to paint to.
without rambling, I wanted to say great job and thanks
SO much for doing what you do and being who you are. My brother-in-law
called me dark and shiny once as a way of describing
my personality. I would like to say I think that applies to you
as well, so I hope you see it for the compliment it is.
dark and shiny!
(Las Vegas, NV; moving to Portland, OR 2007)
"Bellydance for Beautiful Freaks" is wonderful for putting
that darker twist to common bellydance moves. These moves can be
done either on stage or on a dance floor at your local goth club.
Tempest does a great job of breaking down each combination, then
each move after showing what the whole thing looks like. There is
even a mini workshop towards the end which contains information
on Tempest's fabulous 'strange' presence (stage presence), that
anyone who has ever taken one of her workshops, knows is invaluable.
Then Tempest has graced us with not one but two fabulous gothic
performances. I highly recommend this DVD if you cannot attend one
of Tempest's workshops... or even if you can, this is a great supplemental
- Haifa (Pennsylvania)
Hello Tempest, your dvd was just fantastic and very inspirational...
I'm in love with your dancing and personality and want to dance
gothically.I had ordered the East Coast Tribal, but I think you
topped her! I am going back to teaching belly dancing after I quit
when I was 30 years old, and no one has ever attempted to teach
here again. So, I'm going to start this January.
I thought you were so down to earth, so beautiful, inside and out.
I can see the goodness and the beauty of your inner self.
-Cynthia P.Hi Tempest!
Thanks for your reply, just thought you might like to know hubby
ordered your DVD for me and is putting it away as a present for
the holiday season, it arrived yesterday. I can't wait to watch
it and start practicising. My birthday is in February so shall be
hinting to anyone who'll listen for the GBD vest and corset belt
pattern! Hope you can get to the U.K sometime, would love to see
you peform. We struggle for tribal fusion classes where I live never
mind gothic belly dance! Thanks for the lovely picture card that
came with the DVD, that was an awesome extra.
Jan Hi Tempest,
wanted to drop by and say congratulations on the new dvd.
showed Gothic Bellydance to several of the dancers in my troupe
that were looking to expand and explore -- they were completely
wowed and inspired.
know one of them has already order your new instructional vid....and
is patiently waiting for it to arrive. She had no idea that (and
these are her words, not mine) "there were other beautiful
freaks like her in the dance community!"
have been working with them over the past few months to help them
move more towards what is really reflective of them as individuals.
They have loved tribal -- but I know that for at least two of
them, being able to be Goth and a bellydancer has really made
a difference for them. Althought they have worked hard and are
very good tribal dancers -- it has meant submerging who they are
to a certian respect, which to me is never a good thing. They
now have a connection to a broader community with more common
interests -- and a passion and understanding of what they want
to convey in their dancing.
let you know how they progress -- and perhaps I can convince them
to connect with you themselves!
I have just bought your video. Here is how it came about....
Last week, I looked at my 43 year old self in the mirror and sat
upon my bed and cried. I had gone to the Masque Ball at Element
NY last Sunday and watched Sky Claudette dance her muscled pixie
body around with fire, whilst Jeniviva and Isis moved their flat
bellies to tribal rhythms. All the while I wondered why my feet
hurt, why I had scoffed down most of my 4 year old's Halloween candy
and how very out of touch with my woman's body I have become. I
am a spaz, from the get go and have always been ( tho' I can move
somewhat gracefully in those tall fetish boots) and it is time for
me to feel actually good about the body I have been given, instead
of dreaming about some miraculous windfall of money that will permit
me a radical makeover at the hands of some misogynistic surgeon.
In any event, I have been immersed in the gothic subculture of Gotham
for many, many years and have looked with envy at the young things
that have mastered this art of Raks Gothique and other tribal dance.
I am doing this for total self-connection and expression - physical,
emotional, sensual. If you have any words of inspiration for this
old bird, please send them.
Right now you are my inspiration. I hope you have had a beautiful
Thank you for introducing me to this beautiful form of expression.
Jana (La Fee)Hi Tempest,
I just ordered your video from Amazon, and I have to say you're
quite inspirational! I am fairly new to belly dance, but I have
always been goth so the combination feel so much more natural to
me than the cabaret style I am currently learning. Hopefully you'll
consider coming all the way to the Maryland/D.C. area for a workshop
in the future. Good luck with everything...keep it up!!!