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That 70’s Bellydance Show – Retro Raqs


A TRIBUTE TO THE 70s


Bringing you Egyptian, Turkish and Lebanese dance from this often forgotten about era!Ashley Rhianne will be performing in the Retro-Raqs Online Gala Production – That 70’s Bellydance Show October 23, 2021!

That 70’s Bellydance Show Coming October 2021!
Gala Show Featuring Ashley Rhianne

This weekend will be an all-star studded weekend featuring Shahrzad (Egypt/USA), Esmeralda (Brazil), Azad Khan (Turkey/Germany) and is hosted by Katie Sahar & Amara Sayid.

Early bird registration starts August 15.

www.retro-raqs.com for more details!

Being a Beginner Takes Courage

Being a Beginner Takes Courage
Do you remember your first dance class?
What brought you to this class? What internal drive caused you look up the class time table, to pack your bag, to step foot into the studio?

How did you feel to suddenly realize you know nothing about what you were about to do, to suddenly be a beginner?

Being a beginner is scary. Being a beginner takes COURAGE.

As a confession, I haven’t handled this experience well as a more advanced dancer. It is humbling to step back and put yourself back in the vulnerable position of knowing nothing.
It is something that I am working on by working on Instagram challenges, taking  online classes and pulling out material to train.  But this practice will be ongoing for my whole dance life.

As a soon-to-be-mother, recognizing that I am going into a Brand New Role of totally unknown territory is incredibly scary. I will be starting at the base – every child is so different and I have no reference of what to do compared to others.  It is a very scary position to be in.  Being a beginner takes courage.

BUT.  Every class you take, every book you read, every day that passes we become less & less of a beginner.  We start to grow through the adversity, through the struggle, through the sleepless nights.  We gain experience. We learn coping mechanisms.  We cry, we fall, we stand up again.  We show up time and time again to evolve from day 1.

Accepting we know nothing will allow us to grow into something.

For those of you (like me!) that hold ourselves back from doing that thing we want to do but we are too scared – JUST DO IT. Just try it.  Every single person that inspires us was once a novice.

Here is a listen for you if you are in this boat!

Being a Beginner
Artists for JoyListen on Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/being-a-beginner/id1509742324?i=1000486676552Message me and let me know if you have felt this feeling & how you dealt with it. I would love to hear & learn from your experience!

I have also released my first prenatal pilates video on YT!  Please click here to see it & share to someone who you know that is pregnant!  If you haven’t subscribed to my channel, please subscribe & help me get to 1k subscribers so that I can monetize my channel <3

What Does SUCCESS Look Like to YOU?

The Iceberg Theory

What does SUCCESS look like for you?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

⠀⠀⠀🎯Creating content, choreographies, workshops, class programs, prepping for a show is a hustle for sure. It’s easy to look at someone’s work or success & think that either they have it easy or that it is easy. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

🙅🏻‍♀️What we don’t see is the magnitude of sweat labour it took to get to the finished product. It’s easy to forget the layers of foundation work it took to get there.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

⠀⠀🗣I find this with clients. When they balk at your price or ask for a discount it can be really disappointing & rude. As I reflected a few weeks ago on my Instragram, I’ve really started to lose patience with this! But quite often it’s because they don’t understand the level of work it takes to even just show up at their door let alone how you got to the place where you would even be considered to be hired as a professional in the first place. This is the opportunity (if they are willing to listen) to give a quick run down of why your prices are what they are & why, because of these reasons, you should be hired.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

💰 We spend thousands on honing our crafts. Between classes & workshops alone that is serious bank. Not to mention costumes, jewelry, make up etc. This is without the non-monetary value stuff – what about missing your cousins wedding, dancing on a broken toe (me! lol), spending hours on research & analysis…it all adds up quick. Don’t forget you can still do all this work and still not get to where you want to go. It’s tough. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

☝🏻Remember what we see at the top is a tiny fraction of what is unseen below. Where do you think the real successes are found? I would wager that these real success are the ones that are unseen – without this foundation you would never see the peak!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

What are some other things we sacrifice in order to find our personal success? Comment below 👇🏻

Finding Your Creative Process

Finding Your Creative Process

Generating ideas for a choreography or performance is hard in the best of times.

This can be even harder when you are asked to dance in a themed show or given a concept to work with. It might be something that you don’t necessarily jive with or you feel restricted by the direction.

It can be all-consuming, stressful or even painful creatively to get started.

Rehearsals can feel wasted or even that you don’t have the drive to start.

I’ve been in this boat MANY times & tbh sometimes my best work comes out of being commissioned. I tend to fight against it a lot but it typically forces me out of my box & to put on a different hat. But even creating choreo for myself can be tough & hard to navigate.

I’ve created a way over the years to help me get on board & reduce the stress around creating performance. It helps me hone into the end result but essentially storyboarding the entire thing from concept to creation.

So you have been asked to dance in a show. Now what?! Lets start from beginning… looking at the overall Theme of your performance.

#1: Choose Your Theme

This part might have been given to you already so now where are you going to go right? Well this is the part where you can take that idea & turn it into your creation.

Say you have been asked to play a certain character in a show. You have the rough sketch or expectation of the character, but you can turn that into something personal that you embody.

Focus on what feelings & emotions do you want to portray. Find your theme by exploring the overall tone & message of your piece. Determine what feelings & emotions you want to showcase both in yourself & your audience…what do you want you audience to feel?

#2: Represent

This is now your chance to take these emotions & feelings and start to embody them. What & how do you want to represent your theme? Start by brainstorming what you want to represent by setting the tone & the message. Write these out so that you have a clear understanding on where to work from & to make connections. You can also cross reference or delete in this step once you start compiling ideas.

#3: Inspiration

What is your inspiration? Where do you seek inspiration from typically? Are you inspired by watching other dancers, reading poetry, watching a film, nature? When starting to create your overall theme, go to where you get inspired keeping in line with your idea for your piece. Keep writing, create wordclouds, doodle. Allow yourself to connect with words and use them to keep setting the theme.

#4: Communicate

This is where you want to start to further enforce your message. What message do you want to send to the viewer? To the performance? Do you want to take the audience on a journey with you? Do you want them to experience visceral emotion? Do you want them to interact with you or silently observe? Do you want this piece to be purely authentic in its style or abstract? Do you want clear symbolism or leave it up to the audience to decide what it was about?

Having a clear direction about this message means that you will be able work from here equally clearly as you can start to draft the experiences from this place.

#5: Dive In

Get to work! Now that you have determined the overall theme & tone of your piece, it is time to dive in and start working.

Stay tuned for the next installment!

Ashley Rhianne xo

Classes for 2020 are now posted!!!

Ashley Rhianne is pleased to offer 2 weekly classes starting January 6 2020! Check out the CLASSES page for more details!

Ashley Rhianne in Moscow, Russia July 2018

Ashley Rhianne will be teaching, performing and judging in Moscow, Russia at the Al Maren Cup Festival July 2018 sponsored by Russian superstar Marina Shishkova!  This is a huge and exciting opportunity for Ashley Rhianne and she is very grateful to join the incredible team of dancers and teachers.

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Ashley Rhianne in Seattle January 13 – 14 2018

Ashley Rhianne will be performing in Oriental Bliss’s gala show featuring Amanda Rose & Vanessa from Cairo.  She will also be taking part training with these two amazing ladies and dancers.   For workshop and show details, please visit the Oriental Bliss Facebook event page here.  This is not to be missed 🙂

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Ashley Rhianne in Quito, Ecuador

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Ashley Rhianne is very excited to be an invited guest artist and judge in Quito, Ecuador for the Bellyfolklore Festival October 6-9 2017!  A huge thank you to Bassem Ramadan for his tireless work and bringing Egyptian dance and music to Latin America!

For workshop and show details, please see here.