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Teaching Philosophy and Reviews
"The only reason for mastering technique is to make sure the body does not prevent the soul from expressing itself." La Meri
ballet dancer knows to start her routine by working at the barre, well,
so do we for belly dance. My classes are packed with specific
information, yet we take about 10-15 minutes time at the beginning to
not only warm up but also condition and prepare the muscles that are
essential for this dance form. Not that we use a barre (although it can
help if we have it available) but we need to condition, stretch and
fortify the body, to create the foundations for isolation and balance.
Proper conditioning also prevents you from hurting yourself, which could
happen by doing the things the wrong way. For this purpose, I use
elements coming from yoga, floor bar and a few concepts of Pilates and
Alexander technique. You will get awareness of muscles that you didn't
use in other forms of exercise, and a new perception of your entire
body. Proper alignment and body image will be developed as well as
coordination. If you always thought that you had two left feet, give
yourself a chance to overcome that limitation.
Although I have trained and perform in many styles (Egyptian, Turkish
and American fusion) my classes are mostly based on the Egyptian style,
as I have been inspired by the teachings of many of the leaders of the
Egyptian dance, such as Yousry Sharif, Faten Salama, Aida Nour, Raqia
Hasan and Farida Fahmy, among others. Other big influences were Amir
Thaleb of Argentina (who himself profoundly admires Mahmoud Reda's
style), as well as Nourhan Sharif and Katia of Boston (also specialized
in Egyptian style).
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See reviews on Yelp:
"Her class is organized and fun, with a focus on both proper technique and musicality. Her background studying with the Egyptian greats and the Argentinian masters of her homeland, as well as ballet, makes her qualified to teach advanced/professional level dancers. She covers the rhythms of Arabic music, and steps to go with them. She also teaches short choreographic segments to challenge the body and brain. If you aspire to ever perform, Seyyide's attention to detail - not just movements but nuances, expression, posture - will get you closer to your goal.
I really appreciate that she watches each student and gives individualized feedback. I can learn much more with the feedback loop than I could at home alone with a video of same class. It takes both a sharp eye and a caring soul to be able to give good feedback on students. For example, one student may receive a tip on arm carriage, while another gets help on foot placement, or muscle engagement - depending on what she could see their individual struggle was at that moment. The feedback is delivered in a kind way, and she only gives what that person at the time can take."
Shannon Davis, 2012, student and professional dancer
"Seyyide is the best belly dancing teacher I went to, she
can make me do moves I never dreamed
I could. She is always patient, and kind, yet she has a keen eye,
and a gift for explaining to you in many different ways till you get it. If you are a yoga student, and you are interested in
softening your asanas, and adding fluidity and freedom to your practice, this
class is for you."
Ruth Knill, students, acupuncturist and yoga practitioner.
"Excellent individual instruction even in a group setting. I was skeptical when the class said "open to women of all ages and body types" but this 50+ overweight woman learned to DANCE!!"
Ginger Webb, 2012, student
"I took my first dance belly dance class from Seyyide almost 11 years ago. I had not been dance trained, was (and am) heavy and was scared about the experience but it was something I always wanted to do. I was SO lucky that I found Seyyide. I am STILL dancing, and her training is the key. A dancer highly trained in many areas of dance, Seyyide infuses her classes with professional rigor, yet is just as encouraging and demanding of beginners as she is of those with extensive experience. She is a professional from tip to toe, while also being supportive and encouraging. If you are looking to train as a professional performer or just to experience the joy that this dance beings to so many women (it always touches your life in profound, wonderful ways, including a delightful and diverse dance community in New England), you can't help but benefit from the training of Seyyide. Her solid technique is excellent."
Heather Emerson, 2012, former student
"Fabulous teacher. Breaks down moves completely, gives individual attention and feedback to students, teaches choreography, AND makes class fun!"
Nahid Roberts 2010, student
"Seyyide is a classy dancer strong teacher who really promotes technique. I would not be where I am now without her 'yes, you can, now do it again!' coaching! Thank you for helping me do more than I ever thought I could and changing my life with this dance!"
Heather Emerson, 2008, student.
“I wanted to express to you how much I am enjoying the private lessons I take with you. You have a real gift as a teacher. You challenge me, which I love, and you always do it in a very supportive way. I feel more connection to myself and my spirit. Thank you guiding me through this journey.”
Jane Dixon, 2007, Ballet teacher
Her strong attention to proper technique gives you the building blocks
to take the dance anywhere you want to - whether you are a hobbyist or
have your eyes on professional dancing.”
" As a teacher, Seyyide
makes bellydancing both fun and challenging. She knows each student's
strengths and weaknesses, and brings out their best with her warmth,
humor, knowledge and expertise."
Ginger Webb, 2002, student, 2nd year.
" Many teachers will claim to teach belly dance, but Seyyide's classes are the real deal. She is a technical, knowledgable, and deeply caring teacher, with the ability to give advice to students of all levels. She also has such a playful and wonderful presence that I came away from each of her classes in a good mood!"
Katie Kemple, 2002, former student, dancer, member of SilkRoad company.