Learn Questions

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  • Q: Can I start classes at any time & will things make sense if I have missed a class?

    A: Yes! Each single class makes perfect sense and teachings will be specific to those you attend so you'll always know what you're doing. Starting on the first week of a term gives you the option of pre-booking your space at each class throughout that term but you can drop in any week and not feel lost.
  • Q: What should I wear in class?

    A: For all classes, wearing something stretchy is a really good idea as this allows you to move freely and without risk of injury. We traditionally bellydance bare foot, this gives us natural grounding although soft soled shoes/ballet pumps may be worn if preferred and for fitness focused classes such as BellyJam indoor trainers are recommended for extra grip. Wearing a hipscarf is popular and adds many dimensions to your dancing experience whilst being physically beneficial in all classes, these are available to buy in the shop and in class, good quality, good price.

    Additional helpful stuffs:

    • For technique focused classes, such as BellyBasics, wearing something figure hugging will enable your technique to be developed properly by the teacher as she can see your movements more clearly, think vest top & leggings/yoga pants
    • For styling focused classes, such as BellyDance, wearing practice costuming & accessories is encouraged as this can assist in your creativity of movement, think circle skirts/harem pants, vest/belly tops, light jewellery
    • For fitness focused classes, such as BellyJam, wearing sports fitness clothing will keep you comfortable and supported. Indoor trainers are recommended for good grip
  • Q: What should I bring with me to class?

    A: Some water to rehydrate during the session and perhaps a small piece of fruit for afterwards to refuel. Bellydancing props such as veil, cane etc. may be used in some classes, in this case you'll be informed in advance.
  • Q: What is the average age of those in your classes?

    A: The average age changes all the time, on a term-to-term and even week-to-week basis as new friends join us all the time. Ages in any given class can range from around 16-67 years and the more diverse the group the richer the experience.
  • Q: Can I put my name down to make a provisional booking for a class?

    A: This is possible only for new or pilot classes where stated to ascertain the interest for the proposed class or workshop. For all other classes pre-booking is advised or 'drop in' on the day as an alternative. This helps to ensure we have enough committed attendees to run a class.
  • Q: I'd like to book my space on the term but I can't make it to all classes what should I do?

    A: Your best option is to buy an 8 Class Pass. You then have the card punched at each class you attend and carry over any you can't make it along to.
  • Q: What levels are your classes?

    A: All classes are 'open level' or as we like to call it "free range" People shouldn't be pigeonholed as beginner, improver, advanced as we all have different strengths and at times we might like to revisit a class for a refresher. We do have classes that focus on the basics covering breathing techniques, posture and all the fundamentals, classes that focus on learning about dancing choreographies & improvisational pieces and classes with a real fitness emphasis. We leave it up to you to decide which classes you'd like to take and you're welcome to mix and match. If you can't decide which is right for you get in touch and we'll advise you, the important thing is that the options are there!
  • Q: What styles of Belly dance do you teach?

    A: All styles. Basics classes give you good grounding across all styles and in other classes we explore each style in more depth based on the interests of the class as a whole.
  • Q: What's the format of classes?

    A: Most classes run as 8-week terms or "blocks" of lessons. This is considered the optimal length for learning, we usually then take a short break before learning more in depth.

    Great care and consideration is taken in the planning of each lesson to ensure it is tailored to the group of women attending. No term is ever repeated and fresh learning & progression for all attendees are high on the agenda. You can do a number of blocks of the same class and carry on learning or mix and match classes and blocks to gain the different dimensions of Bellydancing.

    Safety is paramount and this is always at the forefront of the teachers mind. You will be given a short health questionnaire to fill in at the start of the 8 week block, this is optional and is hugely beneficial to teacher and student. If you missed the week this was handed out you can fill one out next time.

    Each week registration, souk and circle time happens at the start of class after we are changed and ready to dance. We dance a varied warm up, main section and follow with relevant cooldown stretches. Finally we congratulate each other on being fabulous ladies and usually talk about how alive we feel afterwards! Many of the girls stay on for a second class and some do 3 classes a week.
  • Q: Are you qualified to teach Bellydance?

    A: Interestingly there are no formal qualifications or body that govern 'Bellydance', anyone who tells you otherwise has misled you or they have been misled themselves (This would be akin to trying to obtain patent rights to the world's first loaf of bread!)

    We are 100% qualified to teach any Health, Fitness and Exercise and have undertaken several years of fulltime study within the Fitness Industry to ensure our teachings are physically and mentally safe and healthy. We are public liability insured and advance first aid certified. With over ten years of quality Bellydance study and a very colourful experience CV to match we are health & fitness professionals who specialise in teaching and performing Bellydance.
  • Q: What's this questionnaire I've been asked to fill in?

    A: You will have been given a short health questionnaire to fill in in class. Filling this in is entirely optional but doing so will enable your teacher to keep you safe within your bellydancing/fitness classes. It will also assist you in setting any goals you may have and allow your teacher to give you an experience tailored to your interests, aims and objectives. The more detail you provide the better! Your details will be stored and protected in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and destroyed when no longer required. See our Privacy Policy page.
  • Q: I can't seem to access the Lesson Summaries/my Chat Profile, what's up?

    A: You may be entering the wrong password. The password for Lesson Summaries is the one given to the group in class. It changes each term. Your Chat Profile uses your own personal password that you either stated on your questionnaire or set online yourself. EMail: info@bellydancingbarbie.com and we'll help you out with access to the lesson summaries and your chat profile!
  • Q: Can I make a provisional booking?

    A: Please note that we cannot take provisional bookings and that submission of an enquiry does not ensure your booking, a booking confirmation will be given. Please book well in advance as our diary can fill up rather quickly!
  • Q: Do you come to us or do we come to you?

    A: We can come to your suitable arranged venue or home address to deliver your bespoke bellydance entertainment. Let us know all the details such as the exact address, rough size of danceable space, floor type & if glass might be present, if our arrival will be a special surprise for guests etc. We will be chaperoned as company policy.

    For some events, such as hen parties and workshops, when you have no venue prior arranged we may be able to book a venue, such as a dance studio, on your behalf. Please indicate this at the time of enquiry and we can look into it.
  • Q: My event is outside Edinburgh can you still provide my entertainment?

    A: Yes! In some instances distance/location can vary the total cost of your hire. In such instances basic travelling expenses will be charged over and above that of your entertainment. If you think this might apply to your event be sure to let us know the location at time of enquiry and we can discuss this whilst tailoring your event.
  • Q: What I'd like is extremely specific & might take forever to plan can you still provide my entertainment?

    A: Yes of course! We spend a lot of preparation time on every event. In some instances where prep time well exceeds the norm this can vary the total cost of your hire. In such instances basic preparation expenses will be charged over and above that of your entertainment. If you think this might apply to your event be sure to let us know the specifics at time of enquiry and we can discuss this whilst tailoring your event.
  • Q: My event attendance is well into the hundreds can you still provide my entertainment?

    A: Yes absolutely! In some instances, for example a hire including a teaching element - which would prompt additional health & safety considerations for us, this can vary the total cost of your hire. In such instances an additional fee may be charged. If you think this might apply to your event be sure to let us know the estimated attendance at time of enquiry and we can discuss this whilst tailoring your event.
  • Q: What style of Bellydance will you entertain us with?

    A: Classical or Modern style bellydance is our favourite for its glamorous and sophisticated styling although we can provide any style you like: Classical, Modern, Folkloric Dance, Tribal, American Tribal Style, and breakthrough fusion styles such as Bellyburlesque.
  • Q: What can we expect you to wear?

    A: We'll wear beautiful costuming which accurately fits the style of our performance whilst being something we think best suits your event and audience. We will always dress tastefully and wouldn't be seen dead in anything other than classy costuming! Please let us know in advance if you require us to wear very loose, fully covering clothing.
  • Q: Why are your prices so good?

    A: We understand that the more coins you keep on your belt the more shimmy noise you make at the party and as such our prices are very competitive for live bellydance entertainment!
  • Q: Do I have to pay a deposit?

    A: We ask a 25% deposit to hold a slot in the diary and for the remainder to be paid at least 48 hours prior to your event. In the unlikely event you cannot keep your hire booking, we ask that you inform us as soon as possible so that we can give the diary time to someone else.
  • Q: How do I pay for my hire booking?

    A: Payments are appreciated in advance of your event and can be made -

    • through Paypal for your convenience, login to a Paypal account and select 'send money' to: sales@bellydancingbarbie.com


    Where payment cannot be made in advance of event a discreet cash payment is welcomed on arrival at the venue.
  • Q: Can I have an invoice for my organisation?

    A: Yes of course, we'll pop one together for you.
  • Q: Do you need somewhere to change?

    A: Yes, we usually need a small secure area in which to change into costume, adorn ourselves in gorgeousness and store any valuables during the event. We're not diva-ish, we've changed in some funny places before but given the choice we'd prefer not to stand barefoot in a toilet cubical wearing a £300 dress! A hotel restroom with mirror or lockable office for example is perfect.
  • Q: Will you provide your own music?

    A: Yes, we'll bring our music, ready on both iPod and CD so there's a back up method.

    If you have any specific music requests, bellydance or otherwise, please let us know in advance as anything's possible!

    Live music, drummer for example, may be arranged as an add-on to your booking should adequate advance notice be given, this will be at additional cost.
  • Q: What about a sound system?

    A: When we come to you we bring a small portable sound system from which to play our music, the volume and sound quality is great for performances and workshops in smaller venues. For larger venues we'd recommend a professional public address system (PA) as these provide really good amplification and sound quality. It's generally assumed that an event in a function room you are hiring will have access to a PA sound system provided by either the venue or a hired DJ. If this is not the case we can recommend independent equipment hire services.

    If we are booking a venue on your behalf, such as a dance studio, we will be looking into the sound system options at the same time and will advise if any add-ons are required.
  • Q: Can I take photographs at my event?

    A: Yes we expect you to! We'd love to see your pics, you can upload your images using the form on our View Page, once approved these may feature in one of our galleries! We can also recommend our professional photographer for your event.
  • Q: When you perform how should we respond??

    A: A good question, glad you asked that! In short the answer is, make lots of noise throughout!

    Here in Western culture we tend to save our applause to the end of a performance and to hiss at a performer would be an insult.

    ?In Eastern culture this is very different.. the audience are considered a part of the performance, the more you clap, the more others clap - the more others clap, the more natural a performance! Cheering is also a very favorable sign of your appreciation. You can call out the Arabic word "AIWA" which in this sense is similar to saying "Yes! go girl!" As is hissing like a snake when the Bellydancer performs a slinky move "Hisssssssssss" most Western dancers understand this to be flattering!

    Another sound sometimes used in Bellydancing is something called a "Zaghareet" It's done by covering your mouth and moving your tongue very quickly to form a high pitched "Ooolaaaaaaaaa-ee" sound, this takes a lot of practice but its fun to try! (Bet you want to try it now)
  • Q: Do you accept block/multiple bookings?

    A: Yes, a discounted rate is available to requests for regular and ongoing bellydancing engagements.
  • Q: Do you dance at any restaurants?

    A: Yes! Experienced in the art of restaurant dancing we are not contracted with any particular restaurant and enquiries are most welcome.
  • Q: Do you do any charity performances?

    A: Yes whenever we can. Visit our belly dancer hire - Philanthropy page for details.
  • Q: You just entertained us and it was amazing, can we leave feedback anywhere?

    A: Yes it's great to get feedback and we're pleased you can now leave it on our Facebook Page or send it in an email to info@bellydancingbarbie.com and if you like we can pop it up as a quote on the site to share!
  • Q: What is regarded as a genuine enquiry?

    A: Whilst we are lovers of the mysterious we shall not respond to repeat incoming phone calls at 2am from blocked numbers, the same applies to text messages. Such pestering may be treated as harassment and details passed on to the police. ...On the other hand, calling legitimately to discuss this healthy artform, during recognised office hours and from any displayed number will be lavished with our attention!