Log in


<< First  < Prev   1   2   Next >  Last >> 
  • 16 Mar 2023 11:36 AM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Where are we going?

    Uskichitto Retreat Center, 590 Retreat Rd, LeBlanc, LA 70651 ( located six miles west of Kinder) 337-738-4218 or https:\\

    What is provided?

    Your price includes 5 classes (8 dancing hours) with the Hamer Sisters, 3 meals a day (vegan and gluten free options available by request), temperature-controlled cabins with bunk beds, a swimming pool, and a fire pit.

    Who is invited?

    Must be 21 or older to attend. There will be a quiet cabin as well as a second cabin. LGBTQIA+ are all welcome. 

    Where do I park?

    DO NOT park in front of the Pavillion nor on the grass. There is plenty of parking around the dinner hall. You may park infront of your cabin.

    WIFI and outlets?

    There is no WIFI. There are limited outlets. Please use this time to unplug and focus on the dancing and fun. Try to bring battery operated technology.

    What to pack?

    • sheets for a twin bed OR a sleeping bag

    • pillow(s)

    • flashlight with batteries. There is a limit to the # of outlets so please consolidate your # of chargers needed that weekend.

    • Clothing for the weekend. Please include hip scarves, pajamas, walking shoes, and swim suit. 1 outfit for hafla with favorite prop and accessory. 

    • Washrooms will provide hand soap, toilet paper and paper towels. You will need your own bath towels, grooming supplies and toiletries.

    • Swim towel and accessories like a hat and sunglasses.

    • Insect repellent and sunblock are recommended.

    • Zills, drums, and other percussion instruments are encouraged. Please bring a yoga mat and picnic blanket. 

    • Meals and water are provided. However, I recommend that you bring your own stash of snacks and drinks.

  • 30 Oct 2022 7:22 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Both Maria Hamer and Christine Andrews formerly danced with the Zafira Dance Company. Christine Andrews has been dancing with her sister, Maria Hamer for decades. 

    Maria Hamer is a long time bellydancer/ Middle Eastern performer of Pittsburgh, Pa, training tirelessly & passionately for close to 3 decades with some of the most sought-after teachers in this dance form including Jill Parker, Suhaila Salimpour, Zoe Jakes, Helena Vlahos & Aisha Ali.  Training culturally & respectfully, Maria continues to delve deeper into folkloric dances involving specific traditional & regional dances from North Africa & Asia as well as exploring 'vintage American" style bellydances.  She has co- directed & helped in pioneering East Coast companies such as 'Folkloric inspired' Ghawazee Middle Eastern Music & Dance Ensemble in the mid 90's to the more theatrical & earthy glamour/contemporary elements of award winning Zafira Dance Company, active for over 11 years.

    Maria's traveled the globe studying, teaching, performing & has collaborated with some of the most notable dancers in her genre such as: Jill Parker, Zoe Jakes, & many others. Currently as a solo artist, she collaborates with her sisters Christine Andrews & Jennifer Imashev as 'The Hamer Sisters' as well as with local dance artist, Joanna Abel as Starry Moon Dance Co. As a local Pittsburgh teacher and Bellydance community supporter she contributes with her exciting student troupe EvilEye. She holds certifications in the Suhaila (L2) & Jamila (L1) Salimpour formats, & Key of Diamonds in Zoe Jakes's format.

    LABDA is excited to host a dance camp May 2023 with these sisters. Event page will have details. 

  • 17 Apr 2022 7:43 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Richard Rodgers, ERYT and Scotti Rodgers, ERYT, are owners of the Lotus in the Pines Yoga Studio in Natchitoches. Scotti is a member of the Indigeaux Tribal Fusion Troupe. 

    Richard Rodgers, ERYT was born in Shreveport.  He participates in personal yoga practices for fifteen years. He successfully completed the 200-hour yoga teacher training at Circle Yoga Shala in Jasper, Arkansas as well as the 200-hour yoga teacher training at Wild Lotus Soul School in New Orleans. Co-owner and operator of Lotus In The Pines Yoga Studio in Natchitoches since 2002. Richard has been married to Scotti Rodgers (Maha Devi) for at least 50 years.

    Scotti Rodgers was born in Shreveport. Graduated Byrd High School one grade behind Richard, but we never met until after I spent junior year of college studying in France.  She worked in field of education 33 years. Taught aerobics 25 years just so I could dance every day. For the last 25 years, she taught yoga. Scotti also completed same two yoga teacher trainings as Richard. 

    They own and operate Lotus in the Pines Yoga Studio in Natchitoches since 2002. Scottie married her soul mate and biggest fan of the Indigeaux, our tribal fusion troupe. Richard has been married to Scotti Rodgers (Maha Devi) for at least 50 years.

  • 17 Apr 2022 7:01 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Jacqueline Lemoine began her belly dance career in 2000, studying under noted international dancer, Maria Barannco. Jacqueline gained an instant appreciation, talent, and what some might call an obsession, with Middle Eastern dance. She has trained extensively in Egyptian, Turkish, Lebanese, American Cabaret, and Fusion techniques. So she shares with her students not only the rich history and various styles of belly dance, but also the physiology behind the dance's serpentine movements. In June of 2008, she formed the belly dance troupe, Pandorium, composed of her most dedicated students. Jacqueline and Troupe Pandorium perform frequently around the Gulf Coast region. Additionally, Jacqueline began studying Polynesian dance in 2009, which she now teaches and performs. She continues to train daily as she believes a truly great teacher should never stop learning so she continues to learn from many notable stars in the world of Middle Eastern, Tribal Fusion, and Polynesian Dance. 


    James Thorton has been drumming since 2008 and professionally for the better part of the last 10 years. His specialty is Middle Eastern, Latin, North African, and modern rock rhythms. His instruments of choice are Doumbek, Dhembe, and Cajon- both Peruvian and Flamenco.

    He has performed with multiple groups, including Pandorium Belly Dance, Crescent Lotus Belly Dance, and is the current primary drummer for the Accoustapunks and Whiskey Bay Rovers and is an inaugural member of the Quicksand Caravan Band.

  • 17 Apr 2022 6:52 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    EVA CERNIK traveled extensively in the Middle-East from 1979-2010, learning, exploring dance and culture, leading dance-tours, working as a solo dancer, and for a year with a Turkish Oriental troupe. Eva continues to teach internationally and at her home-base in Denver.

    After extensive training in gymnastics and ballet, at age 19 Eva was first introduced to Belly dance by Anahid Sofian in New York. The following years, she studied in Denver with Naila-Rose, of the original Salimpour school. Then for 13 years, Eva studied intensively with the recently deceased Adnan Sarhan of Baghdad. This training filled her with a deep love for Middle Eastern music and with techniques to practice Dance as a spiritual path.  

    In order to absorb directly from the cultures which have nurtured this dance for centuries, Eva set out on her first trip to the Middle East in 1979. To finance her explorations and ongoing studies abroad, she worked as an Oriental dancer in London, Paris, Istanbul, and in-troupe in much of Spain, Baghdad, and Cairo. She also traveled in Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Morocco and 14 other countries. Eva’s adventuresome field research and the dance study tours she produced, were not limited to the night clubs of Cairo and Istanbul. They also extended to the villages where Ghawazi, Turkish Roma and “folk” dance to traditional acoustic music at their festivals, weddings, and homes.

    Eva was voted "Innovative Dancer of the Year" in 1997 by the International Academy of Middle East Dance (IAMED);  "Favorite Interpretive Artist" in 2002 by Zaghareet Magazine;  "Master Instructor" by IBDC in Las Vegas 2007.  She accepted  a "Lifetime Achievement Award" at the Belly dancer of the Universe competition in Long Beach which prompted a three page interview in the July 2009 issue of The Chronicles.  

  • 17 Apr 2022 6:32 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Elizabeth Kerry is known for her elegant lines, deep curves, and smooth seamless flow. She is a teacher, performer, and creator based in South Mississippi. She’s a member of the Crescent Lotus Dance Studio troupe in New Orleans, the Wayward Dance Collective based in Austin, Texas, and a Certified Datura Style™ Instructor. Yet Elizabeth considers herself a life-long student who has had the good fortune to learn from many master performers and instructors. She also has a unique perspective on dance due to her personal journey through injuries and health conditions. She is extremely grateful for the accessibility and benefits this dance form provides. Through her relaxed and approachable teaching style, she empowers her students to challenge their bodies and mind in a safe, encouraging setting. You can check her out at

    Recently she’s taken her love of this art form a step further by designing and creating accessories.  “The Scarlet Rose” is a design studio offering unique, hand-made, luxurious adornments for your dance and every-day life. Find your own Crown at

  • 3 Apr 2022 4:24 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Sahira is a lifelong performer and has studied music, drama and dance since the age of two. She has dedicated the last 22 years of her life to the art of belly dance and her favorite thing in the world is to share the dance with others. She has trained in both Egyptian and Tribal style belly dance as well as Modern and West African and loves to incorporate all of these influences in her art. Sahira is a lifelong musician and head over heels crazy about the zills. She is known for her warm and inviting energy and her tendency towards the ridiculous.

    Sahira will teach ZILLS! ZILLS! ZILLS! on Saturday July 16th at 1pm.  Most of us have a love/hate relationship with our zills…and sometimes for good reason! Sahira invites you to learn to love those things on the ends of your fingers as she shows you the zills in a whole new light – as a musical instrument. She will begin by teaching some music theory and then move on to a series of common-sense patterns and cool zill tricks to inspire even the zills-shy among us. Don’t forget your zills!

    Sahira is also presenting the Art of Improvisation on Sunday July 17th at 11am. Take that brave leap into the world of solo improvisation! In this class, Sahira will give you a road map, some pointers, a few cheaters, and a wealth of information that will help you improvise with confidence and grace. Musicality and the structure of dance music will also be covered.

  • 20 Mar 2022 4:44 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Hannah and Rosanna Setu return for their 7th year at Bayou Belly Festival. Together they are presenting Something Old, Something New: All of You”. Then Rosanna is teaching Dancing Flame: Drum Solo Choreo. 

    Hannah Setu, LMT, MTI, Reiki Teacher, Dance Educator, has 40 years of experience in all aspects of dance and alternative health. After graduating from NTSU in PE and Dance, she moved to New York City where she studied modern dance at both the Martha Graham and Erick Hawkins Schools. She soon moved to Indonesia where she lived for ten years studying classical eastern dance forms and Asian healing therapies. While in Jakarta, she was primary choreographer for The Jakarta Players, staging Broadway productions for the expat community. Back home in 1990, she became a licensed massage therapist. There she began Reiki instruction and in 2006 she received a Master Certification in Hypnosis. She is founder of “Healthy Dancer for Life!” Workshops and presents them with Rosanna as a mother/daughter team so that dancers can enjoy lifelong, injury free dance practice and radiate loving self-awareness and vitality. 

    Rosanna Setu, B.A. Psychology, Reiki Master/Teacher in Dallas/Ft. Worth. An award-winning belly dancer, Rosanna started belly dance classes at eleven years old at the Isis Studios in Bedford, Texas. She currently instructs, choreographs and performs there with The Wings of Isis. Rosanna has performed professionally at Scarborough Fair Renaissance Festival in Texas since 2014 as well as instructed workshops at 3rd Coast Tribal Festival in Ft. Worth, ABDC in Austin, Texas, and at Yaa Halla Ya'll in Grapevine, Texas. Hannah and Rosanna have co-presented ‘Healthy Dancer for Life!’ workshops since 2011 for dance festivals across Texas and Louisiana. 

    Both can be found at 

    Something Old, Something New: All of You”

    Hannah and Rosanna are presenting an experiential workshop focusing on self-awareness and compassion. You are invited to experience your own SGS (Spiritual Guidance System) with our very best tips and techniques in centering, starting with hands-on Reiki and concluding with a deeply relaxing guided meditation. Workbook and goody-bag included.

    Rosanna's Workshop will be Dancing Flame: Drum Solo Choreo

    Set your soul on fire and feed the flame with this red-hot drum solo choreography workshop! Rosanna presents a sultry and dynamic choreography set to a scorching drum solo by Artem Uzunov. This workshop is full of sinuous undulations, striking isolations, and sizzling shimmies. Let’s turn up the heat!

  • 19 Dec 2021 3:38 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    Shakshuka Tribal is a member of LABDA. They want to share their holiday cheer with the LABDA community. Check Shakshuka out on Facebook or you can view their holiday dance on YouTube at

    LABDA members with a dance related business can advertise on our website by emailing Members who own a studio can let us know about your events for community support.

  • 4 Dec 2021 4:16 PM | Communications Officer (Administrator)

    There are over 2 dozen holidays between the end of October and the end of the year. Some are government, some are religious, and others are seasonal. There is a lot of pressure to be charitable, hospitable and with family. If you want to be charitable to our community, you can make donations at the bottom of our website. 

    No matter what you are celebrating and how you celebrate, I hope you find time for pleasure, joy, and fun. LABDA wishes you community and laughter.  May you end your year on a high note. 

    LABDA is planning to for the new year to be full of events. There are 2 big events being planned for 2022 as well. Be sure to sign up as a member to be included with updates on events. 

<< First  < Prev   1   2   Next >  Last >> 

Email :

Lafayette, LA

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software