Tribal Belly Dance

Welcome to Tribal Belly Dance by experienced teacher Dea Robson.

Our Tribal Belly Dance classes are temporarily on hold.

Tribal belly dance is a very grounded earthy style form of belly dance and is performed by groups of women or tribes.

All classes are defined by a set of attainable objectives.  The techniques are  broken down into  clearly defined moves which are demonstrated and are easy to follow with clear instructions.


There is plenty of repetition and time to ask questions, with small group practice and observation as well as full group participation so you wont get left behind.  It is a supportive environment and though teacher lead there is also plenty of peer support too but most of all it is a fun way to tone those muscles and with regular attendance and practice learn a new skill and drop a dress size.

Information coming soon for 2022

Course commencing 12th October 2021 7 week course £46 or dip in and out with our FAST PASSES

Free First Taster

1. Recap & consolidate some of the North & South African dance moves learnt in last blocks 

2. Brief introduction to Spanish Flamenco & how it relates to TBD, some staple moves. Meaning behind Duende or Tenor Duende.  Walking. Cross step, Braceo (Arms) Ghawazee 1 with skirt, Directional Shimmy Combo with Skirt  

3. Fulerios hands). Hand Exercises. Soft hands, Shoulder elbow wrist, Shoulder rolls with arm extension Spanish Step, Matador  4. . Skirt work, Extended skirt L & R, side step, butterfly, Fig 8 on left  

& right, 

5. Fan work, open & closing, sunrise/sunset, Fig 8 from wrist,  

Flamenco spin turn with lean, Camel 1  

6. Skirt & fan-work, conceal & reveal, moving in & out of circles  

( with skirt & fan ) 

7. Recap weeks 2-6 Performance work, following and leading 

This course is predominantly upper body work, using 

• upper torso 

• shoulders 

• elbows 

• wrists 

• fingers 

You will need a full circular skirt for weeks 2-7, ankle length. Incorporating a fan from week 5 onwards,

if you have a fan please  bring but I will bring enough fans for all to borrow. It is useful to practice your moves in front

A Little History...

It all began in America in the middle of the 20th century. So when you consider how old traditional Egyptian or Turkish bellydance is for example, dating back to ancient times of Tutankhamen and Cleopatra, really tribal bellydance is very young.


Jamilia Salimpour started the Tribal beginnings, when she started classes in 1949. She developed her own vocabulary (some terms we still use today), for the moves she taught. Her troupe Bal Anat (Dance of the Mother Goddess), performed her version of dance styles, that fused Middle Eastern, Indian, Spanish, North African et al. The troupe was made up of dancers, singers and musicians, they performed at festivals, fayres and public events.


In the 1970's, Masha Archer, student of Jamilia's, set up her own classes, but as she had never learned to choreograph, came up with improvising, to fill in the gaps. A student of Masha's' was Carolena Nericcio/Bohlman, who went on the start her own troupe 'Fat Chance Belly Dance'.

This name came about because belly dancers have an image of being prostitutes and strippers, so when asked for a private show, Carolena, would reply 'Fat chance'. When Morocco of New York an American Belly Dancer, saw a performance, she coined the phrase 'American Tribal Bellydance' (ATS). Which Carolena adopted and registered.


Paulette Rees-Denis was a friend of Carolena and attended her first classes. They enjoyed dancing together even though they didn't know what it was called, it had no name then. They began to develop a unique style of dance. Their very first performance was for Paulette's birthday in her backyard. They continued to dance and perform together and the troupe grew in numbers. The dance became known as ATS. They began to develop a style of costuming, by making and adapting pieces to wear, big, full skirts, large pantaloons, decorated bras and cropped choli tops. All adorned with lots of big, chunky and ethnic jewellery and headwear - turbans, flowers.

They continued to dance together until Paulette moved to Portland, Oregon in 1991. It was there that Gypsy Caravan was born ( the dance format we use at EB ). Paulette decided to carry on with the dance but with her own interpretation of tribal style bellydance. Incorporating the left side of the body as well (ATS is predominantly right sided). Paulette has gone from strength to strength with her teaching, her travels, her blogs, online classes, online training and her continued development and dedication to this dance.


Her book "Tribal Vision - A Celebration of Life Through Dance" was published in 2008 and documents her journey of dance.

Gypsy Caravan Tribal Bellydance is so much more, with new and exciting things coming at you all the time. Since the early inception of Tribal Bellydance, there are now many other dance troupes with their own take on the genres that come under this umbrella. Tribal fusion, gothic, folkloric, gypsy style, tribal style to name just a few. The word Gypsy has now been dropped from Gypsy Caravan Style due to its potentially offensive connotations and is now known as Global Caravan Tribal Style ( the dance format we use at ENERGYBODi)