We have an exciting lineup of stellar instructors and diverse educational workshops for 2017! We think you'll like it! 

Elena's Web Site
Elena Villa was introduced to Middle Eastern music and dance by her parents in Big Sur, California in the late 1970s; she had her first solo performance to live music at age 10. Elena resumed her study of belly dance in Santa Cruz, CA in 1987 and began studying flamenco in 1991. She has pursued long term intensive study in both art forms with acclaimed artists from North Africa, Spain, the Middle East, and North America. Since 1995, Elena Villa has developed her own style of Spanish Arabic fusion drawing on her years of training and performance experience in both dance forms. Elena began teaching dance in 1996 and continues to offer weekly instruction and workshops in classic belly dance, flamenco, and Arab-flamenco fusion. Elena has shared the stage with many renown artists and also coordinates the talent for the Caravan Stage at the Oregon Country Fair in Veneta, OR, a major West Coast venue. Elena Villa holds a doctorate in Comparative Literature from the  University of Oregon where she has taught classes in literature, film, language, and culture with a particular emphasis on dance and performance studies.


Fatima's Web Site
Fatima is a prominent Middle Eastern dancer, vendor, instructor, coach, and sponsor. Born in Africa, Fatima has always carried dance in her heart since having been introduced to its beauty in her father's native home, the Sudan.
After over 20 years in the medical field, Fatima "retired" to a life of dance. She travels the world to dance, teach, inspire, and vend beautiful clothing and accessories. She spreads her heartfelt feeling for the dance everywhere she goes. Sacramento, California, is home to Fatima's Dance Studio & Bazaar.

George's Web Site
Drummer and Egyptian tabla player (dumbek), George’s musical journey took him through Middle Eastern music, Jazz, music of the Arabian Gulf, the Balkans, and his niche and first love, Egyptian music of his native land.

Growing up as a drum kit player, George had a chance to learn several styles of music that did not necessarily use the Egyptian tabla which helped broaden his approach to composing tabla grooves. As a teenager, George performed in international clubs around the Northwest during the ’80s. In the ’90s, he relocated to LA where he performed in international shows and was a studio session artist.

Today, George performs around the Northwest with several bands and runs his Barking Dog studio in Edmonds, Washington. He enjoys teaching Tabla and sharing his music with all. George will be teaching drumming at the retreat.

House of Tarab's Web Site
The band, House of Tarab, aka H.O.T, performs vintage live Arabic music often accompanied by word-class belly dancers. Performing classic and traditional belly dance music with a heavy cabaret touch is their specialty.

Tarab is a state of ecstasy and surrender one enters while listening, with body and soul, to music. Whether it’s the dancing strings of the oud, the weeping melody of the violin, the mystical call of the nay, or the pulsating rhythm of the drums... the House of Tarab invites you in. 

Jahara's Web Site

Jessaiah's Web Site
Jessaiah Zure began bellydancing in 1997, studying primarily with Katarina Burda, and later Jamila Salimpour. 2004 began her 10 year journey of living and studying on and off in Istanbul, Turkey where she studied Turkish Roman Dance primarily with Reyhan Tusuz. Jessaiah was Reyhan’s second-ever “student” and since then Reyhan's recognition has grown worldwide as she teaches international travelers in her home. As the years progressed, she met more people and danced and studied with many more dancers: professionals, women in the kitchen, Anadolu Atesi dancers, and more.

The locals in Istanbul were amazed at Jessaiah’s natural familiarity with the music and dance. While she was there, Jessaiah was a featured dancer at many local events, weddings, shows, written about in newspapers, and asked to be in movies as a dancer. Her presence there garnered much attention, as she danced “like a real Roman.” With this she became a well known Roman dancer in Istanbul, and now here in the States as well. She has continued to gain respect for this form internationally by dancers and academics alike.

Malia Clancy is a Yoga Instructor at The Workshop, in Edmonds, WA. Trained in Vinyasa Yoga, Malia has a passion for both yoga and dance, often incorporating dance-like flows into her sequences. This will be Malia’s second year providing calm, safe, and unique instruction at Emerald Sanctuary Belly Dance Retreat, guiding with acknowledgment to all individuals needs.

Martina's Web Site
Martina started dancing at a young age and trained in ballet, jazz, tap, and modern. However, when her journey in dance happened upon bellydance she quickly discovered she had found her passion. She has trained with Rachel Brice, Kami Liddle, Mardi Love, Zoe JakesHeather StantsUnmataSamantha Hasthorpe, and Suhaila Salimpour.
In 2004, Martina became the founder and creative director of Bellyfringe Bellydance which consists of quality classes, workshops, and live stage productions. Her past credits of performance troupes were Turquoise, Lazuline, and Ginger Blue. Her current performance troupe is Rocais with members Shelby Alexandria and Coila Craig.
In 2011, Martina relocated to Ulm, Germany where she taught a full and intensive workshop schedule at many major festivals throughout Europe. Her fast paced skills, with meticulous detail to technique and drilling, are highly sought after. As always, Martina has a major passion for training and updating her skills. Currently, she holds certifications in Rachel Brice’s 8 Elements program with Cultivation status, and in Zoe Jakes’ Dance Craft program with Key of Hearts status.
Martina lives in Seattle, Washington with her family and teaches weekly classes in Duvall and Seattle.

Indigo is the Founder, Organizer, and Mastermind of Emerald Sanctuary Belly Dance Retreat. She started belly dancing in 1998 and is well-known throughout the Pacific Northwest dance community.