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Middle Eastern Belly Dance Entertainment, 
Cape Town, South Africa


The Ups & Downs

in The Life of a

Cape Town Belly Dancer.


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Chelsey's hen party 27/05/2017

Posted by Tanya Cameron on May 28, 2017 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)

And now for something completely different to the usual baby shower!

They totally enjoyed themselves.

Mum in law was the organizer and she told me that they wanted something more fun for everyone than just playing present guessing games which are usually soooo boring and often humiliating for the mum to be.

I was extremely careful of the mum and kept her by my side the whole time warning her of potentially dangerous movements during the lesson. Don't get me wrong, belly dancing is fabulous during pregnancy but please don't start during the end of your 3rd trimester and for goodness sake don't do lots of percussive and jolting movements. Last thing I want to do is deliver a baby! If I heard the words,

" My water broke!"

I'd probably be the first one out of there!

I dressed Mum to be in blue and pink as the gender of the baby is a surprise.

My costume is another made by Yours Truly;-) Photos taken by Kalynda on the Sony Cybershot.

See more here: www.tanayabellydance.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=16076283

Hen party and a birthday

Posted by Tanya Cameron on May 22, 2017 at 3:55 PM Comments comments (0)

14th May 2017 - Such a fabulous hen party on Saturday! The ladies were such good fun and joined in with good spirits. The bride to bes granny was amazing! She is 86 years old and was shaking her hips with much enthusiasm as the younger ladies - maybe even more! Turns out she does Senior Aerobics. Kalynda came with to help and to take photos and ended up dancing the drum solo with me. She was wearing a beautiful long dress and looked lovely. See Gallery under Anjas hen party, House of Minc.

20th May 2017 - Kalynda and I danced together at a 30th birthday party in Lansdowne on Saturday night. I've had my pink costume for years and Kalynda recently bought one in the same style just a different colour and has been dying to flight it. I looove the dark blue! Almost got that one myself and then last minute chose a hot pink dress which I still haven't used yet! Seeing as it's winter in Cape Town now, I'm sure I will wear it soon. There are a few photos of varying quality from multiple devices. Look in the gallery under Nadias 30th birthday.

March - April - May 2017 gigs

Posted by Tanya Cameron on May 6, 2017 at 8:05 AM Comments comments (0)

I know, I have not been writing about my gigs recently. Just didn't really feel like it and nothing really memorable happened. 

So this post is going to be about all the gigs I didn't write about.

March 9th I danced for an 80th birthady at Ratanga - Officers Lounge ( I think it was called.) It was lovely. I was booked by the birtday girls son, all the way from Australia. Bridgeways were their usual organized selves and everything was fab. I even had the use of the backstage dressing room all to myself. Kalynda came with to help and take photos. 

Then I had the healthy kiddies birthday party in Constantia - Already wrote about that one.

Next was a bridal shower in Wellington. Stunning house and beautifully decorated area. Girls were all great sports and especially the lovely bride to be. She had already been dressed a la theme so I suddenly had extra time on my hands! I wore my latest costume designed by Yours Truly. It's meant to be a mermaid style. Photos taken by Kalynda on her Samsung S6 'cos I forgot my camera:-o

After that I had 2 gigs on Saturday 10 April. First one was a bridal shower in University Estate and the second was at a 40th birthday party in Durbanville. Jaden took the photos at the bridal shower on my LG G4 mobile phone as the camera battery was flat in spite of charging for the whole day. There were too many light sources and a massive mirror so the pics were sadly very over exposed. The second gig Kalynda came with and took pics on 2 Samsung phones and the teeny bit of charge in the camera battery. Very challenging circumstances but I managed to salvage a few shots. And of course I was dancing barefoot on a sloping brick patio!!

Next gig was a last minute booking via my friend Nadia for Nomad tour group. We didn't even have to dance choreography, just sort of floated around as ambient entertainment. It was great fun though and really loved dancing with my friends Jamilah and Nadia.

Then the next day I had a lovely 60th birthday gig at Cinnamon House for Stephanie. Beautiful, tasteful venue, but it was so hot on that day, I was melting! 

After previous melty gig, we went down to the beach to cool down and take some photos of my new mermaid costume made by Yours Truly!! So proud of it, but in a good way!

A few days later Natasha from HipCircle booked Jamilah and me for a gig at Lagoon Beach Hotel. There were 3 other belly dancers there. Never danced with any of them before and we had to improv to each others music while each one of us had a solo. It was a lot of fun. Hotel staff were fantastic - very polite, helpful and attentive. The audience was what I usually consider a no no. All male - eek! BUT, there were 5 of us and Natasha as our agent and Kalynda as photographer and all the female hotel staff. Plenty of girls to balance the testosterone. The men were super. Very appreciative and also very polite. (There is a way to show your appreciation without being sleazy, and I have to say that Middle Eastern folk have mastered that skill!)

Then yesterday....Polynesian party at the Protea Hotels Fire & Ice! by Marriott for a 10 year old. The birthday girl was dressed beautifully as Moana from the Disney movie. Kalynda and I taught and performed. The girls had all been guzzling sugary sweets and drinks for about an hour before we arrived and had the slightly crazed look of crack addicts in their eyes. We managed to keep them under control and taught them some hula dancing moves and a very easy chorography under the guise of a competition. I had to ban them from eating and drinking any more sugar loaded treats until the competition was over! Fortunately I had a selection of small gifts to hand out as prizes. The day before I actually hand made a Heart of Te Fiti stone as a gift for the birthday girl. She was ecstatic when I gave it to her with her certificate of achievement. 

You can see all the albums here http://www.tanayabellydance.com/apps/photos/

So, I have been busy, just not busy writing!!

Kiddy birthday party Constantia

Posted by Tanya Cameron on March 18, 2017 at 4:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Friday 17th March I had an 8 year olds birthday party. It had been quite a long time in planning for the mother and she was finding it difficult to get RSVPs. It was important for her to have numbers as she wanted to give each girl a coin belt as a party gift. Eventually she felt that everything was confirmed and then ordered 15 coin belts from me.

Weeks before, and as soon as she said that she wanted to buy coin belts, I went out and sourced as many as I could find - they have been in short supply recently. Not a problem for me if she didn't want them, I'd just keep them in stock.

They were so sweet and their attention span wasn't as short as I had feared! I flew completely solo - no assistant or photographer with me. I did take my camera with and asked one of the older girls to take a few pictures. I think she did really well. The mum was such a good hostess, the snack table was loaded with healthy treats of mostly fruit with one naughtiness of a chocolate fountain at the end! 

During the workshop a couple of the girls were complaining that they were getting a stitch, so we had to keep stopping to do stretches. The funniest part was when the Mum took out a jug of water for one girl that was thirsty and the rest of them just followed her! I was alone on the dance floor! Anyway we managed to complete the lesson and I taught them a simple choreography. After my performance they came to tell me that I was very talented and that they were very impressed that I didn't get a stitch! One of the girls came to tell me that she wants to book me for her birthday. They were all very cute.

The drive home at 5 pm was absolutely brutal! Rush hour traffic:( Next time I dance at that time in the southern suburbs will just hang out at a coffee shop until the madness is over.

See pics here.

40th birthday Green Point

Posted by Tanya Cameron on February 25, 2017 at 1:20 PM Comments comments (2)

A very difficult gig.

I did not have a good time!

I had to throw a couple of diva tantrums, the audience was making me so cross. 

They hi-jacked my sound system to play their own music while I was performing, messed with my settings, wouldn't leave the volume alone, unplugged my light and were getting far too close and personal for my liking. Even the cane and shamadan didn't put them off and you know those can both cause serious injury! They were seriously getting all up in my grill!!

Especially the one guy...jeez...I could happily have strangled him. He was even stepping on my toes! That's how close he was. At one point I stopped dancing and asked who they wanted to watch, him or me?? I accidently hit him a couple of times with my cane, must get a heavier one, and had to physically push him away when dancing with my shamadan. 

I was thoroughly sick of the whole thing by the time my last set was over, and couldn't wait to leave. Said my polite and always professional farewells. Then the one lady stopped me at the door and said she wanted to give me a present, It was a really nice tip - the best I've ever had! But I was still fuming and smarting the whole way home...and then, I discover I forgot my cane and veil. Flip! So annoyed. Went back today to collect and had to pretend that I had had a wonderful time the evening before and hadn't been complaining at all. lol!

Mehndi evening, a birthday and a carnival!

Posted by Tanya Cameron on February 13, 2017 at 3:55 AM Comments comments (0)

My theme for the month of February is red and white in honour of Valentines day. Any combination we feel like. If you look closely you can see we have sewn hearts onto our costumes. Cheesy, I know, but sometimes one just needs a little extra fun!

Friday the 10th I was booked for a Belly dance and Bellywood performance at Nuraans Mehndi evening in Crawford. Kalynda came with to dance the Bellywood performances as they are group or duo dances and I really don't like performing them as a solo. It was a bit of a challenge as the area we had to dance in was a tented off portion of the garden and the space allocated to us was a carpet on grass. Very uneven spongy surface! Plus we had speakers on tripod stands on either side and we had to be careful not to trip over the legs. But, all went well and they loved us. One lady held my hand at the end and thanked me personally. So sweet.

Stephanie, who has recently rejoined the group, came with to take photos.

The hostess sent me the message below;

          "Hi Tanaya, thank you so much for an absolutely beautiful evening last night. The ladies loved your performances!" Nuraan

See pics here http://www.tanayabellydance.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=16059419


Then we had to dash off to the next party at the Taj Hotel in Cape Town. I didn't have a clue the nationality or demographic of the client as it was a very last minute booking by a third party.

We arrived fresh(not!) from our previous gig. (All hot and bothered!) Quick change and lipstick check and off we went. The audience was fantastic! Mum and her beautiful daughter were such good sports and were dying to dance. We even did an extra song for them!

          "Thank you Tanaya, they were overjoyed. They showed me a nice video of you dancing with the birthday girl. Thanks for assisting at such short notice." The Taj Hotel

See pics here http://www.tanayabellydance.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=16059421

Camera seemed to be struggling with all the different light sources, but you can see how much fun we were all having!


The next day, Saturday the 12th February, we all dancing at Parow Valley Primary. Quite stressfull. Kalyndas dad had to be rushed to hospital. As soon as she knew he was stable, she rushed back to get ready for our performance at Parow Valley Primary. This was also Stephanies first performance in a long time. There was a fire fighting demo happening, so we had a little impromptu photoshoot behind the fire engine. We were caught by one of the firemen and he kindly posed with us! Photos taken by Jaden and Graham.

See pics http://www.tanayabellydance.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=16059429

Antonios 21st birthday party

Posted by Tanya Cameron on January 8, 2017 at 1:00 AM Comments comments (0)

I just finished dancing at a 21st birthday. Had a costume emergency! The most serious one I've ever had. The zipper that I thought was stuck/broken closed, (so I have to pull the skirt up without using the zip) chose this evening to come undone whilst I was dancing. Fortunately I noticed the expectant and rivited faces and heard someone yell, "It's coming off!" The skirt did feel a bit loose and I immediately realised what was happening and zipped up again. I fretted for the rest of my set but fortunately no further mishaps occurred. I have now stitched that sucker closed permanently!

Friend and wing lady came with to takes some photos and videos.


Random gigs 3rd Dec to 10th Dec

Posted by Tanya Cameron on December 12, 2016 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Two hen parties less than an hour apart.

The first one was very rushed. Everything about it was rushed. I was booked and paid the day before as the previously booked entertainment had apparently cancelled at the last minute. We had to open the festivities with me, which I don't like doing. I prefer the ladies to settle, have a drink and a chat first before they get into the dancing, but there was no helping it this time.

The second one had been booked and paid for about 3 weeks earlier. It was hilarious there were willy shaped straws, decorations and a huge pink willy pinate! (Start as you mean to go on! Show that willy who's boss!! Lol) They were all already in a very good mood when I got there and the bride to be was quite tipsy. They were a lot of fun. And the cutest little girl, she kept hugging me.

The party on the 10th was quite funny as well. I gave my flash drive to the hostess and she said it would play through her bluetooth JBL. I thought she meant a JBL like mine, but then I saw this tiny little cup sized speaker and there was no way that thing could pump the sound I need. I rushed back to the changing room to get my docking station and ipod, much better! The wind was howling through the garden, yep dancing outside! My skirt and my hair got tangled in my cane! Totally lost my place in the choreography and to make matters worse there were two bar tenders that were walking around while we were dancing and they kept bumping into me. Clueless, I tell you. Eventually I said very loudly that if they bumped into me one more time they'd have to dance with me! Haha, they really kept their distance after that! And now tonight off to a henna evening. I should be getting ready, not writing a post.

90th Birthday celebration - Bosjes

Posted by Tanya Cameron on November 27, 2016 at 11:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Yesterday we drove for an hour and a half to Bosjes Farm, somewhere between Worcester and Ceres. So far that we even had to drive through the tunnel!

Jaden and Graham came with to be roadies and camera crew wearing their brand new CREW t-shirts.

The guest of honour was turning 90 years old and  was still sharp as ever. I had taken an out fit for her to wear, 'cos that's part of what I quote for, but I wasn't really expecting her to want to wear it. She didn't!

I had been warned that it would be difficult to get the guests to participate, but actually, it wasn't too bad. About half the people joined in and some of the kids. 

As they were running late I had to do a bit of a speed lesson, which was also just as well. It was very hot and I was worried that my "students" would give up and collapse into a chair. They actually did well. I taught them my simplest choreography and they said they enjoyed it. Yay! There was one little nunu that stayed in front of me nearly the whole time. So cute.

After the workshop I did a 3 song performance for them. It was another dodgy floor. During one of my turns My toe got stuck in one of the gaps and half pulled off my nail! Ouch!

While we were having a photo taken the 90 year old guest of honour was giving me a good feel around my waist and saying what a nice figure I had! Roflmao!

The farm grows the most spendiferous king proteas. Sadly did not take a photo, but I found one similar on Google to give an idea of their magnificence.

SafariNow Party

Posted by Tanya Cameron on November 27, 2016 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Friday the 25th November I was booked to dance a double set at SafariNows year end party. Graham came with to help carry and take photos. They didn't turn out as well as hoped. Camera struggled as it was getting darker...but, he did take some videos clips which is great! I need videos! 

Last week I had ordered some T-shirts for my crew to wear when they accompany me to my gigs. We picked them up an hour before my gig, and on the way, luckily.

Traffic was dreadful on the way to the t-shirt pick up, but then magically cleared up for the final leg of our journey so then we arrived too early.

We went in anyway, and it was probably just as well as my flash drive was not the best option for playing my music, the screen on the speaker was minute and I have lots of folders on my drive. We could not see the names properly as they were truncated. Luckily I have all my songs on my mobile so I just created 2 new playlists on that instead.

I changed into my first costume (pink Hanan) and went out onto the deck to wait with Graham.

There was a waitress walking around serving canapes and she came up to offer us some. Of course I refused, but urged Graham to have some. He's always hungry. A bit later she came to me again and offered more nibbles, I refused and then pointed across to Graham and said she could keep feeding him. After the gig he said she was so sweet, she kept coming up to him with trays of food, so at least he was happy!

The floor was just rough concrete and at the last minute I chickened out of wearing my dance shoes and decided to go barefoot instead. Not sure it was a better idea as the floor had the texture of pumice and my soles were quite tender afterwards.

My second set I had taken my turquoise Sim and a white chiffon skirt as turquoise and white are my clients corporate colours. Sometimes I need inspiration otherwise I just wear my favourites all the time.