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About Abigail Keyes

Abigail Keyes holds Level 5 certification in both the Suhaila and Jamila Formats. She's officially been with the Salimpour School since 2005, and has been studying the format since 2000. In 2016, she earned her MA in Dance Studies from Mills College and also has a BA in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. At the home studio in Albany, she is Assistant Director of our resident dance companies: the Suhaila Dance Company, the Repertoire Ensemble, and Bal Anat. When not teaching at the "Mothership," she travels around the world to teach the Salimpour Formats.

Why Learning Choreography Will Improve Your Dancing

Learning and performing belly dance choreography is a significant part of studying at the Salimpour School of Dance. The Salimpour repertoire ranges from elegant and flowing pieces like “Princess of Cairo” to challenging and fierce drum solos like “Accessible.” Each of them has their own unique character, story, and sentiment.  But many dancers ask why [...]

By |2021-02-25T15:00:38-08:00February 25th, 2021|Certification Program, Inspirations|Comments Off on Why Learning Choreography Will Improve Your Dancing

5 Reasons Why You Need to Revisit Level 1

When you first start belly dance at the Salimpour School, you learn fundamental movements, techniques, and learning strategies that you’ll take with you for the rest of your journey. But after dancers earn their Level 1/Fundamentals certifications, it’s really common for them to get so wrapped up in learning the new material that they forget [...]

By |2021-01-18T17:29:27-08:00January 19th, 2021|Certification Program|Comments Off on 5 Reasons Why You Need to Revisit Level 1

Apply to earn a scholarship to the Fall 2021 semester at the Suhaila Salimpour Institute of Online Education!

The Salimpour School and the Suhaila Institute of Online Education are excited to offer a funding opportunity for the Fall 2021 semester! If you're planning on attending one of our 12-week online courses starting in August 2021, don't miss this chance to be awarded $750 towards your tuition. Recipients must follow the instructions below, and [...]

By |2020-10-12T13:52:06-07:00October 12th, 2020|Certification Program, News & Events, Salimpour School, School News|Comments Off on Apply to earn a scholarship to the Fall 2021 semester at the Suhaila Salimpour Institute of Online Education!

Congratulations to our scholarship recipients!

We're excited to announce the recipients of our fall 2020 scholarship! Yes, we're awarding more than one person, because your entries were so strong. Thank you to everyone who submitted an application! Suhaila was already considering, given this was the first semester for the Institute, that she might award one or two $300 scholarships if [...]

By |2020-06-16T13:48:10-07:00June 16th, 2020|News & Events|Comments Off on Congratulations to our scholarship recipients!

Salimpour School Summer Contest 2020!

Summer Contest 2020! This years's theme: My Home Studio In 2018, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of Bal Anat. In 2019, we celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Salimpour School. Now, in 2020, we celebrate the launch of the Suhaila Salimpour Institute of Online Education. And we want to hear about how you train from [...]

By |2020-06-01T18:43:59-07:00June 3rd, 2020|Certification Program, News & Events, School News|Comments Off on Salimpour School Summer Contest 2020!

The Best Free Resources from the Salimpour School

The Salimpour School offers a broad collection of free resources, available to anyone! We want to make sure that you have the tools you need to become an educated, well-rounded, and knowledgeable dancers, in both body and mind.  Use these videos, articles, and training tools to supplement your practice, dig deeper into the history of [...]

By |2020-05-22T18:25:11-07:00May 26th, 2020|Salimpour School|Comments Off on The Best Free Resources from the Salimpour School

5 Ways to Earn Salimpour School CECs At Home

We’ve heard from many of you that you worried about earning the continuing education credits (CECs) to keep your certifications current.  With the novel coronavirus disrupting many planned in-person workshops with Suhaila and instruction with our licensed instructors, you might feel like you won’t be able to get your CECs in time. We’re not going [...]

By |2020-04-28T15:32:52-07:00March 31st, 2020|Salimpour School|Comments Off on 5 Ways to Earn Salimpour School CECs At Home

7 Reasons to Pursue Salimpour Certification

Today, belly dance certification is everywhere. But when Suhaila began her program back in the 1990s, certification was a radical and controversial idea. Long time dancers in the field argued that belly dance is a folk dance, and that certification and testing would remove the creativity and personalization that are so essential in this form. [...]

By |2020-02-17T13:37:15-08:00February 20th, 2020|Salimpour School|Comments Off on 7 Reasons to Pursue Salimpour Certification

Why the Salimpour School Welcomes All Bodies: Our Inclusion Policy

Dance is a celebration of personal expression, freedom, and connection with others.  The Salimpour School is proud to welcome students from diverse backgrounds and experiences. We do not discriminate on the basis of race or color, gender or gender expression, sexual orientation, body type, health conditions, or disabilities.  And while belly dance is a majority-women [...]

By |2020-01-31T15:27:49-08:00January 31st, 2020|Salimpour School|Comments Off on Why the Salimpour School Welcomes All Bodies: Our Inclusion Policy

5 Myths About Jamila Salimpour and Her Belly Dance Format

Of course, we're a little biased, but we think that Jamila Salimpour's format revolutionized belly dance practice, teaching, and understanding around the world. Her and her daughter's careful cataloging of steps by dancers from a diverse range of styles and regions has left us with a versatile and comprehensive collection of movements. But when you're [...]

By |2020-01-16T15:01:21-08:00January 23rd, 2020|Certification Program, History, Salimpour School|Comments Off on 5 Myths About Jamila Salimpour and Her Belly Dance Format