My journey with dance
My longest relationship has been with dance.
And like any relationship it has journeyed through phases of passion, devotion, pure joy, to uncertainty, unhealthy patterns, pain and loss.
The 8 year period of loss made me feel confused, directionless. Who was I if I was not a dancer?
Where that really started to shift for me was in the summer of 2015 when I was in Arambol, Goa.
Initially I went for the psytrance parties & hippy life style but did not anticipate that in fact this actually would be the catalyst for a deep embodied exploration of myself and ultimately the first step in healing my connection to myself, my body and my beloved… DANCE
I have always loved dance and been a dancer my entire life.
I trained in classical ballet & contemporary for 15 years and for most part absolutely loved it, it was my passion, it was a potential career for me.
But in the later years – the years where there is so much VULNERABILITY being a teenage girl, my love of dance training was destroyed.
I was so consumed by body image distortion, not feeling ‘thin enough” for the industry and I had that that painfully re-enforced to me by my teacher.
I did not feel seen or valued.
I lost my voice, my expression.
My confidence was gone.
My love of myself gone.
And it is interesting how that played out for the next 7 years.
This was reflected in my relationships
In how I spent my weekends
In the jobs I took where I felt exploited
I numbed myself hardcore and my relationship with dance entwined itself with the party scene. Ecstatic yes, healthy? NO.
I was seriously stuck in a loop not sure how to get out.
ULTIMATELY, I WAS JUST SO DISCONNECTED FROM MY BODY
I had attempted during this time to reconnect with western dance training but also felt confronted that I was in my late 20’s. Was I too old to start up again? And then oooooh yeah those triggers were still there.
I did not proceed.
I didn’t know how to reconnect.
Then I went to India, the motherland of transformation.
It was the first time I had witnessed women dancing in their full expression, moving in such a strong, confident and embodied way.
It was so beautiful and inspiring.
Through that witnessing I had a moment on a dancefloor one night where for the first time I felt like I didn’t hate my body.
That was my first breakthrough
My second was attending my first ecstatic dance.
I was actually super confronted by it because I hadn’t danced sober since my ballet days.
I felt clunky, awkward, very in my head but the experience was beautiful and I realised that this was definitely a pathway for me to reconnect with dance.
The third catalyst was witnessing fusion belly dance for the first time and taking a class with a women from Turkey.
I was interested. Not hooked yet, however decided to focus on ecstatic dance instead.
About 6 months later I came across a video that ignited the fusion belly dance fire.
My SOUL LIT UP.
And I realised under the enjoyment I was experiencing through ecstatic dance was a DEEP DESIRE for ARTISTRY.
I was fascinated by the intricate technique of fusion belly dance, how it created so much beauty and grace while defying the bodies limits.
My devotional discipline brain awoke.
I had to learn this.
And I fell in love with dance training again.
I was OBSESSED & CONSISTENT with my training from the get go. Training over EIGHT HOURS a week, travelling overseas to train with mentors.
I am not going to lie, the first couple of years of training were challenging.
I had never explored my bodies mechanics in such a technical and intricate way before and it took time for the body to start integrating the movements.
And it was actually the intense focus on my body and the movements is what broke me away from self-judgement & frustration.
Instead, the repetition of movement practice became like a meditation where for that period of time I was not in my monkey brain but 100% in my body.
And guess what that did.
I developed a deep connection with my body – especially my pelvis, hips & belly. It allowed me to soften, embrace my curves and to feel into the core of my creative power.
I felt desire, confident & self-expression came with ease.
I also reframed my perception of frustration and saw it as part of the process of learning, of the neural pathways firing and as part the evolution of mastery.
I have experienced many breakthroughs from a beginner fusion belly dancer to where I am now (9 years later as I write my story)
There are so many layers to fusion belly dance and even today I feel like I am still finding new elements to explore, expand and evolve.
My desire in the pursuit of artistic mastery has become my life’s journey and that is EXCITING, BLISSFUL and inspires DEEP COMMITMENT.
I learnt that it doesn’t matter what age you are, what body you have - you can always learn, transform and break past conditioning when you fall in love with something – for me it was fusion belly dance.
My journey with the dance form has allowed me to discover who I really am and I now LOVE my true authentic self.
Through deep training I have unlocked my body, fine tuning it so that I can fully EXPRESS my SOUL through movement without limitation.
It has become artistic platform where I can process my EMOTIONS and EXPERIENCES.
It healed my body dysmorphia
AND I developed beautiful connections with the incredible women in the community.
My intention is to guide others through this beautiful artistic dance form so they too can REMEMBER who they really are and be able to be LIMITLESS in their expression of themselves.
TRAINING & PERFORMANCE
Sarah's passion and commitment to Fusion Bellydance art form sees her regularly travelling internationally to train with the likes of Zoe Jakes & Colleena Shakti and is currently certified in Zoe Jakes Dance Craft Key of Spades (L2), Olga Meos Phase 2.
She is passionate about sharing her love for Fusion through her performances and classes.
She has taught workshops and intensives in New Caledonia & various Bellydance Festivals around Australia and is the director of ALYASATI Fusion Bellydance School in Brunswick where she teaches beginner & inter/adv Fusion Belly Dance.
Sarah regularly performs in the Melbourne Bellydance Community, at live music events & transformational festivals around Australia and Internationally and is available for event bookings.
Sarah is also co-director of Melbourne's most sought out Fusion Bellydance Troupe - LilliM
TRAINING & CERTIFICATIONS
2023 Cert IV Pilates Matwork National Pilates Training
2022 Olga Meos Phase 2 Certification
2021 Olga Meos Phase 1 Certification
2021 Zoe Jakes Dance Craft Key of Spades Certification Level 2
2019 Zoe Jakes Dance Craft Key of Diamonds Certification Level 1 (New Orleans)
2018 Deb Rubin Dance Therapeutics Certification Level 1 (Sydney)
2019 - current Zoe Jakes Dance Craft format
2019 Fleur Du Danse Festival, Zoe Jakes, Kami Liddle, Mardi Love (New Orleans)
2019 Odissi Classical Indian Monica Singh
2018 Rachel Brice Intensive (Melbourne)
2017 – 2018 Colleena Shakti Indian Fusion Belly Dance Retreat (Bali)
2018 Kathak Semi Classical Indian Dance & Classical Studio J, Sanchita Abrol
2018 Kami Liddle Intro to Krysalis (Belgium)
2018 Far East Belly Dance Festival (Melbourne)
2018 Devi Mamak Stage Craft (Melbourne)
2018 Suhaila Salimpour Intensive (Melbourne)
2017 -2018 Lakita (Melbourne)
2016 - 2017 Ghazelle Sibyl (Melbourne)
2017 Ghazelle Sibyl Ishta Devi School of Dance and Yoga Arts Retreat (India)
2015 - 2016 Entwined Belly Dance
2015 Traditional Tantra Yoga | Shri Kali Ashram (India)
2014 - current Vinyassa & Hatha Yoga
1993-2006 RAD Classical Ballet BDC Dance, Christa Cameron School of Ballet
1999 – 2008 Contemporary Dance BDC Dance, Christa Cameron School of Ballet