a rehearsal

Our friend Otway came by during a rehearsal at Illumination Dance Studio and took some pictures and video.

Movie of Gypsies, Tramps and Theives Show

Gypsies Tramps and Theives from Todd Raviotta on Vimeo.

Our performance of Szaba Madar is used for soundtrack.

Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves

all photos by Rebekah Brunson unless otherwise noted

above photo Dave Parrish

<iframe src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/52823212?badge=0" width="500" height="281" frameborder="0" webkitAllowFullScreen mozallowfullscreen allowFullScreen></iframe> <p><a href="http://vimeo.com/52823212">Gypsies Tramps and Theives</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user2477893">Todd Raviotta</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree


The Professor and the Dancing Madwoman  had a wonderful Halloweeny time performing in Buster Britches' "Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree".
Thank you Buster!

photo Brian Crawford


Nothing like showing up to a gig and you're already there, hanging on the wall. That's what happened at our last gig in Petersburg. No artist name. No title. Just us in oil on the wall.

Gourds and Bellys

The Professor and the Madwoman were proud to host so many gifted performers at this Bellydance Cabaret; the Gourd Trio (house band), Poisoned Spoon, Ysabeau, Raihan Alum, John Bari and special thanks to Stephen Williams for commemorating the last day of Oktoberfest with a rousing rendition of "The Happy Wanderer".

photos: Otway Chalkley (unless marked otherwise)

The Gourd Trio with Raihan Alum 


photo Arthur Stephens

The Dancing Madwoman

Poisoned Spoon 

photo John Bari

John Bari 



Gourd Museum

photo John Bari

photo Arthur Stephens

Woodland Creatures


a few photos of our recent trip to TribOriginal in Asheville NC
Khalima was also an organizer and MC


there were many wonderful performers, among them Krys Sta, a bellydancing clown and puppeteerIIn



Khalima dancing in a video by Arthur Stephens. Music is by the Richmond Indigenous Gourd Orchestra of which the Professor is a member.

Back stage

photo: Jaki Hawthome
Backstage at the Down East Bellydance and Drum Fest.
Can you find the Professor?

Puccini, Southside Richmond Style


We took rehearsal outside and made this little video on a smart phone. 
Getting ready to perform at Tribo in Ashville.

Stir Crazy

photo Otway Chalkley                                                       
at Stir Crazy with the Happy Lucky Combo 

 video Arthur Stephens

League of Space Pirates

The Professor and the Dancing Madwoman took part in the shooting of The League of Space Pirates video at the Byrd. Noah Scalin aka "skull guy" is the band leader and the Madwoman is part of the group.

Backyard Sangri-la

The Madwoman dances. Arthur Stephens videos. The Richmond Indigenous Gourd Orchestra plays "Backyard Shangri-la. The Professor is in RIGO.

Happy Birthday Liz

It was an honor to perform at Liz's Birthday Party. It was a magical, fun, wonderful evening. Small, intimate and cozy under a Moroccan tent. Morocco Southside Richmond style


New video by Arthur Stephens of the Madwoman dancing to music of the Richmond Indigenous Gourd Orchestra of which the Professor is a member. The song, Maranka, is on their fourth CD, "Backyard Shangri-La".

River City Muse

Otway Chalkley has taken some wonderful photos and videos of the Dancing Madwoman over the years. Heres one with vinettes from the last few years, including the first time the Professor and the Madwoman performed together. The soundtrack is a piece that The Professor wrote for a dance and includes August Hoerr.

Thanks Otway.

The Professor and the Madwomans' Awesome Down East Adventure

The Professor and the Madwoman headed to New Bern NC to perform and teach. Being billed as Avant Garde Bellydance provided us with enough ambiguity to be who we are. This blog is about our little corner of a grand event. 

Our workshop was "Oriental Tribal Fusion Taqsim".  Khalima is trained in classical Egyptian Taqsim. It is basically slow improvisation, dance and music. Of course the Professor throws in a polka now and again. One of the highlights of the class is "emotional charades" where a dancer picks an emotion out of the hat and the Professor and the dancer convey it to the group though music and dance. This was a fun, creative and engaged group!

The show was in an old Masonic hall. Masonic halls are full of esoteric photos, paintings and signs. The Professor felt right at home.

The musicians, Andrew Shakinovsky, Oud,  Brian Beaman, doumbek and Matthew Waltenberger, doumbek and davul, were very gracious and generous. The Professor picked up some Turkish, Greek and Arabic tunes and learned a lot about theory.

Kaitlyn far right, her daughter and sister. Kaitlyn organized this wonderful event. And of course she and her troupe Apsara Dancers, peformed beautifully. Her sister MC'd and her daughter was the STAR of the evening, which opened with her singing the Star Spangled Banner.

Love this photo! While waiting to perform, Naima Sultana curled her hair, reapaired her costume and discussed North Carolina politics. The real show is always backstage.


Sight seeing brought us to the water where this man taught us how to crab.

Beautiful blue fin.

The Madwoman in he throes of a Southern Gothic moment.

Black Beard is that you?

The House Band; Matthew Waltenberger, Andrew Shakinovsky, Professor Bless and Jeremiah M. Soto.