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.

Zombie Apocalypse?

The Madwoman was searching "Zombie Apocalypse" and this came up... our Mardis Gras performance with Pippin Barnet on drums. Go fiqure?

Postcards for the Adventure

We're hittin' the road folks. Headed to New Bern NC. So we made postcards to give to people on the way. 

Busk at Dusk in the Hotness

We don't lack for public space. But much (most?) of it is designed to get people in and out of private space, ie roads and sidewalks. Those of us fortunate enough to visit places in the world where hanging out in public space is a way of life know some of the possibilities yet to be realized here. The Occupy Movement was very much about occupying public space, reclaiming public space, being present in public space and expanding possibilities for behavior in public space. The muscular excitement of the automobile has defined much of what is desirable and acceptable in public places here in the US... please join us as we explore possibilities for joy, tenderness, longing, whimsy, eroticism and occasionally ecstacy.

And if your able, please drop some $ in the hat. Bottom line, we're entertainers.

photo Oway Chalkley

photo Otway Chalkley

photo Otway Chalkley

Lazy Days Solstace Festival

We made the big time... page two of Amherst Countys New Era Progress!

Thank you Lazy Days Winery for inviting us to perform and rove. I'm always impressed by how people flock to the Dancing Madwoman like she's royalty. At one point people were lines up to have their photos taken. And the little girls treat her like she is truly a Princess.

It was also a pleasure to perform for vendors and festival workers who couldn't make it to the stage.

Moulin Rouge-ish

On short notice Mark Slomski was asked to put together entertainment for a Moulin Rouge themed party at the Jefferson Hotel... Deanna Danger, Bitsy Buttons, Mark Slomski, Deepa De Jour, and Professor Bless and the Dancing Madwoman...