About Helen Santa Maria

Helen Santa Maria. Photo credit Oakmist Photography

My name is Helen Santa Maria and I became entranced by belly dancing after seeing it at a friend’s birthday party in a Turkish restaurant. I was utterly smitten by the isolations and shimmies of the hips, the snakey arm and hand movements and of course, the amazing costume.

By chance, I soon came across a taster session for belly dance classes and quickly sought out as much training as I could.

(I had previously trained in ballroom and Latin dance which helped me with some of the isolation technique.)

After several years of training, attending countless classes and workshops, I gained the IDTA Belly Dancing Teaching Diploma, and became a graduate from the Drumzy Advanced Dancers course (which included learning how to recognize, name and play Egyptian belly dance rhythms). 

Photo credit Oakmist

I then took a trip to Cairo to take more classes and have some costumes made. I was ready to take on professional performance and teaching work.

In 2005 with nothing more than a deep love of belly dance, an old boom box and a university classroom that I managed to blag for free, I started to teach others.

And I performed residencies at several restaurants, often with live music, as well as regular performances at events, parties, weddings and festivals.

Since then I’ve grown a team of teachers and now run a Belly Dance Academy that has taught thousands of women to belly dance.

Over the years I have become known for giving step-by-step, easy to follow belly dance coaching which I offer at my local classes here in the UK, plus online to anywhere in the world at Santa Maria Belly Dance Online

Photo credit Oakmist

For the last few years I’ve also shared masses of free tuition through my regular newsletter and blog.  If you’d like to receive my belly dance tips and tutorials straight to your inbox, go to my website to opt in. You’ll also get my FREE online beginner class when you sign up!

And if you’re ready to get serious with your belly dance adventure, we’ve got you covered with specially designed beginner level tuition.

It’s simple step by step, non-intimidating belly dance instruction that helps you embrace your body like never before – even if you’re super limited on time and space.

I believe there’s no such thing as a 'late starter'. So if you think you've left it too late to become the belly dancer of your dreams, think again!

Helen xx

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