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Join us in September 2020 for the first annual ZAKA Bellydance Music Festival,

headlined by bellydance supergroup Helm from Fairfax, CA!

Helm, Mark Bell, Ling Shien

Friday, September 25, 2020

7:00p - 10:00p - Live music welcome party featuring

Sacred Shimmy musicians and friends

Saturday, September 26, 2020

10:00a - 12:00p - Awakening Your Percussive Voice

12:00p - 1:30p - break for lunch

1:30p - 3:30p - Zilling Consciousness

3:45p - 4:45p - Exploring Maqsoum

4:45p - 7:00p - break for dinner

7:00p - Festival Showcase at Vanderelli Room

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About Helm:

From original compositions that have become classics in the worlds of Tribal and Belly Dance to traditional music from throughout the Mediterranean, Helm has continually expanded their repertoire since the band's beginning in the early 1990's. Based in Marin County, CA, Helm has been touring internationally with recent performances in London, Rome, Lima, Istanbul, Moscow, Australia, and the island of La Reunion. In addition to their 12 plus albums, Helm has provided sound tracks for both film and television productions. Helm's performance history includes over thirty Renaissance Faires, multiple appearances at the acclaimed San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival, and numerous corporate and private functions.

Head here for more information about Sacred Shimmy Studio.

Go this way to learn more about The Hip Art Collective.

ZAKA Bellydance Music Festival Workshops

Our inspiration for ZAKA was to create an event that focuses uniquely on the music we love to dance to and the music we love to make.  While many fantastic events exist where bellydancers can congregrate and hone their craft, few festival spaces exist for the study of bellydance music.  In this spirit, we invited Helm to create three brand-new workshops specifically for this setting, allowing participants to dive deeply into music comprehension and music creation!

Awakening Your Percussive Voice

(2 hours, taught by Mark Bell)

You know the basic rhythms but where do you go from there? This workshop will provide you with concepts and exercises to not only do basic embellishments, but to create your own musical voice. Songs will include "Hicaz Saz Semai" from Helm’s recording Istanbul'da.  Please bring darbukas, riqqs, and frame drums. Smallish djembes and zils are also okay.

Zilling Consciousness

(2 hours, taught by Ling Shien)

This workshop will take you beyond just playing basic patterns. We will explore employing finger cymbals to create two different complimentary melodic lines for the song, "Saidi Roah" (from Helm’s recording SpiceBox).

Exploring Maqsoum

(1 hour, taught by Ling Shien and Mark Bell)
Become conversant in the rhythm maqsoum. This workshop will explain what maqsoum really is, how to manipulate the underlying concepts of the rhythm, and provide you with a blueprint to apply to all rhythms.

ZAKA Bellydance Music Festival Shows

  • Friday, September 25 - Live Music welcome party at Sacred Shimmy Studio featuring Sacred Shimmy musicians and friends

  • Saturday, September 26 - Festival showcase at Vanderelli Room featuring music by Helm

This event includes two shows, both of which will feature all live music!  The Friday evening welcome party is open to all, dancers and musicians.  The Saturday evening showcase will feature a two-hour live music set by Helm, accompanied by a curated selection of the finest bellydancers in the region.  To reserve a spot in the Friday evening event, contact Zach Beery via FB Messenger.  If you'd like to apply to perform with Helm in the Saturday evening show, you'll find the application here.


  • The Friday evening welcome party and all Saturday workshops with Helm will be held at Sacred Shimmy Studio, 4875 Hendron Rd, Groveport, OH 43125.

  • The Saturday evening festival showcase will be held at The Vanderelli Room, 218 McDowell St, Columbus, OH 43215.


  • Super Early Bird: All Helm workshops (5 hours) & Friday night welcome party, $125.  Available through February 29, 2020.

  • Early Bird: All Helm workshops (5 hours) & Friday night welcome party, $150.  Available March 1 - June 30, 2020.

  • Last Call: All Helm workshops (5 hours) & Friday night welcome party, $175.  Available July 1 - start of event.

  • A La Carte, available starting July 1:

    • Awakenening Your Percussive Voice (2 hours), $70.

    • Zill Consciousness (2 hours), $70

    • Exploring Maqsoum (1 hour), $35

    • Friday night welcome party at Sacred Shimmy Studio, $5

    • Saturday night festival showcase at the Vanderelli Room, $10

ZAKA Workshops with Helm at Sacred Shimmy Studio
Sep 26, 2020, 10:00 AM
Sacred Shimmy Studio
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