I’ve been dancing with Kanina for 3 1/2 years now. When I started dancing, I thought of myself as a graceless klutz and couldn’t stand looking at myself in the mirror. The greatest lessons I’ve learned in class have been to love my body as it is right now and delight in what it can do. Kanina nurtures each and every student and brings forth the greatest expression of their inner light. I’ve mastered new amazing skills and discovered a whole new genre of music and culture that I’ve absolutely fallen in love with. Kanina is an inspiration to all of the women in class and in our audiences. She rouses our class to greater heights of confidence and beauty every term. Dancing in class and with the company is my greatest joy and I feel blessed to have found Kanina and all of my fellow dancers. Words to describe Kanina: inspiring, beautiful, creative, nurturing, classy, legendary, the essence of grace and dance!
I started taking class with Kanina a couple of years ago purely for the exercise. What I have gotten back is so much more. Not only do I get a great work out but I have grown as a person. It is a learning experience for me also. I have learned about music, culture, art, and fitness. I have met some truly amazing women along the way, Kanina not withstanding. I should also mention along with all of this I have actually learned to belly dance. So much so that I actually performed before an audience. Which not too long ago, is something I would have told you I would never do. I would never have imagined 1 1/2 hours a week would pack in so much fun, fitness and education.
Her creative style radiates a rare grace, power and stamina, as well as incredible realm of emotion.
— The Warwick Beacon
This dark, lithesome beauty with startling blue eyes communicates her sheer joy of bellydancing through her incredible energy and audience rapport.
— R.I. Woman Magazine
Exuding feminine charm, grace and wit, Kanina is a sultan’s delight…exotic, colorful, intriguing and refreshingly different is Kanina.
— The News (Aruba)
For a long time, my girlfriends and I have wanted to take lessons in belly dancing. Last spring, we finally joined a class and quickly fell in love. Belly dancing is not only a form of dancing but also an incredible workout. Last year, I had several surgeries that left me feeling weak and uncertain. The belly dancing movements and stretching improved my strength and gave me my confidence back. Learning to focus your thoughts and movements on particular parts of your body and combine them into a routine help you regain control of your body and give you the freedom to express yourself. I am grateful for the strength and courage belly dancing classes have given me.
I started belly dancing as part of the Shape Up RI program with the goal of doing something active for 12 weeks. Little did I know I would fall in love with it — and lose 10 lbs to boot. I found abs I didn’t know I still had! Kanina is a class act and it’s been a real joy to learn the art of belly dance under her tutelage as well as to seek — and find — my ‘inner dancer.’ She continues to inspire me to improve and I’ve made many fun new friends along the way.
As a 4th yr belly dance student, I can’t put into words how much I have grown as a person as a result of my participation and involvement with Kanina and her belly dance classes. I have met some wonderful and very talented women, and watched them grow and develop into inspiring dancers. Kanina challenges me to be better than I think I can be and does so with patience and encouragement. Kanina is a wonderful teacher and choreographer. Kanina will develop her choreography around the personality of the class. Her passion for the art and for teaching is evident at every class and I feel it when I am there-wanting to do better, wanting to come back to learn more. I have come such a long way since I started, and even I can see I get better and master a new skill at every class. There is a great camaraderie among the students no matter what skill level they have attained, and everyone helps and encourages everyone else. I have learned a lot about the music, the culture, the art form, and about myself in my belly dance journey, and look forward to continuing to learn more and aspire to someday be just a fraction as good as some of the women in Kanina’s dance company and advanced classes. Thank you Kanina!
My Thoughts on Belly Dancing… I started belly dancing last year with my friend. I have never taken dance lessons before but have been interested in belly dancing for the last few years. I had even bought a CD to learn how to do it at home. When my friend mentioned that lessons were available at the local dance studio, I jumped at the opportunity. I walked into the studio for the first time and didn’t know what to expect. I had never been in a dance studio before. I was nervous at first but when I heard the beautiful music and met the beautiful Kanina, I was not nervous any more. Over the next several months, I was taught more and more belly dancing steps, I make a veil swirl in ways I didn’t know existed, challenged my body to move in ways I had never known it could move, and gained an amount of self confidence in myself and my body that I had not known. When talk of performing in front of people came up, I immediately thought that I was not ready. With hard work and encouragement from my fellow dancers and Kanina, I had the confidence to dance a beautiful Middle Eastern dance wearing a beautiful costume in front of 200 people. Kanina is a talented dancer, a patient, caring teacher, and a beautiful person. Thank you Kanina.
…a leader in the rejuvination of the art [of belly dancing].
— The Providence Journal
I signed up for belly dance lessons with my daughter three years ago. My intention was to exercise and have fun. That intention was fulfilled, but I experienced far more than I could have imagined. Kanina is an excellent teacher whose passion for the art and culture is evident in her style, technique and enthusiasm. I learned about the different music, countries and artists who have contributed to this ancient art. Kanina has nurtured a community of dancers through her inspiring and dedicated choreography and encouragement to practice and perform. What began for me as a lark has developed into a commitment to myself and the dancers with whom I share the good fortune of learning the art of belly dancing from Kanina.
It all started as a Christmas gift. My cousin got all the girls in the family a belly dance skirt two Christmas’s ago. I decided that this was a great opportunity to get a girlfriend and try something different! Since then, over two years have gone by and I have learned so much about different cultures, dance and general, and myself. Now not only is every Tuesday a Fun ‘girls night out’ and a good workout, but its also a challenging learning experience. Its an opportunity to believe in myself and have fun and just dance all at the same time.
Belly dance first interested me the summer before my freshman year in high school. I was self-conscious, nervous as anything, and had a feeling I would need something to relieve some stress. I found Kanina on the internet and asked if she would teach someone so young. Her support for my efforts was overwhelming and that autumn I enrolled in the first performance based activity I have ever stuck with. Belly dance is truly a near religious experience. Like religion it requires faith; the faith that missed sleep, sore muscles, and hours of practice will pay off; the faith that the band behind you and the people around you are there to help. As with religion, belly dance provides a congregation, a family, who are there for you constantly. The women I dance alongside are as dear to me as my own family. Depending on what you need they are friends, confidantes, mothers, and teachers. Belly dance also provides comfort in times of doubt; it is a art, an ability, that you can rely on and the passion with which you learn can be used at a moment’s notice. I am coming up on my fourth year dancing with Kanina. The motions which were at first so foreign to me are now my daily stretches. Zill patterns and music that I strained to remember now frequent the tips of my fingers and the melodies of my humming. Belly dance encouraged me to embrace myself the way I am. I encourage ANYONE to enrich their lives by trying belly dance.
Belly Dance by Kanina has been an incredible experience! Kanina is a beautiful, charismatic, teacher and performer that takes the time to make sure every student gets the necessary individual attention in a steadily paced group class. Not only has learning belly dance been a great supplement to my regular workout routine, but an unexpected side-effect has been the boost to my self esteem. Like many women, I have a ton of “body issues,” but with such positive encouragement and dancing along such beautiful women of all shapes, ages, and sizes, how could one not feel great about themselves? I definitely recommend belly dance classes to anyone looking to learn this beautiful art with a great teacher and do something positive for themselves.
Taking your classes by myself gave me the confidence to do other things like go to Hawaii by myself which was AWESOME! It also helped me move past some youth traumas. It also helped me remember that I’m a woman. Not just two hands made for scrubbing dishes and moping floors. I bet you’d be surprised to find out all you classes have done for people.