How to Belly Dance with Irina Akulenko

Learn about Irina Akulenko, one of Howcast's belly dancing experts, in this video.

My name is Irina Akulenko and I’m a professional belly dancer, choreographer, and teacher in New York City. I got into belly dancing purely by accident. I was a dancer my whole life, but I just saw a belly dancing performance once and I saw I thought it was really magical and beautiful so I started taking classes and I haven’t stopped since then. What turned me to belly dance was the elegance and really kind of mysterious, beautiful movement of the performer that I saw and the dance community itself also. You get to meet really amazing people when you’re entering the belly dance world. One thing about belly dance that you should know is that if your really like it, it becomes a full-time obsession. So, a lot of women actually kind of get bitten by the belly dance bug. So, once you start taking classes and if you have really right teacher and you have passion for it, you can’t stop. So in this series of videos, I’m going to be teaching the most basic approach to belly dance, the most basic isolations, which are completely essential in order for anybody to first of all experience for the first time and then later on be able to build more complicated movements that you might be completely in awe of and you’ve seen some amazing performances. But before you get to complicated movements, you have to master the basic isolations and some basic hip work and this is what’s going to happen in these series of videos. It’s very basic, very simple, it’s your belly dance 101.