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About Essence

Essence of Belly Dance is one of the leading annual belly dance festivals on the East Coast produced by Farah "Faaridah" Taylor and Team Essence, fusing Cabaret,  Tribal Fusion, and world  dance styles. The event includes a variety of workshops by some of the most notable dancers in the industry! We tie it all together with an all star gala, competition and awards ceremony celebrating diversity in our beloved art form!! 4 days of pure Belly Dance! It is truly an experience!  Whether you are new to belly dance or an experienced professional, you will walk away with a solid foundation to help you improve as a dancer. We hope you can join us!

Check out the 2020 Full Weekend Schedule:




Featured Artists:

2010 - Ansuya 

2011 - Suhaila Salimpour

2012 - Aziza (Montreal) and Sera Solstice

2013 - Amar Gamal, Jill Parker, Mira Betz, Sadie

2014- Jillina, Sharon Kihara,  Issam Houshan, Louchia, Heather Aued,  Lauren Boldt & Danielo! Our 2014 featured the theatrical production Belly Dance Evolution: Alice in Wonderland!

2015 - Jill Parker  (USA), Leila Farid of Cairo (Egypt), Luna of Cairo (Egypt), Kami Liddle (USA), Sorraiah Zaied (Egypt), Tjarda (Netherlands), Petite Jamilla (USA),  Aziza Nawal (USA), and Issam Houshan (USA)

2016 - Madame Raqia Hassan (Egypt), Sorraiah Zaied (Egypt), Amy Sigil, Silvia Salamanca, Ranya Renee, Ebony Qualls and Issam Houshan

2017 - Mohamed Shahin (New York & Egypt), Suhaila Salimpour, Mira Betz, Colleena Shakti, Natalie Nazario, Andrus Ramir

2018 - Sadie, Victoria Teel, Kami Liddle, Mardi Love, Abby Keyes, Rachel George, Sabriye Tekbilek, Lebanese Simon and Suhaila Salimpour.  

2019 - Aziza of Cairo, Mohamed Shahin, Amy Sigil & UNMATA, Suhaila Salimpour and Arish Lam