Jenza McNeil

Photo credit: Jenza's Archives

The Gilded Serpent presents...


Suzanne McNeil

Her dancer mother, Samira, introduced Jenza to Middle Eastern Dance in 1975. Jenza danced in most of the celebrated nightclubs of the Los Angeles, San Diego, and Orange Counties of California while her mother traveled the USA as one of the prominent vendors of Belly Dance costuming and ethnic inspired designs.

Throughout her career, Jenza always found enjoyment in teaching dance and inspiring others to pursue their dreams of dancing professionally. Her classes and workshops have been popular all over the United States, and have even taken her to the other side of the world.

Today, Jenza continues her work as a sought-after instructor and costume designer in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. She also devotes time to supporting her mother’s costume designing, and her daughter’s (Elayssa) own creative endeavor, the acclaimed Elysium Dance Theatre. It's all in the family!


Articles on Gilded Serpent by or about Jenza

  • Samrah's Legacy, Revisiting MECDA's First Fundraiser in Los Angeles, May 1978
    However, THIS event was different due to the overwhelming support and participation from our dance community. The community I mention was primarily working nightclub dancers and musicians, and a few vendors. In fact, I had not seen so many musicians’ come together for a common cause before and certainly ever since.
  • From Obscurity to Mainstream The American Journey of the Afghani Dress
    Interest in Afghani folk clothing and designs began in the late 1960s due to the influence of the hippie generation.  As this fascination with folk arts developed, mainstream America took notice.  Along with the granny dress, maxi dress, and peasant dress, the Afghani dress was a perfect addition to our wardrobes.