The Gilded Serpent presents...


Lauren's love affair with Middle Eastern Dance came directly from her mother. Though not a dancer, Lauren's mom is a huge fan of all types of dance, from ballet to African. Mom had to drag Lauren to her first hafla, but then it was love at first sight!

Lauren started taking lessons with Warda of Sahara Sand Productions, with the intention of getting some exercise and having a little fun. After just a few years, Middle Eastern Dance had become an overwhelming passion. In addition to performing as a member of Sahara Sand until the troupe dissolved in St. Louis in 2003, Lauren teaches regular classes in the Illinois suburbs of the St. Louis area and performs on a semi-regular basis.

She furthered her study of Middle Eastern dance and music through independent reading and study and also through taking workshops with Morocco, Yousry Sharif, Nourhan Sharif, Vashti of Dallas, Shanna of Little Rock, AK, Rania, Chelydra, Hadia, Shareen El Safy, and others.

As part of her quest to become a better teacher, Lauren tested for and received an ACE certification as a group fitness instructor in 2004. That led to an interest in physical activity and health in general, and now Lauren is back in school working on a degree in Exercise and Wellness. In summer 2005 Lauren spent a month in Mexico at Yandara Yoga Institute, living in a hut on the beach, and is now certified as a yoga instructor with Yoga Alliance at the 200 hour level.

What a long journey from being a sedentary snacking smoker for 25 years
-- and all of it triggered by....belly dance!

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Lauren is also available to design your ad graphics for display on Gilded Serpent.

Articles on Gilded Serpent by or about Lauren

  • Rakset Assaya: An Introduction to Egyptian Saidi Technique
    So what could be better than learning Egyptian Saidi technique from an Egyptian of Saidi background who is the renowned master of the dance? How about learning it from his partner, who breaks the steps down verbally in the American teaching style!