Nisaa is pleased to offer the following lectures online via Zoom.  Before registering, please read ALL the information below, and if you have questions, e-mail or call 314.599.0506 for more information.  Stay up-to-date regarding upcoming class sessions by subscribing to Nisaa's monthly newsletter!
February 2023 Online Lectures with Nisaa
Registration and Payment Information


$25 USD for one lecture, or $40 USD for both lectures

Please note that class fees are non-refundable after the start of the session.  Classes missed in the current session may not be used as credit for classes in future sessions.  Registrations are non-transferable.


Register here with PayPal.  Click on the links to the right.  You don't have to have a PayPal account to use this method of payment.  Please be sure to register with a current e-mail address - Nisaa will e-mail the Zoom meeting links to this e-mail address!

Important Information:

  • Register at least 24 hours prior to the lecture.
  • Check your e-mail!  Nisaa will e-mail you the Zoom meeting link within 24 hours of the start of the lecture.  If you have not received an e-mail at least two hours prior to the start of the lecture, please contact Nisaa immediately to request the Zoom meeting link.  Please do not wait till the last minute!
  • A recording will be available for viewing for 14 days after each lecture.  All purchasers will be notified by email as soon as each recording is available.
Before There Was a Badlah:
The Evolution of Egyptian Belly Dance Costuming from the Late 18th Century to the Early 20th Century
February 11, 2023 | 2-3:30 PM US Central Time​

The badlah (Arabic for “suit”) has been the Egyptian belly dancer’s uniform since at least the mid-1930s.  Generally consisting of a bra, a belt, and a skirt, usually with the midriff bare, this ensemble is widely recognized as the typical costuming for Egyptian belly dance.  However, this wasn’t always the standard belly dance costume.  In this lecture, Nisaa traces the history of Egyptian belly dance costuming from the late 18th century through the early 20th century.  Nisaa illustrates how specific elements emerged in the mid-19th century that began to differentiate a professional dance costume from everyday attire.  Further, she problematizes the idea of “Western influence” on the eventual development of the badlah.  Current evidence suggests that the Egyptian badlah evolved from an indigenous (though Ottoman-influenced) costuming style, while absorbing foreign innovations, such as stockings, fashionable European shoes, and new fabric choices and design elements.  This hybridization of costuming at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries was consistent with a broader trend of adapting and integrating foreign ideas and influences into a native Egyptian aesthetic.
February 25, 2023 | 2-3:30 PM US Central Time​

“Belly dance is sensual, not sexual.”  This statement is made frequently by belly dance instructors and practitioners outside of Egypt, in what is generally a well-meaning attempt to stress the artistic merit of the dance.  Yet, statements such as this are counter to historical reality.  The historical record reveals that sexuality and eroticism have been part of belly dance in Egypt throughout the course of its existence.  While the presence or absence of sexual elements depends on a variety of factors, including individual performers’ personalities and choices, performance context, and social class of both performer and audience, the fact is that sexuality and eroticism can be an important feature of Egyptian belly dance performance.  In this lecture, Nisaa offers a frank consideration of this side of Egyptian belly dance, demonstrating the role that sexuality and eroticism have played in the dance through history, and illustrating how this side of the dance has parallels in other traditional Egyptian entertainment forms.
Let’s Talk About Sex!
A Consideration of the Historical Role of Sexuality and Eroticism in Egyptian Belly Dance