Lady Ra of Beats without Borders & Belly Belly Hip present: Arcanic Caravan – A Weekend of “Tribal Secrets” Dance Workshops & Tarot Deck Photo Tour with Anandha Ray! June 14-16, 2013

Wednesday, 17. April 2013 2:56

Meet Anandha Ray of “Tribal Secrets”! (S.F.)


After retiring from an award-winning, 30-year career in modern dance, Anandha Ray is re-emerging as a dance photographer and as a tribal fusion choreographer synthesizing modern dance into the world of tribal fusion bellydance. Seeking to expose the extraordinary within the ordinary, Ray’s work has long delved into the subculture of shadow and light, figuratively and literally.

Both dance and photography have the potential to change the world, giving pause to the viewer, evoking thoughts and inspiring questions. In their authentic forms they speak human truths and they cannot lie. For Ray, the synthesis of modern dance with tribal fusion bellydance provides a fresh forum for exploration and understanding of the unmistakable beauty of darkness and the honesty of our humanness.

Internationally acclaimed as a dancer, director and choreographer, and recognized as a master teacher of the highest level, Ray has produced over 300 concerts, directed a professional company on tours of seven countries and throughout the USA, directed dance departments at a university, a college and a community center, and founded and directed a non-profit studio/theater.

She is well known for her unique methodologies for training dancers who improve rapidly to attain the highest tenets of professional dance. For her contributions in dance she has been inducted into the Women’s Hall of Fame and as an honorary Kentucky Colonel, has received commendations from the US Senate and the CA Assembly, was named as one of 25 Women Leading the Arts and as a Visionary for the 21st Century, and has received numerous grants and awards.

Friday June 14

Ethiopian Dinner Meet & Greet 6pm-7pm

Modeling for Dance Photography 7pm-10pm   $45 (inc. dinner)

Conceptually, a great photograph captures not a dance pose, but rather freezes a moment of profound performance at just the perfect point. Not every photographer can coach dancers as well, as many don’t have the knowledge of the form required to assist the model in finding the perfect moments to photograph. Thus, dancers need to understand just how to communicate those perfect moments for the camera. A photographer and model herself, Ray was the photo assistant and dancers’ coach for internationally renowned dance photographer Scott Belding for 15 years. There are many Tribal Secrets that make modeling for dance photography much easier to understand!

Saturday June 15 – 9am-5pm

Tribal Secrets Tarot Deck Photoshoot! $150

The goal of the Tribal Secrets Tarot deck is to harness the beauty and magic of the Tribal Fusion Bellydance world, and to market this beautiful world to the public. These cards will mark this time in the history of Tribal Fusion Bellydance. There is magic in the imagery and energy of Tribal Fusion Bellydance, and this world is the embodyment of the symbolism inherent in Tarot cards. It’s a perfect match to create a living deck.

Dancers who model for the deck will work in collaboration with the Tarot Deck team to determine which card will be theirs.
Personal Tarot deck card designs can be used as business cards as well.
Decks will be published professionally and sold at festivals and stores throughout the nation.Selected cards will be blown-up and displayed in galleries through out the U.S.

$150 per one hour shoot includes digital access to all photos and15 retouched photos of your choice! A fantastic deal for Anandha’s gorgeous work! No licensing fees! Check out her portfolio here:

Other days and times may be available for outdoor shoots; please check this page for updates. Please indicate preferred day and time on June 15, 17, 18 or 19th as well as a phone number where we can reach you to arrange times if necessary.

Saturday June 15 8pm-late      $15.00

Special edition of Caravanserai featuring Anandha and our amazingly talented local dancers, with afterparty hosted by djs Lady Ra & the Lizard of Oz!

This is going to be an extra-special night of dance and music!

8pm @ The Fall Tattooing and Artist’s Gallery
644 Seymour Street
Vancouver, BC‎

Sunday, June 16

Moving with Confidence: Intuitive Technique for Bellydancers 10-1pm   $35

Unlock the physical blocks to absolute and intuitive technical mastery in this non-stop, highly athletic technique class. Each student will experience pure technique in motion through guided movement instructions that expose and re-program blocks in the performance arena. Students trained through this method attain the highest levels of mastery in technique, risk taking, and emotional expression. Can be attended by all levels but is best suited for intermediate/advanced students.

A Waking Dream: EMP for Bellydancers 1:30-4:30 pm  $35

EMP (Expressive Movement Processing) teaches emotional expressiveness in movement and provides a method for understanding authenticity in performance. Combining improvisation, dance therapy and choreography, this class takes the participant on a journey to their inner depths of performance. Through guided imagery, like a waking dream, students develop a pathway to heighten their performance ability. Suitable for all levels of dancers. Take your performance to the next level!

Workshop Options

Tonje Olson

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Armani Friend of Desert Dwellers: a co-production between Lady Ra & Chris Chill of Interchill!

Thursday, 5. August 2010 20:25

Amani Front Web

So, I’m really pleased to be able to create an event around Amani and his Desert Dweller sound! For real. I’m listening right now to ‘Misty Mountain’  (go head, press play, below!)  in my headphones. There is the gentlest of cool summer evening breezes wafting through my window, I am exhausted from a tightly scheduled week, and I am feeling myself reach my centre. The richly textured layers,  balance of deep bottom bass, flutes light as air, and harmonious mid-tones are just what the shaman ordered .

When I need to create an ambience of crystalline clarity; when I need to smarten up and get yogic; when life as a human on this spinning globe starts to overwhelm; a dose of Desert Dwellers releases just the right amount of seratonin and endorphins. And I am certain that putting Desert Dwellers on regular rotation makes one more intelligent.


Amani Friend (founding member of Desert Dwellers & Liquid Bloom) has been a musician since his fingers could reach a keyboard or percussion instrument. A graduate of the College of Santa Fe’s cutting-edge Contemporary Music Program, he has nearly two decades of music production experience in jazz, blues, dub, electronica, ambient, world music, yoga, healing, and progressive dance music …always combining the diversity of the world with the most modern production methods.

Amani produces regularly with studio partners Treavor Moontribe and Rara Avis under the name Desert Dwellers. The roots of this “virtual band” come deep from within the electronic music gatherings taking place in the deserts of the Southwest. The Desert Dwellers have remixed artists such as Deep Forrest and Karsh Kale; their music appears on White Swan Records, Six Degrees, Native State, Bedrock, System Recordings, Ritual Sounds, and their own label Desert Trax. Amani also produces under Shaman’s Dream, Liquid Bloom, Amani vs. Teapot, and Cerebral Dub.  When not making music, Amani has become known for his strong vision in graphic design and digital artwork (Global Dragon).

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My New Favorite Track: Kiril feat. Ras Tweed & Esma Redzepova (Queen of the Gypsies) – Raise up your Hand

Tuesday, 16. February 2010 3:32

Over the years, Balkan flavours have emerged to be a consistent favorite in my mixes. At first it was the freshest sound on the block, but even as the Balkan scene exploded, my enthusiasm grew. Perhaps it’s because these countries are the closest to part of my own heritage, culturally speaking (Mom & grandparents are Czech), but also – Balkan tracks are just damn fun -’specially when fused with some good ol’ fashioned Jamaican-style MCing ala Ras Tweed.

First, you really, really gotta know who Esma is in order to really appreciate this track.

Beloved singer of the Romani people, Esma Esma Redzepova Teodosievska

Daughter of a Turkish Muslim Roma (Mom) and Albanian-Serb Catholic Roma (Dad – who had a Jewish Iraqi mother), Esma is the beloved of Roma people everywhere, labeled Queen of the Gypsies during a tour to India in ‘74. Her career began at age 9 in Skopje, Macedonia, when she joined a local Romani band. By the time Esma was 13 years old she had earned enough money to set her father up with a shoe-shining kiosk in the Central Square. At age 14 she was discovered by the man later to become her husband, Stevo Teodosievski, when she won a contest sponsored by Radio Skopje .

Some 500+ recordings and two Nobel Peace prizes later, Esma – born in 1943 – is still rockin’ it, as evident by her performance in the high-energy dance track you’ll see below. She has fostered over 47 street kids and orphans and given them musical training to boot, sponsored countless humanitarian organizations, and began her own foundations: the Home of Humanity and the Museum of Music. She unabashedly admits that she is a ‘money-making machine’. However, she redistributes her wealth for the good of her people, and in fact, all people. As Esma’s own heritage encompasses the trinity of monotheistic religions and their respective cultures, she has no tolerance for the division of humanity along racial, cultural, or national lines.

Her musical history and her generosity both of spirit and material wealth are phenomenal and it is worth reading more about her if you’re whiling away the hours. Seldom does history produce a deservedly-revered performer the likes of this.

Hands up! Go Macedonia! You can expect me to be playing this fantastic treat at a party near you! (Perhaps you’ll come out this Thursday, February 18th).

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Beats without Borders & 5 Years of Global Goodness!

Thursday, 3. December 2009 18:17

Vj Electrabelle, dj Nils, Lady Ra, T-spoon

Vj Electrabelle, dj Nils, Lady Ra, T-spoon

Whoa, 5 years working with my 3 ‘brothers’ on the Beats without Borders Collective project! It was actually Adrian’s idea, originally, one of his many. And this particular one took root and grew! He envisioned a radio show. Collectively, we thought the radio was a bit limiting for our collective talent and the club nights were born! The combining of live musicianship, dancers, dj’s, and a vj was too enticing to pass by. Oddly enough, the other ‘World’ fusion collective in town, Electropical, began at the same time and celebrates their anniversary in the same week as ours!

It hasn’t always been easy, working with our different personalities and visions, but it has been satisfying. We created our own outlet for what we wanted to contribute to this town (and sometimes far beyond) and without it, certain things most definitely would not exist (Delhi to Dublin – Tarun’s super-Indo-Irish-etc-group, born of a night we did for Celticfest). And for me, it has given me opportunities to share the music I collect and love that has spread from here, to Dubai, to Australia, and in between. I have met like-minded people around the globe and realized once again, just how small our world is.

Our past celebration was off the hook; Nicodemus and Zeb (the Spy from Cairo) were gracious guests and performers-on-fire, and the people who came to celebrate us filled the dance floor with the best vibes I’ve experienced in a long time! Gracias por todos – to my BwB home crew -Nils & Tarun, to Adrian, now living off the land in Hawai’i, to Nico and Zeb, to Suez, our Vj who’s never missed a show, and to all of those who supported us and made this all possible through half a decade! Viva la musica!

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My new friend Zeb – the Spy from Cairo

Tuesday, 17. November 2009 22:46

Nickodemus &  Zeb of Turntables on the Hudson, NY

On Sunday morning, the Creature of the Night, yours truly, got up extra early to interview one of our special guests for Thursday night’s party. In case you’ve been hiding in a cave, on Thursday night, my home crew Beats without Borders ( will be celebrating their 5th Anniversary in bringing the finest Global Fusion talent to Vancouver (as well as developing our own).

Anyway, I interviewed ‘Zeb – the Spy from Cairo’. It was a most hilarious and highly entertaining chat and you can go to my ‘music’ page and listen to it yourself – really, you should! The funny thing too is that ‘Zeb’ is of Arab descent yet calls himself something that in Arabic means… well, if anyone can tell me what it means I will send you copies of my mixes on CD as a prize!

But the current issue is that in fact, Zeb, who was/is to be my houseguest as well as a featured musical act at my show, did not board his plane in Newark this afternoon because the crew at Continental would not allow my friend to keep his oud with him. Way to go, Continental! But we will find a way, because we want our friend and special guest with us no matter what!

Please go to the ‘upcoming events’ page or to get tickets for Thursday’s fanastic event, also starring Nickodemus, founder of New York’s Turntables on the Hudson. See you on the dancefloor, yo!

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Finally, Lady Ra has taken over her own cyberspace!

Thursday, 12. November 2009 1:48

Dj Lady Ra

Finally, dj Lady Ra has a website that she can update herself! This too shall lead to new horizons! Thank you Wordpress! Changes are-a cooommin’ UP!

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