Ma*Shuqa's Classes and Workshop Topics

Weekly Tuesday &  Wednesday

Boutique Belly Dance Exercise Studio Classes

in Ma*Shuqa's Los Gatos Studio

 "Hidden Garden Oasis Studio"- entrance gate off driveway Classes are held in a beautiful boutique studio specially designed for belly dance.  See a gallery of Ma*Shuqa’s studio images at:

 (Located in a quiet residential area at the corner of Edmund Drive and Camino Del Cerro - see the "lighted obelisk on the fence at the end of the driveway - entry gate off driveway - call for entry info)  Can't find us? Give us a call (408) 356-9473

Performance and Technique taught in all classes

Tuesdays: 7:00 - 9:00 pm 

Wednesdays:  1:00 pm - 2:30 pm, & 7:00 - 9:00 pm

Students are welcome to drop-in and start at any time.

Fees: $20./class (drop-in) or purchase a Class Card: $60./5 classes, $110./10 classes.

(To receive class card rate, card must be presented in class or the $20 fee drop-in rate applies. Cards transferable and/or may be shared with family or friends -  no expiration date).

 (Lost Class cards cannot be replaced.)

Ma*Shuqa's Weekly classes are on-going and year-round

*Check here for dates with no classes.

-Wednesday, September 12, 2018

-Tuesday and Wednesday, September  18 & 19, 2018

- Tuesday  and Wednesday, September 25 & 26, 2018

WEEKLY CLASSES RESUME - Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018

Learn the Ma*Shuqa Method of developing dance movement and styling with 10-step Styles to personalize your dancing. Ma*Shuqa Method instruction assists you to enjoy learning and dancing while developing your own unique dance style. 

Find out about "dance posture: core stabilization and energy", determine your personal body undulation and movement style.

Every class starts with a basic movement warm up which becomes the foundation of flowing movement of the Ma*Shuqa Method. Every movement and step is related to this foundational structure.

Every movement and step is performed as a dance - rather than as just a repetitive drill.  Come to class and see this professional difference and see, hear, and feel how energizing and beautiful Oriental dance can be for you.  Come for a fun, energetic, and graceful workout that will leave you feeling beautiful and refreshed.

Accepting new students serious about learning Orientale Dance.

Orientale Belly Dance Classes for the discerning dancer - who wants to learn about musicality, rhythms, dance style, and performance.

Classes for dancers who wish to develop their own dance style and learn the art of improvisational dance performance.

CLASS HOURS (check above for *dates without classes)

Weekly Tuesday and Wednesday evening class 2 hours to provide dancers the convenience of class time that better fits their busy lives, commute, and schedules. 

Weekly evening classes are 2 hours in length from 7:00 - 9:00 pm. 

This will give us more time in class for in-depth instruction, discussions, and even "pop quizzes" - with in-class trial of what you learn. 

Class fees for Drop-in $20/class. Class Card fees remain the same.

With the new class schedule - no worries if you are delayed by traffic, or if you have an early work schedule and need to leave class early.  (408) 356-9473

“We must do what we love and share our talent, passion and joy with others.”

Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan – (Translates: Beloved Sweetheart of Treasure)

Ma*Shuqa is known internationally as the “elegant” performer with a unique style of dancing which blends the music and dance into a compelling art form.  Ma*Shuqa teaches a unique Ma*Shuqa Method approach for dancing and playing cymbals in performance to live music. She was the first dancer to dance with Isis Wings – and is known for her performances with Isis Wings.

Ma*Shuqa teaches weekly classes and private classes at her Los Gatos Dance and Photography Studio.  She has been teaching and coaching for over 40 years and is known for the Ma*Shuqa Method format of developing unique dance styles – that brings out the best in each student.  See information for her Diva Professional Development Intensive Retreat in June 24, 25, 26, 2016.

She and her husband, Carl Sermon, a performance photographer, offer photo sessions at Mendocino Camp with coaching and posing for professional performance images.  See galleries of their work at accommodate all levels of dancers. 

  • Advanced dancers are challenged with adding detailed movement and unique personal styling to combinations.

  • Students welcome in classes and workshops,
  • no visitors, no auditing  This policy affords the students the opportunity to focus on the learning and movement without distractions by observers.  No previews - all dancers attending are expected to enroll in class.

    Classes may be scheduled by appointment at Ma*Shuqa's Studio on other evenings .     See Private Class Fee Schedule below.

    Ma*Shuqa's Studio Location:  15651 Camino Del Cerro (corner of Edmund Drive),  Los Gatos, California, USA  95032  1.408.356-9473

    Ma*Shuqa Method of Instruction:  Dance instruction tailored to each dancer to discover your personal performance style based on your own physique and personality.  Ma*Shuqa uses a supportive approach that allows students to understand how dance movement works with their own personal movement style and body type.  Her "10 step style" creates movement style options and dancers discover their own unique movement style from Ma*Shuqa's "80/20 movement style" explanation.  Ma*Shuqa teaches th easy-to-learn method of dancing and playing finger cymbals.  Class focus: steps, technique, combinations, musicality, and movement modalities, and strategies for dancing improvisationally to Egyptian, Turkish, Lebanese, Greek, Persian, and Armenian music.


    "Ma*Shuqa's Method of instruction really enabled me to dance and really learn how my body moves.  She gives each student options for performing movements to fit their own bodies and personalities."

    "Once I discovered how my own body moves from personal feedback from Ma*Shuqa, I realized that I could move smoothly and elegantly.  Now, I can dance while balancing props; and people say my dancing is more professional."

    "I finally understand the music, the rhythms, and differences in dancing to the various Middle Eastern instruments and musical selections."

    "Ma*Shuqa has a vast music library.  There is a great advantage to taking from a teacher who has studied the music, and drum, def, and finger cymbals as musical instruments and thus can explain the rhythms and musical elements important to the dance."

    "Ma*Shuqa's Method of teaching finger cymbal patterns is unique and makes playing sagats easy to learn.  She was right, I could play sagats and dance in my first lesson with her."

    "I love that Ma*Shuqa teaches us dance technique and movement and provides us with dance combinations that make practice fun and enable students to really enjoy the dance and art form."

    "After taking many classes over the years, I discovered that it really makes a difference taking from a teacher with a sound educational background in curriclum and instruction - she offers so much more than those who say follow me and you will learn to dance."

    "No other bellydance teacher offers private lessons that include a DVD recording of your lesson. I was able to learn choreography and record a special birthday video to send a unique gift to a relative."

    "Read the Gilded Serpent articles Ma*Shuqa has written on "Tarab: Emotional Aspects of Raqs Sharqi" and "Expressivity and Musicality in Oriental Dance Performance".  Ma*Shuqa not only researches these key elements from a musical perspective, she has developed an instructional method to teach dancing with musicality, improvisation and dancing authentically."

    "Ma*Shuqa's experience performing overseas in Germany, Greece, Egypt give her a unique expertise that she passes along to her students.  She has experienced the differences of dancing with Turkish bands, Greek bands, and to Egyptian audiences.  From her you get not only the scholarly researchers expertise, you receive coaching from an experienced performer."

    "If you are planning to enter a dance competition, or preparing for a special performance, I recommend private lessons with Ma*Shuqa because her teaching emphasized my dance movement preferences and thus I developed my own performance styling.  She is right, her goal is to foster individual dance development.  None of her students are carbon-copies - many have blossomed into professionals with their own signature styles."

    2/3/2014 Rechelle from

    Ma*Shuqa's Private lessons  -

    Individual or Shared Semi-private lessons

    Do you love this art form, enjoy taking classes, and are looking for classes that meet your individual needs?  Schedule a private lesson for instruction in performance, musicality and dance style development.  You can learn the art of improvisation, or work on special choreography and personal performance refinement.  See list of potential lesson topics.

    Please come and enjoy dance classes that reveal your best performance with  personalized coaching.  It is my crystal-clear objective to share skills, techniques, knowledge of rhythms, music, and performance-awareness that will significantly and positively influence your dance so you can enjoy this dance and achieve your personal dance objectives and goals.   Call me at (408) 356-9473 to schedule your special classes.  Private classes scheduled at times to fit your schedule - flexible scheduling in Ma*Shuqa's beautiful private secret garden oasis studio.

    Ma*Shuqa has worked with many award-winning bellydancers.  She focuses on the special and uniqueness of each dancer and coaches their best performances.  Her private students have been recognized and awarded for bellydance, Raqs Sharqi, Belly Dancer of the Universe Universal category (requiring zil playing and stylized dancing to 4/4, 6/8, and 9/8 rhythms), Bollywood, and Tribal styles.

    "We must do what we love, and share our talent, passion, and joy with others." Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan

    Private classes include a video recording to document lesson content on DVD) to retain a video reference library of your instruction for your own practice time.

    Private Class Fee Schedule: 

    $45/1 hour, $60. 1-1/2 hours, $75. 2 hours, $90. 2-1/5 hours.

    Shared Private Lesson Fees

    Two or more students may share their private lessons at the following rates:

    2 students: $30. ea/1 hr, $35. ea/1-1/2 hours, $40. ea/2 hr, $45. ea/2-1/2 hr.

    3 students: $25. ea/1 hr, $30. ea/1-1/2 hr., $35. ea/2 hr, $40. ea/2-1/2 hr.

    4 students: $20. ea/1 hr, $25. ea/1-1/2 hr., $30. ea/ 2 hr., $35. ea/2-1/2 hr.

    5 students: $17. ea/1 hr, $22. ea/1-1/2 hr., $27. ea/ 2 hr., $30. ea/2-1/2 hr.

    6 students or more at the 5 student rate per student.

    Private or Semi-Private Group ClassesDiscount

    $5. discount per class for each student for a minimum 4 pre-paid classes booked in advance*

    Call Ma*Shuqa to schedule  (408) 356-9473

    Private Lesson Cancellation Policy and Fee

    Over 12 hours cancellation: no penalty fee

    6-12 hours cancellation: 1/2 private class fee

    1-6 hours cancellation - full class fee charged

    * For booked pre-paid discounted private or semi-private classes no rescheduling, refunds for cancellations or no shows

    Ma*Shuqa's Workshop Topics A - Z

    Ma*Shuqa Method of Instruction for Orientale Dance (Belly Dance, Middle Eastern dance, Egyptian Raqs Sharqi, Greek tsiftetelli dance, French danse du ventre,  or German bauch tanz) blends instruction in technique and performance and utilizes a self-discovery format combined with structured and scaffolded instruction.   Ma*Shuqa’s approach to teaching reflects her educational background in curriculum and instruction and she provides Scaffolded Instruction as a framework for structured learning.  During instruction Ma*Shuqa brings to light elements of movement that each dancer can reflect upon to understand  her own body type and physical movement style awareness upon which to develop her own dance style.  The Ma*Shuqa Method includes instruction and awareness of personal movement preference that determines individual dance style:  body posture, dance stance and weight shifting, foot fall style, dance movement preferences for torso, arms, and hands, movement tempo preference, and the 80:20 body undulation style variation.   Come take a class or workshop with Ma*Shuqa and experience "the professional difference, elegance of style" from an instructor who can share her expertise from over 30 years of teaching and 35 years of performance in the U.S. and abroad.

    Ma*Shuqa teaches these topics and content in monthly Studio Workshops at her studion in Los Gatos, California USA – and during her weekly classes.

    See the new "Diva Dancer Professional Development Intensive Retreat "- June  22, - 24, 2018- comprehensive 30 hours of dance instruction, fun BBQs, and three performance opportunities + photography by Carl Sermon - at their Dance and Photography Studio in Los Gatos, CA  

    Can't attend the dates of the Diva Intensive? No worries, you can request dates and design your own customized Dream Dancer Mini-Vacation and Educational Weekend with Ma*Shuqa and Carl.

    Dream Dancer Mini-Vacations Customized dance retreats.  Ma*Shuqa's Belly Dance 101 Weekend Comprehensive Workshops - design your own curriculum.   See “Workshop Topics” page for more information  Schedule your own private dance retreat weekend with Ma*Shuqa and Carl that includes: airport pick-up, bed and gourmet meals, your choice of dance class content, Ma*Shuqa Method instruction and teaching technique guide and notes, photo sessions, video recording on DVD, yoga, massage, vacation mini-trips: to the beach, wine tasting, Egyptian Museum, San Francisco, California Redwoods.  Call for a Ma*Shuqa  Comprehensive Study Weekend brochure and to set up your personalized dance retreat. (408) 356-9473

    Ma*Shuqa's Workshop Topics A-Z

    List of Ma*Shuqa’s Workshop Topics  See “Workshop Topics” page for detailed information Descriptions of Studio Workshops and Seminars “A to Z” – seminar organizers and dream dancers select workshop topics from this list.

    Alf Leila Wa Leila Choreography

    Alif “Love Supreme” by Omar Faruk Tekbilek and Steve Shehan workshop: 

     Andalusian Gypsy Rom Skirt Workshop

    Artful Arms, Hands, and Torso Workshop:

    Bahia Dance Choreography:

    Bahlam Beek:

    Batwanes Beek Dance Choreography: 

    Best of Ya Salaam Drum Solo #2

    Best of Ya Salaam Drum Solo #3:

     Bir demet Yasemen:

    Cane Dance to “Ayeela Tahya”: 

    Checklist for Analyzing Music and a Structure for Improvational Dance: 

    Checklist for Improvisational Dance: for Dance Performances: Troupes and Soloists

    Core Energy  and Workout

    Dance Make-up, Costuming, and Stage Lighting Workshop: 

    21 Dance Style Tips: Ma*Shuqa’s 21 principles for developing a unique individual dance style. 

    Drum Solos - Techniques for Dancing to Live Drum Solos

    Drum Solo Rhythms from the “Heartbeat of Cairo”:  4 Drum solos from Horacio Cifuentes and Beata Zadous Oriental Fantasy Vol. 9 CD.

    Dynamic Entrances, Finales, and Exits: 

    10 Easy Principles for Playing Sagats: Erev Shel Shoshanim (Yarus): 

    Fakarouni Choreography: 

    Fire Dance by Faruk Tekbilek, dance choreography: 

    Floor Dance Basics and Balancing Acts

    Greek Music and Oriental Dance Style:

    Greek Tsftetelli 2/4 Rhythm Oriental Dance: 

    Hagala Drum Solo and Sagat (Zil) Patterns:

    Hebbina Dance Choreography

    Hot Egyptian Drum Solos

    Improvisation how to develop instant on-stage choreography and dance style   

    Isis Wings and Veil Workshop

    Isis Wings: Secrets to Perfect Performance -  Tips and Techniques

    Kashilama 9/8 Rhythm Dance

    Lailet Hob Dance Choreography

    Lebanese Dance Style and Choreography Amani Style:

    Lebanese Style Music and Cabaret Dance:

    Looking Good with Style Professional Study Series:   This topic is the heart of the Ma*Shuqa Method  Instruction and focuses on how each individual dancer can develop their own personal dance style

    Marketing 101 for Dance Professionals: 

    Ma Shaal Dance Choreography

    Ma*Shuqa’s Guide to 12 Middle Eastern Rhythms and Zil Patterns: 

    Mirfet Dance and Zils Choreography

    Middle Eastern Rhythms for Dance and Zils

    Music and Choreography to Music by  Emad Sayyad:  Sunset Princess, Modern Belly Dance Music from Lebanon, Best of Belly Dance from Egypt, Arabia and Turkey   

    Nuance and Nemantics: The Subjective Sense of Memorable PerformancesPerformance Workshop:

    Picture Perfect Performance Pizazz - the art and form of dance performance

    Popular Middle Eastern Rhythms for Doumbeq and Dance Drum Solos: 

    Rhythms, Dance Styles and Cymbals: 

    Rhythmical Patterns for Middle Eastern Rhythms

    7 Secrets to Performance: Entrances to Finales or “How to turn dance steps and technique into a dance performance”.

    Secrets to Performing According to Ma*Shuqa

    Secrets to Dynamic Entrances and Exits:

    Senuous Floor Dance

    Set el Hosn

    Shamadan (Candleabra) Balancing Workshop:

    Sohair Zaki Drum Solo: 

    Solo Performance Criteria for Professional Performance: 

    Stage Presence: What it is and how to overcome stage fright

    Star Dance, Yasmina My Love Dance Choreography

    Sword Dance Workshop “Raks al Sayf”: 

    Sword Dance Drama Workshop: Exercise, movement, performance

    Tamerahenna Dance Choreography: 

    Taxim improvisation to Oud,  Nai, Tar, Mizwig, Kawala, Saz, and Mizmar: 

    Taxim: Analyzing Music and Developing Structure for Improvisational Dance - Principles  and Key Concepts of Middle Eastern Musicality:  Homophony, Embellishments (Mordents, Grace Notes, Trills, Turns, and Slides)

    Teacher’s Seminar – Tips and Techniques for Middle Eastern Dance Instruction:  Learning styles, teaching rhythms and finger cymbals, body awareness/posture/centering/core energy.

    Tray and Tea Set Workshop: 

    Turkish Dance Style and Rhythms Workshop:

    Velvety Veils and Spectacular

    Spins: Warm-up and Stretch: 

    Water Glass Dance Workshop: 

    Zil Technique and Style: Coordinating Finger Cymbals and Dance Choreography: 

    I'm a long-time dance student who has taken MaShuqa's classes, private classes, and workshops.  My experience is that MaShuqa is a dancer's dancer.  She is a Master instructor with many years of performance and teaching skills and possesses an abundant amount of  knowledge in all areas of belly dance:  music, movement, props, make-up, costuming, history, culture, etc. (from vintage to modern belly dance) which can definitely help accelerate your dance level and understanding of the dance (beginner to pro).  Her weekly classes, private classes, and workshops are filled with tons of useful information and personal attention.   She is always professional, organized, on-time, and relays information in a way that's easy to understand and follow.  I appreciate that MaShuqa offers her classes and workshops at affordable prices which makes her reachable to all levels of students no matter what kind of dance budget you're on.   The other thing that I really like about MaShuqa is that even after all her years in this dance form, she is still heavily active in the dance community and is very passionate about teaching this art form.  She's not one of those unorganized, uninspiring teachers who sluggishly show up to class teaching the same thing week in and week out.  I like that MaShuwa is challenging and she is never stagnant in learning and soaking up new information which she shares with her students.  Lastly, I'd like to say from my experience that MaShuqa is sooo down to earth, patient, and comfortable to be around (no diva drama).  MaShuqa possess everything a student should seek in a dance teacher.  I highly recommend her.  Give her a try and see for yourself.

    PS:  I just took the Diva Day Workshop which focused on photo techniques for dancers.  I learned a lot  of useful information in this workshop and will definitely use the techniques I learned in my dance all the time.  Every dancer needs to take this workshop, plus it was tons of fun!

    Ma*Shuqa and Carl's  - Hidden Garden Oasis Dance and Photography Studio 15651 Camino Del Cerro, Los Gatos   (408) 356-9473 - (Call or email for entrance info

    Contact Ma*Shuqa if you have any questions.

    Drop in any Tuesday or Wednesday. - All classes feature warm-up and cool down,technique, movement combinations, performance tips and an aerobic workout.

    All-levels welcome - Ma*Shuqa provides basic instruction that works for beginners and challenges advanced dancers to layer movements and add more complexity of movement.  Students master dance movement and techniques through basic movement patterns and combinations - with more complexity and layered movement for advanced performance styling is offered to advanced students.