SHEFFIELD belly dance teacher Jenny Muhlwa is looking to add a bit of spice to the city’s celebrations for the arrival of the Olympic torch in the city.
She is aiming to bring together 50 women “with fire in their belly” for a “dramatic performance” on June 25.
Jenny, who once taught belly dancing in Turkey, is making preparations to join activities in the city centre linked to the torch relay on its 70-day journey across the UK before the opening ceremony in London.
“The theme for the performance is fire,” said Jenny, owner of Belrobics in Sheffield. “It will be very dramatic and include props to create flame effects.
“The vision for this project came three years ago. I wanted to do something that would bring communities together through dance and show the world the great talent and enthusiasm we have in Sheffield.”
Jenny, aged 30, who lives in Fulwood, came to the University of Sheffield 12 years ago to study French and business and worked for a time in a hotel in the south of France where she learnt oriental dance. She then moved to Turkey to teach oriental belly dance.
“I wanted to take the magic of this dance and continue to teach in the UK and have been teaching in Sheffield for four years with classes taking place mainly in Meersbrook,” she said.
Jenny, a learning and development manager, said she has always loved dancing, and was a member of the Latin and Ballroom Society at Sheffield University.
But she became captivated by belly dancing. “It is the only dance created by women for women. As such there is something special about this dance that brings out the beauty of every woman. There is the artistic nature but it also gives them immense confidence.”
Jenny, whose classes attract about 30 women, wants to recruit 50 for the ‘Belrobics Fire in the Belly’ project. She says they do not need any belly dance experience, as classes will teach the technique for the dance, and she points out that costumes can be altered “if women don’t want to show their belly!”
She holds classes at Meersbrook Church, Chesterfield Road, on Mondays and will also be holding free sessions at St Timothy’s Church in Slinn Street, Crookes, on Tuesday from 7.45pm to 8.30pm and at St Swithin’s Church in Main Street in Holmesfield next Thursday from 6.30 pm to 7.15pm. She is searching for a venue on the Manor.
Jenny can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 0781 6850132.
Thousands of torchbearers are being recruited for the Olympic flame’s journey after it arrives from Greece on May 18. The relay will begin at Lands End and will end in the Olympic Stadium in London on July 27.