Found in Translation

In January, I was lucky enough to travel to the southern coast of France to teach at Festival al'Shimmy. This amazing festival was put on by my dear friend, Aude Mathis.  The festival offered a competition, a gala show and three days of workshops with myself, the amazing oriental dancer, YaĆ«l Zarca, an amazing bollywood instructor and was headlined by Egyptian Dance legend, Dr. Mo Gedawwi.  Although I was excited and honored to be in such great company, I was nervous about teaching on such a large scale since I don't speak french (well I can say things like "yes" "no" and "the dog is black" but that doesn't get you very far.) 


However, I learned a few great lessons while I was there -- the powerful and universal ability to communicate through dance, how similar we all are and how generous and open dancers are all over the world.  Oh, and, Aude is an amazing translator who speaks multiple languages, so that really helped too!


So, I learned that there are some things everyone understands...emotions, body language, funny faces and the word chocolate! I also learned that everyone knows the words Facebook, tag and Johnny Depp!


Additionally, I was struck by how bellydance brought us together and has allowed a universal point of connection.  What a gift, to have an immediate thing in common with dancers all over the world.


Can't wait to go back!



Asheville Bellydance Festival

Register Now!


Mahsati Janan & Lisa Zahiya present:

The 1st Annual

Asheville Bellydance Festival


April 15-17, 2011

Three days of fun including a hafla, gala show & workshops all day Saturday & Sunday!


Questions: Email or call 828-242-7595



Friday, April 15th: Hafla & Bellydance Party!

Join us for a night of socializing, open dancing & performances.  Would you like to perform? Please email us!

Location TBD

Saturday, April 16th: Gala Show!

Join us for a night of amazing professional bellydance performances!

$12, $15 at the door, Location TBD



All workshops are $20/$25 at the door.  All workshops will be held on Carolina Lane in downtown Asheville.  See full workshops schedule here.



Mahsati Janan

Lisa Zahiya



Sara Beaman

Natalie Brown



Reyna of the Rising Sun Tribe

Annie of Ancient Moon Bellydance


Register Now!


Dance Retreat with Ava Fleming & Lisa Zahiya

 Questions? Email Kim


2011 Bellydance Retreat - A Focus on Performing

MAY 27-30, 2011

All registrations are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Register Now

In 2011, we will focus on performance, dealing with all aspects from preparation, costuming, nerves, emoting and more!





Location: The Prama Institute, located 20 miles north of Asheville, NC (  The center will be all ours for the weekend.  The center is located on top of a mountain - it has amazing views (and this time of year will be fantastic!), a beautiful domed education room with radiant heating, an outdoor fire pit and stage and more!


There are large comfortable rooms with bunk beds - the center sleeps 28 so there will be plenty of room for all of us.


All meals are provided and will all be vegetarian.


Schedule: **this is tentative - the schedule will be set with your input in mind, I'll send out a questionnaire once people have confirmed**




arrive any time Friday morning

1-2 Introductions

2-5 Class

6 Dinner

Field trip to Hot Springs NC for soaking in natural mineral hot springs



9 breakfast

10-1 class

1 lunch

3-6 class

*special night activity*



9 breakfast

**field trip to Marshall NC for coffee shop and professional development talk**

1 lunch

3-6 class

*special night activity*



9 breakfast

10-1 class


The closest airport is Asheville (AVL) and we are 45 minutes from Greenville (GSP) and 2 hours from Charlotte (CLT).  If you fly into Asheville I can arrange travel from the airport to the center and back.  If you will be staying in Asheville Thursday night or Sunday night, please email us for hotel or hostel reccomendations.


Interested in a private lesson?

Privates with Ava, Lisa or both instructors together will be scheduled on a first come, first serve basis. Please email Kim to schedule.  Privates with Ava are $75, privates with Lisa are $60, privates with both are $100.


picture by Ryan Baumgardner

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Bhangra Party

2/24 in Asheville

come to Chai Pani and join us for a night of Bhangra dancing!

$3 cover


*Note that there is no hip hop class this night - come dance instead!*

Classes in Asheville


purchase class cards online


Tuesday 9-10 AM Hip Hop Conditioning


Tuesday 6-7 PM Beginner Bellydance


Tuesday 8:15-9:15 PM Intermediate/Advanced Bellydance


Thursday 9-10 AM Bellydance - All Levels


Thursday 6-7 PM Bollywood & Bhangra - All Levels


Thursday 8:15-9:15 PM Hip Hop - All Levels


Drop-in classes - start anytime. $12 drop ins. Class cards: 4 for $40, 8 for $72, 12 for $96, $16 for $120. All sales are final and non-transferable. Class cards are valid for any drop-in class   




purchase private lessons online


1:1 classes in which you will receive individualized attention to improve your technique, musicality, dance vocabulary and more.


1 hour $60 :: 3 hours $150 :: 5 hours $225


Interested in taking classes with your daughter, friends or family? Small group lessons allow you to schedule a customized lesson for your group at a time of your choice. Small group lessons are $75 per hour. If you'd prefer to have your lesson at your home or business, the cost is $80 per hour.


to schedule a private or small group class please call Lisa at 828.242.7595 or email



All classes are held at Studio Zahiya - 41 Carolina Lane

class FAQ




Spring Classes & Worshops!

Mark your calendar for these fun and educational enrollment classes & workshops!




6 Week Turkish Intensive

Tuesdays 7:05-8:05

$65 or 2 payments of $35

April 19-May 31

(no class April 26)

In this class, we will focus on the art of Turkish bellydance. Learn the rhythyms, movements, and Romani and Oriental styling.  Bring finger cymbals! 

 Register Here


4 Week Balancing Class

Tuesdays 7:05-8:05

$45 or 2 payments of $25

June 7-28

Break into proptasticness with the basics of balancing.  Bring a sword, basket, tray or whatever else you'd like to balance on your head!

 Register Here


4 Week Veil Technique & Combinations

Tuesdays 7:05-8:05

$45 or 2 payments of $25

July 5-26

Learn veil techniques and combinations.  Bring a 3 yard silk veil.

 Register Here





Hip Hop Bhangra Fusion Choreography (6 weeks)

$65 or 2 payments of $35


Combine the excitement of bhangra with the preciseness of hip hop.  Learn a bangin' (yes I said bangin') fusion choreography.

Register Here


Advanced Bhangra Performance Focus

6/2-8/4 (10 weeks)

$100 or 2 payments of $55

Take your dancing to a new level.  This class will include individual attention and correction, advanced choreography & technique.

Register Here


Upcoming Events

February 24 - Bhangra Party! at Chai Pani


March 4-6 - Lisa teaches and performs in Pittsburgh, PA


March 19-20 - Lisa teaches and performs in Columbia, SC


March 25-27 - Lisa teaches and performs at Amira Star's Birthday Bash


April 9 - Lisa teaches and performs in Athens, GA. Email Christy for details.


April 16-17 - Asheville Bellydance Festival!


May 13-15 - Lisa teaches and performs at The LEAF Festival in Black Mountain, NC


May 27-28 - Bellydance Retreat with Ava Fleming & Lisa Zahiya in Asheville, NC - only 7 slots!


September 19 - Lisa teaches near Charlotte, NC. Sponsored by Pyramid Road







Dance with Lisa Zahiya • Studio Zahiya • Asheville, NC 28801
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