Anna West is a tribal fusion belly dancer, teacher and performer. She works continuously to grow as a dancer and teacher, and this willingness to learn has earned her the respect of other members of the belly dance community. Anna is working on her certification to perform Level 2 Improvisational Tribal Style (ITS), which is not just a dance, but a language that allows dancers to nonverbally communicate sequences that will be improvised while on stage. She is also studying Raqs Sharqi, aka Egyptian Cabaret, a technique that is nearly opposite to her “home base” of tribal fusion. In addition, while live snakes are commonly used in belly dance, Anna is the only known performer to incorporate a live bird into some of her performances. Anna is also working on her Group X fitness and recently certified to teach Zumba.
Anna took her first belly dance class in 2003, after stumbling into a class at the fitness center at her work. She was immediately hooked and saved every note and handout, dreaming of one day becoming an instructor and performer. Anna began teaching beginning belly dance as a volunteer at YouthCity After School Program in 2007, and used the opportunity as a springboard to develop her curriculum. Her signature “fun” style was developed in partnership with her YouthCity students who were ages 9-14.
Anna studied and performed with Desert Journey School of Dance from 2003 to 2009, Transfusion Hype Dance Company from 2009 to 2011 and began her own school The Rubber Room in 2011. She currently directs The Rubber Room School of Dance and its troupe’s Asylum and Hipsteria. Anna studies regularly with various local and regional dance teachers and performs with them as often as time permits. She also participates in every workshop she can get her hips on, including those taught by international superstars such as Aziza, Rachel Brice, Unmata, Kami Liddle, Calamity Sam, Lisa Zahiya and Sharon Kihara, and incorporates her learnings into her daily practice. She also cross trains with weight lifting, flexibility training, and exploration into other dance styles and dramatic practices.
Anna holds a Master’s of Science in Health Education and spent more than
17 years working in marketing for public health. She lives in Provo with her partner, Marty Kendall, Welsh Terrier, Girlscout, performing partner, umbrella cockatoo, Sapphron, and recently adopted lesser sulphur crested cockatoo, Shino. Anna is grateful that belly dance is a pursuit that is accepting of all body types and ages; and offers enough breadth that it can be her lifelong passion.
Belly Dance Timeline
- 2016, established The SLCC Belly Dance Club to provide performing and artistic development opportunities for Salt Lake Community College students, faculty, staff, partners, alumni and community education students.
- 2013, joined SLCC as adjunct professor.
- 2011 to present director and main choreographer for The Rubber Room School of Dance, including troupes Hipsteria, Asylum and The Fourteenth Ward.
- 2009 to 2011 signature belly dancer in Transfusion Hype, hip hop/contemporary belly dance company. Contributed choreography and assisted in the production of their About Love show at the Rose Wagner Theater.
- 2007-2009 Member of Troupe Sekmet, Egyptian belly dance group directed by Fvorboda (Jeniel Allen) and part of Desert Journey School of Dance.
- 2003-2009 Charter member of Dragomi, gothic/tribal fusion belly dance group that toured the Intermountain West and part of Desert Journey School of Dance.
For more information, view Anna’s CV.