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The Secret Language of Belly Dancing
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Maria Strova was born in Colombia, where she began to study classic Russian dance at the age of 12. At 17, Maria moved to States, where she studied a variety of modern dance styles (Graham, Ailey, Cunningham). She also worked with Ellen Burstyn, director of the Actors Studio, Michael Douglas (The Jewel of the Nile), Danny De Vito and Quentin Tarantino (Reservoir Dogs). One day, as she was walking down the street in New York, she happened to hear the sound of a drum, a darbouka, and thus discovered Belly Dancing. At that moment, the long journey of study and research began which would ultimately lead Maria to present her own work in many countries: Japan, Mexico, Egypt, Colombia, France and Tunisia. Interested in the theme of motherhood, she recognized in that discipline an effective compendium of Belly Dancing - particularly with respect to breathing techniques - and became the first teacher in Italy to teach a fusion of the two as preparation for childbirth. She has produced a variety of teaching DVDs, and wrote and directed Searching for Scheherazade, the first documentary in Italy on the art of belly dancing and the daily efforts to keep the dance alive. She currently teaches at the IALS in Rome and has the Omphalos Cultural Center and the Breath Theatre, based in Fiano Romano (Rome), where she develops new talent, in collaboration with other teachers, through the search for a Belly Dance adapted to theatre and choreographic experimentation.

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