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Sword Certification

Each level of testing has been created to help students develop their technique and expertise with each level is designed to build your proficiency with dancing with your sword.

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Queen of Swords

Belladonna is a modern fusion belly dance instructor, performer and show producer from Washington DC. She is also a certified yoga instructor, fire dancers, troupe director and artist. Inspired by the power and healing dance can evoke. She believes that self-expression is essential for one's wellbeing, and hopes her performances inspire others to find a passion they want to pursue.

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  • “Belladonna Boheme is an international icon in the tribal fusion realm. She developed and popularized an entire universe of movements that use the scimitar to create visually striking performances that blend seamlessly with the belly dancing body work. She was one of the reasons I picked up my first sword in enthusiasm and she continues to inspire me, year after year, to create new possibilities for this aspect of our dance form. Her capacity to envision and execute patterns that seem mind-melting is unsurpassed. Long live to this Queen of Swords!!” - Sílvia Salamanca
  • “Bella’s Sword Intensives are extraordinarily empowering. I was afraid to even handle a sword, prior to taking her Apprentice Intensive, but under her expert guidance and desire to share what she has learned over the years, she made be feel safe, secure and, dare I say, graceful with my sword and accompanying movement. She gives you a thorough breakdown of the proper handling technique, teaching you how to handle your sword respectfully and safely. She has a strong understanding of how to condition your body so that you can expand your range of motion and not injure yourself. She begins each workshop with a targeted yoga practice to help open you up and receive the energy to make the most of the sword techniques you will learn. I felt very aware and centered before I even picked up my sword, which I am sure is by design. Bella leaves no detail out and is attentive to each student. You can clearly feel her passion and how much she loves to teach. I went from being afraid of handling a sword to wanting to choreograph a sword piece! I will forever be grateful for all she had done to improve my confidence. She’s amazing!“ ~ Donna Sullivan
  • “The Bohemian Blade Sword Program is awesome! It has completely changed my approach to sword; physically, mentally and spiritually. It has also created a bond with fellow sword enthusiasts throughout the Bellydance community. I look forward to continuing the journey on this creative adventure.” ~ Kimala Nar
  • “I cannot express enough how invaluable my experience in studying with Belladonna within her Bohemian Belly Dance Sword format and program has been. Belladonna is a teacher that welcomes you feel like dance family and also encourages you to, not only dance with your sword, but with your heart. In studying with her I have grown to love and develop both my relationship with my sword and with myself. Belladonna’s teachings are extremely experienced, well-rounded, restorative and challenging. I highly recommend this program to any dancer with a sincere interest in sword dance! Words cannot express all that I have gained in studying with Belladonna!” ~ Crissy Marie
  • “The Bohemian Blade certification program is a great way to expand your dance technique and vocabulary as well as discover a new dance partner in your sword. Belladonna’a approach to sword training is thorough and well balanced. From the history of dancing with a sword, to building confidence, strength, and poise with your new partner, you will not be disappointed. In addition to technique and dance with your sword, Bella also covers strength training and centering through a specific yoga practice to help you condition your body and help prevent injury. I highly recommend this program for anyone wanting to truly enhance their craft.” ~ Monica Troutman
  • "Belladonna’s sword intensive is a must for any sword dancer, regardless of dance style. Her open approach to not only the hows but the whys behind what she does helps give a greater understanding to the moves and technique. She challenges you to think about the choices you make to create a cohesive story and purpose for your performance. Delving deeper than just teaching tricks (which alone are worth the weekend), Belladonna takes you on a journey of the sword that better helps you understand its significance and symbolism and creates a deeper connection between the dancer and the weapon. Her real-world examples and advice are invaluable, and her teaching style is open and approachable. It is clear she wants her students to excel and is willing to take the time needed to help them do so. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to learn from her and am looking forward to continuing the journey. I highly recommend anyone interested in swords seize any occasion to take one of Belladonna’s classes or workshops. You won’t regret it.” ~ Nanette Blake