Jen McDonald

Jen fell in love with dance during childhood, watching Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire, and Gene Kelly movies with her Grandmother.  She enthusiastically tried tap and ballet at a very young age, but was told she didn’t have a “dancers body”.  Jen moved into choir, theater, and sports, developing her stage presence, strength, grace, and team skills through her years in school and college.

A severe sports injury in 1999 changed everything.  Fearing a life of non movement, Jen searched for something to heal her body and spirit.  In September 2000, her love of belly dance began.  Starting with American Cabaret, belly dance quickly became a joyous obsession.  Jen studied Egyptian, Turkish, Indian, and various Gypsy styles, eager to learn as much as possible.  In 2003 she saw ATS for the first time and was utterly captivated!  Quickly this dance style was pursued, and just as quickly, Jen was connected to her true love in dance.

Jen’s background as a student has lead to her belief that all women can dance, and she is passionate about nurturing a love of belly dance in all of her students.  One can expect encouragement, patience, and enthusiasm in Jen’s classes, as well as a step-by-step breakdown of technique with a balance of focus and fun.  Jen firmly believes that laughing promotes learning and people get better at what they enjoy and love.

Jen directs the professional FCBD®Style troupe, Twisted Gypsy, regularly performing throughout the West Coast. She also directs and instructs the Gypsy Sisters, a performing student troupe, who travel throughout Southern California.

Serving as a FatChanceBellyDance® Sister Studio, her certifications include, General Skills (2008), Teacher Training (2009), Teacher Training II (2010) and Advanced Teacher Training (2015).

In the rare moments that Jen is not dancing, teaching, performing, and rehearsing she enjoys creating a wide of variety of jewelry and has a deep passion for cooking.

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Jen McDonald