About Calamity

Photo by Lee Corkett

Most known for her musicality and ability to connect with the audience, Calamity Sam is not afraid to ham it up and show her sense of humor on stage.  She has been a featured performer and instructor in France, Holland, Spain, England, and across the U.S.  Sam is based in Oakland, CA where she creates for Calamitous Costuming and teaches Unmata/Hot Pot I.T.S. & Fusion classes.  You’ll find her regularly in Berkeley assisting Zoe Jakes with Coven Dance Studio & Company.

Sam’s initial training in belly dance began in Los Angeles at Dance Garden LA. She was lucky enough to learn from Zahra Zuhair, Heather Shoopman, and Sherri Wheatley- all in one place! This firm base of learning gave her the foundation she needed to grow as a young performer, in a community that fostered support and inclusiveness. In 2010, Sam re-located to Oakland, Ca. She quickly found The Lady Fred and her group of students as a new supportive space- and a place that welcomed her into the Bay Area community.

In 2012, Calamity Sam started training with Amy Sigil (of UNMATA) and the instructors at Hot Pot Studios, which lead to her becoming a certified Improvisational Tribal Style (I.T.S.) teacher in the Hot Pot Studios format.  She is currently building a community in the Bay Area as an extended off-shoot of the Hot Pot family.  You can see her I.T.S. group, MotherLode, performing around the bay.

In addition to the adventure that is I.T.S., Sam has also continued her dance studies by learning from and training with Zoe Jakes(Beats Antique). She is currently a member of Zoe’s Beats Antique dancers, House of Tarot, and Coven Dance Company.

Calamity Sam sees fusion belly dance as the medium of the eclectic- stringing together the pieces of inspiration from all over the globe and mixing them up in her own way,  while paying homage to the traditions of world dance.


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