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A little about Debbie Despina Cartsos

 Innovative instructor and virtuoso performer Debbie Despina Cartsos is obsessed with belly dance. The rich sounds of her childhood and the tantalizing movements of dancers in Greek night clubs awakened a passion within her to study the dance. Her connection to the dance fuels her deep dedication to both education and exploration throughout the art. 

Despina’s official belly dance training adventure started in 2005 when she began studying fusion belly dance (Fat Chance Belly Dance Style) with Mimi Fontana and became a founding member of Manhattan Tribal. Under the mentorship of Irina Bellyrina, she gained an appreciation for the legacy of the Salimpour family and the formats taught through the Salimpour™ School. The certification program has been an important tool in her growth as dancer: she is Jamila Level 1 and Suhaila 1 certified and plans to continue studying both formats. She also studies under renowned world fusion artist, choreographer, and master teacher Dalia Carella. Dalia is also Despina’s mentor, design muse, and co-producer for Menagerie d'Arte, "a surreal and immersive dance experience".

Despina started teaching in 2016 in Astoria, NY. She has also taught classes and workshops Manhattan, NY. She has also taught under Dalia Carella, Belly Queen and at the belly dance festival Art of the Belly in Ocean City, Maryland. She loves creating group choreographies and helping her students strive for the best. "Debbie takes a hands on approach with her teaching and ensures each and every student gets the personal attention and feedback they need, even during warm up. Her focus on drills and technique helps dancers achieve those beautiful lines, grace and power. Not only do her classes allow you to become a better dancer, Debbie creates a fun and dynamic environment! Classes are always filled with laughter and humor. You’ll always look forward to going to class! No matter what your dance goals are, whether you want to learn about Belly Dance for the first time, or if you’re looking to become a better performer, Debbie’s class is for you."

Despina’s choreographies are deeply influenced by the teachings of Dalia Carella and the Salimpour format. Her authentic love for music and movements is contagious. She has a weakness for finger cymbals, swords and pushing boundaries on stage. What kind of journey will she take you on next?


Young Despina in her belly dance gear
Despina with  bellydancer


May 2020 - Boho Blade Apprentice with Belladona Boheme (Level 1 Certified)

November 2018 - L1 Suhaila Format Intensive with Angelique Hanesworth in New York City, NY (Level 1 Certified)

August-September 2018 - Certification of completion Natalie Nazzario's 8 week Mahraganat Course New York City, NY

June 2018- L1 Suhaila Salimpour Intensive in New York City, NY

January 2015 - ATS® Teacher Training ATS Homecoming in SF (Teacher Training Certified)

June 2014 - L1 Jamila Format Intensive with Suhaila in New York City, NY (Level 1 Certified)

June 2013 - L1 Suhaila Salimpour Intensive in New York City, NY



Various Workshops:

October 3rd and 4th: Suhaila Salimpour 2 Day Intensive in New York City, NY

October 2014 - Rajasthani Gypsy Caravan, workshop taught by Suva Devi & the Ustad Arba Music Group 

May 2013 - Rachel Brice "Vintage Stylizations with Spins, Levels & Zils"

May 2013 -  Kami Liddle "Gettin' Hyphy with Saidi"

May 2012 -  Kami Liddle "ATS inspired Fusion"

April 2012 -  Rachel Brice: "The Balancing Act"

July 2011 -  Tribal Pura Workshop with Carolena Nericcio-Bohlman director of FatChanceBellyDance® and Megha Gavin

September 2009  - Tribal Pura Workshop with Carolena Nericcio-Bohlman director of FatChanceBellyDance® and Megha Gavin

February 2009 - ATS® General Skills at the FatChanceBellyDance® Studio in SF (GS Certified) taught by Carolena Nericcio-Bohlman

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