The Gilded Serpent presents...
Bert has been in show business all of his life. He studied ballet and modern dance in Berlin and Paris and Spanish dance in Madrid and Barcelona. He has performed and/or taught in Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia and New Zealand. His introduction to Middle Eastern Dance was in Lebanon, then in Egypt, where he was in contact with the late Samia Gamal and Tahia Carioca, and he has worked with Nagwa Fouad, Sohair Saki and other notable stars. Before he began working in Middle Eastern Dance he was a recognized personality in other dance venues, from opera to nightclub to musicals, where he worked with Germany's most famous musical star, Marika Roekk, and French star Josephine Baker. Now he is best known for having made a contribution here and abroad in the Oriental Dance field. His partnering of some of the most popular dance stars is one of his many accomplishments.
Bert, semi-retired, resides in the San Francisco Bay area on a ranch where he can indulge his passion for horses and the country life.
Articles on Gilded Serpent by or about Bert Balladine
Truthfully, I had never laid eyes on an authentic belly dancer, live or on film at that point, so I hardly knew what to expect.
- 4-16-13 Tale of the Rat, Beginning to Teach, Part One
He warned me! My German speaking mentor and dance partner, Bert Balladine, told me one day that teaching would change my dance—not necessarily for the better.
- 3-15-09 Tribute to Bert: Photos from the GS files
Bert's memorial page, please add your comments, thank you.
- 5-18-10 Sula, An Artisic Life
Sula continued to study with Bert through the early 1970s, though by 1972 she called him "my ex-teacher and now equal partner". Bert was extremely proud of Sula, as she was among the first students he trained who began teaching seriously.
North Beach Memories Chapter 6: Bert
On my first Monday at the Casa Madrid, Bert came to support the place and me. Well, what he saw was equivalent to a San Francisco earthquake.
A Question of Style
Since most of us have chosen Oriental Dance for the pleasure of doing it, being a zealot about purity and ethnicity will just hamper getting the fullest enjoyment out of the dance.
Bert and Amaya Workshop
“He makes you feel special and sexy!”, one participant was overheard to exclaim.
Weight Loss, The Bert Balladine
That was not the first time I had nearly starved to death “on the road with Bert”.
Soraya of Oklahoma City
Bert and I look good and work well together! We were complementary heights. We read each other while dancing with a mutual instinct. We each knew what the other was going to do. Bert would give me a brief over-view of the choreographic outline and then we would just do it. And it always worked!
Dalilah began dancing in the 1950s...passed on September 18, 2001
Doing it my way
For me, dance is not cerebral, but highly emotional.
Emotion, Part 2
The audience is not going to care, or even notice, that a dancer did a high-stepping Fandango Walking Step with an over-lay of a Soheir Zaki Head Tilt and a really fine ......
Emotion, Part 1
"The place of dance is within the heart."
At long last Bert begins his North Beach Memories!
Conversations with Bert,
The Belly Dancing Boom of San Francisco in the 1960's
One room was full of coats on the floor and there were people underneath all of them! There were orchids floating in the bathtub and candles everywhere.
with Bert Balladine
Words of history and wisdom from our dear mentor!
More "offsite" Material Available on Bert Balladine
Celestial Arts Publishing, Millbrae, CA, 94030 1972, 96 pages
- Amaya available through