Festival site: Smith Memorial Student Union Ballroom, Room 355 at Portland State University * 1825 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97205


The JamBallah NW mission is to celebrate all facets and faces of the bellydance community, together in a chic, inclusive atmosphere. We believe in supporting experimentation on the edges of fusion, while maintaining a strong respect and connection to the stylistic and cultural roots of belly dance (and everything in between.) We believe in promoting education, discussion, and diversity to strengthen our worldwide community.

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We want YOU to feel welcomed and supported! Feel free to email jamballahnw@gmail.com or use the anonymous 'contact us' form on the site at any time to let us know how we can do this better.

Where do I find the application form for Vendors, Performance, Volunteers? Are you still taking applications?

Here they are! When you open them, the applications will say whether they're on waitlist or not. You're always welcome to fill one out anyway. Vendor and performance applications tend to be set in Feb-April, and the volunteer list tends to be set in May-June.


Can I buy an ad in the program?

At this time, our small info pamphlet does not allow space for ads, as we do not put out a full program. However, we do have several avenues of sponsorship that include perks and cross-promotion opportunities, including Facebook posts, logo/promo placement on the website, on the JBNW promotional materials, vending space and banners onsite.

Cash support to benefit our Odd Fellows Community Scholarship. Please see our Sponsorship Opportunities Document for more information.


I'm a photographer! Can I come take photos at the event?

Awesome! Here are our photography guidelines.

  • The three afternoon shows (Festival Shows Part 1, 2 and 3) are open to anyone who would like to take non-flash-photography photos.

  • Photography IS allowed in the vendor area.

  • We do not allow photography at the two evening shows (the JamBallah Showcase Night I and II).

  • We do not allow photography of in-session workshops.

  • You must make a good faith effort to allow any captured subjects (either performers from the shows, or vendors/attendees in the vendor area) to veto photos before public posting, either with verbal or written consent. (I can forward galleries to the performers, we usually do that and then give them 3 days to reply with any vetos.)

  • If a veto request is made by a subject, you must remove the photo in question from public view asap.

  • Public sale of photos without written approval from the subject is not allowed.

I do have three photographers I work with each year as the official JBNW photogs, so at this time I am not looking to hire more or add any additional photo booths. However, I love to hear about new contacts and folks, so fee free to send me your info/portfolio!


How do I purchase tickets for the JamBallah Showcase or other shows/parties/workshops?

Newsletter subscribers are given first notice of exact dates, along with discount codes and other perks. Showcase tickets go on sale in May, workshop tickets go on sale in Jan or Feb each year.

Additionally, our Showcases page has information on all the parties, shows and performances.  Join the Newsletter for discout codes to the JamBallah Showcase Nights I and II! 

If you are an international attendee and the system errors out on you, please email me at jamballahnw@gmail.com with your list of classes/shows and I will add you manually. Thanks for understanding!

Be sure to check out all our events as they show up on Facebook as well, and mark yourself as 'going'... we often give out prizes and surprise discounts to our Facebook friends!


I bought a ticket, and now I can't make it OR I want to attend a sold-out class.

Though we have a strict no-refunds policy on workshop and ticket purchases, fear not! We encourage folks to visit our Facebook group here, devoted to helping class passes find new owners. If you're wanting to attend a class that is sold out, check there first, and if you don't get any bites try just showing up that day. Often, we'll have no-shows at classes and are able to let a few folks in at the door. Another trick for either buying or selling is to post on your personal page, mark it as a 'public' post, and tag @Jamballahnw in the post- that has a higher chance of folks spotting it.


Do you know future dates yet?

JamBallah NW is held on the second weekend in August annually.


Where do I register for classes?  

Look for the Buy Tickets Buttons throughout the site, or click on the Workshops tab in the navigation bar.

Be the first to know when registration starts, and be the first to get the links by signing up for the Newsletter.


Where are the workshops / shows / vending located?

SMSU Floorplan 2nd floor.jpg
SMSU Floorplan 3rd floor.jpg

JamBallah Showcase Night I and II, the three JamBallah Festival Shows Parts 1-3, all workshops, and vendor faire are in the same building. 

The Smith Memorial Student Union Ballroom, Room 355 at Portland State University

1825 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97205


Where do I park?

There is ample metered street parking around the building, from 90m to 3hr limits. 

There are many independently-run parking lots around PSU. See the map below for more details.

We highly recommend riding Trimet public transport to the festival--

  • Just 5$ for an all-day ticket covers bus, streetcar, and MAX train.

  • MAX stop: PSU Urban Center/SW 5th & Mill MAX Station. Stop ID 7618

  • The Portland Streetcar: SW Park & Mill Westbound. Stop ID 10766

  • PSU is served by 10 different bus lines

PSU 17-18 Hourly & Daily Parking Handout-1.jpg


Help, I can't afford to come!

You should definitely apply for the JamBallah NW Odd Fellows Community Scholarship, which was started in '16 as a way to include dancers whose financial situations might make it impossible for them to otherwise attend workshops. Anyone is welcome to apply, and all are invited to donate a few dollars to the cause during check out. Together we can make a difference!

There are also many volunteer opportunities available that have perks like entrance to the shows and VIP access, and some that include free classes, goodie bags, or other swag. Please fill out our volunteer form here, and we'll set you up with a fabulous job and some perks!  We also encourage dancers to connect to share lodging, carpooling, and couchsurfing networking on our JamBallah NW Facebook Page. Be sure to keep an eye out for free classes and show tickets via the Portland Bellydance Guild's Guild Giveaways, one of the awesome perks of joining (membership is open to all). Occasionally we will also give away classes or show tickets at other local shows in July, and sometimes via the JB Newsletter as perks of subscribing-- so keep an eye out!


How do I know if a workshop is the right level for me?  

Most of our classes are structured to be suitable for a wide range of skill and experience levels, from beginning to advanced dancers.  We have tried to add any level considerations to the workshop descriptions. If you're just starting out you will definitely be challenged in many of the workshops, but we encourage folks to try it anyway! This is a supportive, fun environment to push your limits and training. For advanced-level dancers who want a more intense experience, please check out our series of 3hr Advanced Classes, which are for advanced students and professional performers. Classes marked as INT/ADV will have a high focus on technique and quicker presentation of material. Lecture and hands-on classes are of course open to anyone and everyone, with absolutely zero dance experience required.


Can I sign up to perform at the festival? What's the difference between the shows? 


JamBallah NW has five shows, and features attendees in each one. Spot availability is filled on a first-come first-served basis, and all levels are welcome to apply from pro to student. Please see Perform! link above for more info, and sign up for the Newsletter to get the application as it's released each year, as well as special discount codes to the JamBallah Showcases.

Fri/Sat evening- JamBallah Showcase Night I and Night II: Opulent evenings of inspired performance featuring the JamBallah NW instructors as well as specially curated attendees. Limited number of discounted Child seats available. Grab a VIP ticket to reserve the best seats in the house, plus a drink ticket, priority will-call, and a goodie bag with a poster signed by all the performers and a jar of JamBallah Jam specially crafted by the Lucky Larder. Drinks and light concessions available in the Artist's Repertory Theatre lounge 1hr before event, and during intermission.

Fri/Sat/Sun afternoon- JamBallah Festival Shows Part 1, 2, and 3: These fully packed mixed-level shows are filled with the astounding talent of our festival attendees from guest professionals to student debuts. Be surprised, amazed, and inspired, and be sure to leave time before or after the shows to browse the fabulous vendors bazaar.

All shows are all-ages. Children under 10 free at Festival Shows. Festival Shows Parts 1-3 are free on days you take workshops!


I would love to come and teach!  Are you accepting instructor applications?  

I would love to hear from you!  Please email me directly at jamballahnw@gmail.com with your instructor packet. I generally build and finalize the instructor list in Sept-Oct each year, but am happy to take inquiries outside of those dates and I do keep a running file of folks interested in future consideration. A disclaimer-- there's SO much incredible talent out there, it's impossible to fit in everyone I'd like to every year. Instructor selection is based in part on teaching/performing experience, availability, and distinction in the bellydance community. However, it is also heavily influenced by portrayal of a clear and unique style that fits well with the other styles offered that year, as well as a strong commitment to integrity and respect for our roots and diversity in the dance world. We will be offering a range of different instructors every year.


How large will the classes be?  Will I be able to see/hear the instructor?

We are adamantly against huge class sizes, where participants feel like one in a sea of faces. No classes will have more than 40 participants, several are capped at 25.



Still have questions?  Please contact us and we'll do our best to answer!

Photo by Annie Eshaia

Photo by Annie Eshaia