Rachel Brice first fell in love with Belly Dance when she saw the famous Hahbi'Ru in the early nineties. The spectacular
antique tribal jewelry, facial tattoos, and rich textiles blew her mind, but even more exciting was the variety of the performers' body types. She'd always loved to dance, but felt self conscious about being a little curvy. When she saw big, gorgeous, proud women with such strong carriage and charisma, it changed the way she saw beauty. She started classes right away.
In Orange County in the early 90s, there wasn't a teacher doing the style Rachel wanted to pursue (in fact, that style hadn't been invented yet!), so she got a hold of Suhaila Salimpour's videos and began to teach herself while she pursued Yoga and Massage Therapy.
In 1999, she decided to study dance full time, and relocated to San Francisco to pursue a degree in Dance Ethnology, and to study with some of the best known Belly Dance teachers in the United States. At this time, a new Belly Dance form now known as American Tribal Style was being fused with some more theatrical elements and folkloric styles by Rachel's teacher, Jill Parker. Jill was the first ATS trained dancer to fuse that form with other dance styles, and in 2001, Tribal Fusion was born. Rachel danced in the first Tribal Fusion company, Jill Parker's Ultra Gypsy.
When her studies began to demand more time than she could give to a company, she pursued a solo career, and continued to study ATS and American Cabaret Belly Dance, and began to fuse other influences into her own blend of Belly Dance.
In 2003 she was discovered by rock mogul Miles Copeland and toured for a few years with his company, Bellydance Superstars. These tours sparked a global interest in this very San Francisco style of dance, and Rachel and members of her new company, The Indigo, travelled the world performing in every kind of venue and for every kind of audience you could imagine, from broken down shacks in the deep south to the Folies Bergeres and the Palace of the Prince of Monaco (who, by the way, became a fan of the Superstars). It was quite a time. Now Tribal Fusion is an established form of Belly Dance, much larger than any one artist, and is constantly growing, changing and defying definition.
Today, Rachel studies Belly Dance with her teachers Carolena Nericcio, creator of American Tribal Style, and Yoga with Gary Kraftsow. Whenever possible, she takes classes with her colleagues. When not teaching on the road, she lives in Portland, Oregon where she's opened a studio, Datura which lives in the real world and online, and has begun a production company, Little Scarab, with her partner, Sol Crawford. Together they've created a comprehensive Belly Dance training program called the 8 Elements™ of Belly Dance. Someday they hope to own a dog and tend a garden.