Gothic Belly Dancer by Laura DeLuca
Gothic Belly Dancer Laura “Tempest” Schmidt
One of my favorite scenes in Phantom includes a belly dance routine. I can’t say any more than that because I don’t want to give away information about a pivotal scene in the story. But I can tell you a little about the amazing woman who inspired the scene. Her name is Laura “Tempest” Schimdt, and she is a world renowned Gothic Belly Dancer.
I consider myself truly blessed to have not only met Tempest, but to have shared Sacred Space with her on a few occasions. About three years ago, I was introduced to Tempest through my best friend and coven sister, Donna. She was taking her belly dance class at a local gym, and convinced me to come along. Now, I am just about the most uncoordinated person in the world, and learning even the simplest steps was a challenge for me. But Tempest had the patience of an angel, and always took a few extra moments to try to help me get it right. I was only able to go to few classes before I got pregnant with my daughter and was on bed rest. By the time she was born, Tempest had moved, but those few classes were an experience I will never forget.
In addition to taking her class, I also attended a few professional performances that Tempest arranged in our area. The class was fun, but was nothing compared to watching Tempest perform live. When she begins to move, it’s like she is magically transformed into the Goddess herself. Her movements are fluid and graceful. Her costumes (which she often designs herself) are enchanting. She has created her own version of Gothic Belly Dance that is elegant and breathtaking. It literally brought tears to my eyes. Even as a writer, I find it hard to express just how amazing it is to watch her perform. Tempest is one of the most beautiful women I have had the privilege to meet. It is a beauty that emanates from her soul and is transferred to the fluid movements of her body. All the wisdom of the ages is expressed in the poetic motions of her dance. She is a true artist.
If you would like to learn more about Tempest, you can visit her website, Darkly Dramatic. There you can find dozens of beautiful photos in her gallery. Both the costumes and the poses are stunning! If you want to learn how to belly dance, she has several DVDs available for purchase. You can also check out Med Devi to purchase her own unique accessory and costume designs.
The “Phantom” was a musical phenomenon that Rebecca had always found enchanting. She had no idea that her life was about to mirror the play that was her obsession. When her high school drama club chooses “Phantom” as their annual production, Rebecca finds herself in the middle of an unlikely love triangle and the target of a sadistic stalker who uses the lines from the play as their calling card.
Rebecca lands the lead role of Christine, the opera diva, and like her character, she is torn between her two co-stars—Tom the surfer and basketball star who plays the lovable hero, and Justyn, the strangely appealing Goth who is more than realistic in the role of the tortured artist.
Almost immediately after casting, strange things start to happen both on and off the stage. Curtains fall. Mirrors are shattered. People are hurt in true phantom style. They all seem like accidents until Rebecca receives notes and phone calls that hint at something more sinister. Is Justyn bringing to life the twisted character of the phantom? Or in real life are the roles of the hero and the villain reversed? Rebecca doesn’t know who to trust, but she knows she’s running out of time as she gets closer and closer to opening night. Only when the mask is stripped away, will the twenty first century phantom finally be revealed. Buy Links Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes and Nobles
Laura “Luna” DeLuca lives at the beautiful Jersey shore with her husband and four children. She loves writing in the young adult genre because it keeps her young at heart. In addition to writing fiction, Laura is also the sole author of a popular review blog called New Age Mama. She is an active member of her local pagan community, and has been studying Wicca for close to eight years. Her current works include Destiny, Destiny Unveiled, Phantom, Morrigan and Player.