Ishtar is Pittsburgh’s BellyRock Band. Ishtar is comprised of Melissa Murphey on clarinet, Jeff Chmielarski on electric bass, Ian Green on percussion, Julian Broughton on darbuka, and Ayleeza Quatrocchi on riq. Playing their own unique interpretation of Vintage Middle Eastern and Mediterranean folk melodies, Ishtar performs songs that were popular in the bellydancing nightclub scene during the mid-20th century. This exceptional fusion of traditional songs with surf rock elements has become: BellyRock. In 2008, Ishtar was voted as Pittsburgh’s Best Underground Band by the readers of the City Paper!
ENTER the Belly-Off Competition and try out dancing with a live band!
What is the Belly Off?
The Live Music Belly-Off is a competition that focuses on impromptu dancing to a live band. All contestants will receive a short taxim followed by an upbeat tune to finish their mini set. The upbeat tune will be drawn from Ishtar’s repertoire and challengers perform the selected tune on the spot. The panel of knowledgeable judges will determine the winners! The competition is open to dancers of all styles!
Here we have the lovely Elianae dancing at the 2013 festival with Ishtar!