OUR LOVELY 2010 INSTRUCTORS
- ↓Anasma is a Performance Arts Dancer, Teacher and Choreographer. Drawing from her crossed-training in Bellydance and other forms (Hip Hop, Acting, Miming, Gymnastics, Yoga, Salsa, Wushu, Flamenco, Modern Jazz, Contemporary Simonson technique, African…), Anasma focuses on making Dance meaningful and touching through storytelling , character development and movement. To her, dance is an expression of the self and of the soul that enables each dancer, may they be new to it or professional, to share their deepest emotions and to be in the Now.
Half Tunisian and Vietnamese brought up in Paris, France, living in New York City, USA, Anasma was naturally drawn to mixing art forms to express who she is through performance and teaching. Thus her World Dance fusions (Hip Hop Bellydance Liquid fusion, Wushu bellydance, Salsa bellydance…) are a mix between the ethnic and the urban components of her personal background and her present life.
Since 1997, Anasma has performed and taught in dance festivals, prestigious theaters, TV shows, concerts, and toured many times in Europe, North America and Asia. From 2006 to 2009, Anasma worked with the respected company Bellyqueen as one of their principal dancers. Anasma is featured in the following performance DVDs: “Bellydance Experience”, “Bellydance NYC: the Ultimate Fusion Experience”, “Fantasy Bellydance”and “Fantasy Bellydance: Tarot” as well as in two instructional DVDs: “Bellydance Hip Hop Liquid Fusion” and “Wave Explosion” with Future. She sings alongside Pete List in the album “Songs for Kassar”. She is the co-director of the New York Theatrical Bellydance Conference with Ranya Renee begin_of_the_skype_highlighting end_of_the_skype_highlighting and has co-produced the interactive dance show “Ready, steady , dance”. www.AnasmaDance.com.
- ↑↓Ranya Renée Ranya has trained in Arabic language and music for many years, produces live music and dance workshops and concerts, and conducts original research in the Middle East. A protégée of New York’s Yousry Sharif, Ranya also studies with other Egyptian masters including Mahmoud Reda, Mona El Said, Raqia Hassan, Aida Nour, and others.
Ranya performs and teaches internationally, with past engagements in Japan, Taiwan, Canada, France, Italy, Norway, Honduras, Israel and Tunisia. In New York City and around North America, she has danced at museums and cultural festivals as well as in large stage shows. She has been featured twice at the Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festval with virtuoso Simon Shaheen’s Near East Music Ensemble. The Tunisian cultural minister for dance commissioned her solo danse orientale performance early in her professional career, accompanied by the Tunisian Troupe Nationale orchestra, for a large gala event in Tunis. Ranya has also performed dance presentations at Central Park Summerstage, the United Nations, the American Museum of Natural History, the Brooklyn Museum, universities, and Arabic clubs and cultural functions, including weddings.
As a dancer-actress, she performed with Alessandra Belloni in the Passion opera as Mary Magdalena at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York. Television appearances include Good Morning America and programs in Europe, Central America, and the Middle East. Ranya has been interviewed on women’s fitness by Self Magazine and Fox News Online. The New York Times’ Weekend section featured Ranya on its cover in August 1998. The New York Press said of her show: “Ranya is a vision…you can’t take your eyes off her.” In reviewing her August 2001 Lincoln Center performance, the Village Voice praised the “classy, poetic fluidity of her gestures and isolations.” Respected dance master Elena Lentini has called her dancing “luxurious.”
Ranya brings her decades of theatrical experience as an actor, director, and acting coach to her work with dancers, and identifies links between physical, energetic, and emotional aspects of the dance in giving feedback to performers who train with her. Ranya’s “Breathwork for Performance” techniques, which she has been developing since 1996, help dancers build confidence in themselves and build a relationship with audiences. She has trained dancers all over the world in these techniques, and has presented related research and teaching material at the Second International Conference on Middle Eastern Dance (California) and at the International Bellydance Conference of Canada (Toronto).
Ranya directs professional and student ensembles (including her company Maqamikaze), and has contributed to off-Broadway and independent productions and performing groups in this capacity as well. Ranya has also served as curator for the “Dance at Alwan” series at the Alwan for the Arts Arab cultural center in Lower Manhattan.
Visit www.Ranya.net for more about Ranya’s work.
- ↑↓Aszmara “Dance is emotion in motion” describes accurately the quality of Aszmara’s dance. Performing and teaching workshops regulary in the USA and Europe, she is one of New York’s best interpreters of the ethnic dance. She impresses through her expressive stage presence and interprets the music with her own blend of modern and ethnic Arab and Turkish dance. The New York Times describes her dance as “intense”.
Throughout her over three decade career as a teacher and performer, Aszmara’s performances range from pure cabaret entertainment to full concert stage creating themed concert events as well as innovative dances. Her choreography has graced many New Rochelle Opera Companies productions (currently working on Turandot) as well as many New York city dancers. As a master teacher she teaches master and beginner’s classes with the same enthusiasm. Her deep love of the dance and teaching shines out to all in her classes bringing out the expressive passion in her students. A wonderfully clear, down-to-earth, funny, good-natured teacher she transports you to new levels of intensity and focus. Her workshops, thus, are highly appreciated both by professional dancers as well as by beginners. Proudly, she is an Adjunct Professor since 2002 at the College of New Rochelle as well as the Advisor for their Step Team, Black Ice. Aszmara’s instructional DVD, Belly Dance… The Secret Desire won high praise from Habibi Magazine for it’s educational value.
In 1988, Aszmara with Roberta Koch co-founded SaZ Dance Theatre, a groundbreaking Multi-cultural dance company. Classical Indian, Spanish, Afro-Haitian, Cuban and Middle Eastern techniques were blended with modern movements to create an exciting and eclectic dance form. NYC productions were at The Knitting Factory, The Moving Company, Movements Afoot, Evolving Arts Theatre at Dance Space, SounDance Repertory, and in 1993 and 1996 had two weeklong runs at SoHo’s Ohio Theatre where Jack Anderson of The New York Times wrote their production of “Out of Time” was “explicitly dramatic” and “a fascinating assortment of brief pieces.”
Oriental Images was formed in the mid 1980’s along with Carmen Evan and Majda Mudell Fisher with the idea to educate and entertain audiences with the rich culture of the Middle East. For 15 years they produced yearly events which were highly regarded in the Middle Eastern Dance community with workshops and concerts presenting folkloric and classic Oriental dance for the theater stage. In 1997, Oriental Images received the AAMED Hall of Fame award.
Since 1989, she has toured yearly in Switzerland with the ethnic/jazz fusion music group, Transition with Master Musicians, Haig Manoukian, Souren Baronian and Cornelia Kraft, who blend traditional music from Armenia & the Middle East with Jazz. Aszmara has been teaching Weeklong Dance Workshops in Switzerland once a year since 1991 as well as Weeklong Dance & Drumming Workshops along with drumming instructor Cornelia Kraft since 1999.
Aszmara embodies theatrical passion. Her performances delve deeply into the soul of the music and demand the audience’s attention. Her passionate connection to the music and her informed teaching are truly unforgettable with an electric excitement of music and dance created in the space between choreography and improvisation.
- ↑↓Lotus Niraja is a professional Middle Eastern dance artist specializing in Urban, Contemporary and Modern Egyptian and Lebanese belly dance styles. As one of the top performers and instructors on the East Coast, Lotus is widely recognized for her dance style, dramatic energy, and vibrant interpretation and technique. Known for her drum solos and shimmy technique, her dance style is dynamic, infused with glamour and style! Lotus teaches Belly Dance classes and offers private lessons as well as national and international workshops. In her classes and workshops, Lotus combines elegance, grace and crisp movement technique with stage dynamics and audience participation in order to help the student give a polished theatrical performance. She offers an extensive library of workshop topics including Raks Modern, the Art of Belly-o-Graphy, Raks Sabor, the Icing on the Drum Solo, Egyptian Style Dance Boot camp and Shimmilicious Shimmies.
In addition, Lotus is the Artistic Executive Director and a Principal Choreographer of the award winning, internationally known troupe, The NDC (The Niraja Dance Company). As one of America’s premiere belly dance companies, they are most admired for their modern approach to Middle Eastern belly dance style, featuring classical and contemporary movement, haute couture costumes designed exclusively by MAZ, and a love for a performance well done! Lotus and The NDC have been featured on DVDs such as Suzy Evans’ IAMED series, the By Dancers for Dancers series by Michelle Joyce’s Cheeky Girls Productions and in print and online magazines such as Zaghareet, the Chronicles, Shimmy Magazine and iShimmy.com. The NDC believe in presenting dynamic theatrical dances in a way that infuses the audience with excitement.
- ↑↓HananHanan (Tiffany Madera, M.A.), has been a leader in her field for over a decade. Specializing in contemporary folkloric styles of Egypt, Yousry Sharif wrote “Hanan can easily pass as a native dancer of Cairo… this is no easy task”. The Miami Herald describes Hanan as “boundary crossing”, “bold” and “a dominant force in contemporary dance”. She is the Founder of Cuba’s first Bellydance Troupe and band; Aisha’ Al-Hanan and has created and developed two documentary films on the subject. She is currently in post production of her film “Havana Habibi” in collaboration with Beeloved Creations. Hanan is a prolific and avante-garde dance theater artist and is a critically acclaimed director and producer of the Habibi Trilogy (Hip Hop Bellydance hybrid theatre) and Hanan with Other Friendly Gods and Goddesses, which made the Miami Herald Top 10 Performances of the Year. Hanan is a world renowned protégé of Tamalyn Dallal and Yousry Sharif. Her teaching manifesto is based on community empowerment and service. Hanan spent several years teaching bellydance at Battered women’s Shelters, Women’s Prison and inner city community centers. She created the Dance Empowerment Project with the Arts at St. Johns originally targeting adult survivors of sexual abuse. She then expanded the program focusing on creative unblocking and psycho-spiritual artistic empowerment through bellydance. Hanan did her graduate studies focusing on Arabic Dance and Identity in Cuba focusing on Feminist, Dance and Diaspora theory analysis. In 2009, Hanan co-created the project “Ayiti Baladi” bringing Bellydance and empowerment to women and girls in Jacmel, Haiti. In addition to training talented dancers in Miami, Hanan is a published arts writer and critic, an interdisciplinary theater director and the newly appointed Executive Director of the Mideastern Dance Exchange, 501C3.
- ↑↓Fahtiemis a multi-award winning choreographer, master instructor, international superstar performer, highly renowned in the world of Middle Eastern Dance. Featured in Time Magazine, numerous TV, Commercials, Movies and in many performance and instructional DVD’s. She is listed in several editions of International Who’s Who of Professional & Business Women. Her awards include: International Cultural Diploma of Honor, Woman of the Year, International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance, Dancer of the Year, Entertainer of the Year, Choreographer of the Year, and Teacher of the Year. American Academy of Middle Eastern Dance (New York), Hall of Fame-Lifetime Achievement, and MECDA Hall of Fame. Fahtiem has taught and performed globally, including in Egypt at the Ahlan Wa Sahlan Festivals in 2007 and 2009, while maintaining a full teaching schedule in Los Angeles Ca. including college level dance courses. Fahtiem has choreographed for Othello at the annual Grove Shakespearian Festival. She has been a performer and a teacher on cruise ships, the choreographer for the Miss America Preliminary Pageant and is the Director/Choreographer of the Sultan’s Delites. She produces/directs the highly acclaimed stage production “Oasis Dance Magic”. Film credits include: Good Morning America as a performer and interview, Solid Gold as featured belly dancer, Counter Culture as host and performer, A.D.I. as dancer and interview, featured guest on Comin Alive – The June Cain Miller Show, a featured dancer on the Belly Dance with Atea TV show, Let’s Talk as featured dancer, and Star 80 the movie as an extra. She is a featured dancer and performer in the videos “Belly Dancer’s Paradise”, “Belly Dance Fast Moves”, “Belly Dance Slow Moves” and “Arabian Dance Fever”. She has been featured in the Kabob Palace, Crystal Lighting and Casa Blanca Restaurant commercials on Arab American Television, and was an instructor/interviewed with her class on Arabic MTV.
Visit Fahtiem at http://fahtiem.com/
- ↑↓Angelika Nemeth is an internationally renowned artist who has received numerous awards for her teaching and performing, is on the dance faculty of three California colleges where she teaches accredited classes in Middle Eastern dance. She has produced and directed numerous critically acclaimed world dance concerts and co-sponsored the historic 1st and 2nd International Conference on Middle Eastern Dance. She was influential in the creation and development of Orange Coast College’s World Dance Certificate Program, which she now supervises. Her artistic legacy has significantly influenced her dance genre, especially in her home base of Southern California. Angelika trains and mentors many of today’s new dance stars, lectures at colleges and libraries and adjudicates belly dance competitions world-wide. She also organizes and leads dance study tours to the Middle East and is featured on numerous dance videos and in print media. Her enthusiastic and culturally informative teaching method makes her a sought-after master instructor. As a performer she is known for her elegantly sensual and passionate blending of traditional forms with a contemporary flair. She has performed for royalty and celebrities, has been featured in settings from intimate supper clubs to large theatre stages, and is the artistic director and choreographer of her award winning Angelika Nemeth Dance Ensemble (ANDE). She has certificates in Dance and Theatre Arts and Related Technologies, holds a BS degree in Education and an MA in Psychology specializing in the Transformational Arts. www.AngelikaNemeth.com
- ↑↓Sarah Johansson Locke is a performer, choreographer, and teacher whose work is inspired by her experience with several forms of traditional and contemporary dance, theater, yoga, and somatic modalities. As the Artistic Director of Alchemy Performance, Sarah has been at the forefront of establishing and cultivating the New York Tribal/Fusion scene since 2001. She directs two companies, Alchemy Dance Theater and the Alchemy Tribal Collective; teaches dance, yoga, and anatomy; curates and produces the HYBRID performance series and other events; and performs frequently. As a certified instructor of Yoga and Embodied Anatomy as well as a dance teacher with more than 15 years of experience, Sarah is known for her informed and inspiring classes which empower students to find a deep sense of body awareness and creative expression.
Her performance style stands out for its strong yet meditative power, its ability to draw you in to a profound and sacred space. Alchemy Dance Theater and the Alchemy Tribal Collective are known for their dynamic movement vocabulary, fluid line, and intricate formations, as well as a strong group stage presence that has been called “mesmerizing“, “captivating“, “deeply moving“, and more. Sarah began her study of Tribal Bellydance in 1994 and was a member of Gypsy Caravan, the second Tribal troupe to exist, for several years before returning to NYC (where she grew up) to develop her own style of contemporary Tribal Fusion as an alchemy of her wide ranging theater, dance, and movement experience.
Through her roots in the early development of the Tribal style, Sarah witnessed the gift and power of the dance to bring women deeply into themselves as well as strongly together into community. Since then, along with her experience in both traditional and contemporary dance as well as experimental theater, Sarah’s intensive study of yoga and anatomy has deeply informed the development of her dance style as both a performer and a teacher. Throughout her performance career, she has been involved with projects ranging from site-specific installations and street theater to international arts festivals and large theater productions, both across the U.S. and in Europe.
- ↑↓Kaeshi Chai was born in Brunei and brought up in New Zealand and Australia. She co-founded the New York-based dance company Bellyqueen with Amar Gamal in 1998 and has been it’s primary leader since 2005 overseeing artistic vision and choreographies. Kaeshi also co-founded PURE (Public Urban Ritual Experiment) [ www.pureglobe.org], a healing dance and music community, which has rapidly spread into many branches all over the US and internationally and has been PURE’s main facilitator since 2006.
Kaeshi has performed and taught in many countries including the US, Canada, Europe, Mexico, Carribean, Australia, South America and throughout Asia. In 2002, she performed 5 shows a day to live Arabic music at Aladdin’s Desert Passage in Las Vegas. In 2003-2004, she was part of the first professional touring bellydance company in the world, The Bellydance Superstars and held the position of dance captain for the 2004 US & Canadian Spring tour. She has performed at Central Park’s Summerstage, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, Folie’s Begere in Paris, Bloomsbury Theater in London, Teatro Smeraldo in Milan and has made television appearances on Conan O’Brien as well as BBC’s Blue Peter. In 2006, she made history as the first US based dancer to teach a workshop in mainland China. From 2007-2009, she toured 6-13 dancers representing Bellyqueen Dance Theater through the United States 3 times, Canada 3 times, Western and Eastern Europe and Japan. This makes Bellyqueen the second most active touring bellydance company in the world next to the Bellydance Superstars. In 2009 and 2010, she was honored to be the featured soloist in Turkish dancer Ahmet Luleci’s Collage Dance Ensemble Boston and New York shows. Recently, she was invited to team up with the one and only Jillina for her Bellydance Revolution project.
In between her extensive travels, Kaeshi co-hosts a weekly Wednesday night happening in New York’s east village called ” Djam Under JeBon” showcasing international and local talent, with live band, Djinn. She can be seen in the following DVDs: “Bellyqueen: The Bellydance Experience“, “Bellydance Jam“, “Bellydance NYC” by Bellyqueen; “Bellydance Superstars: Live in Paris at the Folies Begere“; “American Bellydancer“; and “Crazed: The Bellydance“. In her spare time, Kaeshi studies Mandarin through ChinesePod, enjoys foot massages, and drinking Soy Chai Lattes.
- ↑↓Samara’s hallmark style, a blend of serene elegance, spiritual grace, earthy passion, and technical prowess is the result of a life long commitment to Oriental Dance. Drawn to the dance since she was a child; via her Mediterranean heritage (Greek and Turkish), Samara’s background enhanced her organic sense of rhythm and her mastery of hip dynamics that characterize the dances of the Near East. Samara began dancing professionally in her teens, having already studied other dance forms extensively.
In her pursuit to study the art of Middle Eastern dance on it’s highest level, Samara was aided by her outstanding dance mentor, the late master dancer/teacher/choreographer Ibrahim Farrah. Samara studied with Mr. Farrah for over 15 years became his protege and utilizes much of his philosophy and technique in her teaching method and choreography. As a member of his renowned Near East dance Group, Samara’s performed in some of America’s most prestigious concert halls, including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center, Town Hall, The Triplex Theater, Theater of the Riverside Church and Merkin Concert Hall in New York, the Warner Theater in Washington D.C. and the Spoleto Festival in Charleston S.C.
In addition to her work with the Near East Dance Group, Samara has shared the stage with some of the most famous singing stars of the Middle East including, ( to name a few), Walid Tofic, Ragheb Alame, Sabah, Warda, and George Wassouf. She danced with Alabina at The Beacon Theater and Christine Aguillera at Radio City Music Hall for the MTV Music Awards. Samara was a 1998 inductee into the American Academy of Middle Eastern Dance Hall of Fame.
As a soloist, Samara has been engaged in Middle Eastern nightclubs and theaters throughout the United States and Abroad. Her dance journeys have taken her to Mexico, the Caribbean, France, England, Russia, Bulgaria China, Japan, Turkey, Greece, Jordan, Egypt, Israel and West Africa.
Samara is the choreographer and Artistic Director of Dance for The Mosaic Dance Theater Company, a non profit Dance Company specializing In the Dances of the Near East, North Africa and the Mediterranean. For Mosaic she has choreographed numerous traditional and interpretive Theatrical Concerts critically acclaimed in such publications as The Village Voice and The Star Ledger.
As A Seminar Instructor Samara teaches regularly throughout the United States and abroad. Here in NY she teaches weekly classes and is a faculty Member at The Alvin Ailey Extension.
For more information about Samara visit www.SamaraDance.com
- ↑↓Roula Said is a multi-faceted artist who has dedicated her talents to Middle Eastern music and dance. One of Canada’s leading lights in the world of bellydance, Roula is the director of Om Laila Bellydance, the producer of FunkaBelly – Toronto’s premier global Grooves Dance Party and Bellydance Cabaret, and the vocalist, dancer and percussionista of Gypsy/Arabic funk band, Nomadica (which she co-leads with trumpeter and composer, David Buchbinder).
Roula is an inspiring teacher who has been sharing the wisdom and pleasure of bellydance for over 20 years. She has taught workshops from coast to coast in Canada, as well as in the US. Along with her warm and poetic teaching style, Roula also brings to students her fluency in the Arabic language and vast knowledge of Middle Eastern music. She has studied with some of the leading educators in the field including Yousry Sharif, Elena Lentini, Yasmina Ramzy, Aziza, Jillina, Mahmoud Reda, and the late Ibrahim Farrah. As a musician, she sings and plays qanun and percussion, having studied with George Sawa, Simon Shaheen, Bassam Bishara and master musicians in Syria.
Roula’s current passion as a teacher is Seven Waves Movement System, a holistic, bellydance infused series of movement sequences built upon the wisdom of the wave at the centre of all healthy movement. Seven Waves is simple, essential, deeply transformative and seriously fun. It is truly a work out for body and soul and imparts a profound experience of integration and wholeness. Roula is also a masterful finger cymbal player and has developed a thorough and challenging method for teaching and playing the saghat/zylls which she is currently setting to DVD and presenting at the 3rd International Bellydance Conference of Canada.
Reaching further back, Roula has a performance background as an actor having worked both in theatre and film. She most recently appears in Ruba Nadda’s film Sabah (Ruba is the director of Cairo Times which is currently garnering rave reviews in the international film festival circuit). Roula has studied physical theatre, contemporary theatre and clown (Richard Pachenko style). She has performed in numerous works from avant guard renditions of Shakespeare to sketch comedy and has created many witty and sidesplitting choreographies with her performance troupe The Roulettes and with NYC’s fabulous Ranya Renée. Visit Roula’s Website
- ↑↓JeniViva has the distinct pleasure of being one of the pioneers of an alternative genre of dance: Gothic Bellydance. This genre blends the old with the new, adding a dark twist of Gothic elements to classic genres of Bellydance. The fruits of JeniViva’s efforts can be seen in numerous Gothic subculture magazines and websites. She also has been featured on the first ever Gothic Bellydance DVD by World Dance New York and performed in and appeared on the cover of the Gothic Bellydance 2: Revelations DVD. A native New Yorker, JeniViva’s dance training began at 3 years old at the Second Avenue School in Lower Manhattan. JeniViva’s training continued over the years: classical ballet with the Rabovsky family, dancing competitively in Jazz and Modern dance, and exploring her roots by studying Flamenco and Sicilian Folkdance.
In addition to dance studies, JeniViva also majored in Theatre Arts at CUNY. Prior to fusing Gothic music and culture with Bellydance, JeniViva’s passion for Bellydancing was originally founded within the form of Classic Cabaret Bellydance. In 2001 JeniViva began her training in Egyptian Bellydance with such Master teachers as Rayhana, Jehan, and the late great Serena Wilson. Some years later JeniViva found a deeper connection to Turkish Oriental Cabaret Bellydance and also in the basics of Romani (Gypsy) dance having been heavily influenced by taking repeated workshops with Artemis Mourat, Eva Cernik, and Tayar Akdeniz.
Today JeniViva performs and teaches both Classical Turkish Cabaret and Gothic Fusion Bellydance in New York City. She has also developed her own Gothic Bellydance technique entitled “The Serpentine Method©“. Jeniviva describes it as a technique that “fuses movements of Vict-Oriental, Gothic, Steampunk, Cabaret, Tribal Fusion, and Ritual Bellydance. The ultimate fusion of alternative Bellydance genres with a modern theatrical twist!” JeniViva has appeared on The Conan O’Brien Show, the WB 11, at The House of Blues, The Rainbow Room, and numerous prestigious nightclubs in NYC. JeniViva has performed for such clients as Jay-Z, Marc Jacobs, and Esquire Magazine and she recently had the pleasure of being cast as a featured dancer in the film Sex in the City Part 2.
- ↑↓Aepril Schaile is “An American priestess of the Dark Goddess” working through the ancient and ever-evolving arts of Bellydance, Music, Ritual Theater, and Divination. Aepril has taught and performed at curated events in Paris, NYC, L.A., Hollywood, and San Francisco. Aepril directs Exquisite Corpse Productions and is Artistic Director of Exquisite Corpse Dance Theatre. Aepril teaches ongoing classes in Boston and Salem, MA, and teaches traditional, theatrical, and shamanistic Bellydance workshops nationwide and internationally. In performance, Aepril becomes Trickster, Warrior, Ghost, Storm, Grieving Mother, Killer, Snow Queen, Seductress… Aepril’s performances invoke the archetypal Feminine as a force of nature and magick. Aepril is an astrologer, musician and composer, dancer and dance teacher, writer and storyteller, mythologist, animal rights advocate, and witch. Aepril is an AAFA certified Group Fitness Instructor, and she holds an MFA in Interdisciplinary Art.
Aepril Schaile dances to make the archetypal Dark Feminine sacred again. Aepril is recognized for her pioneering innovation in dark theatrical, ritual and shamanistic bellydance. Her recent appearances include Spirit of the Tribes in Florida, Festival Bellyfusions in Paris, France, Night of 1000 Goddesses in NYC, An Evening of Experimental Middle Eastern Dance (EEMED) in Los Angeles, and she was a Guest Artist at Rakkasah’s Spring Caravan in NJ. Aepril teaches ongoing classes in Salem, MA, and teaches workshops both locally and nationwide. Aepril’s Exquisite Corpse Productions produces an annual theatrical bellydance event called Descent: Dances of the Dark Goddess; she annually co-produces The Art of Bellydance show with the Salem Arts Association in Salem, Massachusetts.
Aepril became deeply immersed in the world of Spirits and Invisibles during a long period of voluntary solitude. There, while inhabiting the wild and magical coast and woods of northern New England with her wolf companion Coda, her heart was opened, and dance and music moved through her in a new and mediumistic way; she is inspired by forces of nature such as winged creatures, wolves, storms, and the sea; she is also inspired by the invisible forces of the subconscious, the supernatural, and the synchronistic. Aepril dances as a ritual of reverence to the Divine for Her powers of regeneration and redemption.
Interested in times past as well as the Timeless, Aepril’s “ancestors” of dance include Ruth St Denis, Josephine Baker, and Isadora Duncan. She has been influenced and instructed by bellydance masters Elena Lentini and Dunya, as well as the performance artists Diamanda Galas and Rachel Rosenthal in her approach to performing.
Visit Aepril’s website http://AeprilSchaile.com/
- ↑↓Blanca Born in Mexico and based in New York City, Blanca is a dancer, choreographer, teacher, and workshop leader. She incorporates metaphysical elements into her work and infuses her students with pure self-confidence. Blanca sees belly dance as a tool for communication, a performing art, and a compelling storytelling device all in one. She likens it to a yoga practice, something that can lead students to a different kind of enlightenment and awareness.
Blanca recently wrapped a dance scene in the upcoming Sex and the City 2 and has been featured in 11 DVDs, including Sensual Bellydance which features her technique and dance style. Blanca has performed onstage with Alabina and Gogol Bordello. She has appeared with famous burlesque and film star Dita Von Teese. Her television credits include the Bollywood Music Awards (aired worldwide) as well as multiple appearances on Spanish television networks Univision and Telemundo, Fox and BBC. She has performed at venues as diverse as Trump’s Taj Mahal, the Brooklyn Museum of Art and Lincoln Center. She is a faculty member at the 92Y and teaches weekly classes at Serena Studios. Blanca has led workshops across the USA (including the Rakkasah East Festival) and Mexico. Upcoming workshops include Festival Isis in the Dominican Republic. Other credits include: Rolling Stone, Universal Pictures, MTV, and Disney. Over the past few years she performed, choreographed and produced in a variety of shows and workshops with her previous dance collectives Venus Uprising and CollexArts. www.BlancaDance.com www.SensualBellydance.com www.YouTube.com/sensualbellydance
- ↑↓Elisheva Elisheva is a 2nd generation Belly Dancer from NYC who started her studies as a young artist in Music, Theatre, Drama, and Dance. She has become an internationally acclaimed dancer, sought after for her signature fusion of aesthetics- Belly Dance fused with trained classical dance, jazz forms, and hip hop’s popping & locking. She has taught workshops, classes, and performed in dozens of countries around the world. She will be this years featured instructor at Hiptastic! 2010. Elisheva is currently featured on many available “Performance” DVDS and has 2 DVD instructionals available, her solo debut : “Tribal Fusion, Pop & Lock” and “Hard Candy”.
HISTORY: She began performing jazz, tap, modern and lyrical dance with a children’s touring dance troupe located in NY’s Catskill mountains for 7 years. She focused on modern dance intensively in Performing Arts H.S. under the direction of original ‘Alvin Ailey 2‘ Artistic Director Tyrone Aikens and other noted teachers, at NYSSSA, ADF, then went on to finish her dance studies at The Ohio State University where she earned her BFA degree in Dance Performance under the direction of Susan Hadley (Mark Morris Co.), Bebe Miller (Bebe Miller Co.), Rosalind Pierson (Charles Weidman Co.), and Karen Elliot (Merce Cunnigham Co.), all of whom are part of the many important teachers who have influenced her abilities and talent. It was during those years that she challenged her art with an extensive program that allowed her to master choreography and Dance Labanotation©, creative work such as lighting design and extensive music studies, and Movement Theories such as the Alexander Technique©, Pilates©, and Bartinieff Fundamentals©. At the age of 15, she began her professional bellydance career at Lincoln Center’s Damrosh Park leading Serena Wilson’s and Renate Wallasch’s collaborative summer show.
CURRENTLY: She now performs as company member and as the Dance Captain of NYC’s world-renoun bellydance company “Bellyqueen”( www.bellyqueen.com ) , and with “Venus Uprising” as a soloist. Elisheva has studied under the likes of many world wide acclaimed teachers and is Level 1 Certified in the Suhalia Salimpour format. Her passionate performances have allowed her to dance on stages with international powerhouses such as Oojami, and Elisheva’s extensive dance training has given her opportunity to tour and perform on and off-Broadway with Bellydance, Modern Dance Hip-Hop, Jazz. Her talents have been featured on television series (FOX), national commercials, news broadcasts, National Geographic’s Performance Theatre and award-winning Independent Films, as well as cabaret/dinner clubs all over the N.Y.C. and Long Island area for over 15 years.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
- ↑↓Andrea, Enchantress of Bioluminosity Andrea, the Enchantress of Bioluminosity, has shared her elegant & ethereal dance style with audiences in theaters, cabarets, museums, & universities in New York City & abroad. Her versatile palette ranges from traditional ethnic dance to technologically savvy multimedia performance art. Highlights include opening for Rickie Lee Jones’ East Coast Ghostyhead Tour; dancing with the Rhode Island Symphony Orchestra; collaborating with the Minister of Lamination to present Lamination Rituals worldwide; starring in Amy Greenfield’s internationally acclaimed cinedance films Wildfire and Dark Sequins; and performing as part of the band Crash Course in Science at Belgium’s Bimfest 2009. Andrea has been making dance related films & videos since 1987; she recently edited The Zar Dance DVD featuring Ibrahim Farrah’s Near East Dance Group. Andrea has been a dedicated teacher of the Middle Eastern dance arts since 1993, sharing her technical expertise & passion for dance with future generations of dancers.
- ↑↓Yael Becker Yael Becker is an Oriental dancer, Choreographer and Instructor. She is immersed in the Middle Eastern Dance and contributes to its field for the past 14 years.
Yael Becker was trained in Middle Eastern dance in Israel, Egypt and the US (Elizabeth, Fifi Ness, Mahmoud Reda, Yousry Sharif and Dalia Carella to name a few). She also studied Improvisation, Contemporary dance and Theater dance, acting and singing, meditation and guided imagination technique. Yael holds a B.A. from the Tel-Aviv University in Psychology and Multidisciplinary Art.
Yael, native of Israel, has developed her own style. Influenced by Egyptian dance and Theatre dance , inspired by everyday life, her choreographies and dance are expressive and soulful.
Yael Becker has created the theatrical dance shows, “Rikdi Tamah” (2009) and “Raks 2” (2006) (Inbal Theater, Suzzen Dellal Center, Israel ). She has been featured as a solo dancer in shows and festivals internationally, and recently danced with Kashie Chai and with The Dalia Carella Dance Collective in NYC. She has been giving classes and workshops in the US and Israel for all levels.
For more information visit her at www.myspace.com/yaelbecker or www.beckeryael.com
- ↑↓Dalia CarellaDalia Carella is a renowned world fusion artist, choreographer and master teacher. She is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Dalia Carella Carella Dance Collective. Ms. Carella has delved deeply in the studies of dances from the Near and Middle East including Egypt, Turkey, Lebanon, as well as North Africa including Morocco and Algeria, India and Spain. Her dances are both traditional and contemporary with a spiritual and mystical essence behind each and every dance that she creates. Ms. Carella has been teaching Near Eastern Belly Dance and her unique style of Dunyavi Roma Dance since 1980. Some of Ms. Carella’s new works represent both traditional and contemporary movement ranging from sacred rituals to global contemporary theater pieces to post modern works. Her dance background also includes studies in Flamenco, Indian, Bollywood/Bhangra, Afro-Haitian, Samba, Salsa, Bomba and Plena from Puerto Rico as well as jazz and ballet. Ms. Carella’s numerous concerts and teaching tours have led her throughout the United States, Canada, England, Puerto Rico, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Portugal and Japan.
- ↑↓The Dalia Carella Dance CollectiveThe Dalia Carella Dance Collective (DCDC) is a global fusion dance theater company that fuses traditional and contemporary dance forms from around the world with Western Contemporary dance. Frequently drawing inspiration from female archetypes, the DCDC’s works are theatrically staged and performed with a modern-day sensibility that transcends labels and forms. Artistic Director and Choreographer Dalia Carella is a world-renowned artist known for blurring the boundaries of genre. Carella culls members from the entire range of the dance spectrum and from all cultural backgrounds, yielding a rich menu of dance that is much more than the sum of its parts. DCDC performance highlights in NYC include: numerous performances at the annual Rakkasah and Spring Caravan Middle Eastern Festivals, HERE Arts Center, The Duke, The Lucille Lortel, Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater, Dance New Amsterdam, P.S. 122, La MaMa, and Adelphi University. DCDC has also performed at The Ford in L.A. and Great Hall Kudan Kaikan in Tokyo, Japan.
- ↑↓ZahavaZahava trained at Juilliard, Tisch School of the Arts, Alvin Ailey School, Sarah Lawrence College & performed with legends including Katherine Dunham, Urban Bush Women, Liz Lerman & the Joffrey Ballet. Her background in West African, ballet, modern dance, Middle Eastern dance, Sufi Dancemeditation with Dunya, & yoga has given her an appreciation for the infinite movement vocabulary of the body as well as how differently each culture defines dance & its relationship to creating community, healing, connecting with the soul, rites of passage, & preparing for birth. She is a Pilates instructor, Anusara Pre/Postnatal Yoga teacher, taught at East Physical Therapy & Ina May Gaskin’s Farm, known internationally for their women’s centered birthing process, Deepak Chopra’s Center & Phoenix Temple. She studied the Chakra system with Anodea Judith, Sexual Shamanism with Kenneth Ray Stubbs, Ph.D., ideokinesis with Andre Bernard, the art of intimacy with Sheri Winston, & the pelvic floor with Virgina Reath.
- ↑↓SiraSira’s professional training began in 1992. She has been a member of Serena’s Dance Company, Shoshana’s Dance Theater Company, Jehan’s Goddess Dance Productions, and is currently a member of Anahid Sofian’s Dance Company. She started performing in 1994 and continues to perform in NY’s top nightclubs/restaurants as well as parties.
Some of her past performances in theater shows have taken place at the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn-Queens Conservatory of Music, Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park and Bruno Walter Auditorium, Queens Theater in the Park, Evolving Arts Theater, DNA, Merce Cunningham, and Spring Garden Arts Theater (England).
Sira has also appeared on MTV, Good Morning America, Good Day New York, Channel 11 News, and coverage on Japanese, Indian and Russian programs. She was also featured in DVD’s such as “Fantasy Bellydance”, “Belly Dance Stars”, and “The Way to Belly Dance”.
- ↑↓Yasmine Yasmine has been performing throughout NY & NJ since 2000. The venues where she has been featured include The Nile (NJ), Aladdin (NJ), Roses’s Place (Englewood NJ), Cavo (Astoria, NY), Mezzo Mezzo (Astoria, NY), Habibi lounge (NYC), Lafayette Grill (NYC), and countless other nightclubs and restaurants. Yasmine has an extensive dance background which includes Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Modern, Flamenco and Tango. She fell in love with middle-eastern dance at a young age and has enjoyed being one of New York’s highly sought out bellydancers ever since.
In 2001 she performed for Jon Bon Jovi at his estate, and in New Year’s Eve 2007 she was invited to perform at WyClef Jean’s festivities. Theatrical productions include Zodiac Dance at Merce Cunningham Theater in 2008, coproduced and performed in “Bellydance Live from NY” at the Poet’s Den in 2009 and “The Zoo” Fantasy Bellydance show as Cancer at Merce Cunningham in 2010. Yasmine appeared in DVD’s “Belly Dance Stars” and “The way to Belly dance”. She danced with band YerbaBuena on Late Night with Conan O’Brien in 2006. Yasmine is also featured in the upcoming movie Sex and the City 2, in theaters May 27, 2010.
- ↑↓DunyaDunya’s mystical, artistic performance has electrified the NY Belly Dance scene since 1985.
NEA Choreographer, Dunya McPherson has been hailed by NY Times as “an unusual and talented choreographer…who knows how to put movement together…ingenious…” She has choreographed opera, musical theatre and over 30 original works for venues including Lincoln Center, DTW, Santa Fe Performing Arts Center, numerous universities & colleges as well as The Juilliard School, and High School of Perf Arts.
Dunya formed the Alembic to present non-traditional performative work. Performances include New Orleans DramaRama Festival, Kripalu Center Artist Residency, and Monday Salon Series at the Metropolitan Building.
– Nisaa Christie’s performances include ‘Still Life,Life Still’ at St. John the divine, ‘What the Funk’ at Aaron Davis, ‘F train to Africa’ at Brooklyn Academy of Music.
– Kate Russel has a certificate in dance from the Ailey School, and an MA in Dance and Somatic Well-being.
Nisaa & Kate have been with Dunya’s Core Alembic since its inception in 2005
- ↑↓AmarPierre Khoury (Amar) is young, passionate and ambitious, both as a doctoral student in psychology and a bellydancer of Syrian background that acquired a rich and varied experience in terms of stage performance and entertainment. During his collegial studies, he won a well-known local talent competition and later supervised the college’s dance troop towards the development of an annual show. His performances are known for their originality given his enthusiasm and varied training. He currently teaches workshops and classes of baladi-funky, a style inspired by the expanding pop culture of the Middle East. He is also a member of the Tywallines oriental dancing troop and his very fond of artistic director Khadija Jabiry for her crucial guidance in his ongoing dancing journey. He was more recently selected to perform at the main stage of the International Bellydance Conference of Canada where he was noticed for his charisma and for being able to convey his heartfelt emotions to his audience.
- ↑↓Lena Lena has danced all her life, starting with jazz and rythmic gymnastics as a girl, she first saw belly dance at age 15. Lena fell in love with the dance and moved to Egypt, where she lived for 12 years. She has learnt the dance from great stars as Zuheir Zaki and Mahmoud Reda and worked as a folkloric dancer in Egypt with her husband at the big 5 star hotels in Cairo. After moving back to Sweden she started her dance school in Stockholm where most of the creme de la creme of Swedens dancers and teachers have studied. Lena is in high demand in Europe and she has toured in Chile. She is also the artistic leader of Sheherazade, her award winning troupe that has toured Europe and won the Bellydancer of the world 2008.
Lenas profound knowledge in both the Egyptian style cabaret dance and Egyptian folklore, her artistic choroegraphies and her ability to make every dancer the best she can be she has become one of the most loved teachers and choreographers in whole Scandinavia. Her down to earth, fun and flirty personality shines through on stage, in her choreographies and in class. Lena introduced the shaabi style to Scandinavia and she is known as the Shabiyya of Sweden. Being fluent in arabic and having lived in Egypt she is a true source of knowledge for all dancers wanting to emulate the Egyptian style, but more than anything she lifts the veil before the window to the Egyptian thought process behind the poetic interpretation of sound, diction in lyrics and movement leading the dancer onto a path of voyage leading to greatness.
- ↑↓AysheAyshe is a New York dance artist, choreographer and designer. She blends her Greek and American heritage to create an exotic and unusual dance style. She has trained extensively in classical ballet, modern dance, yoga, and numerous ethnic dance forms, particularly Middle Eastern dance, ancient pharaonic dance, and Indian dance. She holds a B.A. from Hunter College in Human Movement, Archaeology, and Middle Eastern Studies.
Currently, Ayshe has been working on creative performance projects and workshops with Venus Uprising .(www.venusuprising.com) Last summer she formed a new group, Cult of Isis, which focuses on performing ancient Egyptian dances. Most recently they performed at Rakkash’s Spring Caravan.
Ayshe is widely known for her wings of Isis. She is responsible for the initiation of “Isis wings” as a specialty for cabaret performances. Her instructional dvd, Wings, The Complete Technique, is the only one of its kind, fully describing and teaching, step by step, the movement vocabulary that Ayshe has created for dancing with wings.
- ↑↓Eugenia Hu Eugenia is a recent transplant to the Boston area from Washington, DC. A respected professional tribal bellydancer in the DC area, she is a frequent performer at many local venues for tribal bellydance, including Tribal Cafe at Asylum, Palace of Wonders, and bebar, as well as bellydance festivals all over the country. She is co-director of the pure American Tribal Style troupe Sammati, co-director of the Brain Dance collective, and also performs as a tribal fusion soloist. With a love of theatrics and “old school” hip hop, she constantly experiments with fusing both elements into her solo work, and attempts to create “dance that means something”. Her dance background includes substantive training in tribal fusion, hip hop, American Tribal Style, flamenco, and Level 1 certification in the Suhaila Salimpour format, and she has studied extensively with Mars of Devyani Dance Company and Asharah.
- ↑↓Alexia (Kim Leary) & Groove Merchant Drum & Dance Ensemble and Lisa BotalicoKim Leary (Alexia) is a belly dance performer, choreographer and instructor in Central New Jersey. Kim Leary’s (Alexia) dance accomplishments include teaching both credit and non-credit dance at Princeton University. She is Co-Artistic Director of Groove Merchant Drum & Dance Ensemble and Co-Director of her school, The Drum & Dance Learning Center in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. Many of the group’s performances have been sponsored in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Ms. Leary has performed at numerous prestigious venues such as Lincoln Center, The Ohio Theatre (SOHO), CAMI Hall (NYC), DanceSpace (NYC), FIT (NYC), The Evolving Arts Theatre (NYC), The Black Box Theatre (NJ), as well as at many colleges, universities, and festivals as a soloist and with her own dance company, SaZ Dance Theatre, Jamila Salimpour’s Bal Anat and Dalia Carella’s DNA Project. She also teaches at Rutgers University and Middlesex County College.
- ↑↓Alchemy Tribal CollectiveThe Alchemy Tribal Collective is a contemporary world fusion dance company that celebrates the alchemy of tradition and innovation, tribal and urban, ritual and spectacle. ATC’s work is developed from a strong foundation in tribal and tribal fusion bellydance as well as elements of traditional and modern dance and movement from around the world, exploring new forms and fusions of ancient and contemporary sources. Tribal itself is a modern fusion of traditional dances from countries along the Roma (Gypsy) Trail from India to Morocco to Spain. Alchemy deepens these roots of ritual and community dance, and adds elements of butoh, experimental theater practices, hip hop, modern dance, and yoga; the result is a moving collage across cultures. ATC dancers performing tonight are Abby Harkey, Elizabeth Green, Irina Komarovskaya, Janina, Megan Fitzgerald, Sarah Johansson Locke, and Sophia Ma.
- ↑↓Niraja Dance CompanyWidely recognized for their dance style, energy, theatrical interpretation and technique, Lotus Niraja & The NDC are a group of Middle Eastern dance artists specializing in Contemporary/Modern Egyptian and Lebanese belly dance styles. Their dance style has been called dynamic, infused with glamour and style! Lotus Niraja is the Artistic Director and Principal Choreographer of the award winning troupe and the Executive Director of the Belly Dance Nationals Competition.
- ↑↓NADIA MARIA MICHAELS AND DANCERSThe company presents works that draw upon elements of ballet, modern, Middle-Eastern, Indian and African dance, as well as contemporary and traditional dances of the Middle East and beyond. Most recently, Nadia collaborated with some of NYC’s top Middle Eastern dance artists to create a new work, “The Five Elements” performed at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. The company has performed at the Public Theater, Madison Square Garden, and Joyce Theater Soho, among others. This past season, Nadia received a cover contract with the Metropolitan Opera for two principal dance roles in the opera “Thais”. Nadia appears as a featured dancer in the upcoming “Sex and the City II” movie. She has taught at Lotus Dance Studios in NYC, as well as master classes and workshops at Sarah Lawrence College, NYU, Fordham University, Barnard College, and the Omega Institute. Nadia received an MFA in dance from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She is also a member of the Dalia Carella Dance Collective.
- ↑↓ZOE ANWARTrained in classical ballet at the Royal Academy of London and oriental dance with acknowledged masters such as Lenna or Raqia Hassan, Zoe Anwar has a complete and extensive career as a director, dancer and choreographer. She has worked with some of the greatest Arab artists all over the world and performed on international tours in Europe, America and Arab countries. She currently leads the oriental dance company Tandava and created the dance-theater plays Karah and Aluaan to great critical acclaim and commercial success.
- ↑↓TaraTara’s passion for dance began with Egyptian Bellydance but she later found a deeper connection to Tribal Fusion, a style in which she flourished. Intoxicated by this new direction, she took as many workshops as she could, even choreographing her own solo and group performances, not knowing that she would later share the stage with her mentors. In 2008, she was honored to dance in the Bellydance Superstars show, Tribal LA, as a member of Urban Tribal Dance Company. The show was later made into a live performance DVD.
She has since developed a serene performance style that has grown beyond bellydance, captivating audiences with a deep emotional connection to the music. Her dynamic angles, attention to detail, mesmerizing technique, and passion for dance make her a stand out performer at any show. Her provocative depictions of the human spirit are unforgettable spectacles that evoke something different in everyone.
- ↑↓PUELA LUNARISPuela Lunaris is a New York City based Dancer, Teacher, Producer and Spoken Word Artist dedicated to Saving Dances and Music in Danger of Extinction. She specializes in Barefoot Flamenco Dance and Traditional Flamenco Rap.
Committed to make her culture accessible to international audiences by producing quality educational materials, Puela has produced the Flamenco Caliente! Practice Music Trilogy, companion albums to the Flamenco Dance Series (DVDs).
She has also served as curator, artistic director and producer of the Legendary Gypsy Masters Anthology.
- ↑↓BastetThe roots of what we call “belly dance” are obscure. Reputed to be the world’s oldest dance form, it has evolved over millennia and has been influenced by many cultures. BASTET, grew out of a desire to evolve with the dance.
BASTET takes inspiration from the dances of the Middle East, Africa, and India in order to create unique choreography and to convey stories through dance. The dancers come from a variety of belly dance backgrounds and draw from other movement forms such as hip hop, circus and martial arts.
BASTET regularly collaborates with musicians in the genres of rock, soul, electronica, Middle Eastern and African music. They also collaborate with other dance and theatre acts such as Desert Sin, Billi Shakes, Estampas Negras and Naach Sensation.
A sub-division of BASTET is Belly Dance for Change, which brings together performers from all around the city to raise money for charity
- ↑↓Jenny C.Jenny C. has had the pleasure of dance for most of her life. Although having only begun the study of Near Eastern influenced dance since 2002, Jenny C. has studied the dance forms of hip hop, ballet, jazz, modern, tap and Polynesian dance throughout the course of her life. Currently Jenny C. is a soloist and teacher in American Style Tribal Fusion Bellydance: a conglomerate of Near Eastern based folk dance influenced by the art of ballet, the freedom of modern dance, and the many dynamic forms hip hop. “I believe that to dance is to find ourselves.”
- ↑↓UnveiledUnveiled Dance Company was founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 2004 under the direction of Crystal Dunlap now (Crystal Esteves). Unveiled is known for large scale theatre productions, their greatest accomplishment being the “Elemental” Production at the Towsley Theatre in Ann Arbor preformed in October 2007. “Elemental” was a full length theatrical bellydance performance divided into four acts that showed the different styles of bellydance through the Elements: Water (Fusion), Air (Cabaret), Fire (Tribal), and Earth (Forkloric). In 2008 Crystal moved to New York and continued to teach bellydance.
In early 2010 she started a Brooklyn-based chapter of Unveiled. Unveiled New York made its group debut at Rakkasah East’s Spring Caravan festival this May, performing a unique Mozart-inspired bellydance-ballet fusion sequence. Both the New York and Michigan dance companies continue to perform with a focus on theatrical large scale production.
The New York page is under construction as we are new but will be up soon. Feel free to look at my personal page and that of the Michigan group.
- ↑↓Jessenia and the Hip FreaksJessenia is an NYC Bellydance performer, instructor and choreographer. She grew up fascinated by music videos, particularly Michael Jackson’s, and by classic comedians and cartoons of the 1920’s – 1950’s, which became the influence in her creating theatrical choreographies, especially comedic ones. She was a member of Widad troupe at the City College of New York for several years, holding positions as choreographer and troupe co-manager. Recently, she has co found with friend and Tribal Fusion dancer Nirmala, an innovative Bellydance ensemble which will debut at the conference. Dancers joining her will be: Evelyn, Amira Nazar, Sianna and actor Jose Saavedra.