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Miami’s Egyptia 2012 Festival: Celebrating the Art of Egyptian Dance in June

Egyptia 2012 is coming to town from June 1st to 3rd.  Here the authenticity of Arabic Dance will be celebrated through workshops and a final gala performance studded with stars of the genre.

Dance as Everyday Life in Ancient Egypt

We’ve seen depictions of Egyptian dance in ancient paintings and etchings on murals, tombs, and artifacts enough to realize how much a part of everyday life it figured in ancient Egyptian culture. Dance was ever-present at ceremonies, celebrations, and rituals, with the oldest records pointing to its importance at funereal events. Here dancers performed to appease the goddess Skehmet so that the dead could become rejuvenated for their next life. One of the most famous dances was the “offering table,” which lured the dead to their new life and first meal. Celebration of the gods and goddesses, marriages, childbirth, and banquets were other areas where dance was plentiful, with music and offerings accompanying the festivities.

Styles of the Dance

Dance in Egypt took on a wide variety of styles, depending on the occasion. Dancers would dance in unison, or solo, with each dancer expressing his or her personal style with specific gestures and movements. Traditionally in Egyptian dance, males and females do not dance together.

Dance Classes for All Levels at Egyptia 2012

At Egyptia 2012, participants will have the chance to learn many of the common and more esoteric styles of Arabian dance through the classes of three celebrated Master Teachers:

Aladin el Kholy is an internationally known choreographer, teacher, and performer from Cairo who has been dancing since he was 10 years old. Once a member of the famed Balloon Theatre, he was named the “Best Dancer of All Egyptian Universities” in 1983 by the Egyptian government and continues today to disseminate the tradition of Oriental dance. He lives in Bonn, Germany where besides having his own studio he presents the city’s annual Oriental Dance Festival. He is also the author of “Dance in Egypt.”

Ahmed Fekry began studying and performing Egyptian folklore and contemporary dance at 12 years old. Throughout the years he became renowned for his unique expression and joined the Balloon Theatre in Cairo as a part of the famed Reda Troupe. Considered a visionary artist, he explores the Raks Baladi and Shaabi forms and has been a guest artist at countless festivals worldwide.

Zaza Hassan is an actor, dancer, and choreographer with a background in Classical Ballet, Egyptian folklore, and Oriental dance, all of which adds to his allure and charisma as an artist and maestro. Among many other venues, he danced at the  National Theatre in Cairo, where he also was choreographer. He also choreographs and produces for television, and film in Egypt and abroad.

Master Classes are open to beginners as well as intermediate and advanced dancers.

For more information on classes and the gala performance at Egyptia 2012 from June 1 – 3rd, 2012

8:30 PM

Tickets: $25 advance $30 at door

Doubletree Hotel, Miami Airport Convention Center