Hailing from Casablanca in Morocco, Nawarra studied Arts and Drama at University before taking the opportunity in 1996 to come to the UK to continue her studies in Leeds. In Morocco she was a member of various theatre groups specialising in comedy and sketch-shows and she worked with some of the top Moroccan comedians. She loves to entertain and brings her passion, high energy and sense of fun to every performance.
Being so far away from home, North Africa has never ceased calling out to her specifically the traditional music and folk dances which had so fascinated her as a child. She began to use these influences as a way of expressing herself and to form friendships in a land of strangers. She found that Leeds had an emerging interest in Middle Eastern dance, but the information forthcoming was second hand and lacking teachers actually from North Africa and the Middle East. She began to share what she knew and from these small beginnings has gone on to become one of the UK’s most recognised teachers and performers, with a growing international reputation. She naturally focuses on dances from North Africa ( The Maghreb ) but also teaches Egyptian, Lebanese, Palestinian, Iraqi and Gulf Styles.
Nawarra has taken part in the UK’s top Bellydance Festivals: Jewel of Yorkshire, Majma, Belly Dance Congress, Raqs Britannia, Belly dance Mania, Pycoob Festival, Sirocco and Shimmy By-The-Sea as well being invited regularly to teach in bellydance communities around the U.K. She also appears regularly at the Liverpool Arab Arts Festivals and London's Planet Egypt.
Nawarra has also been invited to take part at various festivals abroad including Spain, Germany, Croatia, Ireland, Japan, France, Israel and Russia and has appeared at the Musica Rouhiya Festival in Fes, and at Mediterranean Delight in Marrakesh, Morocco. She is also regularly invited to participate on various judging panels at Bellydance competitions including Miss Bellydance U.K. and JOY ( Jewel Of Yorkshire ). Most recently she has been invited to Nizhny Novgorod to help find Russia's latest dance stars, at Petrozovodsk in Russia. She has also set up a flourishing travel agency, taking dancers from all over the world to experience the sights, sounds, people and culture of her beloved Morocco first hand.
Nawarra is well known for her high energy and joy which she brings in to any event,. So she has become one the main wedding dancers in the UK and abroad. Recently she was invited to perform at a wedding in Tunis as well as Tel Aviv with a well-known Moroccan family.
In 2012 she realised a dream of producing a theatre show dedicated entirely to the folkloric dances of the Middle East. She demonstrated that there is so much more to love about Arabic Dance than the glittery world of Cabaret Bellydance. Nawarra co-founded the "Funoon" company; a new venture spreading access to traditional Middle Eastern dance. It's aim is to introduce Arabic music as well as Arabic language through acting and the folkloric dance. So far there has been interest from various Arabian media including BBC Arabic, Aljazeera Alarabiya and the Al Ghad Alarabi Channel
Nawarra hopes that "Funoon" will go on to become an inspiration and ongoing resource for British dancers as well as a source of pleasure and pride for people of Arabian descent coming to or growing up in the UK.
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“Dance is the hidden language of the soul”
This quote from American dancer Martha Graham, sums up Sacha’s approach to dance. Dance for her, is joy, sorrow, celebration, therapy and everything in between. Her admiration of all dance forms led her to try Bellydancing 15 years ago and she hasn’t looked back since. For her, the richness of this dance form – the music, the culture, the myriad styles - is what keeps her coming back for more.
Sacha started her bellydance career, training originally in the Turkish styles of bellydance and since then, she has continued to expand her knowledge and skills by training with world class bellydance and folkloric teachers from the Middle East, North and South America and the UK as well as studying other forms of dance like Contemporary, Ballroom and Latin to continuously develop her own personal style, which has been described as energetic and full of emotion.
She is particularly well-known for her lively and powerful Turkish Roman dance as well as her creative and interesting theatrical choreographies, which she performs with her two dance troupes, Damara Dancers and Çarşamba, who are known to bring something a little different to the events they perform in.
Sacha is based in the South West, but teaches and performs at festivals, private parties, restaurants and events around the UK. She gained her ASWAD teacher training qualification and has taken various courses to understand anatomy and the safe delivery of teaching dance, and is known for packing a lot of information in, but her warm and engaging personality and her passion for this dance encourages the students to really explore their own dance expression. She teaches regular weekly classes in Chipping Sodbury every Wednesday to beginners and improvers.
Sacha, along with her dance partner, Stephi, hosts international dance teachers for bellydance workshops in Bristol; they recently hosted international dance star Elis Pinheiro and Sacha will be hosting the fabulous Paola Blanton in July this year and is hoping to bring Ozgen back to Bristol in 2018.
Sacha toured with Carmen Jones' fantastic and highly successful Club Cairo show during 2016 as a soloist & cast member and will be joining the upcoming 2017 tour, for further details please see CLUB CAIRO.
Every year, Sacha also hosts a big charity event locally in South Gloucestershire, Moon and Stars Dance Showcase, now in its 2nd year, raising money for Cancer Research and Macmillan. This event features live music with the Hazir Ensemble and guest musicians, and dancers from abroad and locally, all coming together for the cause. It’s a really special evening.
Sacha really enjoys working with live musicians – the connection between music and dancer is really made visible when there is live music, an aspect she particularly enjoys as both artists are inspired by each other and the audience so no two performances are the same!. She has guested with Brothers of the Baladi and has had the opportunity to work with Chas Whitaker & Maren Lueg and regularly works with the Hazir Ensemble, exploring some of the classic and popular Turkish songs, including those with a 9/8 rhythm, which will be the feature of this festival’s workshop.
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Dancing has always been part of Angela’s life from her early years at ballet classes she went on to explore many forms before falling in love with Tribal Style belly dance. She has travelled extensively to pursue her passion, seek training, gain experience and broaden her knowledge of the dance. She has gained certification in both ATS® and Gypsy Caravan Tribal Style Bellydance®.
Tribe Zuza is Angela’s business, set up in 2005, offering tuition, performance, holidays and costuming. She is currently teaching 11 regular weekly classes in the North East of England as well as at festivals across the UK and internationally. Tribe Zuza hosts the longest running UK Tribal event, Tribal Goddess, in its 11th successful year.
Her first job was as a Wardrobe Mistress in the Theatre, from there she went on to lecture in textiles. Costuming was certainly part of the attraction to the dance. The idea of a costume evolving appealed to her hunter gatherer nature, going out and searching for pieces and combining them to make something beautiful. Each element has its own story, inspiration, origins and evolution.
This wonderful improvised dance has become a huge part of her life and she hopes that through her teaching she can encourage others on their own dance journeys.
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Carmen's dance is one of expression, expansion and fun ! Her years of experience have been a journey of self discipline, self discovery and adventure. She has travelled internationally, works within the theatre and teaches and performs internationally.
She has trained with many great teaches from Egypt, U.K and U.S.A and continues to develop her style by taking classes in contemporary dance. She hopes to convey an authentic Egyptian style with her own dynamic form of expression that truly resonates with the music.
Her real passion is working with ‘live’ music. Not only has she performed on several occasions with Hossam Ramzy and his Ensemble but also has guested with Brothers of the Baladi and has, since 2007, performed regularly with U.K based bands Mazaj and Souk-Bab-El -Louk.
Locally, in Bath she hosts a bi annual event ‘Club Cairo ‘ and also presents a performance night as part of the Bath Fringe festival.
Her close collaboration with the musicians have led her to gain a deep understanding of the connection between musician and dancer. It is this that she especially enjoys sharing with her students through her teaching.
Some of her previous performance and educational work includes: Glastonbury Festival, WOMAD, Drum Camp Norfolk, Middle Eastern Music, Drum and Dance Camp, Majma, The Big Chill and she has taught in the Sinai, Egypt.
Back home Carmen is core producer at Club Cairo. Club Cairo presents an exotic array of entertainment from Arabia. A vibrant sensory experience straight from the heart of the Middle East that combines live music, dance and theatre. Most recently,in 2016, she took Club Cairo on it’s first tour around the uk. This was a wonderful opportunity to share with audiences her first theatrical production ‘Julnah of the Sea’. A fairy tale filled with marvels, magic and wonders. A unique show combining dance with live music and projected imagery. She is currently writing/producing her next production that will be toured in autumn 2017.
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Michelle Pender is a popular teacher and performer with over 16 years experience under her belt in Egyptian/ North African Roots Belly Dance and Tribal Fusion. She has a wealth of teaching experience including Raks Britannia, Tribal London, MAJMA, Tribe of Doris, Joy, Fantasia, The Tribal Gathering and many others. She is also the owner of one the countries most popular and favourite Bazaars - WHIRLING DERVISH ( which will be at this event ). Michelle has years of experience trading in Egypt and Turkey including running holidays in these countries. Her eclectic style reflects her taste in world music and her workshops are aimed at improving technique and having fun.
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Stephi is a bellydance teacher & performer based in S.W England. She performs and teaches at events and festivals throughout the UK. Her dancing has been described as fluid, powerful & earthy. She has trained predominantly in Egyptian Modern & Folkloric styles and seeks out world class teachers in the UK and abroad to continuously develop her dance skills and knowledge.
Stephi has received fantastic feedback for her classes, workshops and creative choreographies. Students have described her as fun, energetic and highly approachable. She focuses strongly on developing great technique & building confidence. Stephi is well known for packing lots of information into her classes but maintains a warm, relaxed teaching style. She has taught weekly classes in Bristol for many years and was also manager & choreographer for Easton Bellydance Troupe. She is now based in Somerset and has weekend workshops scheduled in Bristol for Intermediate/Advance level students during 2017 please see Stephi Bellydance (link is https://www.facebook.com/stephi.bellydance/).
She toured with Carmen Jones' fantastic and highly successful Club Cairo show during 2016 as a soloist & cast member and will be joining the upcoming 2017 tour, for further details please see CLUB CAIRO.
Stephi loves dancing to live music and has had the opportunity to work with Chas Whitaker & Maren Lueg and regularly works with band Hazir. Stephi collaborated with Elvin Herrick (Hazir) in 2016 to produce his wonderful drum solo track ‘Shakti’, which will be the subject of her workshop with Elvin & other members of Hazir at this years’ festival.
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"Shakti" Drum Solo
"Solstice" Drum Solo