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MAESTROS

Randa Kamel

!cid_BFBF5059-D0D9-4B76-8656-CB50CE7F4F60After more than two decades working as a professional oriental dancer, Randa Kamel still remains one of the most famous and valued egyptian dancers, because of her own particular style, full of energy, as well as a teacher that has shared her knowledge with thousand of pupils all around the world.

When she is in Egypt, Randa appears in weddings, parties and in the Nile Maxim cruiser. Even if her own orchestra is composed of 28 musicians (percussion, “nay”, keys, accordion, violin, guitar, piano, double bass, brass and three singers), she doesn’t appear with the whole orchestra because the Nile Maxim’s stage is too small.

During the rest of the time, she travels around the world teaching in seminaries. She takes part as teacher of Raquia Hassan’s Ahlan wa Sahlan festival in El Cairo. She also organizes her own arab dance workshops.

Her history

Randa Kamel was born in Mansoura, Egypt. When she was a kid, she had many problems with her family because she used to dance in her friends and neighbours weddings and in scholar festivals. In that traditionalist city, her family disapproved her pleasure of dancing.

At the age of 15, she began studying egyptian folklore with the famous group Reda. She took part of it during 7 years. Nevertheless, she never attended to oriental dance courses, she always developed her own style.

Even if she is a psychologist (which is a discipline that helps her to be a dancer), Randa began her career as a professional dancer at the age of 21, in Alexandria. She lived there fore two years.

Afterwards, she moved on to El Cairo and worked in restaurants and cabarets during four months until she began to work in Meridien hotel. There, she shared the stage during a week with the famous dancer Fifi Abdou.

Randa danced as soloist in the hotel´s night show for two years, and later she began to work in Nile Maxim, a luxury cruiser that sails through the Nile river.

She likes working in El Cairo because she loves live music, but she also likes traveling and teaching oriental dance. “When I dance abroad, I feel as my country and my culture´s messenger”. She also tells us about the belly dance prejudices in her country that: “In Egypt, we believe that the oriental dance is a representation of the women’s beauty in order to seduce men. But I don’t agree with this. This is a millenary dance, and one of the most difficult ways of dancing. That’s why I don’t dance in a seductive way”.

 

About her own style, Randa says that she puts together ballet steps, the folklore style of Suheir Zaki or Samia Gamal and her own invention steps.

For her: “dance must be energy and power, constant movement. I don’t like soft movements. I like to show different expressions, feelings; every single part of my body must move. I want that anyone that looks at me, feels my movements. It’s the only way to catch the spectator’s attention, to surprise them”.

Even if she enjoys dancing baladi and modern oriental, her favourite music is Um Kulthum, because “everything in these songs is beautiful, the music, the lyrics; there are so many feelings that they catch my heart”.

When she dances, she never prepares choreographies, she dances with feelings and with her heart.  In her opinion, choreographies are only useful in order to teach. The best of dancing in her presentations for her is the public’s applauses.

She says that when the show finishes, she needs to cry. “When I see that people enjoy what I am doing, I’ve got goose pimples. This is really very important for me”.

She attributes her success to 3 factors:  “It might be God, luck or maybe the fact that my mother loves me” and adds, “I love dancing, it goes over my blood”.

When we ask her about the most important aspect of dancing, she says:

“There are many pretty dancers, but they don’t dance from the bottom of their hearts, so they don’t contact people’s heart. And that is what God gave me. Beyond the technique, this is the most important”.

As an advice for dancers, in order to enter into stage, she suggests to feel glorious, proud of themselves, one-of-a-kind and lovely.”

 

 

 

 

 KHALED MAHMOUD

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Professional Belly Dancer/Teacher

Khaled started dancing in Cairo many years ago when he was just seven years old at parties and weddings, his father thought he was very artistic so he sent him to study Ballet for six years.

He went on to College to study accounts, so no time for dancing.

When he finished College and worked in a factory he danced with a group for four years dancing Egyptian style.  It was during this time he took Belly Dancing lessons with Abrahim Akef and many master teachers in Cairo, he then became a Belly Dancing teacher himself.

He likes the style of the old Belly Dancers Naima Akif, Tahia Carioca, Samia Gamal and the new style dancers.

Over the years he has developed his own style of dancing.

Since arriving in England in 2001 he has held workshops and performed in shows all over the UK and in 2002 launched his International career at the Belly Dance Festival in Sweden, he now travels the world teaching and performing and is considered to be one of the most sought after performer and master teacher of this ancient art.

He likes teaching all styles of the Egyptian dance for example Classic, Oriental, Baladi, New Style Egyptian, Veil, Sha’abi, Khaleegi, Malaya, Tabla Solo, Saidi & Gwazzi at any level from basic up to an experience dancer and he arranges workshops for many famous teachers.

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Sharon Mesguich is a French-Tunisian/Algerian dancer living in the south of France (Montpellier). She has always dabbled in the arts, be it dance, theater or music. Key words that would describe Sharon include joy, humor, dynamic and fire. Her style is often characterized by her explosive energy and generosity. For more than 11 years, her talent and determination has led her to teach in the four corners of the world: France, Mexico, Tunisia, Morocco, Israel, England, Italy, Poland, Ukraine, etc. Sharon, impassioned by her art, has always traveled to Cairo to perfect her style and stay current. Sharon’s artistic influences remain rather Egyptian. She admires legends like Fifi Abdou and Dina, as well as more modern dancers like Randa Kamel and Mayodi, a master and mentor who has especially impacted her career. Sharon is an accomplished artist with a rich experience: performances and workshops abroad, music videos, musicals, television shows, palaces, casinos and festivals. She currently organizes the Oriental Marathon Festival held in May 2014.