Immerse your group in diverse cultural expressions. Local performing artists introduce cultural rituals, traditions and stories from around the world. These workshops utilize a range of arts to educate participants about vibrant cultural traditions.
Classic Dance from Hindu Monasteries
- In this workshop, Madhusmita Bora, a performer of the Sattriya Dance Company, takes you on a journey through a 600-year-old dance tradition. This dance was only preserved, nourished, and practiced by monks in a little island in Northeast India until recently. Your group will be exposed to stories from Hindu mythology through the dance, and will also learn about the monks and their lives. There will be masks, costumes, and props on display. Along the way, you will be led in movement exercises and will learn some vocabulary of this ancient Indian tradition. A group of less than 120 people receive a talk and dance demonstration without the formal performing costume. A group of more than 120 people can include a live dance performance with the formal performing costume.
- Dance in Egypt as a Celebration of Daily Life
- The traditional dances of Egypt provide a record in movement of a vanishing way of life. They reflect aspects of village life such as water gathering, ritual combat, and the celebration of weddings. These dances symbolize a continuity of traditions in different Egyptian ethnic groups: The Fellahin, Bedouin, and Nubian peoples. Through discussion, demonstration and by encouraging audience participation, Habiba will explain the dances and movement styles of these three Egyptian groups and reveal something of the character and the essence of these peoples.
History and Mystery of Belly Dance
- Raks sharqi is the Arabic name for the solo interpretive dance that we call belly dance. It is one of the oldest documented dance forms and can be traced back to ancient Egypt. It has a long history as a dance done by professional entertainers, but also as a social dance that both men and women learn as soon as they are old enough to stand. Here, dance and music are inseparable from daily life, and are a vital part of weddings, feast days, and family gatherings. Habiba presents the history of the dance from ancient times to the present and demonstrates its impact on the western perception of the Middle East. Habiba will explain how the modern belly dance performance came into being and how to appreciate a belly dance performance like an Egyptian would. Habiba then performs and invites the audience to practice some moves themselves.