Saturday, July 22, 2006

I'm Not Dead Yet .. Just Half Dead

To all those people who have so sweet and concerned about my sudden "disappearance" ... my sincerest apologies and greatest gratitude.


No, I am not dead yet ... just half dead. Been incredibly busy. Too busy to even eat sometimes and definitely sleep deprived. I shall not go into details but am involved in a concert next weekend with a possible overseas (redeye) performance as well as a roadshow. So it's definitely masochistic of me to be kind of enjoying this.


Anyway, I will not be able to update the blog till everything dies down but for those dying to see me (rrrrright ...), catch me at the UCC Hall at the National University next weekend. I'm the one looking very hungry and half stoned.


I promise I will update later. But in the meantime, read this ...


The First CAIRO! CAIRO! CELEBRATION OF EGYPTIAN DANCE FESTIVAL will take place in Singapore from 28-31 July 2006. Following in the illustrious footsteps of and with the endorsement of the largest and most prestigious industry landmark event, Ahlan Wa Sahlan Oriental Bellydance Festival, the first CAIRO! CAIRO! CELEBRATION OF EGYPTIAN DANCE FESTIVAL is a celebration of Egyptian dance with a memorable opening concert, intensive dance classes and a halfa (dinner and dance party) as well as a bellydance competition.

This will be the first time the widely respected Ahlan Wa Sahlan Organisers and Master Teachers will be banding together to collaborate with Singapore bellydance pioneer, Claribel Ng, to organise a bellydance festival and dance camp.

Why is this significant? Why is a tiny island, more Southeast Asian than Middle Eastern, shining a beacon for a dance form seldom understood outside of Egypt? What is the connection between an ancient dance form and Singapore culture? Why are half of the Master Teachers male? Never has Singapore seen so many Master Teachers working together on our tiny shores and the opportunity to speak with and learn from them is not one to be missed.

Attached is some information including profiles of the Master Teachers and the event for your easy reference. More information on the CAIRO! CAIRO! CELEBRATION OF EGYPTIAN DANCE FESTIVAL programme is available at
http://www.claribelstudio.com/event.htm.

We cordially invite you to the opening concert on 28 July 2006 and will be pleased to organise interviews with the Master Teachers, the organisers or any of the dancers at the concert.

Cairo! Cairo! Celebration of Egyptian Dance Concert
Date: Friday, 28 July 2006
Time: 8.00 - 10.00pm
Venue: UCC Hall, National University of Singapore
10 Kent Ridge Crescent
Singapore 119260

The stars of the concert are Ms Randa Khamel, one of the reigning stars of the Cairo bellydance scene today and highlight of every Ahlan Wa Sahlan, as well as Mr Momo Kadous, one of the most famous choreographers from the Nile Delta who is renowned for his Taktib (stick dance). Their solo performances will definitely offer the most defining moments in Oriental dance in 2006 in Singapore.

Humbly sharing the stage with these two stars and performing the beautiful choreography of Master Teachers Ms Raqia Hassan and Dr Mo Geddawi will be a local dance troupe from Claribel’s Rak Sharqi Studio, clad in costumes from Mdm Eman Zaki, couturiere to the dance stars in Cairo. Troupe members include some of Singapore’s more established professional dancers, such as Claribel, Ghram, Hsiao Min, Namiko, Serene and Stephanie. The ladies come from all over Asia from Hong, Kong, Japan, Taiwan to Singapore, perhaps earning the right to be called a truly Asian troupe devoted to recreating the calibre and class of the world renowned Reda Troupe - the training ground for many of the Master Teachers of today.

Tickets for this concert is available on www.gatecrash.com.sg as well as any SingPost Post Office counter or S.A.M. kiosk island-wide. For credit card bookings, dial 6222 5595 for the GATECRASH ticketing hotline.

Intensive Dance Workshops
29 July 2006 - 31 July 2006 UCC Dance Studio
National University of Singapore
10 Kent Ridge Crescent
Singapore 119260


Closing Gala Party aka The Halfa
Date: Monday, 31 July 2006
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Raffles Town Club


ABOUT AHLAN WA SAHLAN
The Ahlan Wa Sahlan Oriental Bellydance Festival is a landmark Egyptian event held over 1 week in Cairo every June. The largest and most respected Bellydance Festival in the world, this annual event attracts dancers from all over globe to immerse themselves completely in this ancient dance form that has influenced many of the modern dances of today.

Ahlan Wa Sahlan was first conceived of and organised by Madam Raqia Hassan.
Bellydancers all over the world flock to Cairo for this Festival and in 2003, documented 700 dancers from over 30 different countries such as Cuba, USA, Canada, South America, Brazil, Australia, UK, France, Germany, Hungary, Holland, Russia, Hong Kong, Brazil, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, etc. Other Bellydance Balls and events may have been organised before, but thus far, none have approaced the scale and calibre of this defining festival. Please visit
www.raqiahassan.net for more information.



Intensive Dance Workshops
29 July 2006 - 31 July 2006

UCC Dance Studio, National University of Singapore
10 Kent Ridge Crescent, Singapore 119260

Registration of workshops can be done through the post by mailing the completed registration form (available on www.claribelstudio.com) and a cheque for the fees to Claribel Ng at 151C King’s Road, #16-12 Farrer Court, Singapore 268160. Cheques should be written out to Claribel’s Raks Sharki Studio.

Closing Gala Party aka The Halfa
Date: Monday, 31 July 2006
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Raffles Town Club
1 Plymouth Avenue
Singapore 297753

This will feature a buffet dinner, bellydance performances from the workshop participants, a bellydance competition as well as an open invitation to all participants to grace the dance floor after all the planned activities.

Tickets for the Closing Gala can be purchased at the NUS UCC Hall Foyer on 27 July 2006 from 2.00-8.00pm and on 28 July 2006 from 2.00-10.00pm.

For more information please contact Claribel at Tel: 9792261, email: claribel_ng@hotmail.com or visit www.claribelstudio.com.





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