Rakkasah West was a blast this year, and the Suhaila Dance Company had a great time! Again, we want to thank the outstanding audience. Below, you’ll find links to the performance highlights. . .and a little insight to some of the choreographies.
Suhaila’s classic Raks Suhaila choreography was written in the late 1980s. Inspired by a live performance by Dina in Egypt, one of Suhaila’s students requested that Suhaila create a choreography reflecting the Egyptian style at that time. The solo choreography represents a moment in time of Egyptian dance that included grand and extended body lines. For this year’s Rakkasah performance, Suhaila staged the solo choreography for a group. The Company is divided into two portions, each receiving its own special moment to shine. With the addition of the cane toward the end, both groups come together as a village with one heartbeat. The music can be found on the Arabian Musicals Vol. 1 CD (also available as a download). See the original solo performance by Suhaila from her Unveiled DVD on YouTube. To learn the choreography by subscription, visit Suhaila Online Classes.
Suhaila choreographed the Chair Veil Choreography in the mid-1990s. Suhaila and her dance company were performing regularly at the Cabaret Tehran on Ventura Boulevard in Studio City. The establishment was a true, classic cabaret, and Suhaila choreographed the piece to match the mood of the venue. . . taking inspiration from Liza Minelli’s performance in the movie Cabaret. The music (Keyboard Solo Track 2) is available on the Arabian Musicals Vol. 2 CD (also available as a download).
This choreography was written by Andrea Sendek as a solo piece for her Suhaila Format Level 4 certification requirements. Suhaila asked Andrea to stage the piece for a group, and this is the exciting result. The music is Prayer (Oh Doctor Jesus) by Miles Davis from the Porgy and Bess soundtrack. Note that the video isn’t available in all countries because of copyright issues; we are trying to negotiate an arrangement to show the work.
Raks El Zagat
Raks El Zagat was choreographed by Jamila Salimpour and staged by Suhaila Salimpour. The staging was inspired by the warring dance sequences in West Side Story. Choreography instruction is available by subscription from Suhaila Online Classes.