Discover what projects I have created
Throughout my nearly 20 years in the dance world, I have created numerous projects. They often came about spontaneously, responding to the needs of myself and my fellow dancers in the community. These projects brought the community together, allowing us to share information and experiences, ultimately improving the level of Oriental dance in our country and abroad.
Orient Express magazine
It was an oriental online magazine that was established in 2009 and the project was concluded in 2014. We presented articles on various topics – music, dance, song translations, costumes, interviews, reports, and more. Among the co-editors were Badriyah, with whom we conceived the magazine, as well as Dana Blahetová, Vilma Kaplanová, and others. The new version of the project is the Orient Express Live podcasts!
Since 2009, you have been able to attend oriental evenings in music clubs in Brno (we started in Bora Bora, Girandelle, Viva La Fiesta, Two Faces, Esperanze, and Savoy). The evening program includes performances by professional and amateur dancers, mainly in oriental styles. We invite interesting guests to these events – Eglal, Vendulka Uhýrková, Shereen, Yalia, and I usually organize seminars as well. At this event, you can show your own dance and enjoy it in a relaxed atmosphere.
Orient Vision z.s.
In 2010, I founded the civic association Orient Vision o.s. together with Tereza Dvořáková, who helped me realize the Tales of Sahara festival. The third person in the association was Lenka Badriyah Zychová, who also assisted at the festival with lectures, organization, hosting the open stage, and coordinating the “Queen of Baladi” competition. In later times, the association organized many activities to promote Oriental dance in Brno and the South Moravian region. We collaborated with students from schools, foreigners from third countries on a project to support integration, and other organizations where we presented Oriental dance to the general public, aiming to improve the reputation of this dance form. At this time, the project is overseen by a new member, Pavlína Bádrová, who is responsible for administrative tasks.
In 2013, I also organized the first successful conference for Oriental dancers within the association, which will be repeated every January. Its purpose is to share information, educate ourselves, and address important issues. In 2013, we participated in a European project to support integration and organized several educational cultural events throughout the South Moravian region, where people could try different ethnic dances and attend various lectures. The association continues to primarily focus on organizing the Tales of Sahara festival and the conference for instructors to this day, with the new addition of Markéta Mašková (formerly Šunková), who handles all accounting work and is my right-hand person and, above all, a friend.
Tales of Sahara
The festival I organize, which follows after Cairo Dreams and Glamour Orient Show, has grown into a five-day event and enjoys great attendance and popularity. I prepare the festival throughout the year with the association Orient Vision z.s., and every year we invite international guests such as Orit Maftsir, Jamilah, Kareem GaD, Katalin Schaffer, Yalia, Katalin Breban, Mercedes Nieto, Munique Neith… from whom dancers learn at workshops and audiences can see them dance live at our Gala show.
We had been dreaming about an intensive dance training with Badriyah for a long time, and in 2013, we finally managed to organize it. Our goal was to create a program that goes deeper, with more practicality and necessary theory, which is often lacking in seminars due to time constraints. That’s how our physically demanding intensive training, which we named Bootcamp, came to life. The program is packed with content, and the first session was fully booked within two days, prompting us to open a second date. A year later, we held another Bootcamp with a different and new program. We are definitely planning to repeat this project.
My dance groups
In my early days, I longed to be part of a dance group that focused on folkloric dances. However, since there was none at the time, Aini, Samiya, and I decided to create our own. We dedicated ourselves mainly to Egyptian folklore, but also explored modern dances. Our performances were primarily showcased at oriental dance festivals, where we presented the beauty of folkloric dances. Another group called Awaleem also focused on folklore, but their main aim was to revive the Golden Era and deliver performances in a vintage style, accompanied by music and, perhaps someday, even singing, just like it used to be. Over the course of 15 years, my dance journey evolved in various ways, as did the groups and their concepts. Currently, I am part of Aphrodisia / dance company, where we focus on a commercial yet artistic portrayal of oriental dances. Unlike previous endeavors, our goal is to entertain audiences, popularize oriental dance, and showcase our talents at events.
Funoon Shaabeya – documentary film
You’ve probably already heard about my travels to Egypt and studying Egyptian folkloric dance. I utilized all of that in a documentary called “Funoon Shaabeya” (translated as “traditional arts”), which I filmed with camerawoman Klaudia in 2021. The film includes numerous interviews and, most importantly, showcases traditional dances and music from Egypt. You can watch the film now on this website. Alternatively, you can read more about the project on its website here.
Al Raqs dance conference
All my projects originated from the need for what was missing in the dance community at the time. Similarly, it was with the conference when dancers lacked the opportunity to share their know-how, experiences, and the chance to develop in other areas – such as marketing, psychology, etc. For several years, the conference took place live in Brno, where dancers from all over the Czech Republic and Slovakia gathered. However, the event has grown, I have entered the international scene, and thus the conference has been held online twice already for dancers worldwide. Take a look at what the program of the last one looked like.