It was PACKED!
I've never seen that many people before at any of the Gala Dinners at the Nile Group festival (Pyramisa hotel, Dokki).
The sound system was the best yet... but unfortunately the lighting wasn't so great- so i will apologise in advance of writing about these dancers and costumes, that there are no photos. Anyone reading this who has pics of the event- please feel free to forward them to me to include!
Nancy (Egyptian was 1st up). She has put on a little weight since last time, and it suited her. She was relaxed, bubbly, cute. She had a lot of lovely moves in there... and some facial expressions and arm movements which reminded me of Suraya. But I guess both of them were taught by Raqia Hassan in the beginning. The first costume was very glittery, disco ball inspired bra belt with black chiffon skirt. The chiffon is unusual to see in 'modern' Egyptian dance, and nice. The last costume though was not so flattering. I guess it was 'Egypt' inspired since it was red white and black and she danced to a song all about 'Egypt' in it! Unfortunately it didn't flatter her figure the way previous costumes had. Last night was the nicest I have seen Nancy dance.
Tito's show was next, starting with a pharonic dance with everyone (all his 'backing' dancers) dressed in gold and blue. Was visually eye catching.... and I guess works well for tourists in sharm.... but didn't really inspire most of the dancers I talked to about it last night! However, Tito on his own, in both his stick dance and his tabla solo, was on FIRE ! VERY VERY good. Best i have seen him. Slightly more technique than usual... but mainly what was impressive was a phenomenal stage presence that had even me weak at the knees at times. Well done that man! Sometimes when male dancers perform it is spoiled for me because they look like they are trying to be women.... when Tito danced these 2 dances he was 100% masculine.
Camelia blew everyone away! She started in a relaxed way... but that lasted all of maybe one minute before she was up to full speed and high high energy. Even taking her hair and spinning it round helicopter style half way through the 1st dance! LOTS and LOTS and crazy hair flinging in all of her show. Especially of course in the Khleegy which had lots of new things in it- and a lot of jumpy steps from Iraq too! My favourite dance as usual from her was the Shamadan (the candleabra on the head!) maybe because she does, by neccesity have to, calm down slightly in it! Her gold/balck costume she wore for the shamadan dance was my favourite costume of the night too. LOVELY ! The thing about Camelia for me , is that her crazy energy is the thing that is equally the best and worst thing about it! You cannot help but smile the entire time she is dancing....... but I would love to see how she would tackle an omm khalsoum or baladi takisim or something!
Liza was last on the bill and incredibly relaxed after both Tito and Camelia. Her final show was the most different thing with a stunning assuit dress and tribal style headdress and belt with metal and pom poms! The dance had sections of haggala, saaidi, baladi, nubian you name it- it was all there. Her drum solo at the end was using a duff to hit various parts of her body with. I spoke to people who thought she was their favourite show of the night. I felt she got better as the show proceeded and I enjoyed the last song, and costume, very much!
Of course, when i got home at 3.30am... i thought- great - an early night... but then sat up for 2 hours discussing the entire show with the 2 dancers ( Norwegian and American) who are staying with me just now!
Great day today- Teaching a private, receiving a private and then going to see a show. How bellydance a day can you get?!!!!! Life is good.