Tulay Karaca (Turkey)

If we ever needed a lesson in Turkish dance or how to play zills or how to perform it all, well here it is! The dancer in this clip is Turkish performer Tulay Karaca.
If the rhythm is confusing here’s what Indrayu in Australia says ‘At a Karsilama workshop I attended, the teacher made the counting more accessible by “fruit salad” counting, app-le, app-le, app-le, ba-na-na (pea-ches pea-ches pea-ches straw-ber-ry) etc rather than 12-12-12-123. Worked a treat, especially at the end of a long weekend of concentration.’

Lucy (لوسى)

Here’s another ‘golden oldie’ performance this time the dancer is Egyptian bellydancer Lucy (لوسى).  Her performance is in two parts. In this clip she’s wearing a blue bedlah.
This is a digital conversion from an old video tape that’s been played many, many times so the visual quality is not the best.

Fifi Abdu in the Gulf

This is a performance by Egyptian bellydance legend Fifi Abdu during one of a series of concerts filmed, probably in Abu Dhabi the capital of the United Arab Emirates, during the 70s. Possibly the concerts were part of the celebrations related to the formation of the UAE in 1971 but nobody really seems to know exactly. Any confirmation would be greatly appreciated. In this clip Fifi Abdu’s wearing a blue bedlah.

Soheir Zaki in the Gulf (blue bedlah part 2)

This is part two of a performance by Soheir Zaki in the Gulf. She’s wearing a blue and silver bedlah. The concert was probably in Abu Dhabi the capital of the UAE and was probably filmed the 70s or early 80s nobody really seems to either know or remember exactly.
Trivia: On TheCaroVan you’ll find her other performance in AD where she wears a red galabayah.

The Great Unknown.

This is a clip that was on my YouTube channel and unfortunately due to the termination of the channel I’ve lost all the information about the clip.
Its from an Egyptian film, and from the clothes being worn and the hairstyles, it looks like its from the 80s. Who’s the actress dancing? The singer, is it Fatma Eid? Who’s the actor who dances with the cane? Aaaagh!

Gisele Bomentre (Brazil)

This is a performance by Brazilian dancer Gisele Bomentre during a Lebanese tv game show . Gisele became well known in the Middle East, firstly in Lebanon but later throughout the region where she performed extensively. She was noted for her sword work. To place Gisele in the Lebanese dance timeline, she’s of the same era as Amani, Samara and Australia’s Amera Eid. Gisele has since returned to her home country of Brazil where she teaches and performs and has developed a career as a singer.
Sorry about the jumps-and-bumps during this clip, its a conversion from an old VHS tape to digital.

Mahmoud Reda, Farida Fahmy and the Reda Troupe (1963)

Mahmoud Reda, Farida Fahmy and the Reda Troupe perform in a scene from the 1963 film “Agazet nos el Sana” (Mid Year Holiday/Vacation أجازة نص السنة.). The film also starred Egyptian actress Magda and Abdel Menam Ibrahim.

Mahmoud Reda is the co-founder, along with his brother Ali and Farida Fahmy, of the Reda Troupe who bought folkloric Egyptian dances onto the stage where they could be seen and appreciated by a wider audience.  In his younger days, Reda was a gymnast representing Egypt in the 1952 Helsinki Summer Olympics.

Reda freely acknowledges however that he altered the folkloric dances by adding other influences to make them more accessible to the audience. In his own words during an interview with Carolina Varga Dinicu in 2005 he describes his troupe’s dances as being merely “inspired by the folkloric”.  As dancers, it would do us well to remember that Reda has never claimed to show authenticity and his comments on the dances in their original form were less than enthusiastic.  His interpretation of the Hagallah, a dance from the Mersa Matruh (مرسى مطروح) area of Egypt would be just one example.  (So you can place it, Mersa Matruh is in the top left hand part of Egypt, near the border with Libya.)  Back to the dance.  You’ll see al hagallah frequently in dance shows, usually performed to same piece of music (you know the tune – daa, daa, daa, daa, da-de-da etc), often with the same steps as the original Reda choreography, sometimes with scarves, sometimes without, sometimes costumed with the style of tiered skirts or sometimes in the glittery cabaret version. The Reda style hagallah is a great show piece but is it ‘real’? However, as an Egyptian friend said recently, ‘Egyptians have so many other things to be worried about than some old time dance!’

Trivia: Mahmoud Reda’s daughter Sherine was married at one time to Egyptian singer Amr Diab.


Dani Boustros داني بسترس

This is Lebanese bellydancer Dani Boustros (Bustros) in a stage performance. She’s wearing a blue bedlah.
Trivia: The Boustros family, of which Dani was a member, is well known in Beirut as one of the ‘seven families’ who traditionally were the land owners and commercial magnates.

Aida Riad (1994)

This is actress Aida Riad dancing in a scene from the 1994 film اللي يعيش ياما يشوف (Those Who live Will Undoubtedly See). She’s a good dancer isn’t she? And there’s a reason for that….she started off her show business career as a 15 year old dancer in an Egyptian National Folk Dance troupe.
Trivia: Aida Riad was married to singer Muharram Fouad for some years. He’s probably best known for the song ‘Rimsh Enoh’.
Many thanks to Mona.