Zulya, Shara, Susan, Nawal
posing in Hamza costumes

The Gilded Serpent presents...
Giza Academy Awards of
Middle Eastern Dance Video 2000

by Leyla Lanty

On Saturday, December 9, 2000, at the Noe Valley Ministry in San Francisco, the Giza Academy of Music and Legends of Dance presented its 4th annual Academy Awards of Middle Eastern Video show. Amina Goodyear and the Academy lined up the Arabian Knights band, The Aswan Dancers, Al Asaab, and provided a Middle Eastern mezza buffet with plenty of champagne to create a gala evening for San Francisco Bay Area dancers, dance fans and dance aficionados.

The Arabian Knights started off the evening with a program of the songs of Om Kalsoum. Band members were singer Fadi Hanani accompanied by Fouad Marzouk on qanoun, Loay Dahbour on tabla and duf, Tony Lammam on tambourine, Jacques al Asmar on duf and Amina on duf and sagat.

The presentations and dance show began with Linda Mahboula Grondahl Hannane's short talk about Om Kalsoum, followed by a short history of the Giza Club, and an introduction of the band and dancers. Members of the Aswan Dancers who performed to Om Kalsoum's music and other well known Arabic musicals were Amina, Shara, Nawal, Susan, and Zulya. Members of the Al Asaab troupe who performed a North African/Algerian suite as well as an Egyptian style comedy number were Amy Bonham, Azhar Bubalina, Cameron, Dunya Tania, Linda Mahboula, Shamira Bionica, Stefania, and Zelina. The troupes performed after Linda's introductory remarks and between the award presentations.

A dance performance by Jacques al Asmar ended the evening's program. At the end of his show, Jacques invited the audience onto the dance floor to enjoy dancing to the music of the Arabian Knights.

Technical assistance was provided by Carl Sermon, Gregory Burke, and Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan.

Winners of the Giza Academy Awards of Middle Eastern Dance Video in 2000:
  • Choreography Award, presented by Jeanette Cool, went to Shareen El Safy for her video, "Weadirt Tohgor."
  • Troupe Dance Award, presented by Latifa, went to the video, "Al Dunia" performed by Sahra and the Ya Amar Dance Troupe.
  • Documentary Award, presented by Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan, went to Brita Landoff for "A Little for My Heart and A Little for My God, A Muslim Women's Orchestra."
  • Instructional Award, presented by Lynette of www.gildedserpent.com, went to Aisha Ali for two videos, "Dancing with Aisha, Tunisian Rhythms and Raqs Shaabi," and "Dances of North Africa."
  • Solo Dance Award, presented by Gregory Burke, went to Fahtiem for her performance in the video "Queen of the Nile".

Editing by Jennifer Layout, graphics by Lynette

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