Photo credit: Patrick Gutenberg

The Gilded Serpent presents...

Nicole McLaren

Nicole McLaren is an international dance artist who performs on stages worldwide: Egypt, America, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, the Netherlands, or South Africa. The Swiss dancer, instructor and choreographer for Oriental ance with special focus on Whirling dance (Tanoura) lives in Zurich (Switzerland) and Los Angeles (USA). She also performs to the live music of the Oriental Gypsy band, Ssassa, or to the one of her own band, Harlekin. Beside dancing, she has a black belt in karate and has competed for years in European and World Championships, in which she won bronze and silver medals. Professionally, Nicole graduated University of Zurich with a double Master of Arts degree.

Nicole fell in love with one particular type of Oriental dance style: Whirling. For her, this highly dynamic dance bears a unique, mesmerizing quality, and paradoxically, a great calmness while being in full motion. It simultaneously embraces a deep meditative tranquility and a vibrant joy of life. In her own Whirling style, Nicole combines modern music and dance elements as well as props from different cultures with the originally Turkish whirling technique. In addition to the Egyptian Tanoura, she uses Middle Eastern veils and Western wings, traditional Tibetan sleeves, or Chinese silk ribbons while Whirling on stage. Consequently, the dance performance blends elements from various cultures and time periods and thus unifies past and present in order to create a new, contemporary stage-form of the Whirling dance.

Articles on Gilded Serpent by or about Nicole

  • Whirling, Meditation in Motion or Spectacular Show?
    A dance could not be any more contradictory. The Whirling dance lingers between spectacular showmanship and meditation in motion; it combines trance and technique. It is a surprising paradox, unified like lovers within the dance.