A Skill called Love

The shots you see here were taken by Nagle, my beloved assistant, in Cairo, Egypt.

She was far from being a professional photographer but that didn´t stop her from taking some of my all time favourite photos.

I never asked her to photograph me – or film me – but she insisted she loved it and wouldn´t stop herself. After carrying my bags filled with dance dresses, props and make-up, she would organize my backstage room – each set of cloths & props gathered in its corner, ready for each stage entrance (usually 3 per show). Then she´d take her camera from her overloaded purse and start her “other job”, one that always made her shine with joy. I swear there were stars in her eyes as she followed me around with her camera – on stage, off stage, often at home.

She was my assistant, my mother, my cook, my friend, my crazy DJ – always the corniest “shaabi” (popular) songs playing in her walkman (yes, she still uses a walkman – I don´t blame you if you don´t even know what that is). She was my strength, the one audiences rarely get to know about.

When I look at the images she captured – some on stage and others backstage, in rare moments of intimacy (me with myself) -, I remind myself of the power of LOVE. Not only in our private lives but in work. Education and training are great and essential to every serious professional activity but nothing – no college course, no diploma, no amount of experience – can replace, or surpass, the quality that transpires from work made with love. Observe the pictures and you´ll know why:

portrait-by-nagle-cairo-egypt

Backstage. A moment of truth – me with myself. Exhaustion, silence, thinking between shows.

Backstage1

Doing my make-up – backstage.

NagleMagicstage.jpg

Moment of “Tarab” (ecstasy;exaltation)

Nagleshotstage

Details – performing with my orchestra.

Nagle shot stage love detail

God is in the details. 

Nagleshotstage2

Flying on stage.

 

Grateful for all the Angels – visible and invisible – that carried me so far and keep carrying me ahead. I never walk, or dance, alone. Never.

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