NEW Egyptian Dance & Self-Empowerment Private/Personalized Online Course by Joana Saahirah

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hand pointingWhat is it?

Egyptian Dance & Self-Empowerment is an Online Personalized/Private Course created and delivered by Joana Saahirah.

It´s a mix between Egyptian Dance Technique, Choreography, and Interpretation skills & Self-Discovery & Empowerment beyond the dance field.

It´s based on the premise that strong, self-confident, empowered women make strong, self-confident, empowered dancers. And vice-versa.

 

hand pointingFor whom?

For lovers of Egyptian Dance who also want to grow as human beings; for women who know they have something unique inside them that deserved to be expressed, shared with the world.

For dancers who are tired of empty, meaningless, competition oriented choreographies and are searching for REAL dance, REAL self-expression, REAL soul. In their dance, as in their life.

 

hand pointingWhat you will get from the course?

Ten private coaching sessions – each with 1 hour length – where you´ll receive an entire choreography  (Classical & Modern Egyptian Dance), dance technique, and a Personal Empowerment Program to awaken or/and strenghten your self-awareness & love.

You´ll have your own Facebook Secret Group where a direct contact with

Joana Saahirah will be kept from the beginning until the end of the course – loads of homework, extra/bonus material will be shared in this secret group, and feed-back will be shared in this group.

Your own Self-Empowerment Booklet delivered at the end of the course, an original manuscript created by Joana Saahirah for this special Private Course.

 

hand pointingHow does it work?

The 10 private/personalized sessions/classes are booked according to YOUR available time as well as Joana Saahirah´s agenda.

Homework & special challenges – on Egyptian Dance & Personal Growth – are shared between sessions/classes so you´re completely engaged and immersed in a journey which is both technical and personal.

The sessions/classes happen face to face with Joana Saahirah via Facebook Messenger or Skype.

The whole program will be adapted to YOU – your goals, your specific difficulties & strengths.

The available spots are LIMITED so – the first students to subscribe are the ones who can guarantee their course.

 

hand pointingJoana´s peculiar approach to Egyptian Dance & Self-Empowerment

After almost 8 years of a high-profile, extremely successful, pioneering career in Egypt, where she was also working as personal teaching & choreography assistant of Mahmoud Reda (aka the Father of Egyptian Folklore), Joana Saahirah traveled the whole world teaching, performing, and lecturing on Egyptian Oriental & Folkloric Dance.

She wrote and published her first book – “The Secrets of Egypt – Dance, Life & Beyond” – and wrote articles on Egyptian Dance & Self-Empowerment for various prestigious newspapers, magazines, and websites. Aside from writing, performing, teaching, and lecturing, Joana has creared “Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School”, a NEW project which has already brought education and empowerment to hundreds of dancers from every corner of the globe.

Along the way, she observed and guided thousands of dancers of all levels – from beginners to the professionals you know and follow in the international “bellydance” market.

Her approach is holistic – it works body, mind, heart, and soul – and she unites Egyptian Dance technique & choreography with personal development tools that take dancers to higher levels of creativity, power, and success. In their dance, as in their life.

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There´s a PROMOTIONAL/LAUNCHING price for this course VALID for subscriptions until the 15th December!

Ask us more about it, and about class scheduling possibilities, via email: dancemagica@gmail.com

 

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On the Gifts of Imperfection

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On the Gifts of Imperfection
As an Egyptian Dance teacher, who knows teaching dance is also teaching selfawareness and love, I’ve witnessed signs of evolution, setbacks, moments of despair, hopelessness, boredom, strength and weakness, fear and courage, one step ahead and three steps back; trying, giving up, trying again; winning and losing and everything in between.
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In Dance, as in Life, growth doesn’t happen in a straight line – it’s made of ups and downs, falling and rising, making mistakes and miracles; meetings, face to face, with our own darkness and with our own light.
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Although we’re taught to celebrate the (false) idea of perfection – which really, and I mean really*, doesn’t exist -, the truth is we’re works in progress – always undone, thriving for a better version of ourselves, always building new houses upon an ancient house (our soul) which has long forgotten universal truths.
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When we think we understood the rules of this Dance, Life takes the carpet off our feet and BAM 💣💥💢, we’re thrown into the beginner’s classroom, once more.
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I say “Celebrate imperfection! Celebrate not knowing, the failure, the darkest meetings with ourselves and with others – there’s always a possibility of a flight after a fall.” Being human is, after all, the adventure of walking in unknown roads where we will, make no mistake, fall and bleed, hit rocks, rise and shine.
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As long as we keep living, and learning from our mishaps, we’re perfect. We may move slowly as long as we keep moving forward.
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Old veggies served at a 5 star Moroccan restaurant? I don´t think so.

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The night was young and we, me and a group of friends, were ready to rock Marrakech.

We left our riad, a building with fresh corners, a courtyard, and birds which drank directly from our hands, hidden in the labyrinth of the old medina, towards the famous Jemaa el Fna.

Jemaa el Fna is that way, that way, that way! – Strangers would yell at us, pointing in the wrong direction. Invariably.

Morocco was new to me and, yet, it wasn´t. The Arabic Culture, the North of Africa, the Chaos & the Colorful Mysteries of Life have been the core of my life for too long. Normality, if it exists, is exotic to me. Madness & adventure aren´t.

We settled for dinner at a 5 star restaurant, half lit, warm, pretentious. Girls dressed as “bellydancers” were swirling around, shaking their tired, apathetic hips in our direction.

I ordered my usual “vegetarian tagine”. What I received was a plate – steaming & depressed – of old, heated, over-salted veggies. 

-Hey, sir. Can you please come here? – I called one of the waiters. 

-Yes, miss. – He approached our table, pulling his “tarboush” towards his legs.

-This plate is unacceptable. You´re cute, the restaurant is gorgeous, but these over-priced veggies are uneatable. They´re old, heated, and over-salted. Take them back, please.

My friends were surprised. The waiter was surprised. I think the “bellydancers” were surprised. I wasn´t.

Whenever I feel disrespected, I say it so. Respectfully, but assertively.

I was being overcharged for a plate of uneatable vegetables and there was no way I´d shut up – “don´t make waves, girl; don´t make waves! – mamma used to say” – and eat something that hadn´t been properly prepared.

I wasn´t upset. In fact, I joked with the waiter the whole evening; I accepted an apology dessert, and I laughed my heart out. But I didn´t pay for that tagine and I certainly didn´t eat it.

Self-respect is a sign of SELF-LOVE. Without SELF-LOVE there´s no love. No love for others, no love for what you do. No love at all. Period. Love, and respect, start with ourselves.

Whenever you´re served an old, heated, over-salted plate of veggies, remember to set the boundaries of what is acceptable and unacceptable for you, and don´t be afraid to make yourself respected.

It´s not a question of creating conflict, or being mean to others; it´s a question of justice, clarity, and evolution. For you. For everybody.

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P.S: This was the only time I was served a lousy plate of food in Morocco.

Moroccan gastronomy is amazing and, if you´re a foodie, like me, you should try it.

 

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Moroccan Vegetable Tagine

 

Why Joana Saahirah Online Dance School is NOT for everyone

Working, and living, in Morocco for a full month inspired me in many ways.

What I want, and what I do NOT want, became even clearer; new insights – personal and professional – bloomed from the inside out, or perhaps from the outside in, and NEW dreams showed up on my (already fiery) horizon.

Integrity, passion, purpose, and clarity on what I am and stand for are a huge part of this magical influence – no surprise I had to shoot the video you can watch in this post.

Common sense would suggest I´d proclaim out loud, my NEW school – Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School – is for everyone, a democratic space where everybody fits in. But, to be honest, that´s not true. My school, as everything I do, is NOT for everyone. I´m an original, very specific, often weird dancer/teacher/choreographer/author – I´m not what I lovingly call a belly dance Zumba gym teacher”.

Rest assured, my school is not for everyone. Students must be aligned with the purpose, the vision, and the vibration I´ve instilled in this newborn baby.

Special students for a special school.

Watch the video for more information and WELCOME to Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School Wonderland IF, and only if, you belong to our Tribe.

Joana Saahirah at the balcony riad Marrakech School

My Life is a Television Series

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Image via Jadranka Tričković-Mohr

My feeling ALL-THE-TIME.
If anyone wants to feel amused, shocked, in awe, hopeful, in absolute despair and mind blown, ask me to tell you a bit, a tiny bit, of my life. Then you´ll know what a great story is.

People only see the tip of the iceberg, not imagining what´s beneath – how many blessings, inner search trips, struggles, obstacles, hard work and doubts run through me.

They ask me: what are you complaining about when you have the life most people can only dream of?

I never had a single thing handed down to me. Never. Everything I am, and achieved, was conquered with hard work, sacrifices and sweat. And I´m not here begging for a free ride but...well…wait…I kind of…am. I´ve earned it, man!

If Louise Hay, and all other Positive Thinking visionaries, are correct, I´ve been attracting the struggle and the need for hard work in order to achieve what I´ve conquered. Maybe they´re right; maybe not (who knows?).

I´d like to believe that, once my beliefs change, my reality changes accordingly. The fact is I´m a positive person who expects the best from people and life, in general; I focus on myself, and my life, and I refuse to harm a flie. Or myself, for that matter.

I know, and believe (those are different things: knowing and believing), I´m worthy and deserving of the best, smoothest ride, and yet my life experience often disagrees.

Fair enough: I enjoy a good amount of extraordinary people, and experiences, on a daily basis but, then again, I earn that reality. If I put positivity, creativity and love out there, why shouldn´t I receive the same back? Isn´t life a boomerang – you receive what you put out there?

And why are there jerks – and I mean devilish JERKS – who harm others, lie, offend, destroy and have a fabulous life?

I´ve materialized most of my dreams and, if I died today, I´d die a happy person. That´s true – it´s not all bad and, I repeat, you won´t see me complaining any time soon. But the weight I (also) carry on my back won´t shut up. Creeps keep creeping in – don´t you love the sound of that triple C-K-C? –  and no fruits fall from a tree I didn´t plant, water and worked on with my own, bleeding, exhausted hands. Which leaves me with the questions: where´s the reality that matches my positive thinking? If I´m doing my homework, sort of speak, correctly, where´s the reward?

Furthermore: can positive thinking avoid life´s darkest side?

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Although I don´t play the victim and focus on the POSITIVE, dismissing the negative at all costs, the truth is life is constantly offering me a varied pallette of experiences, most of them quite challenging, many of them harsh enough to break the bones of any mentally healthy, strong human being. Independently of how much heart, and quality, I put into things, nothing comes easy. And I mean N-O-T-H-I-N-G. There are envy and hate patrols around me, enemies coming out of nowhere, unpleasant surprises and obstacles on every corner. I wonder why. And why not.

Is life supposed to be hard or simple?

Are we supposed to work hard for what we wish for or believe it will be handed to us without struggle?

Is the change of our beliefs enough to change our reality?

I wish I had the answers to those, and many others, questions. I don´t. Not yet. So I keep riding the waves, the best I can, and keep hoping for the best.

P.S: I´d just like to ask the screen writers to take it easy on the obstacles, the envy & haters patrols, and the disappointments. I´ve had my share, and then some, of those. Thank you.

*Food for Thought. Follow the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RLMZZT73kgc

ADULT´S CONTENT: Sexuality in Egyptian Dance by Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School

Sexuality in Egyptian Dance Online Workshop
WARNING: ONLY for ADULTS!
Sexuality in Egyptian Dance by Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School.
Sexuality in Egyptian Dance – Unleashing your inner Lilith
Online Workshop (live & recorded classes)
Awaken your fierce, sensual, free self through Egyptian Dance!
​Sexuality, and sensual pleasure in your dance (and life), is a tabu nobody dares touching. Until now.
Have you ever felt you wanted, but couldn´t, enjoy the physical pleasure dance, and your interaction with other people, can provide?
Have you ever felt confused about what´s appropriate & what´s not in the way you move, & feel, while you dance?
Have you ever felt the conflict between what your body wants and what you think others expect from you?
Have you ever felt like you weren´t living your Dance, and Life, to its full potential?
Are you done with playing the Good Girl Role, the one who provides pleasure to others but denies it to herself?
If so, and I invite you to take an active role in this rEVOLUTION!
If so, this Online Workshop, created by Joana Saahirah exclusively for our school, is for YOU.
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Welcome to Joana Saahirah´s Online Dance School, a place where your Uniquess is celebrated. Authentic Egyptian Dance, Self-Discovery & Empowerment.
Follow the link for a fabulous trip inside our Wonder*land:
Isis Eye Joana Saahirah School

How to be a Confident (Oriental) Dancer

1891110_916618471700855_5379881662101274547_n I may have borrowed the title of this article – from another article I shared on Joana Saahirah of Cairo Fan Page – but the contents are mine. I´m not just a dancer; I´m an Oriental Dancer and that, my friends, makes all the difference.

An Oriental Dancer doesn´t deal (only) with the regular pressure of regular dancers; she/he also has to rise above an annoying array of prejudices, myths and moronic peculiar expectations that have followed Oriental Dance around throughout the centuries.

The problem about self-confidence is that it´s erroneously taken as VANITY when it´s exactly its opposite. A woman – dancer or not – who claims to have confidence in herself is instantaneously labeled as a bitch. No wonder most women are afraid to embrace self-love and acceptance. No wonder so many dancers – Oriental and others – choose to hide behind movements instead of shining their UNIQUE star.

1466207_686732508024968_1433433526_nHere it is, without shame or restraint, my own short SELF-CONFIDENCE guide for Professional Oriental Dancers:

  1. Work, work, work. Nothing is more relaxing than the assurance of having done our homework. It sounds dull and it probably is. I wish a fairy came knocking on my door, every night, to deliver  talent, skills and accomplished homework. It never happened – so far. Although I keep – sort of – waiting, I believe SERIOUS, PERSISTENT, CONSCIOUS and NEVER ENDING work makes miracles. The job of a dancer – any artist – is mostly achieved on the background, doing things the public never gets to see. They watch your performance but they´ll probably never know how much work you put into it before you hit the stage. What people see is the tip of the iceberg and that´s how it´s supposed to be. When you PREPARE your work – shows, workshops, classes, lectures -, you´re in peace with yourself. You know that´s the best you can do – for the moment. That sense of respected duty offers a good base for self-confidence. Nothing makes a dancer more nervous than the awareness of having been lazy or careless.
  2. Learn how to feel compassionate towards ignorance. Oriental Dance is a highly misunderstood art form. You can divide mainstream – and even dance community – people in two groups: the ones who don´t know about the subject and the ones who think they know and don´t know. In both cases, ignorance and twisted expectations are the norm. Don´t twist people´s neck when they show you their ignorance towards the dance. Take the high road, smile and wave like the queen of England. Then walk the talk: teach them what is Oriental Dance by DOING IT GREATLY. No word can substitute the power of an ACTION. No speech is more powerful than a piece of quality dance. Show them what you mean by Oriental Dance ART FORM –  they will catch up.
  3. Remember we are all HUMAN and that is what makes US (you) special. Don´t try to fit the mold. There´s no mold. Every person expects something different from a dancer and it´s impossible to keep up with it, even if you want to. And you don´t have to want it. EXPOSE yourself with courage; embrace VULNERABILITY and audiences will relate to you as an artist and human being. Share you heart and you´ll receive your audiences´heart in return. Don´t be afraid to be a PERSON – that´s the Magic of Oriental Dance; that´s YOUR gift to the world.
  4. Own your booty. If you´re worried about extra pounds, the hips you dislike or the fat arms, your FOCUS is in the wrong place. You´ll not feel free to move beyond appearances – the goal of Oriental Dance. This is something Egyptian Dancers do magnificently: they own their bodies; they inhabit their physical selves without criticism or negative thoughts. They feel so good in their own skin that their audiences end up feeling the same about them. Remember: the audience is a mirror of the dancer – not the opposite. If you love your body – and what´s inside it -, people will love it too. Sure enough: there will be haters. But who cares about haters (aka frustrated folks who throw their demons on other people´s faces)? Blow them a kiss and suggest they get a life. Then move on, rocking your curves and everything else that makes you UNIQUE.
  5. Quit the concept of PERFECTION. It´s a mirage – it doesn´t exist – and it´s so damn boring. Excellence – yes. Totality – yes. Quality – yes. Perfection – what is it? Each person, society and time has its own conception of perfection. Chasing something that doesn´t exist doesn´t sound smart to me. Shine your ORIGINAL SELF. Work your gorgeous ass off before, during and after each performance. Do your best. Work from your heart. Train seriously and search for “out of the box” creative solutions. DARE to do what makes your heart sing. And quit the idea of PERFECTION. That´s just another word for procrastination or, simply, frustration.
  6. Don´t compare yourself with other dancers. Each person is UNIQUE – I repeat. If you look at other dancers, do so with respect and support. If someone has something to teach you, learn it and move forward, respecting the work of others and aiming at creating your ORIGINAL work. Comparisons are the daughters of mediocrity.
  7.  Greatness is an attitude, not a circumstance. There´s no excuse to feel less than your fabulous self. You´re a Goddess – a human goddess. Act accordingly. Always.
  8. Gratitude. I always take the stage by storm because I feel it´s the first time I step on it and it may be the last time. We never know. Being able to do what I love and being appreciated for it is a GIFT I never take for granted. Being aware of this gift is an efficient antidote to stage fright and insecurity. CELEBRATE that opportunity; share the happiness you feel for being on that stage, a stage so many people desire and will never step on.
  9. Embrace BEING NAKED, figuratively speaking. An Oriental Dancer exposes her soul – raw, naked, honest – on the stage. It´s like opening the door of our intimacy to perfect strangers; it´s the FEMININE principle par excellence: RECEPTIVITY, VULNERABILITY taken to the extreme. At the end of that line, you discover POWER. Not male, impositive, exterior power but feminine, interior power. When you hold your heart in your hands and share it with your audiences, they will caress it. Have no doubt about it.
  10. Trust LIFE. Trusting yourself is one thing; trusting life is another. I´ve met people who presume they have to be in charge of everything; they even believe they can control life. They can´t. We play – dance – with life, never quite knowing which part of the dance belongs to whom. Trusting life means you deliver a part of your performance to The UNKNOWN. You allow things to happen – impredictable, sometimes unpleasant things. I´ve lost the count of stage accidents I´ve been through. Losing bras and skirts, falling on my “derrière”, having the music failing when I´m dancing, you name it. I could manage to make something special out of every mishap. I had to. The show must go on – that we know; make sure it goes on brilliantly. Mistakes, as Perfection, are nothing but concepts. What you consider a mistake can be a genius pearl at the eyes of another person. Prepare as much as possible; then, when the lights are on, make the best of whatever comes your way.
  11. Breathe deeply and consciously. Breathing is the easiest and fastest way to relax and re-center yourself. It´s so simple we forget about it.
  12. Look ahead – not down. Own the stage you step on and inhabit yourself – body, mind, heart and soul. Believe in what you´re doing. If you don´t, you shouldn´t be on that stage.
  13. Define your PURPOSE – what makes you go on that stage. Knowing why you´re there – what you have to offer – builds confidence and clarity. Are you there to beg for applauses or to share a gift? Define it and then share it; don´t hold back. There´s no time to rehearse – it´s now or never. Always.
  14. Use the Music as your companion, a guideline and a source of inspiration, instead of a difficulty you have to manage. Most dancers deal with music as if it was an enemy to domesticate. It´s not. Music is our best friend – it´s the trapeze artist line and safety net. Learn how to use the music in your favour; how to be INSIDE IT (TARAB) and get security from it. If you befriend it, it will never disappoint you.
  15. EnJOY your dance. Don´t take it so seriously it becomes a punishment (for you and your audience). Seriousness is something you practice on the background, sweating in the gym or in your dance studio. Audiences don´t have to bear your heavy “seriousness”, concern and pain. They´re there to enJOY but they won´t EnJOY unless you ENJOY it first. Once you dig into JOY, you tend to forget about insecurities. Your mind cannot focus, simultaneously, on celebrating the pleasure of dance and worrying about all the things you presume you could be doing better. It´s either one or the other. Always choose JOY – the opposite of fear.1520796_616369378461162_3046519421159367263_n
  16. Bring “El Duende” into your dancing space. Trust there is a Spirit – your spirit – that shines through you. Oriental Dance is not about how many fancy movements you can do with your tummy but how you do what you do and what you communicate with it. Meditate before going on stage; pray, breathe, be thankful, call out your angels or yell in the bathroom, if you need to. Do whatever it takes to remember you (we) are not alone. Not on stage, not in life (just an extension of the stage).

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