#TBT: Nagwa Fouad

thebellyblog13:

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“Art,” she said, “is not linked with age or nationality; it is linked with creation and presence and if the artist can give and enjoy, she must continue to perform.”

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SO HERE’S THE DEAL:

We can’t believe we haven’t done a TBT post on this beauty yet! She’s a legend in the belly dance community and a true artist.

Nagwa, whose birth name is Awatef Mohammed El Agamy, was born in 1943 in Alexandria Egypt. Her father was Egyptian and her mother was Palestinian.

When she was just a few months old she and her parents moved to Jaffa, Israel. Unfortunately, her mother passed away shortly after the move. Her father remarried another Palestinian woman, who treated Nagwa like her own. When she was young her father moved to Alexandria to make arrangements for her and her stepmother to move with him. While he was gone Jaffa was taken over by the Jews and Nagwa and her step mother had to escape. They spent some time living in refugee tents in Arish, Egypt. They eventually reunited with Nagwa’s father, but he re married again. Nagwa’s step mother took Nagwa with her to Cairo where she raised her.

Later in Nagwa’s life she would follow in her step mother’s footsteps, adopting a girl whose parents had died in a car accident. She raised her, provided for her and sent her to college. 

Nagwa graduated from school at 14. This is when her dance career began. When she was young, Nagwa had danced at family functions, social gatherings and weddings. After graduating she started performing in small clubs. 

One of the venues she danced at was Abdeen Casino. It was there that she met Ahmad Fuad Hassan, a violin player, composer and conducted who would become her husband for 6 years. She said of her husband, “Hassan was 17 years older than me, but I needed him. He nurtured my amateur’s talents… He taught me the importance of studying and working on my talent if I wanted to be a big star. He trained me at the Nelly Mazloum Dance School and I joined the National Dance Troupe to study folklore with Russian teachers.” 

Nagwa was trained in ballet, jazz, and tap dance in addition to Belly Dance. Her dance background made her very unique and added a lot of dimension to her performances.

WHY WE <3 HER:

Nagwa really took belly dance to a whole new level. She added depth and dynamic to the dance drawing from her knowledge of other dance forms. Her life experiences also enhanced the emotion of her performances.

In 1976, she commissioned Mohammed Abdel Wahab, and Egyptian composer, to compose his first/only piece for a dancer. The song is titled “Qamar Arba’Tashar,” or Full Moon of the Fourteenth. This paved the way for other songs like “Set El Hosen,” by Mohammed Sultan. Nagwa said this was a transitional point in her career. 

To read more about Nagwa click here or here


bellydanceclassics:

Photograph of Samia Gamal during her dance sequence in the American film “Valley of the Kings”, in 1954. One of my all-time fav pictures of Samia! :D


bellydanceclassics:

Soheir Zaki dancing at a wedding for President Sadat’s son in 1974.


thebellyblog13:

LOVE the energy of this video! 


#belly dancer   #dance   #dancer   #egypt   #egyptian   #raks sharki   #raqs sharqi   #monaelsaid   #belly dance  

Sentimental Sunday - Mona El Said: The Bronze of the Nile

thebellyblog13:

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SO HERE’S THE DEAL:

Mona El Said was discovered at a popular disco called Triang A Go Go in Cairo. It was there that Leila Murad told her, “You should dance, because you should be an artist.” That was all Mona needed to hear. She began dancing professionally at 13. Due to her fathers great disapproval of her dancing, Mona left Egypt in 1970 and moved to Lebanon to be able to pursue her dream of becoming a famous dancer.  She fulfilled her dream dancing in Beirut at the best clubs.

Mona found her way back to Cairo in 1975 as a dance star. Her fame, talent, and originality got her gigs at the most upscale Cairo hotels. As mentioned on her website, Mona highly disapproves of counting music saying that it stops you from feeling the music. She “focuses on feeling and emotion, new, innovative movement and creates magic on the stage with her energy.” Mona also notes that is important to listen to the speed of the music and not speed up unless the music calls for it.

Mona’s command of the stage and her audience and her regal presence earned her the nick name of “ Princess of Raks Sharki,” from non other than Tahia Carioca. Egyptian newspapers and magazines nick named her “Sa’mraa El Nile” or “The Bronze of the Nile.”

Aside from dancing in clubs and hotels Mona starred in seven Egyptian films and was featured in many others.

WHY WE <3 HER:

We love Mona because she is unique in the way she dances and in the way she thinks about and teaches dance. An article on Gilded Serpant said that in a workshop she taught in the U.S. a while back, Mona said that our dancing should reflect all the women we can be – “seven women in one woman.” You should be able to show strength, romance, vulnerability, your inner tigress, etc .

To learn even more about Mona click here

Watch in our previous posts to get a taste of the different women that make up the awesomely talented Mona!

xoxo

TBB


#mona el said   #belly dancer   #egypt   #egyptian   #lebanon   #music   #oriental   #oriental music   #oriental dance   #raks sharki   #raqs sharqi   #sentimental sunday   #tbt   #fbf   #fbfriday   #tbthursda   #dance   #dancer   #vintage   #classic   #belly dance