February 09, 2010

Hipnotic, Jazz Cafe in Reading

February saw us all travelling to Reading to perform at Hipnotic at the Jazz Cafe (check out the link, but better still pay them a visit for a brilliant evening)!

We cheered on the other dancers, took part in a few of the classes there we then performed our improvised tribal style dancing. A great evening was had by all. Check out the pictures.

Seeing the New Year in

Woo hoo, catching up on what's been happening this year starts with Kay, Philippa, Rita and Jen (belly Jen, we have 2 Jens, the other being tribal Jen), saw the New Year in celebrating it in the Dil Raj Indian Restaurant in Abingdon, eating sumptuous food, slurping superb wine, watching our belly dancer friend Jo performing yay, pulling crackers (paper ones of course), wearing hats, blowing them tooting blowey things, dancing - oh yes .. much dancing, singing Auld Lang Syne (or was it old Langs eye I sang ... mmm ....), you know, the usual kind of New Years stuff we all do.

Well according to the few pictures here, you can tell we had a blast! Enjoy the pics..................

Don't forget to go try the Dil Raj too!

Report by Kay

February 07, 2010

First Drum Performance

Our djembe drum class was asked to do a 'piece' for the Lake Street Community Centre Christmas do, as this is where we practice every week. It was a great open afternoon, with many families milling around eating mince pies, various cakes, mulled wine etc, whilst being entertained by various acts. Great community atmosphere! When the brass band stopped, it was our turn yikes! The Oxford Drum Troupe professionals drummed various fabulous African rhythms, whilst the people who thronged the room clapped and swayed and the children danced and jigged up and down. We were then invited on by the Drum Troupe for the last piece where we played 3 short rhythms with a drum call to swap from to the other. It went down well and we got a warm round of applause at the end. A big thank you to our drum circle teachers yay!! Afterwards we called into the Four Pillars hotel for a hot cup of coffee, tea and beer to celebrate.

Photo above - the professionals showing us how it's done

Photo right - Kay, Philippa and Rita getting ready

Another Birthday........

December loomed and with Christmas shopping done and presents wrapped, tree up, last card written, fairy lights turned on (yea, but not by me)..... Pippy's birthday jumped out at us suddenly, so at her request we all trouped over to her house each with a dish of food to pool into a birthday supper, with presents to swap and plenty of giggles to share. After sitting down to our feast of an array of English, Turkish, Polish, Indian food with salads and puddings, plenty of wine etc etc, (with Philippa wearing her new fairy wings heading the table) we exchanged presents and then 'hung out' and watched a dance DVD. Much laughter was had by all. Alas no pictures were taken on the big day, so I found this in our archives. Pippy modelling a piece of costuming in our dance studio....... great leg warmers! You go girl! Report by Kay

Christmas Celebration Performance Platform

November 2009 and 3 of Ashnah dancers, Kay, Jen & Rita, travelled to Swindon to take part in the Christmas Celebration Performance Platform organised by MADN (Mosaic Arabic Dance Network) held at the Phoenix Theatre at New College. Performers were plentiful and to name a few were Loreley Rice, Soraya with John Sleiman, Isisters, Helen Sleiman dancing to her fathers drumming (John Sleiman), Hazzaz, Negoum el Leyl, Afra al Kahira, Tracey Jones, guest dancers the fabulous Zehara Dancers led by Nikki Franklin performing their own Zehara tribal style and our very own delightful Ashnah dancer, Rita Maria who performed her new solo. There was a mix of various dances - Turkish pop, veil dances, isis wings dances, solo's, group dances, Egyptian pop, drum solo's and many more, whilst we performed our tribal dance to Harem with zills. After all dancers posed for professional photo's (which will appear in the next issue of the Mosaic magazine), we headed off back to Abingdon for an evening in the Thai Orchid which was simply heaven!!! Report by Rita

Halloween - or maybe not in our case

Hubble Bubble, Toil and Trouble - Philippa suggested we have an evening at hers, a trip down the pub followed by a takeaway. Last minute suggestion from me was 'let's dress up at it's Halloween'. On collection of Rita I was greeted by this ....... thing ..... bright red hair, pointy hat and a painted star over her eye ha! After much cackling all the way to Pippy's, and more shrieks of delight when she clapped eyes on Rita, we trotted off down a narrow lane in what seemed like the darkest depths of Peru, in the pitch black to the local pub. No torches and my mobile phone light wasn't bright enough eek!!!. Gingerly we held on to each other, me trailing at the back keeping an eye out for ghouls and goblins, Pippy leading the way with Rita in the middle cackling all the way. The locals eyed us with suspicion when we entered (though I think they stared at our wicked witch from the West actually), and we supped our tipple with quiet cackles (wondering who was for our cauldron). Another trek back up the darket depths of Peru back to Pippy's house, ordered our takeaway and flew there on Rita's broom, oh sorry I mean drove in my car. Again we were viewed with caution (bewilderment I think was more like it), and we drove back with our catch of Chinese food to gorge over.

Strange thing was, it wasn't Haloween! I'd got the date wrong doh!!!!!!