The dance styles being presented today are from various regions
in Algeria. We will travel from the southern desert oases, to the towering
mountains of Kabylia, and to the cities of Tlemcen and Constantine.
We will sample the dances of the Ouled Nailiyat, the Kabyle Berbers,
and the courts of al-Andalus.
The Imazighen, or Berbers, consider themselves to be the original
inhabitants of North Africa. Through centuries of rule by other cultures,
the Amazigh people have managed to retain much of their language, dress
and many customs. Over the past several decades there has been a rise
of Amazigh identity throughout North Africa, but especially in Kabylia,
Algeria. This includes a bigger awareness of the Amazigh influence
in shaping the distinct culture of al-Andalus and North Africa.
Inspired to present the rarely seen Berber
and Andalusian dances of North Africa to a wider audience, she formed
Danse Maghreb in 2003
with co-director Jasmyn Gloria Mabalatan. Her early training in the
arts began as a child with weekly lessons in music and folkloric dance.
She first studied Near Eastern dance in 1981, and went on to study
classical Egyptian dance with Magaña Baptiste, North African,
Turkish and Levant folkloric styles with John Compton and Rita Alderucci,
Persian, Afghan and Central Asian dance with Sharlyn Sawyer, Turkish
Rom with Suzy Tekbilek, and Algerian and Moroccan Berber and Andalusian
with Amel Tafsout, Aisha Ali, Leila Haddad, and Katarina Burda.
She has performed at the Palace of Fine Arts,
Brava Theatre, McKenna Theater, Marin Showcase Theater, Ashkenaz,
La Peña, San Jose’s
Montgomery Theater and Mexican Heritage Plaza Theater, Campbell’s
Heritage Theater, the Arab Cultural Center, the Algerian-American Association,
Stanford University, New College, UCSF and California Institute for
Integral Studies. Festival performances include the Ethnic Dance Festival,
Berkeley World Music Festival, the Peace Corps Cultural Festival and
the Santa Cruz Berber Festival. Danse Maghreb is annually invited to
perform at the Berber community’s New Year celebration and Berber
In addition to Danse Maghreb, Janine has performed
with Ballet Afsaneh, Hahbi ‘Ru Dance Ensemble and Magaña
Baptiste and the San Francisco Royal Academy of Danse Orientale.
She has produced Ethnic
music and dance performances and fundraisers in the Bay Area since
1999, and is sought out by local artists for her promotional skills.
Janine is a patient and generous instructor, who delights in bringing
out the inner dancer in her students. Her greatest joy is in sharing
these beautiful and unique dances with others.