Danse Maghreb
Saturday, June 21, 2014, 6:30pm - 7:10pm
Faith Petric Stage - Auditorium

Tonight, we are excited to present the lively and colorful dance and music of the Ouled Nailiyat, from Algeria. With their vibrant costumes, ornate headdresses, and lavish jewelry, The Ouled Nailiyat were famous for their dancing skills. They earned a substantial income from their performances, and it was considered an honor and privilege to marry one of them. After marriage, the dancer usually retired, and raised her girls to follow in the tradition. Regarded as women of ill repute by the Victorian-era French, who were shocked by their uncorseted (although fully covered!), vigorous dancing, they gradually disappeared from public. Glimpses of their dance style can still be seen in wedding celebrations in the oasis town of Bou Saada, Algeria.

The music is an intricate weave of interplay between the melody instruments and the multi-layered drum rhythms. The lead melody instrument is the double-reeded mizmar. The goblet-shaped drum is the doumbek, and the bass drum is known as the t'bal. Other percussion instruments include a frame drum with gut snares, known as the bendir, and the tambourine, or riqq.

Dancers: Janine Ryle, Jasmyn Mabalatan-Weissman, Amy Gilbert, Monica Berini, Heather Serginia accompanied by live musicians!

Danse Maghreb formed in 2003. The company members have extensive performance experience, and share a passion for North African music and dance. Danse Maghreb is dedicated to presenting the music and dance from the region in culturally authentic and respectful performances. The group has performed regularly for the Bay Area Amazigh (Berber) community for over ten years. Danse Maghreb's repertoire includes a wide variety of folkloric styles from across North Africa.