BAHIRA

Belly Dancer, Artist & Chef

California

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Site Updated 9/22/2013      Best viewed using Mozilla

 

Biography
Bahira was born of expatriate American parents in Saudi Arabia and lived in the Middle East for nearly 20 years. Arabic music is in her blood having listened to it on the radio and TV throughout her childhood. On bus trips with her school chums they would sing the popular Arabic song "Sel-im-alay" now found on the classic bellydance album Strictly Belly Dancing - Vol 2" by Eddie "the Sheik" Kochak.

She saw her first professional belly dancer at Le Paon Rouge nightclub in Beirut, Lebanon when she was 16 and was smitten by the beauty of the dance. It would be eight years later that while browsing in a Los Angeles bookstore she came upon the instructional book by Marta Schill -- The Compleat Belly Dancer, the very first of the now common how-to books on the art of belly dancing. Using the footprint diagrams and still photos in the book, a mirror and her memory of what she saw back in Lebanon, she taught herself the basics. When she discovered that Marta (former President of MECDA - Middle Eastern Culture and Dance Association) was the featured dancer at The Seventh Veil on Sunset Boulevard, she spent many a weekend night watching and absorbing the nuances of Marta's mesmerizing style. She has been watching and absorbing many dancers and styles ever since.

With the global village concept in mind, Bahira likes to blend and fuse dance steps from many ethnic cultures in innovative and playful ways and uses story-telling and drama to keep choreography interesting for the viewing audience.  In 2001 she formed Troupe Nambah with her good friend, Mandella, in keeping with the ethnic fusion style of belly-dancing using dance steps from Egyptian, Turkish, Indian, Moroccan, African, Flamenco and American Tribal dances as well as her Arabic roots.   In 2005 she formed her newest troupe, Indigenous, to further this style by incorporating other non-Mid Eastern ethnic styles of dance. 

Bahira lives in Santa Clara, California with her husband David, son Doug and two crazy cats named Calie and Sallie.  In addition to dancing, Bahira loves cooking (her specialty is Middle Eastern, of course), creating dance costumes, drumming and writing.   Her fondest dancing memory is an impromptu duet with a Tuareg man in front of an audience of German campers under a canopy of Saharan stars in the small village of Merzuga, Morocco. The Germans were surprised to learn that she was American, not Berber, and the dancing went well on into the night!

Up-Coming Performances    Bahira will be performing with INDIGENOUS at: 

                            Desert Dance Festival 2013 - Saturday, September 28, at 5:03 PM

                            Haunted HaflaAdira - Saturday, October 19, at 2:00 PM

and

Upcoming Events:   Bahira is vending at the 2013 Fifth Annual FabMo Textile Art Boutique - Oct 27

Photo Galleries:            Past Performances

                                     Past Events Attended    

Supplies & Services: 

Miko Kami Dolls   "Altar" Your Life with a Miko Kami (Female Shaman Spirit) Doll.   Now on sale at East West Bookstore 324 Castro Street in Mt. View, California.  --- Create a Shinto Altar Space in your home to give yourself a peaceful place to pause in your busy life and to help you  focus your energy in a positive way.   A great gift for those starting a new job, entering a new abode or in need of a spiritual uplift.    New dolls added each month.  See FabMo Textile Art Boutique in Upcoming Events

 Marrakesh Express   Culinary Adventures specializing in intimate home catering and ethnic cuisines

Three Bees Gallery  Past belly dance creations by Bahira

 Other Interests & Hobbies:           Photographic Art

                                                      Poetry

                                                      Favorite Links

 

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indigenous

In 2005, Bahira created Indigenous, a Mytho-Poetic belly dance troupe in order to further her desires to widen the scope of Mid Eastern belly dance.  The troupe's goal is to blend belly dance with other non- Mid Eastern ethnicities and other tribal dance styles, to entertain via story-telling and to stretch the limits of the current dance's edges. 

Indigenous also performs in the traditional style.

More information on Indigenous and its dancers can be found on the Troupe's website.   Check out the photos of Indigenous's recent performances and the dates of upcoming performances!  www.indigenousdance.net

Bahira and Indigenous are available for hire at festivals, corporate events or private parties (NO BACHELOR or STAG PARTIES) and may be contacted via e-mail at:

bahira_a_t_bahira.net

 

 

 

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Solo Performances

 

Bahira has performed solo for many years as part of a Catering/Dancing Middle Eastern Experience Entertainment Package created by fusing using her talents as a chef and dancer.  She has also performed for restaurants in the Los Angeles area as well as in the South Bay area.  She has soloed at Bistro Atash Kadeh Persian Restaurant (now closed) and Menara Moroccan Restaurant.  At the present time she is not employed as a restaurant soloist, but keeps her performance skills active as director of her troupe Indigenous.

Bahira and Indigenous are available for hire at festivals, corporate events or private parties (NO BACHELOR or STAG PARTIES) and may be contacted via e-mail at:

bahira_a_t_bahira.net

 

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Troupe Nambah

Bahira and Mandella co-directed Troupe Nambah (2001-2008) which billed itself as "World Fusion Style" belly dance, a term coined by Bahira to avoid being locked into any one style of Belly Dance.   World Fusion Style belly dance celebrates as many different forms, styles and rhythms from all the musical cultures of the world as possible.  Bahira and her good friend, Mandella, co-founded Troupe Nambah in 2001 as a way to fulfill the need to express themselves in a positive and soul satisfying form of the dance and with the ultimate purpose of dancing through life itself.  Both Bahira and Mandella have moved on with this philosophy by creating separate dance troupes of their own after a very joyful and successful 7 year run with Troupe Nambah

Troupe Nambah has annually performed for local community festivals and has been a popular feature at both the Santa Clara and Milpitas Art & Wine Festivals.  Troupe Nambah has also performed at Bay Area belly dance festivals such as Desert Dance (San Jose), Rakkasah (Richmond) and Summer Caravan (Oakland).

Although the Troupe is no longer actively seeking performances, members of Troupe Nambah may come together occasionally to perform a corporate events and private celebrations and may volunteer for worthy causes from time to time.   More information on Troupe Nambah and its dancers can be found on the Troupe's website, as well as lots of photos of past performances.  Check it out! www.troupenambah.com

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The Bennuvians

 

Bahira is also a former member of  The Bennuvians (2000-2006), a troupe directed by Alcina , House Dancer for Menara Moroccan Restaurant and belly dance teacher at Sunnyvale Parks and Recreation.   The Bennuvians appeared at many of the Bay Area's large belly dance festivals such as Desert Dance, Rakkasah West and Summer Caravan.  They have also performed for Hands On The Arts in Sunnyvale and several Health and Fitness Fairs in the Bay Area.   The Bennuvians are no longer actively performing at the present time, but small groups of the members may appear from time to time at restaurants or local festivals.

You can find more information about Alcina on Alcina's website: www.swordtamer.com