Musical Performance & Dance: Eid Night! with Yasser Darwish and the Egyptian Celebration Dance Company

Sat, September 11, 2010 9:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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Join us for an evening of dance, music, and helaweyat (sweets) - including kahk and biscot with tea - featuring dances and music of Eid al Fitr -- the joyful conclusion of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan...


Yasser Darwish and the Egyptian Celebration Dance Company

and featuring

Zafer Tawil - Violin, Oud, Percussion
Rachid Halihal - Vocals, Oud, Violin
Amir Naoum Chehade
- Dumbek

Eid Night celebration opens with three outstanding musicians singing traditional songs and music of Ramadan and Eid, along with well-loved Egyptian classics and folk tunes.

Yasser and Company follow with upbeat dances from the repertoire of Egyptian folklore, including the tahtib (stick) and saidi dances, tannoura (secular Egyptian version of whirling dervish), and the dance of the sha’madan (candelabra).

Watch the Dance Company perform here.

Tickets: $20, available at the door and online here. (A surcharge applies; use printout as your ticket)

$15 student and senior tickets available at the door only.

Doors open at 8:30 p.m.

About The Artists

A performer and teacher of Egyptian folkloric dance, Yasser Darwish was born in Alexandria, Egypt. Yasser first became a member of the Alexandria Folk Dance Group and later moved to Cairo, where he danced with the Egyptian National Folk Dance Company. In 2001, Darwish immigrated to the United States and settled in Brooklyn, where he adapted group choreographies to solo shows and incorporated styles that appeal to his diverse New York City public. He is a popular performer of sa’idi tahtib, a stick dance from Upper Egypt, tannoura – a captivating secular spinning dance derived from Sufi tradition.

Yasser is founding-director of Egyptian Celebration Dance Company. Its goal: to present the rich culture of Egypt and the Middle East to people around the world. Collecting talented dancers, musicians and artists, Yasser presents the folkloric dance and music of his heritage infused with modern inspiration. Egyptian Celebration Company can be seen at events such as heritage festivals, television programs, weddings and university programs. Recent appearances include Good Day New York (Fox 5), and The Riverside Theatre (NYC). The Company also provides educational workshops – demos locally and on tour. Yasser is a currently a resident Folk Feet artist of the Brooklyn Arts Council.

Zafer Tawil is a virtuoso on ‘oud, violin, and qanun, and a master of Arab percussion. Zafer has performed in concerts across the country, including performances with numerous musicians ranging from Sting to Arab music virtuosos Chab Mami, Simon Shaheen, Bassam Saba and George Ziadeh, to avant-garde composer/ performer Elliot Sharpe. He was a featured composer and performer in acclaimed director Jonathan Demme's Oscar-nominated film Rachel Getting Married and is composing and performing for Demme’s next film project, Zeitoun, based on Dave Eggers’ book about Abdulrahman Zeitoun’s post-Hurricane Katrina odyssey. Zafer has worked on many collaboration concerts involving classical Indian and Persian music as well as Arab/jazz fusion. He has held workshops on Arab music at many institutions and universities across the United States. A native of East Jerusalem, he resides in New York City.

Rachid Halihal is a world-class musician who brings to the community the true character and spirit of music from the classical Egyptian repertoire which is much loved throughout the Middle East; from the Fertile Crescent; from diverse regions of Morocco and North Africa; and also the mezmerizing music of the Arabian Gulf. He studied Western classical and Andalus music at the Conservatory of Music in Fez, Morocco. In addition to his voice, which is best featured in the Andalus style, his strongest instruments are the oud and the violin, which he plays in both the classical manner and upright resting on the knee for Moroccan folkloric music. Since moving to the United States, Rachid has played and toured with a number of groups including the Chicago Classical Oriental Ensemble, Souhail Kaspar, and Algerian rai music superstar Rachid Taha. He most recently returned from San Francisco where he directs the ASWAT Ensemble.

Amir Naoum Chehade has grown up with a doumbek in his hands. Being born into a musical family influenced his decision to become a professional drummer. Amir attended the Studio al-Fann (The Art Studio) the most famous and renowned conservatory of music in Beirut, Lebanon. Since coming to the United States in 1977, Amir has performed for Arab, Turkish, Greek, Armenian, and American audiences in locations across the US and Canada, becoming one of the most prominent Arab-style drummers in North America. Amir has performed extensively in New York City, including all the major Middle Eastern nightclubs, as well as Carnegie Hall, Town Hall, Lincoln Center, Merkin Concert Hall, and special appearances for The United Nations. He is a master teacher of dumbek and other Arab percussion. Amir is also proficient on riq, muzhar, and bendir.

Last updated: 2010-09-11 03:09:40

Yasser Darwish
Yasser Darwish
Rachid Halihal
Rachid Halihal
Zafer Tawil
Zafer Tawil
Amir Naoum Chehade
Amir Naoum Chehade

Alwan for the Arts

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(between Broad St. and Broadway)
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732-3261

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