Dance Performance: Great Conversations: Banafsheh Sayyad with poet Andrew Harvey

Sun, May 15, 2011 7:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

(View all dance performances »)

Persian dance master Banafsheh Sayyad debuts at Alwan with a performance of her work: Love Comes With a Knife

"Part whirling dervish, part flamenco femme fatale, sensuous and audacious, Banafsheh’s dance is a mesmerizing foray into the body as trance mechanism; a DNA strand, supple, fluid and noble, come to life." Los Angeles Times

Banafsheh Sayyad has blazed a unique trail in contemporary dance. Born in Iran, and based in California, her original dance style draws on flamenco, tai chi, and Gurdjieff Movements, and blends Persian dance’s sensuality with the rigor of Dervish whirling.

In Love Comes With a Knife, Banafsheh interprets five stages of the soul’s journey to its union with the Beloved. Her movement marries serenity and passion, as does Jallalidin Rumi’s vision; and is accompanied by recitation of Rumi by mystic scholar and Rumi translator, Andrew Harvey.

Q&A and discussion to follow the performance.

View an excerpt of Banafsheh in performance ofMud & Glory.


$15 at the door or online(includes small service charge - use printout as your ticket). Members: $5 discount at door or online(ID/Membership card required)

Doors open at 6:30pm

This evening celebrates the highly anticipated release of Banafsheh's DVD, In the Fire of Grace, with Andrew Harvey which will be available for purchase.

Banafsheh will also be teaching a workshop, "Intro to Dance of Oneness: Secrets of the Sacred Feminine", at Integral Yoga, Wednesday, May 18 at 6 p.m.

Banafsheh Sayyad

The award-winning work of Iranian-born dancer and choreographer Banafsheh Sayyad communicates the universal message of Mysticism through an interplay between trance and directed movement. Banafsheh draws from her extensive background inPersian danceand Sufi ritual, Tai Chi and Flamenco to present a new form that is rooted in tradition, "fusing ancient forms with a postmodern punch" (Los Angeles Times). She holds an MFA in Dance from UCLA where she taught Persian dance and is a recipient of the prestigious James Irvine Foundation grant in Dance.Her work has been presented in North America, Europe and Australia where she has gained tremendous audience and critical acclaim. Banafsheh also teaches workshops internationally.

Andrew Harvey

Andrew Harvey is an internationally acclaimed poet, novelist, translator, mystical scholar, and spiritual teacher. Harvey has published over 30 books including Hope, Son of Man (Tarcher/ Putnam) and The Return of the Mother (North Atlantic Books). Harvey is a Fellow of All Souls College Oxford from (1972-1986) and has taught at Oxford University, Cornell University, The California Institute of Integral Studies, and the University of Creation Spirituality, as well as, various spiritual centers throughout the United States. He was the subject of the 1993 BBC film documentary, The Making of a Modern Mystic. He is founder of the Institute for Sacred Activism in Oak Park, Illinois, where he lives.

Last updated: 2012-01-23 11:32:33

Alwan for the Arts

16 Beaver Street, 4th Floor
(between Broad St. and Broadway)
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732-3261

Alwan Auction 2016

Join Our Mailing List:



Classes are currently being scheduled. Please check back soon for updates.



There are currently no upcoming events.


16 Beaver Street
4th Floor
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732 3261
Email Us

Alwan for the Arts is accessible to people with disabilities. Please call 646 732 3261 in advance, or, buzz at the door to arrange a ramp.

© 2020 Alwan for the Arts

Hosting donated by:, the Arabic Encyclopedia