Los Angeles - Dancing with the stars!

Friday was the first of two IAMED shows I danced in.

The wig I was going to wear needed some preparation which I did already before we went to the show's venue. Oli helped me by sitting patiently while I styled the wig on his head. For this, Danette awarded him with the title "Boyfriend of the Year" :-)

The show was organized by IAMED (International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance) and held at a dance studio in an intimate setting with maybe 50 spectators. But it was like the Who’s Who of bellydance in LA :-)
I think there were more famous dancers in the audience than on stage: Zahra Zuheir, Princess Farhanca, Sahra Seeda with Farida Fahmi (!!!), DaVid, Patricia and more.

I did my Surf Sharqi number and it went really well.

And I even got to see the second half of the show. It really was a good, varied show with lots of great dancers in it. Only at one point I got very tired because of my jet lag and had a hard time not falling asleep. Which would have looked really bad since I was sitting in the front row! 

On Saturday morning, Danette, Lucy and I went to a 2 hour class with Jamilla. Wow, she made us sweat! And I really noticed which movements I hadn’t practiced for a while. So it was more than worth it.

After that I got ready for the second IAMED show. Now this was the BIG one. And I mean, really big. It was held at the Ford Amphitheater, an open are stage in the Hollywood hills that takes over 1200 people.

Of course my boyfriend was in the audience and he took a picture of the stage:

I got there early for rehearsals and then had a lot of time to chat with all the other dancers. It was cool to meet some people I already knew again. And I was honored to be in the same show as some REALLY famous dancers.
Can I do some name dropping?
 Dondi, Titanya, and Jim Boz
 My dear friend DaVid
 Sadie + Kaya
 Lilla Varese Dance Company
 Delilah (so much for meeting one of your "dance childhood" heroes!)
 Ava Fleming

Performing on this stage was a real thrill. You don’t really see the audience there but it’s really special.

Well, and I got to be in 2 IAMED videos at once. Both are worth buying, and not just because of me :-)
IAMED shop

Update: Here are videos of my performances!

But that wasn't the end of it! I tested my darling boyfriend's patience a bit more and made him watch a third dance show the next day! Fortunately they were all high quality events...

Here I met Princess Farhana, one of my friends from the trip in March

But this was not the end of it, oh no! A bunch of us met up for dinner in a Middle Eastern restaurant that featured 3 dancers.

Shanna, Danette, Helen, me and Lucy all over us

 Oli with our lovely host Danette

 The fabulous Anaheed
 Using Oli as veil holder

 Rocking it with Aziza