CV-Education, Training & Experience

Nicola’s CV

Formal Dance Training

  • Intensive training with:  Cassandra Shore (2013), Hadia (2007, 2008, 2011  Teacher Training Levels 1-3 full certification with graduation); Sahra Saeeda Kent’s Journey Through Egypt Level 1 (2009)
  • Class training & choreographic collaboration with: Pedro Aurelio (2008-present); flamenco classes 2012-2013
  • Workshop training with:   Sahra Saeeda (2012, 2009, 2000), Ranya Renee (2015, 2012), Hadia (2014, 2011, 2008, 2007, 2004, 2000, 1998), Dina of Cairo (2006), Cassandra Shore (2013, 2010, 2002), Roula Said (2010),  Yasmina Ramzy (2002, 2008), Jasmin Jahal (2009),  Suzy (2004, 2007), Suzy & Jamilee Abir & Ariellah (2006), Jalilah Zamora (2006), Nath Keo (2005), Sarita (2005), Denise Enan (2000, 2003, 2014), Susanna Del Vecchio (2002), Sabah of Victoria (2002), Nourhan Sharif (2001), Jamilee Abir & Ariellah (2001), Scherazade of Germany (1997, 1999), Yousry Sharif (1999), Delilah Flynn (1998)
  • Host, producer and/or performer--Sahra Saeeda workshops + Orient Express 4 show (2012); Club Bellydance 2011 and 2013 with the Bellydance Superstars; Cassandra Shore w/ Jawaahir workshops + Orient Express 3 show (2010); Journey Through Egypt 1 with Sahra Saeeda + Orientale Workshops and Journey Through Egypt show (2009); Hadia Teacher Training Level 1 (2007) and Level 2 (2008) plus workshops & shows Orient Express 1 & 2 (2007, 2008); various haflahs, souks, events, and open houses
  • Gamaal Rawhany troupe, co-founder / co-director (1999-2002), rehearsal director, co-choreographer
  • Ahlan Dance Company, co-founder / co-director (2002-2006)
  • Spice Road Belly Dance, founder / artistic director (2008-2012)
  • Collaborator — dancers Asra, Zafirah, Za’ina Dilshad & Shayera
  • Independent research & training in  styles & regional dances of the Middle East & North Africa.
  • Private instruction/coaching with Cassandra (2005), Sabah (2002), Hadia (2007 & 2008), Sahra Saeeda (2012).
  • Apprentice to local dancer, Shayera, 1997-2000; co-coach & co-choreographer (1999-2006)
  • Class training with Shayera, 1997-2006.

Degrees, certifications & formal education

  • B. Ed. , Early Years, University of Manitoba (1999-2001); including Curriculum & Instruction in Music &  Movement, Curriculum & Instruction in Art & Drama (two year-long core courses)
  • Graduate Program (Ph.D–M.A. bypass), Anthropology, University of Alberta (1994-1998).   Specialized research in medical anthropology, medical history, traditional knowledge, culture & technology.
  • B.A.H. (Anthropology), University of Winnipeg (1989-1993); minor in history.  Gold Medal in Anthropology, Silver Medal in Faculty of Arts, Honours.
  • Dance Teacher Training, Levels 1 – 3, with Hadia of Canada (Body Logic method, now  Savvy Body Bellydance) (2007, 2008, 2011).  Full certification with graduation.
  • Journey Through Egypt Level 1 (of 5) with Sahra Saeeda Kent (2009)
  • Music training/performance in classical, jazz, & stage band saxophone; classical piano (Royal Conservatory method)–completed grade 6 practical, grade 2 theory exams, played to Grade 10.

Performances (selected)

  • stage:
    • Shivers & Shimmies, with Starfire Bellydance Collective, Aremi, Caasi, Accalia, Erin (2016, 2017)
    • Ranya Renee in the Lovely Dozen’s World Dance (Grand Forks, ND, 2015) with Amar Egyptian Dance and as soloist
    • Pedro Aurelio & Bolero Dance Theatre–Scheherazade & 1001 Nights (2017), Cleopatra (Winnipeg 2012, Fringe 2013), Alhambra (2009)–co-creator and co-choreographer
    • Cassandra & Jawaahir Dance Co.’s  Enchanted Evening (Minneapolis, 2013)
    • Orient Express 4 with Sahra Saeeda Kent (Winnipeg, 2012)
    • Club Bellydance with Bellydance Superstars (Winnipeg, 2011 & 2013)
    • Hadia (Edmonton, 2011; Regina 2001; Winnipeg 2007, 2008 (Orient Express 1 and 2)  1998)
    • Orient Express 3 with Cassandra & Jawaahir (Winnipeg, 2010)
    • Live Red Shimmy Show (Winnipeg, 2010)
    • Funkabelly with Roula Said (Winnipeg, 2010)
    • Journey Through Egypt with Sahra Saeeda Kent (Winnipeg, 2009) soloist, and with Spice Road
    • Jasmin Jahal (Chisholm, MN 2009)
    • Hip Heat with Paola Blanton (Winnipeg 2008) with Spice Road Belly Dance
    • One Night in Cairo with Suzy (Winnipeg 2004 & 2007), soloist and with Ahlan Dance Company
    • If Elvis Could Belly Dance with Suzy, Ariellah, & Jamilee Abir (Winnipeg, 2006) danced as Lara Croft of Tomb Raider
    • Jalilah (Winnipeg 2006 )–to Jalilah’s rave reviews
    • Nath Keo (Winnipeg 2005 ), as soloist and with Ahlan Dance Company
    • Sarita (Winnipeg 2005)
    • Ahlan Dance Company Fundraiser (Winnipeg 2004)
    • Embrace of Egypt with Denise Enan (Winnipeg 2000)
    • Desert Sands with Denise Enan (Saskatoon 2003)
    • Eastern Hearts with Cassandra (Winnipeg 2003)
    • Eastern Hearts with Ariellah & Jamilee Abir (Winnipeg 2002)
    • Suzanna Del Vecchio (Regina 2002)
    • Shayera (Regina 1999)
    • Yousry Sharif (Saskatoon 1999)
    • Goddess Dances 2 with Scherazade (Winnipeg 1999), with Gamaal Rawhany and as special finale dancer
  • 50+ Living Show (20111, 2012, 2013)
  • Ciclovia Festival (2010)
  • Dance Manitoba Gala (2000-present, various)– feature instructor in 2001
  • Dance Manitoba Provincial Dance Festival (various)
  • Feature performer at the former Fat Angel Bistro, Winnipeg (1999-2003)
  • Wolseley Street Festival– with Za’ina Dilshad & Gamaal Rawhany
  • Forks National Park & Market, Tut Exhibit demos (2005)
  • Embassy Grill, Winnipeg (2002)
  • Forks Market, busking (2000-2001, 2009)
  • with Shayera, on the cover of Mid-Bits , published out of Toronto by Mayada (2001)midbits
  • Shimmy Train social, West End Cultural Centre (co-organizer, 2000)
  • with Za’ina Dilshad, Hummers’ 1999 Halloween bash/cd launch at the Pyramid Cabaret
  • host/producer/performer :
    • Rock the Casbah:  Myth, Magic, Mischief (2016)
    • Orient Express 1 & 2 Gala Shows w/ Hadia (Winnipeg, 2007 & 2008)
    • Orient Express 3 with Cassandra & Jawaahir (2010)
    • Journey Through Egypt & Orient Express 4 with Sahra Saeeda (2009, 2012)
    • Leylet Hob/Night of Love: Belly Dance for the Cure, a fundraiser for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (Winnipeg 2006)
    • Raks into Spring/Raks into Summer recitals for bellydance students–co-organized with Shayera and Za’ina. (2002-present)
    • appeared in 10 dancer competition, judged by Dina Talaat of Cairo, at the Little Egypt-hosted workshop (no costume, no prep, with music chosen by the dj)   (Minneapolis, 2006)  3rd place
    • various restaurants, festivals, private parties, fundraisers, community events, and cultural demonstrations in Winnipeg and the surrounding area

Memberships, Licenses, & Related

  • Member of Dance Manitoba (2000-present)
  • Founding member of now-defunct Eastern Dance Circle of Manitoba (EDCOM), MB’s Middle Eastern Dance association, since its inception in 1999.  Executive Secretary (2005-2006) and regular contributor to the Belly Button Bulletin, EDCOM’s quarterly newsletter.
  • CPR/First Aid
  • City of Winnipeg Instructor Safety Training
  • fully insured

Awards

  • Silver, Gold & Gold Honours for solo, duet (with Za’ina Dilshad), and troupe dances (Ahlan Dance Company, Spice Road Dance Company), Dance Manitoba’s annual Provincial Dance Festival (1998, 2000-2005), in the National Dance category
  • Faculty of Arts, Honours Silver Medal, Anthropology Honours Gold Medal (U of W)

Teaching

  • instructional contracts with:
    • Essential Motion Fitness, Oakbank, MB (2006)
    • Body Balance Fitness (2009 to present)
    • City of Winnipeg (1999-2006)wellness expo (1)
    • CFB 17th Wing
    • Bravado Dance Studio/ Institute of Dance Manitoba (1999-2008)
    • University of Manitoba
    • Jobworks
  • Independent/freelance classes &  workshops:
    • Chai Folk Ensemble Studio (2011-2012)
    • Ted Motyka Dance Studio (2011-2012)
    • Shirley’s Dance Studio (2011 to present)
    • Au Set Bellydance Emporium (2006-2010)
    • Rising Star Dance Academy (2005+)
    • Nelson MacIntyre Collegiate Student Wellness Expo (2008)
    • Cancer Care MB (2006)
    • CFB 17th Wing, (2006)
    • Teen Warehouse (Portage la Prairie 2005, 2006)
    • Norquay School Multiple Intelligences Week (2003)
    • Women’s Retreat, Misty Lake Lodge (2003)
    • Nicola’s Navel Academy Dance Intensives (2000, 2001, 2002, 2009, 2012, 2015)
    • Wellington Fitness Centre (1999-2000)
    • Wellington Fitness Centre/Hudson Bay Company Workshop for Teen Girls (1999).
  • instructs Egyptian raks sharqi (Orientale, or “bellydance”), raks shaabi, raks beledi, raks Saiidi, raks al assaya, Meleyya Leff, Ghawazee, Khaleegi and “old-school” American cabaret, as well as finger cymbals, veil, cane, fans, wings, and sword
  • recognized for clear, supportive teaching techniques, collaborative atmosphere, excellent resource materials, and diverse choreographies
  • preschool movement teacher, Wiggle, Giggle & Munch community-outreach program.

Other

  • TV appearances on “Backstage” with Tracy Koga, “Cityscape” with Marcy Markusa, “Big Breakfast” and “A Channel News at Night” local news/information programs, and in the Canstar community and Winnipeg Sun newspapers
  • assistant to Shayera in hosting workshops with Cassandra, Hadia, Jamilee Abir & Ariellah, Denise Enan

“The dance is a poem of which each movement is a world.”

Mata Hari


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Contact Nicola

204-957-7520
nicolaraks@mymts.net
Located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.