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| Short Bio for Publicity | Short Philosophy | Long Philosophy | Long Bio |

Short Bio for publicity:

Shoshanna is from Arcata, in the redwoods on California’s North Coast. She has danced throughout her life in many styles and found her art in the dances styles of the Middle East in 1991. A dedicated improvisational dancer who values any opportunity to perform to live music, Shoshanna strives to express the joy of dancing and the emotional quality of the music. As an instructor, she works to balance personal interpretation of the music with excellent technical skills and a deeper understanding of the dance form. Shoshanna serves on the dance faculty of Humboldt State University, directs the Ya Habibi Dance Company, produces music and dance events such as the Redwood Coast Belly Dance Festival, owns Redwood Raks World Dance Studio, and teaches and performs across the US. She appears on numerous performance and instructional DVDs and in 2004 earned the title of Belly Dancer of the Year.Photo by Michael Baxter

My Abbreviated Philosophy:

Well I hear the music, close my eyes, feel the rhythm...
Wrap around, take ahold of my heart...
Take your passion, and make it happen...
Pictures come alive... you can dance right through your life.
Now I hear the music... close my eyes... I am rhythm.
In a flash it takes hold of my heart...
What a feeling.
From Flashdance... What A Feeling by Irene Cara

My Philosophy on Dance & Veilwork:

I see dance is an art of time and space living in a sea of music, emotion, and ideas. The music, emotions, and ideas push, pull, and inspire us to move, drawing out an essence of ourselves. The ways that we manipulate time and space with our bodies and the layers of cultural and intellectual filters through which we mediate our instinctive natural movements with what we feel we “should” be doing all contribute to what is seen and experienced as we dance.

In the milieu of Oriental Dance, we use fabric to accentuate, to frame, to embellish, to extend, to interact, and to enhance our presentations.

I feel that within every dancer is a style, a musical genre, certain movements, a venue, a “prop”….. some type of vehicle through which the unique expression of his or herself may be glimpsed in a performance. In my journey as a dancer I have found the veil to help deepen my connection to the performance experience, and to further illustrate my visual expression of the emotional heart of the music I love.

Being a dance form that is highly individualistic, Oriental Dance has always attracted those interested
in a high level of personal expression. I feel that to truly enter a place where you are expressing aspects
of yourself … to get your performance to the level of “Art,” you need to have three equally developed components:

1. TECHNIQUE (building a strong body that you have cross trained in multiple disciplines and in many methods of movement to give you a large range of possibilities in your repertoire)
2. A VISION representing your inspirations and ideas.
3. KNOWLEDGE giving you a solid foundation of tradition, history, culture, and perspective from which to draw from and depart.

The infusion of these elements into your dancing can give strengthen and deepen any artistic presentation you develop. Continually working on all of these areas is what gives any artist creative food for a lifetime of amazing, expressive work.

Finding the way to tap into your honest expressive potential may not happen immediately – perhaps not even for years. Many dancers and artists need to spend time “trying on” the styles of their teachers or popular artists of the past or present that they admire. Eventually, though, I think it is time to let go of the expressive styles of others and find a way to allow the seed of something within you to be unlocked, unleashed, and nurtured to the point that your dancing becomes an expression of a facet of you…

Whether or not you find the use of long veils to be a way for you to find this creative potential within yourself, I hope to infuse you with new ideas as an artist and to inspire you to use my approaches to dancing and art to enhance and expand your work.

Happy Dancing!

The Long Version... About Shoshanna

Shoshanna is a performer and instructor based in Arcata, in the redwoods on California’s north coast. In addition to teaching at local dance studios and performing frequently she is on the dance faculty of Humboldt State University, directs the Ya Habibi Dance Company and produces concerts and events including the Redwood Coast Bellydance Festival. She has taught workshops across the United States and in 2004 won the title of Belly Dancer of the Year. While Shoshanna’s expressive and dramatic style draws from many sources, her inspiration is always the emotional heart of the music.

Shoshanna’s interests lie in a strong foundation in Egyptian dance with a fusion other influences inspired by her extensive dance training. Shoshanna is an improvisational dancer whose specialties are working with four-yard veils, fans and skirts, and who values any opportunity to perform to live music. She enjoys exploring many styles, from traditional line dances to the latest innovations in Tribal Fusion...

As a performer, Shoshanna strives to express the joy of dancing and the emotional quality of the music. As an instructor, she works to balance artistic and personal interpretation of the music with excellent technical skills, a deeper understanding of the dance form, and to instill a passion for this dance form. This philosophy holds true for any class that Shoshanna teaches.

Shoshanna has studied with many noted teachers including Dalia Carella, Elena Lentini, Mahmoud Reda, Farida Famhy, Momo Kadous, Jamila Salimpour, Raqia Hassan, Dr. Mo Geddawi, Jihan Jamal, Tamalyn Dallal, Leila Haddad, Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan, Amaya, Aneena, Shareen El Safy, Suhaila Salimpour, Cassandra Shore, Jehan Kamal, Bahaia, Aida Nour, Karim Nagi, Amir Thaleb, John Compton, Shukriya, Carolina Nericcio, Jill Parker, Zoe Jakes and many more. Shoshanna has had the pleasure to dance with many fabulous musicians such as: Georges Lammam, Elias Lammam, Omar Faruk Tekbilek, Souhail Kaspar, Faisal Zedan, Naser Musa, Souren Baronian, Haig Manookian, Polly Tapier, Mimi Spencer, Mary Ellen Donald, Reda Darwish, Doug Adamz, Salaheddin Takesh, Joshkun Tamer, Ellen Cruz, Light Rain, Brothers of the Baladi, Karim Nagi, Tobias Roberson, Stellamara, Raquy & The Cavemen and many more.

Shoshanna teaches many classes in local studios and as dance faculty for the Department of Theatre, Film & Dance at Humboldt State University, from which she graduated in 2003 with her BA in Art with concentrations in Art History and Graphic Design, minors in Psychology and Dance, and a Certificate of Art Museum & Gallery Practices.

As the founder of Mosaic Productions (www.redwoodcoastbellydance.com) under the non-profit umbrella of the Ink People Center for the Arts, Shoshanna creates exciting events featuring guest music and dance artists in Humboldt County. Through this group she has begun producing the Redwood Coast Bellydance Festival, held each fall at the Arcata Community Center.

Click here for a list of some of the events Shoshanna has produced... it's a brag list! :-)

Amira & ShoshannaIn March 2007 Shoshanna became a mommy to the lovely Amira Jade... her new favorite person! Now her time is spent producing events, teaching classes, performing, and enjoying every minute with her marvelous little girl. Her second baby is due in March 2010. Fun!

Photo above by Michael Baxter, 2008



Contact Shoshanna anytime:
(707) 616-6876 •  P.O. Box 1086, Arcata, CA 95518 • dance@shoshannaland.com

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