Nini Baseema

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Nini Baseema

I fell in love with belly dance when I was around age 14 or 15. I had made friends with this nice Tunisian girl at school who invited me home to her family many times. The mother was a great belly dancing fan and obviously a dedicated Fifi Abdo fanatic. She would show us all her videos and made us dance to the music, lavished with sequined belts and bellydance jewelery. Whenever the father was away, you could see several generations of women dance wildly around through the house: the mother, the grandmother, the aunt, the sisters- and even the little baby of the family- were having fun together. It was great!

Years later, after moving into another city in Germany, I remember bumping into an advertisement and thinking: Wow, belly dance! That's for me! As a consequence I started taking proper lessons with the professional Turkish born dancer Fatima Serin in late 1996 to early 1997.

Countless classes and many workshops with other teachers in classical Raks Sharki and Mideastern folklore dance styles followed. I began to perform in Fatima Serin's groups after two or three years and as a solo artist shortly thereafter.

I still like to perform with some of Fatima's dance groups or with her in a duet as I enjoy dancing with other women just as much as being the center of the attention myself!

Due to the influence of teachers I have had, (almost all of them were from the Middle East) and the experience I gathered in the past more than ten years, I am considered to be a very traditional dancer. However, that doesn't mean that I'm not open to anything new or to new dance styles- quite the contrary! I love that there is so much diversity possible in bellydance!

Any dancer who presents the art with the right amount of grace, dignity and passion delights me, as long as he or she is somehow true and convincing and possesses a good aura. Martha Graham, a famous modern dance choreographer and dancer, once summed up what I truly believe as well:

"Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance. Great dancers are not great because of their technique; they are great because of their passion."

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