Photo credit: Imad Alam

The Gilded Serpent presents...

Sahra Saeeda

Dancer, Performer, Dance Ethnologist

Sahra is a dancer, teacher and Dance Ethnologist.

As a performer, Sahra performs Orientale and Egyptian Folkloric worldwide. Los Angeles, California, based, she moved to Cairo to research in 1989, and within the month received a contract with the Meridian-Heliopolis 5-star hotel. She held a continuous 6-night a week contract there for nearly 6 years. She holds the record in Cairo Egypt for the longest running contract of a foreign dancer at a 5-Star Hotel with over 1600 shows in Cairo, Egypt alone.

As a teacher, Sahra has taught (and performed) Egyptian style Orientale and Folkloric dance on five continents. She continues teaching a full tour schedule 11 months a year. Her warm style of teaching encourages students to grow, learn and enjoy.

Contributor to the Belly Dance Reader Volumn 1

As a Dance Ethnologist, Sahra has University degrees in Dance Ethnology (Master of Arts UCLA), Cultural Anthropology and Archeology (Bachelor UCSB), and Dance (Associate of Arts Palomar College). After living, researching and performing in Cairo for 6 years (1989-1995) she returns to research in Egypt annually.

"JtE Journey through Egypt" - After studying Egyptian folkloric dance, both academically (in University and under Farida Fahmy) and in Egypt, Sahra felt the call to apply Dance Ethnology concepts to a systematic overview of the Dance Zones of Egypt. She developed the concept and content of her "JtE" Journey through Egypt"; first presenting JtE-1 in 2008. By 2009, JtE-2 was developed and presented in studios. She felt that the only way to continue the study was to actually be there; JtE-3 based in Cairo Egypt and JtE-4 Upper Egypt was first offered in 2009. JtE-5 South Sinai / Suez Canal will be presented for the first time 2012.

Articles on Gilded Serpent by or about Sahra

  • The Dance Zones of Egypt: Sahra Kent's Journey Through Egypt Basic 1 Workshop
    Although not strictly speaking a dance workshop, for each zone we got up to learn some characteristic steps and posture, and gestures associated with each dance zone/style, a good way to blend the theoretical with the experiential.
  • A Night at Wahib's Roxxanne Shelaby's "Pure Sharqi"
    On January 19, Gilded Serpent was in Los Angeles for Pure Sharqi, a special evening of live music and dance, hosted by Roxxanne Shelaby (Hypzotica Productions), at Wahib's in Alhambra. The evening featured the house band, led by Mouhamad Salem, along with invited dancers Aubre, Alexandra, the Lumina Dance Company, Debbie Smith, Sahra Saida, and Roxxanne herself, in addition to the regular house dance company the Sahlala Dancers.
  • Sahra Goes to Egypt, Follow Your Dreams
    Getting to know Sahra through the years I came to realize that all her richness and wealth was in her commitment to the dance and to the culture adjoining it. Like many artists, in many fields, she sacrificed for her art and she was always trying to find ways to share her art, her knowledge and her love of Egypt, dance and music.
  • Judging the Judges, Training Judges for Competitions
    These are fine scoring points, but there are usually no detailed guidelines for each scoring section in each category, nor strict regulations for judges, which seem to cause some grey areas. Contestants have rules and regulations, why not the judges?
  • My First Day at IBCC 2012, The International Bellydance Conference of Canada held in Toronto
    The first day of IBCC is always exciting ā€“ participants are full of pep, hungry to learn, and ready to try it all! Selecting which of the tempting workshops, lectures, discussion panels, and shows to attend is daunting. Like many others, I found it really difficult to decide what to go to and what Iā€™d have to miss; with so many things happening at the same ā€“ and overlapping times ā€“ not being able to take in everything you want is unfortunately inevitable.
  • Joshkun and Company Create Community and Art in the Redwoods, Mendocino Middle Eastern Music and Dance Camp 2011 Photos, Page 1 The Mendocino Middle Eastern Music and Dance Camp has been a community tradition since 1991. Joshkun says that several of the teachers first came as students.
  • Drawing Together: Discussion, Discoveries, Diversity, IBCC 2012: International Bellydance Conference of Canada
    I made some unexpected discoveries about our dance and my place in it. I was aware of how far the dance has come since I started out in 1972, how much it has changed and how much it is changing still. I finally put the whole tribal/fusion dilemma into a place in which I feel comfortable. So much of what holds me back from accepting change is fear, fear that what I know will change and will no longer be acceptable.