Our interview with a Guest star at Arabesque Nights and a performer and audience regular over the years since our beginnings in 2010. It's the theatrical, whimsical and wonderful DAWN HARVEY
What's been your most unusual performance so far?
1. Years ago when I first started performing, there used to a yearly dance day in Covent Garden, and my teacher Jacqueline Chapman took a group of us there to perform, great audience, and atmosphere and so exciting for me at the time. Hossam Ramzy used to organise it . One year I did my first ever solo's to Afrah Baladi by Mostafa Sax. I wore a plain, blue edged with gold embroidery, baladi dress loose no bling. But I can honestly say that performance sticks in my brain more than most I have it on Video I will have to have it transferred to DVD.
2. I did two performance's at a show in Luton Library Theatre about 6 to 7 years ago run by my friend Julie Clark. I can honestly say that those two performance's were the best I have ever done. Being a performer outside influences affect us , so everything sometimes has to be just right, state of mind, how you feel, audience etc. on the occasion I did a double veil performance to a fusion piece and not seen very much know-adays a double sword performance, I felt good, excited, I was pleased. effect on stage was great, and lovely comments, Thankfully they are on DVD for posterity.
I have so many memories over the years I will never forget and thankfully I started quite early on to write each of my bookings up, the good, the bad and the ugly. I have about 3 books full jam packed with details, where , and how much I was paid etc.I have recently started to type and publish them all for future belly dance interest (See help for new dance section)
Do you have a personal favourite costume designer:-?
Going to cheat and choose 3.
Madam Eman - As she only has to look at you and know your size, and colour suitability and works really hard (although I wish she would make the her cups larger).She is one of the only one's who come over from Egypt regularly to UK as well.
Marta - A Turkish designer based in Germany, some of the most expensive costumes you can buy but really worth it. I am lucky to own one and would never part with it as it is so comfy. It is black/silver spider web design, and lucky enough I brought it second hand from Ebay. So look for those bargains.
Madam Abla - I do have one in Purple but it is a little on the small side I think I can alter it to fit however when I have time so may well wear this one again.
You were Guest star at our Midsummer Nights Dream show in June 2013, who is your favourite mythological character and why?
Great Question: A Chinese folk character called Saiyuki Sun Wukong or (Monkey) which is a book form story to begin with by Arthur Waley or if anyone remembers Friday evenings at 6PM on BBC2 n the 1980's you will I am sure remember the hour long weekly series (heavily dubbed) and why the humour ( I never knew how they got away with some of it) grossly exaggerated accents, faciel expressions, which is to blame I am afraid for my strange faciel expressions while performing - that and the wonderful smile of Tom Baker.
Name 3 items you will find in your essential belly-dance performance bag.?
Make-up - Glitter - Costume
Tell us one of your secret indulgences?
Chocolate, Reading, Travel, Doctor Who, Sci-Fi, Films, Friends, Days out
Tell us one of your belly-dance pet hates?
Hearing the same music time and time again in performance , and if I hear Windows of the East or I put a spell on you once more time I will scream.
Give us an interesting belly-dance fact?
Tell a story when you perform, make it much more interesting for the audience. Even if you are not a great storyteller you can always emote it, listen to what the music is telling you and tell the audience. your are part of the orchestra. I find I switch off if a dancer is just there to try and look sexy, being it a man or woman. After-all Sexy is boring - mystery is much more interesting.
Thanks for Natalie Borg for the questions. 2013/2014