Biography


Studying and Performing

Amarise began her dance career at age 3 when her mother enrolled her in her first ballet and tap classes. She has been performing and studying various dance styles for over 25 years. Amarise has studied many different styles of Middle Eastern dance from areas such as Egypt, Turkey, Israel and the Gulf region.

Some of these styles and techniques include:

     Classical Egyptian Raks Sharqi (Bellydance)
     American Cabaret
     Middle Eastern/Spanish fusion
     Veil
     Sword Dance
     Egyptian pop Shaabi
     Lebanese Debke
     Khaleegy
     Haggala
     Saidi
     Turkish Oryental (a Turkish spelling)
     Turkish Rom
     Eskandarani (Melaya Leff)
     American Greek Cabaret
     Israeli round dance
     Single and double cane
     Zils (finger cymbals)
     Bollywood of India

Amarise also had the privilege of commuting to Chicago to perform with Angelina's Chicago troupe for 3 ½ years. In addition to her regular class studies in Chicago, Amarise has completed over 310 hours of specialized workshop and seminar training with visiting national and internationally known master instructors of Middle Eastern Dance, some of whom include:

      Dahlena
      Mohamed Shahin
      Aida Nour
      Maya Gaorry of Italy
      Andreana Maroon
      Tamalyn Dallal
      Cassandra Shore
      Aziza
      DaVid of Scandinavia
      Bozenka
      Sahra Saeeda
      Magda and Atef Farag
      Ava Fleming
      Sabah
      Morocco
      Yasmina Ramzy of Canada
      Angelika Nemeth
      Fahtiem
      Amaya
      Artemis Mourat
      Ma*Shuqa Mira Murjan
      Norma of Detroit

      Indicates instructors that Amarise has studied with for more than one class/workshop.

Amarise attributes most of her Bellydance training to Dahlena, a masterful instructor in the intricacies of Middle Eastern Dance and a dancer extraordinaire and also to her very talented daughter, Angelina.

Amarise has a lifetime of dedication to the arts. In addition to her ten years of experience in various forms of Middle Eastern Dance, she has studied Ballet, Pointe, Tap, Jazz and numerous other styles which have included Scottish Highland, Square Dancing, the Charleston, Bollywood and various couples and ballroom styles. Her combined dance study spans more than 25 years. Amarise continues to explore dance from the Middle East region as well as other dance styles enriching her experience as a dancer and instructor through private lessons and workshops.

Her performances over the years have included numerous stage shows, folk and cultural festivals, retirement homes, various benefits, P.T.A. events, school plays, local television highlights, restaurants and nightclubs, and many special family and corporate occasions in Rockford and the surrounding area, Freeport, Chicago and southern Wisconsin.


Teaching

Amarise currently teaches several ongoing weekly classes for beginning and intermediate students. She also teaches at Rock Valley College through its Community and Continuing Education Program.

In addition to teaching Middle Eastern Dance, Amarise has a unique history of teaching experience. It began when she earned her Tae Kwon-Do Black Belt at age sixteen and was asked by her sixth degree Black Belt instructor, Master Jong Lee, to teach classes and private lessons to men, women and children at the main school, a smaller branch school and at a YWCA. She continued to teach under the direction of Master Lee for the next 2 ½ years.

After college graduation Amarise became manager of a medium-sized store. For 4 years she was put in charge of training the other employees and managers in addition to her regular duties. She also taught weight training to adults of all ages for 1 year at a YWCA.

Amarise returned to college to study mechanical engineering. For the 4 years she worked in the field of engineering, she was often given the task of training fellow employees and her supervisors on various engineering CAD systems.

Amarise discovered early on her ability to break down and analyze individual techniques to better help students learn and comprehend. Amarise's varied teaching experiences give her a well rounded approach to instructing others.


A Bit More About Amarise

Dance is not Amarise's only love. She also has a major in interior design and a minor in fine arts and commercial illustration and she has been a professional photographer. Amarise has sold her artwork and photographs to companies and individuals. She is also very accomplished at sewing and it is not uncommon for her to make some of her own costume pieces. When Amarise is not dancing, you may find her engaging in another one of her loves, hiking.

Amarise also believes in giving back to the community. She has done much charity work over her lifetime including lay counseling for abused and/or troubled women, teens and their families for 7 years. She was also a volunteer at Rockford Memorial hospital for 2 years.



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