Samirah is Baharat!!'s narrator and announcer. She has been studying Middle Eastern dance since 2003. She has taken workshops with several noteworthy instructors, including Jennet, Salome, Shareen El-Safy, Alexandra King, and Dahlena. She has taken classes with local instructors Shaheena, Nizana and Michael Moonbear, as well as studying regularly with A'isha Azar. Though she has no plans at this time to dance professionally, her importance to the company cannot be over stressed. She studies the dances of the Middle East and North Africa, not only for the pleasure of it, but also in order to have a depth of understanding, so that she can talk about the dance with the voice of experience!
Samirah started belly dance with no formal dance training, except for a year of ballet as a child. She also participated in contra dancing in college. She studied piano from childhood into her high school years and found that her musical training was a helpful background for learning to play finger cymbals and drums. She is an avid quilter and would some day like to explore the art of costume making.
For Samirah, the appeal of the dance is its complexity of Egyptian belly dance. She loves the layering of movements, the “interweaving melodies and rhythms, and yes, the sparkly costumes”. Samirah has deep respect for movement as a vehicle for interpreting music.
Samirah has lived in five states throughout the U.S. and, for a short time, in Siberia. She speaks Spanish and Russian and hopes to study Arabic in the future. She is a librarian and a resident storyteller in the library where she is employed. This part of her job serves her well in her capacity as narrator for Baharat!!