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About Gaziyeh Enterprises, Inc:

Gaziyeh Enterprises, Inc. was established in 1995 to study, preserve, present, and promote the arts of the Middle East in the greater Lawrence and Kansas City areas.


The origin of belly dance has been tied to a number of ancient civilizations, cultures and religions. Believed to have originated as part of temple ritual, it may have been used to help women prepare for childbirth by developing control of the abdominal muscle groups as a focal exercise, much as Lamaze is used today. For many, it is meditative, a mixture of the music’s mesmerizing qualities and the enhanced physical awareness that comes with the mastering of isolated movements, which are very natural and help to release tension.


The term belly dance may have been a misinterpretation of Beledi dancer, a descriptor used by the dancers from the Middle East performing at the Chicago Exposition of 1893. Many of the movements originate in the torso and not the belly. Also known as “danse du ventre” (stomach muscle dance), “raks sharqi” and “la danse orientale”, it is among the oldest of dance forms. This style of movement is a celebration of the pure joy of femininity.


Not necessarily the dance of slender youth, any shape of body, age or height is “just right” for belly dance. Around the world, the most admired woman’s form is “rounded” and “softly padded.” The body in motion is not subject to judgment: interpretation of the music is what is paramount. The most celebrated Egyptian dancers have performed well into their fifties. King Farouk once said that the belly dancer "must express life, death, happiness, sorrow, love and anger" So each dancer‘s unique style often parallels their life path: they develop their “dance soul” as they experience life.


Dances from this part of the world include dances for men, to show their masculinity. Among the most exciting is the “Tahtib” or stick dance, where a soloist struts while demonstrating fighting postures. A number of men sometimes participate in a mock battle. There are also line dances, such as the doebka, whose steps vary by geographic area and where the men display acrobatic moves.


The American view of belly dance has changed immensely since its early popularity during the sixties. No longer an activity for bored housewives; professionals from many walks of life boast secondary careers as instructors and performers and network on a global basis. The form has gained some acceptance as art in the dance community at large, with concert venues and ethnic festivals augmenting the restaurant and “belly-gram,” the customary opportunities for dancers to perform.


Gaziyeh Enterprises, Raghsidad and the Lawrence Area Middle Eastern Dance Community include soloists and musicians available for educational demonstrations and social gatherings. Gaziyeh Enterprises, Inc. is a nonprofit cultural and educational organization. Raghsidad is a dance company based in Lawrence, KS and under the artistic direction of Zada Al Gaziyeh.


Visit www.gaziyeh.com, https://www.facebook.com/RaghsidadGaziyehEnterprisesInc?ref=hl or email gaziyeh@aol.com for information.

Note: Zada and members of Raghsidad have taught/are teaching classes and demonstrations in Lawrence & Kansas City areas for information on who and where, email gaziyeh@aol.com

About Zada - a resume:

Teaching Experience:

  • City of Tonganoxie, winter-spring 2007, new beginner class for the recreation department
  • City of Lawrence Parks & Recreation 1986 to Present
    • Thru 2002, principal dance instructor, for tap, ballet, jazz for ages 4 - adult. Began teaching Middle Eastern Classes in 1989 - Current focus on ME Dance Instruction.
  • Tribal Dreams, Lincoln, NE, 2008
    • "Got Ghawazee" - an overview of technique with zills
  • Ottawa, Senior Living at Washburn Towers, 2011-12
    • Weekly Classes tailored to the mature woman.
  • "Drop In" Ghawazee Class for Siham Ali, October, 2007
  • Baldwin City Recreation 1996 -98
    • Tap instructor for semi-private and adult classes
  • Dances of the Middle East, Kansas City, MO 1988
    • 1 ½ hour class of combinations with finger cymbal patterns using three different rhythms with live drumming
  • Middle Eastern Dance Collective, Kansas City, MO 1993
    • Three class series on middle eastern rhythms, and three minute routine accenting dynamics and use of finger cymbals
  • Artists of the Dance, Columbus, OH 1993
    • 1/2 day class focusing on 6/8 and masmoudi rhythms, featuring three minute entrance choreography with live drumming
  • Sands of Egypt Productions, Youngstown, OH 1994
    • 1/2 day class including across the floor work, hip isolations and shimmy technique, and 5 minute drum solo choreography for troupe
  • Des Moines, IA 1994
    • 2 1/2 hour drum/percussion class for Caravan troupe
  • Aalim Dance Academy/St, Louis. MO 1995
    • 2 1/2 hour workshop in ethnic styling for multi-level dance group, including walking steps, arm and hand movements, and techniques specific to Saiidi and Ghawazee styles.
  • Schehera’s Fabulous Festival/Dayton, OH 1996
    • 1 1/2 hour class in rhythm and dumbek for multi-level group. Overview of 10 rhythms, their origin and use with notes provided, and practice drilling of each..
  • Kahraman Studios/Iowa City, IA 1996
    • 2 hour rhythm and drumming workshop for dancers and musicians. Overview of 15 rhythms, as above, including translation to zills, notes provided
  • Judy’s Creative Costuming/ Sedalia, MO 1997
    • 1/2 day class in folkloric styling, featuring traditional Ghawazee and Saidi steps
  • "Belly Jam" / Cincinnati, OH 1997, 1999, 2000
    • 1 1/2 hour clasess in: Ghawazee and Saidi styles, and techniques to translate known movements to folkloric styling; "Don’t be afraid of Kashlimar" (dancing to the 9/8 rhythm); Using other dance forms in ME Dance
  • Fall Mini-Class / Chandara Gamal/St. Louis, MO 1998
    • 2 1/2 hour class – taught choreography with zills for live drumming and 1 hour percussion class
  • Spring Mini – Workshop / Soraya Al Musri/Oklahoma City, OK 1999
    • Full day - featuring the use of finger cymbals with movement. Morning Session - routine of simple steps with basic zill patterns to be performed with any beledi recording or live percussion; Afternoon Session – 3.1/2 minute choreography with zills to "Bedouin Wedding" and 1 hour percussion class
  • Private Workshop / Arleah / St Louis, MO 2002
    • 4 hour class, Cane technique and Raks Al Assaya choreography created for Desert Moon Dance Company
  • Spring Mini-workshop / Ziva Saphira / Birmingham, AL 2002
    • Full day of Class, Morning concentration across the floor and combinations, plus a short choreography with simple zill patterns; Afternoon, understanding and creating zill patterns other than basic Middle Eastern Rhythms and Bedouin Wedding choreography. Private Troupe Classes for Ziva Saphira, with 3.5 minute Gypsy style Kashlimar choreography including staging
  • Mini-workshop / Soraya Al Musri / Oklahoma City 2004
    • Full day - exploring ways to play finger cymbals. Morning session - playing with the rhythm, matching patterns to your steps, and using the music as inspiration; Afternoon session - a short choreography for two or more to the Sultans' Habibi Y'Aini
  • Class for Siham Ali event - 90 minutes of safe warm ups and Ghawazee stylings, KCMO 2007


 Performance Highlights:


  • Kansas City Renaissance Festival, Kansas City, MO 1983 to Present
    • Six years as contracted stage act, "The Ghawazee Dancers"; Ten years as sponsor of special event/performance "Raghs Ruz"; Coordinator Middle Eastern theme weekend - two days of performances by Raghsidad. & Wazan Wa Zamir (1995-2007); Full time stage act Casbah Raks 1999
  • Taste of Cultures, Lawrence, KS 1994-6
  • Celebration of Cultures, Lawrence, KS 1994-6
  • Kansas City Ethnic Enrichment Festival 1988, 1995-6
  • KU International Students Week Performances 1998, 1999, 2002-4
  • 10th Annual Sharif Dance Gala Show, NYC, NY, July 2007
  • Kansas City Fringe Festival 2006, 2008-present


Fund Raisers

  • River City Review, Lawrence, KS 1988, 1995-2000
  • FROTH fund raiser, Lawrence, KS 1994, 1998
  • Bizarre Bazaar (for the Lawrence Arts Center) 2002-present
  • Foundation Follies, Lawrence, KS, 2002, 2004


Stage Concerts

  • Siham Ali Annual Concert, Kansas City, MO (annual) 1985-present
  • City in Motion New Directions Dance Concert Series 1998-9, 2001, 2002
  • Lawrence Area Choreographer's Showcase, Lawrence, KS 1995-2007
  • "Cairo on the Kaw", Lawrence, KS 1995-2007
  • City in Motion "Spotlight on Culture" concert series premiere 1999
  • "Dance in the Park", Kansas City, MO 2002-3, 2005-6
  • "Summerfest", a citywide celebration in Dwight, KS 2002


Restaurants & Clubs

  • Nourhan Sharif Gala Concert, New York City, NY 2007
  • Ibrahim Farrah Gala Concert, New York City, NY 1994
  • Full Moon Cafe, Lawrence, KS 1993 to 1996
  • Nouvelle Tasty Shoppe, Lawrence, KS 1996-7
  • Jerusalem Cafe, Lawrence, KS 1997
  • Jester’s, Lawrence, KS, 1998
  • Aladdin Café, Lawrence, KS 2000-2010


Special Performance: Alhambra Room, Cairo Sheraton, Cairo, Egypt June 2000 - presentation of "American Ghawazee", a historic recreation of dancing from Luxor/Aswan region



Educational Demonstrations:

  • Broken Arrow School, Lawrence, KS
    • Presentation of rhythms, use of hand percussion, simple movement for 1st grade classes
    • Presentation of Middle Eastern Folktales through written, oral, visual, musical and movement for 3rd and 4th grades
  • Pinckney School, Lawrence, KS
    • Presentation on Ancient Egyptian dance and music, consultation for student pageant, featuring ancient and traditional Egyptian movement w/rhythm accompaniment
    • Lecture Demo table for Geography Fair
  • South Junior High School
    • Lecture demonstration in support of Geography unit on the Middle East, including , video clips, clothing and instruments, and discussion of religious and political issues of the day
  • University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS
    • Lecture demonstration with musicians on history of movement and music of the Middle East for western civilization classes
  • Oak Park High School, N. Kansas City, MO
    • Presentation for high school orientation diversity program
  • Clardy Elementary School, N. Kansas City, MO
    • Performance for cultural diversity festival
  • Shawnee Mission High Schools Geography Night
    • Performance and Demonstration w/ Q&A
  • Ottawa University Extension Classes, Mission, KS (1997-9, 2001, 2003-4)
    • Performance and Demonstration w/ Q&A - Cultural Diversity through Music & Dance
  • Lawrence Girl Scout Camps (Summer 2010)
  • Shawnee Mission High School, Mission, KS (1999-2002)
    • Guest Instructor for dance classes – focus on basic movements in Middle Eastern Dance
  • Independence, Inc. (2002)
    • Lecture-demonstration on ME culture
  • Nelson Atkins Museum, Kansas City, MO (2002)
    • Lecture-demonstration of instruments and Middle Eastern musical theory, with dance illustration
  • University of Kansas International Students Diversity Week (2004)
    • Special open dance class for basics and a few traditional folks dances for anyone and everyone
  • Lawrence Public Library (2005)
    • Lecture Demonstration on the history of ME music
  • KC Area Epilepsy Camp at Tall Oak Camp in Linwood, KS (2007)
    • Demo and class, providing a fun break for volunteer workers and parents of campers


Master Class Series:

Sponsor of master classes with nationally recognized instructors* for area teachers and professionals, focused on particular style of dance or method of teaching - Guest Instructors include: Alexandra King, Zeina (Memphis), Shakira, Maleeha (2x), Leila Gamal, Princess Farhana (2x)


Dancers' Toolkit Series:

Sponsor of local seminars with nationally ranked instructors to cover basic skillsets for all dancers, regardless of style:  Cassandra, 2011, Elena Lentini, 2012


Professional Training - Zada:

  • (Ongoing personal training with National and International Instructors through attendance at weekend dance seminars throughout the year)
  • B.F.A Theatre, University of Connecticut 1972
  • Jamila Salimpour, San Francisco, CA 1978
  • Ibrahim Farrah week long Teacher 's Seminar, New York, NY 1994
  • Mahmoud Reda Master Classes 1979-1992-1997-1998 Wichita, KS-Memphis, TN, Dallas, TX, Kansas City. MO
  • Raqia Hassan, Minneapolis, MN 1995, 1996, NY 2000, Cairo 2000, NY 2011
  • Ahlan Wa Salan 2000 - Cairo, Egypt - Ibrahim Akef, Farida Fahmy, Soheir Zeki, Dina, Yousry Sharif, Nabil Mabrouk and others during week long conference
  • Hassan Afifi - Luxor Egypt, 2008
  • Yousry Sharif - multiple study opportunities1995 to present - (latest July 07 / NYC)
  • Elena Lentini - first encounter in Minneapolis in 2000, Class work at Fazil's  in NYC, NYC April 2011
  • Cassandra Shore - At least eight seminars including a weeklong since 1990


Seminar and Master Classes 1987 to Present:

  • Attend an average of 5 seminars with nationally and internationally known instructors each year. Complete list available on request.
  • International Middle Eastern Dance Symposium 1997
  • Delivered white paper on the organization of the International Middle Eastern Dance Community in the 21st Century using Quality Principles



  • Middle Eastern Dance Collective, Kansas City, MO 1993-1998
  • Board of Directors, founding member/secretary (1993-5)
  • Celebration of Cultures, Lawrence, KS 1994-1998
  • Board member, performance coordinator - Celebration of Cultures Festival, 1994-6 , Taste of Cultures 1995-6, President 1995-6 term.
  • The Ghawazee Dancers 1983-1989
    • Managing member-professional dance group featuring live music
  • Raghsidad 1988 to Present
    • Artistic director-professional dance company
  • Wazzan Wa Zamir 1993 to 2005Musician group featuring traditional and improvisational music in Middle Eastern style (known as Raghsidad musicians 2005 to present)
  • Gaziyeh Enterprises, Inc. 1995 to Present
    • Organized as a not for profit corporation in the state of Kansas, purpose: to preserve, promote and present the cultures of the Middle East through the study and performance of its music and dance. IRS 501C3 
  • Staff Writer for Crescent Moon Magazine 1995-1998
    • Publication for those interested in Middle Eastern Dance, produced in Paducah, KY, with circulation throughout the continental US.
  • Online publications at bellydance.net 2005

References available upon request

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