ARABESQUE ACADEMY — Teachers
Amel Farag — Teacher
Amel Farag is a professional dance artist with over 15 years of experience, and 8 years as a student at the Arabesque Academy. She is currently a member of the Arabesque Folklore Troupe. Born and raised in Egypt, she had developed her love of dance ever since she could first walk. The love of all forms of art and dance has been in her family through generations, with family members in ballet, cello, Raqs Sharqi, tar (Egyptian frame drum), and contemporary dance. Amel's passion for Raqs Sharqi and experience in bootcamp style workouts helps her to energize and inspire others to connect with their body in a soulful and enjoyable way.
Dr. George Sawa — Qanoon, Naye, Theory, History
George Sawa was born in Alexandria , Egypt in 1947. He studied Classical Arabic music at the Higher Institute of Arabic Music specializing in qanoon, voice and theory. After immigrating to Canada in 1970, he studied ethno-musicology and obtained his doctorate in Historical Arabic Musicology at the University of Toronto. He has taught medieval, modern and religious Middle Eastern Music at York University and the University of Toronto, and is the author of "Music Performance in Early Abbasid Era 750-932AD" published in 1989.
George Sawa has given numerous concerts and lecture demonstrations at universities, museums and art galleries in Europe and North America He has been teaching at Arabesque Academy, School of Middle Eastern Dance and Music Arts since 1995 and regularly teaches alongside Yasmina Ramzy in many dance workshops. He was awarded the 1990 Ontario Folk Arts Recognition Fellowship for his performances and lecture demonstrations on the qanoon. George served as a performer, composer and music coach in R. Murray Schafer's RA in Toronto (1983) and Holland (1985). As well as serving as the Musical Director for the Egyptian exhibit at the Royal Ontario Museum, George has arranged music for and directed the musicians of the Arabesque Dance Company Orchestra since 1996 where he also plays the qanoon and naye in all of their performances.