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What do you do today?

Gypsy music and dance is a big melting pot – or you might say: fusion. What also attracts me is the very honest human expression in both song, dance and music. Expressions that very easily can be used in dramatized dancing.

Ever since the beginning of 2000, my artistic dancing have been greatly inspired by gypsy style dance and over the years I have developed my own “gypsy fusion style” where I mix elements from both India, Balkans, Russia, Spain and also modern dance.

And of course, with my natural interest for fusion styles – I have of course also found a place in my heart for the tribal style dance, which of course in so many ways also is a contemporary gypsy dance … I love it

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Today I teach Open Studio-classes in Copenhagen embracing both the Gypsy Dance, ATS, Tribal Fusion, Ghawazee, Baladi, and Tunesian dance. I travel around Denmark, Norway and Sweden on regular basis to do workshops in both Gypsy and Tribal Style dancing – and then once in while I am so lucky also to be asked to do workshops or perform in Germany.

But the solo I did this year ““Ha’nadi” by Shiva in Exile) was a woman so much more lost, she has lost everything including herself, she only has this little insane spot inside her that is keeping her fighting to get out-up-away, maybe to escape from herself maybe to call upon someone to help her.

… and of course, this is a much darker story. But the challenge in this choreography was merging the gypsy style dance into the dark fusion. The theme of “insanity” I have worked with before, for the “Orientalia 2000” I did a dance interpretation of Salome (and no, it did not include seven veils) where I also used “insanity” as dramatized element. It is actually very hard to do these very dark, moody dramatization, but it also open you up as an artist and broadens your own horizons in what you are doing.

You seem to tend more to the dark and fusion side of the dance in this year than last year.

Maybe so .. but the dark side has always been a part of my natural dance expression. When I work with myself in my solos I usually like to express many different levels of human feelings – and when I choose a “story” to tell or a person to interpret in my dance, I like to go deeper and not just “scratch the surface”. And this actually means that sometimes a story comes out very “black”.

My gypsy solo last year (“Uton” by Beata Palya) was the story/interpretation of a young woman who has been promised away to be married to a man she does not know. To me the feeling in the dance went from sorrow and sadness to a growing anger turning her strong to survive. A bit of a happy ending, you might say.

photo: Günter Schultz

Could you tell me more about the idea behind the two fighting girls (the performance of Gaia Gaia this year).

Well, well – the two fighting girls .. isn’t that a classical theme? With this 9/8-rhythm tribal music, Linda and I felt a very large urge to do a merger between our gypsy-style roman 9/8 and some Spanish Flamenco temper – and we thought it was logical to make the two women into two female toredors, fighting in dance

And also the element of humor, bringing a smile to peoples faces is a fantastic thing. Both in Gypsy Mystique Dancers + in GaiaGaia, we try to work in the little laughter-zone in most things we do, it gives everything a balance.

Gaia Gaia at 2nd. Tribal-Festival in Hannover,
photo: Günter Schultz