main page/topics
back to interviews
Photos © Konstanze Winkler
Graphics/Web Design: Konstanze Winkler
When Mia Sha’uri entered stage at Leyla Jouvana & Roland’s 20th Oriental Festival of Europe last year we didn’t really know what to do with this name. This changed in seconds. Such joy of life, such quicksilver temperament and so much talent we only knew from Silvia Salamanca before (and it doesn’t come as a surprise that these two found each other and forever seem to be scheming something together).

This year again Mia will appear at Leyla Jouvana and Roland’s Oriental Festival Europe. We ARE looking forward to this.


Interview with Mia Sha’uri

by Marcel Bieger
Graphics by: Konstanze Winkler

When asked how bellydance found you, you tell a cute story about how you visited a Oriental restaurant, where a bellydancer entertained the guests and came to you and bade you to accompany her. But what really did fascinate you and what gave you the decisive kick (if I may say so)? And is this special fascination still existent, still tangible for you?

Truthfully, I've been taking dance classes since I was three. Anything dance related gets me happy and excited. Bellydancing seemed like a mysterious new world of dance I could explore and I was absolutely thrilled at the opportunity to join the community. After my first level graduation I realized this dance allowed me to express myself in very sophisticated ways and that I was in this for the long term. I still get very anxious and excited whenever I'm about to take a dance lesson. This amazing feeling has not lessened with time, on the contrary! That's how I know Bellydancing will always fascinate me.

You have a way of communicating with the audience your happiness and joy of life radiates to the last rows. Could you let us in on a few of your secrets how you accomplish this?

I'm so happy when I dance! It's a belief of mine that part of our art is entertainment, and it's our duty to share our feelings with the audience to transport them to a different world a few minutes at a time. If they can forget about their problems for five minutes and enjoy themselves I've done my job. My goal is always to sweep them off their feet and leave them dazzled. What better way to do that, than by sharing a beautiful personal moment with them!

When working on a new piece, how do you usually proceed? At the beginning is there a certain music title, a special move or even a prop? Please enlighten us.

 It depends on what audience I'm dancing for. I usually have a few songs that are just waiting for the right opportunity to be used, but usually I dance according to what I think the audience needs. If I have a prop or a special move in mind, I search for music that sounds like what I want to perform. If I already have the song, I'll usually work out an entrance and an exit, solidify surprising accents around the middle and work out the transitions. I always write the break down of the song on paper so I know how many counts of what kind of music there is and where the transitions and accents are, so I don't waste my time choreographing incorrectly. I will do last minute changes if it feels like the audience just needs something different.
Whatever feels good is always best!
We definitely include a certain amount of "sabor" (some tasty Puerto Rican flavor) in all of our performances and there is a certain lightness and emotional buoyancy we have from living on the island that shines through. We may not have one uniform style on the island, but wherever there is a Puerto Rican dancer he or she brings something to the table that delights the public in a different way and I think they can perceive
that difference.

Homepage Mia Sha'uri:
Mia Sha'uri is guest at
Leyla Jouvana and Roland's
21st Oriental Festival of Europe

November 22nd - December 3rd 2013
in Duisburg
Mia's announcing the next artists ...
A most dynamic duo - Silvia Salamanca and Mia Sha'uri
As Puerto Rico belongs to the USA, do you as the bellydancers of this island see yourself as part of the US bellydance community or as something own, as a Puerto Rican scene? And if so how does the Puerto Rican scene differ from the mainland scene (if I may say so), is it more Latin, Spanish oriented?

I think I speak for most of us when I say that we consider ourselves quite a different community. Our training is very prop-oriented versus the body first, prop later teaching style that I've seen in most countries, our development is restaurant-based because there is less access to regular theatre, or hotel ballroom shows due to the small size of our community, and our warmth and party-loving atmosphere allows us to relate very well with our audience.

What are your future plans, and will we see you again in Europe?

My plan for the future is to continue being a part of this community, maturing, growing and sharing with as many of its members as I can. I've been very blessed so far to have had so many opportunities to work in what I love and I hope I'm able to continue to do so. There are also some more Stellar Advantage team-ups in the works with my amazing colleagues. You will certainly be seeing more of me in Europe and the US! I'll be visiting Germany in November, as well as some Italy is sprinkled in! You can see my upcoming events schedule at my homepage!