‘Amel will seem to you like a voyager between countries, cultures, and languages (…). Her technique of teaching focuses on sharing spiritual energies (…). Each of Amel’s movements come from inside her and are charged with pure energies. While Amel, the Berber woman, moves closer to the souls of the women, they, in turn, become more aware of their own strength and are able to recover their spiritual balance through dance. The word ‘healing’ is not mentioned but what happens here is nothing less than that.’
Gizella Hartmann, in ‘Orient Magazine’, Germany nr.1,2002
About Amel Tafsout:
The legendary Amel Tafsout, meaning ‘Hopes of Spring’, is an inspirational first source master dance artist, choreographer, instructor, frame drummer, singer, energy worker and one of the finest exponents of North African traditional and contemporary Maghreb Dance of our time. With research in dance anthropology, and long training in various healing practices, Tafsout’s knowledge of her culture and her experience in many dance styles and music make her very unique.
Raised in Algeria among the finest traditional dancers and musicians, Tafsout was fascinated by dance and music since childhood. In her early twenties, Tafsout moved to Germany where she founded the Pan Arabic dance company ‘Banat As Sahra’. In the late 80s, she moved to London, U.K. where she taught and performed at various dance and music festivals and founded ‘The Tafsoutettes’ Dance Company. While currently living in the U.S.A. she is still performing and teaching worldwide.
Tafsout is like a voyager between countries, culture, and languages. Having worked and lived all over the world, unsurprisingly, migration has been a constant theme in her work. Fluent in 5 languages, she is always aware of the impact that cultures have in art and how that can be expressed in dance.
Amel has lectured, danced, taught, sung and conducted anthropological research in many countries. She has been featured in various TV programs in Europe and North Africa. She also published many articles related to dance and Maghreb women in academic and popular magazines. Her research focuses on the Ritual in Maghreb dances as well as looking at dance as a healing form. She explores the rich tapestry of movement and rhythm that has woven over time between Spain and the Maghreb, Africa and the Middle East, the Mediterranean Sea and Europe.
Tafsout developed, reconstructed and stylised the Maghreb dances through her dance experience, her research, her teaching, and performances. She had mesmerized audiences around the world with the earthy fluidity of her dance, her stunning stage presence, and great spirituality.
VENUES, CITIES & COUNTRIES:
In London: Chisenhale Dance Space, Jackson’s Lane, The I.C.A, The Commonwealth Institute, The French Institute, Queen Elizabeth Hall, The South Bank, The Barbican, SOAS, The Oval House, The British Museum, etc.
In Europe: Germany, Denmark, Finland, Austria, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium
In the U.S.A.: Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Missouri, Arkansas, California, North Carolina, Florida, Oregon, Washington, Texas, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Illinois, Washington D.C., Silver Spring, Colorado, Atlanta, etc.…
Elsewhere: New Zealand, Canada, Morocco, Mexico, Tafsout has been invited to Chile and Brazil.
Tafsout has lectured, danced, taught, sung, and conducted anthropological research in many countries; in the UK alone, she has performed at international festivals, such as HARAMBEE AFRICA, WOMAD in the UK and Spain, “Die Orientale” in Dusseldorf, Germany, ORIENTALIA 2004 in Miami, “Spirit of the Tribes”, Florida, “Tribal Quest” in Portland, OR, Breitenbush Dance retreat, OR, RAKS BRITANIA in the U.K. THIRD COAST TRIBAL in Texas, TRIBAL REVOLUTION in Chicago, ELEVATION in Gold, Colorado, BLACK ORCHID festival in Las Vegas, THE ARAB DANCE SEMINAR (For many years) in many U.S cities, TRIBAL FEST in CA, the first Arab Dance festival in Minneapolis, TAPESTRY in Rhodes Island, The Arab Festival in San Francisco.
DANCE & MUSIC:
Tafsout has worked with various well-known performers and bands: Die DISSENTENTEN, 3MUSTAPHA3, HASSAN ERRAJI, CHAKCHOUKA, MAMBO DUNIYA, NOOR SHIMAAL, ORCHESTRE Z’MAAN, and lately SALADIN’S ORCHESTRA, ALI SLIMANI, CHEB ABDELKADER, the very well know Algerian piano player: Maurice EL MEDIONI, Georges LAMMAM, ISHMAEL, Vince DELGADO’s music ensemble, ASWATT, CalPoly Arabic Music Ensemble of San Luis Obispo, directed by Ken HABIB, The Algerian Andalusian singer NASSIMA, Suren BARONIAN and Haig MANOUKIAN, Michael Beach and the Brothers of the Baladi, and Karim NAGI, Fella UDANE.
My bio in Spanish written by Aida de la Fuente:
La argelina Amel Tafsout es una leyenda viva de la danza, una mujer llena de poder y energía, orgullosa de transmitir la herencia cultural del gran pueblo al que pertenece: los amazigh o berber. Este es el pueblo con la cultura viva más antiguo del Mediteráneo. Un pueblo tan cercano como desconocido que va desde el Oasis de Siwa en Egipto pasando por Libia, Túnez, Argelia, Marruecos, Sahara, Mauritania y hasta las Islas Canarias(¡!).
Personalmente tuve el gran honor de compartir con ella escenario y aula en Londres en 2012 invitada por la marroquí Sarah Malik.
Después de traerla por primera vez a España el pasado año 2016 en el Festival Luz de Luna Granada y en Barcelona, te la volvemos a traer para que disfrutes de su frescura, humanidad y sabiduría.