"Oasis at the Races" featuring Angelika Nemeth and her Dance Ensemble with guest artists Lee Ali and Holly Mistine in 13 exciting dances from the Middle East and beyond.
“Oasis at the Races” is the concert that was created by Nemeth for the 2006 Cairo Carnivale. The video is set at the outdoor stage at the historic Santa Anita racetrack in Southern California.
The show begins with the entire company in full regalia entering the arena to a stately Zeffa procession. I can only imagine that, having seen this live, the combination of the powerful music and impressive sight of numerous dancers in colorful thobes, winding in a long parade must have been truly exciting for the audience.
“Oasis at the Races” offers performances of Oriental, Khaleegy, Flamenco and Persian dances.
The entire production was beautifully done. The videography was very well done despite having to compete with the outdoors and faulty lighting. In a strange way, the combination managed to give a grainy quality to the film giving some pieces, like “The Moroccan Tray Dance”, performed by Lee Ali, the feeling of having been captured in the field, at a unique moment in history. This particular performance had its own unique character and could have been ripped directly from old field tapes. Some other performances really caught my attention.
“The Moorish Duet” featuring Jose Rios and Janelle Bel Isle is what I would call a “MEOW” performance.
Here’s a new word to add to your vocabulary.... “MEOW” is an entirely sensual expression that captures a particular energy. It is that which fully expresses the lushness of a particular sensation, capturing its dimension; power and fluidity all at once. For me, the first bite of a piece of dark chocolate is “MEOW”. Jose and Janelle were very “MEOW”.
Their energy and engagement of each other was excellent. A truly beautiful choreography.
The video did suffer due to a lighting mishap. However, Angelika offered, as a bonus, footage, an earlier stage version of “Fire On Ice”. I must say that this earlier version of the choreography did the piece greater justice.
Angelika is a dancer with great depth and subtly. These were displayed much better on the larger stage with benefit of lighting to enhance mood and videography that was able to capture Angelika’s detailed movements and facial expressions. An inspired performance.