“Belly dancing has gone through a transformation during the past 20 years,” explains Myra Krien, who founded Mosaic Dance Company in 1998 and is its director and choreographer. “Even the pure Egyptian style has grown and changed. Modern Egyptian belly dancing looks different today than it did several decades ago.”
Mosaic Dance Company, which presents original works that combine traditional movements with a wide range of international dance styles including flamenco and jazz, presents its annual holiday performance titled “Winter Wonderland” on December 10 at the Railyard Performance Center.
On the program is the company’s unique version of “The Nutcracker” ballet in which, according to Krien, “the movements, music and costumes relate to the steampunk aesthetic” that was inspired by 19th-century industrial steam-powered machinery. The performance also includes tongue-in-cheek dances to select Christmas songs and a lighthearted presentation of “Jingle Bell Rock” that features some of Krien’s youngest student dancers. “Our goal is to get people in the Christmas spirit,” she says. “I’m into all holidays. I love to celebrate.”
Krien also loves to perform. She has appeared in venues throughout the U.S. and on American and Japanese television programs. An active touring schedule takes her to communities worldwide where she often leads workshops that culminate in a public performance. One of Krien’s most recent projects involved mounting a theatrical dance show at the Bella Artes Theater in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico with Mosaic Dance Company members and dancers from throughout the U.S. and Mexico.
Adults and children inspired to try belly dancing for themselves can sign up for a class at Pomegranate Studios, which Krien founded in 1996. This educational organization offers a wide range of movement classes, such as Egyptian-style belly dancing, American Tribal belly dancing and Funk-Ex, a unique cardio workout created by Krien that incorporates movements from jazz, funk, hip-hop, bellydancing, salsa, flamenco and tango traditions. Check out the extensive offerings at www.pomegranatestudio.org.