Sheikhani (L*)- Assyria (also Kurdish, Armenian) – UPDATE

*a Living dance is a 1st Generation dance that is still performed in the country of origin (or immigrant communities) as part of a social event like a wedding where others can participate (not for an audience) by people who learned the dance informally (from friends and relatives by observation and imitation, not in a classroom situation). For more information, click here and here.

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Singer Issam Arabo is based in San Diego, CA. 2012
Demonstration by Kole Left. 2015
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Mel, Sand 2016. They start the dance on what I label (above) as step 7.
Assyrian New Year 6762 (2012), Moscow.
Wedding in Belgium, 2009. Music – Bagiye.
Slightly different version and, same 12 beats. Shamiram ensemble, Moscow, 2014.

Above is the original Ricky Holden recording of Sheikhani, from 1962.

Below is a modern Sheikhani, to the tune of Bagiye. Bagiye is a girl’s name.

A recent Wikipedia article on Assyrian dance asserts that Bagiye is now a separate dance that “Evolved from Sheikhani, Bagiyeh has a move where the dancers slowly turn to face the back of the dancer in front or side of them, leisurely kick both legs in the air, then brusquely raise hands into air whilst making a sharp rotation. The dancers would turn to the right; their hands are hooked to one another by the fingers, the right arm is bent in front of the body, and the left arm is bent in behind the back. Although similar, bagiye is sluggish and more onerous than sheikhany. There is a homogeneous variant of this dance called Peda with particularised sets of songs, popularised by singer-songwriter Adwar Mousa in Syria. The dance beat has gotten popular in the late 2000s and 2010s, with songs traditionally in the belaty rhythm being incorporated into this beat. Notable song with a bagiyeh beat is Yalekhta by Linda George. Notable song affiliated with peda is Narineh by Sargon Gabriel. Bagiyeh is 44 in time signature and is 80-95bpm.

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