Uygur Dance Week at UH Manoa

April 17, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Mānoa Campus, Earle Ernst Lab Theater, Kennedy Theater; and Dance Bldg., UH Manoa Add to Calendar

The Center for Chinese Studies and Confucius Institute at the University of Hawaii at Manoa are pleased to be among the cosponsors for the upcoming Uyghur Dance Week 2014, which will take place at UHM during the week of April 14-18. Details are below. The two dance workshops on Apr 15 and 17 do not require participants to have dance backgrounds—they are open to any interested person to attend. Also, please note, on Apr 18 (which is Good Friday, a holiday), at 4:30 p.m., there will be a free performance of Uygur dance at UH Manoa's Earle Ernst Lab Theater (entrance on the mauka side of Kennedy Theater). Everyone is welcome to attend the performance.

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Join Guest Artist Akram Hélil for a week of Central Asian dance at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa!

Visiting guest artist Mr. Akram Hélil will lead two master classes, two workshops, and give a live performance featuring artists from Honolulu’s very own Phoenix Dance Chamber.

April 14, 12:30 - 1:50pm; Sama Technique Master Class in Dance Bldg.
 Sama Technique Master Class – In Uyghur language, sama translates as “blue sky” and this dance was traditionally performed to worship the ancient Uyghur sky god. Centuries later, the dance style remains the same but the intent is no longer religiously efficacious. The professionalized version of this dance is meant as pure entertainment with no connection to religion. This master class will include the folk-style and the professional-style sama. Previous dance training is recommended, but not required.

April 15, 1:30 - 3:00pm; Dolan Meshrep Dance Workshop in Lab Theatre Dolan-style Meshrep Folk Dance Workshop – Meshrep from the Dolan area is considered by many to be the most pure form of Uyghur meshrep. In fact, it is held in such high regard that most professionalized staged versions of meshrep include Dolan-style aesthetics. The Dolan meshrep folk dance is a community event and it is often used in contemporary society as a means to connect to a traditional past. This workshop will include the four basic sections of a full Dolan-style meshrep and is open to all participants, even those without any formal dance training.

April 16, 12:30 - 1:50pm; Senem Technique Master Class in Dance Bldg
 Senem Technique Master Class – Senem dance celebrates the natural beauty of the human form with an environmental movement vocabulary connected to the sky, land, and water. This genre is found throughout Xinjiang and the Uyghur diaspora and is the considered the soul of Uyghur dance. This master class will teach basic senem techniques and previous dance training is recommended.

April 17, 1:30 - 3:00pm; Nazirkoum Dance Workshop in Lab Theatre Nazirkoum Folk Dance Workshop – Nazirkoum is a dance that originates from the Turpan basin and this genre incorporates movement styles from animals and birds. These movements are stylized and professionalized and usually include some form of comedy. The dances are based on courtship rituals and they usually conclude with the victorious man winning the heart of a female. This workshop will include the basic techniques of nazirkoum folk dance and is open to all participants, even those without any formal dance training.

April 18, 4:30 - 5:30pm; Live Performance in Lab Theatre (Free)

 Akram welcomes guest artists from Honolulu’s own Phoenix Dance Chamber to perform traditional and modern Uyghur dances. Admission is free, however early arrival is recommended as patrons will be turned away once seating is at capacity.

Video examples at

This week of events is generously sponsored by:
 The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Student Diversity & Equity Initiative, The Department of Theatre & Dance, The Confucius Institute at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Muslim Societies in Asia & the Pacific, and the Phoenix Dance Chamber.

Event Sponsor
Center for Chinese Studies and Confucius Institute at UHM, and others, Mānoa Campus

More Information
(808) 956-8891,,

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