NAMVA

Namva has spent much of her life involved in movement arts and in music. From the age of seven through high school, she studied piano with Gwendoline Harper a Harvard and Radcliffe scholar and renowned pianist who taught music at the University of Washington. Namva’s music background has served her well in dance.

She has a natural grace and a love of integrity in movement that makes her a wonderful dancer! Namva has had an interest in movement since her childhood and she competed as a gymnast when she was in junior high school. She expanded on this talent when she went into high school and in her freshman year she tried out for a cheerleading position and was chosen from other candidates to be on the cheerleading squad for her school. In her sophomore year, Namva joined the Drill Team and by the time she was a junior she was captain of the Drill Team and continued in this capacity until she graduated from high school. As Team Captain, she choreographed most of the dance routines that were used by the team.

In 2004 Namva renewed her interest in movement arts and studied ballet with Lael Martin at Ballet Classique in Spokane, Washington. During this time she also became interested in Middle Eastern dance and started her studies with Nadiyah, staying with her for about six months. When her class took a break for the summer, Namva found that she did not want to stop learning, so she contacted A’isha Azar and continued her studies with A’isha. She has been with her since 2005, studying Egyptian belly dance and folkloric dances of the Middle East. Namva also dances with Cindy Moonbear and Malidoma World Dance, a company that performs American Tribal Style dance.

Because the members of Baharat!! recognized that Namva has much to offer as a dancer, in 2006 they asked her to be a guest dancer in several of their performances. She first joined them at the Fall Folk Festival a two-day event sponsored by the Spokane Folklore Society and including presentations from diverse cultures. She has since been a regular guest in Baharat!!’s performances. Because Namva is an exceptional dancer and such a good fit for the company, the other members asked her to join in 2007.