Djam NYC Kick Off Party – Arabic Night + Belly Dance

Wednesday, July 10, 2019
The weekly Djam NYC party returns to a brand new venue!
For Arabic night, EL ASDIQAA (Arabic for “The Friends”), an ensemble of NY based superstar musicians will transport you to Cairo!
Maurice Chedid – Oud + Vocals
Nabawy – Accordion
Saied Emam – Tabla
Said Fahmy – Riq
Athena Najat
Alura (who is celebrating her birthday)
Ranya Renee
Kaeshi Chai
“Nogoom Al Sahara” troupe made up of Gabriela Figueroa’s students (Cynthia Saglam, Dez Cruz, Gail August, Gloria Mendoza, Iveth Balanta, Jennifer Peng)
Gabriela Figueroa
Lizza Hosford
Ranya Renee’s YMCA students
Sarida Bjam (who is also celebrating her birthday).
Engine Room New York, 707 8th Ave, downstairs, New York, NY 10036 between 44th and 45th St
6.30-8pm Percussion and Dance to Live Music Class
8-10pm Show
10-11pm Open Floor Djam
Learn how to play the drum (tabla, doumbek, darbuka) and the art of dancing to live music in a safe space. Develop your musicality, express your unique self and improvise with freedom and confidence. Please bring a drum. This will be co-taught by Brad MacDonald and Kaeshi Chai.
CLASS COST: Register for the percussion and dance class by following this link:
Early bird $15
Tier 1 $20
At the door $25
Plus one drink or food item

Buy Tickets Now!

DETAILED BIOGRAPHIES (Listed Alphabetically)
ATHENA NAJAT is of Greek-American heritage and holds both Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Performance Studies (Dance & Culture) from New York University. Athena lived for nearly a decade in Athens, Greece, where she continues to co-organize Habibi Tsiggana Festival and is also a founding member of Kazafy Troupe Greece. She has been awarded several prizes in International bellydance competitions throughout Europe and in Egypt and is now frequently invited to teach and judge. Athena performed on-contract in several Gulf countries, working with one of the most reputable entertainment agencies in the Middle East. She currently lives in Istanbul, Turkey, dancing on popular Bosphorus dinner cruises. Visit her at
KAESHI CHAI is a NYC based artist who integrates dance, theatre and teaching to empower and shift consciousness through performance projects such as “Ocean Stories” and PURE (Public Urban Ritual Experiment). She produces the annual PURE Conference focused on topics like Love, Peaceful Warrior and the 5 elements.
She is the artistic director of Bellyqueen, the school and dance company, and facilitates creative labs in which participants generate full-length theatrical dance shows in 3-4 days. She has toured extensively with the Bellydance Superstars, Bellydance Evolution and Bella Gaia. She founded the Djam NYC event in August 2007. | |
RANYA RENEE, of New York City, began her performing career as a young actress, and has been bellydancing since 1990. She specializes in traditional Egyptian oriental, baladi, and folkloric dance, performance-skills training and breathwork, and teaches internationally. In 2015 Ranya completed an M.A. in psychology, focusing on aspects of cognitive psychology in the context of performance. In addition to bellydancing, Ranya now teaches Pilates, Barre, and yoga, and coaches performers and presenters in increasing their stage presence through physical and mental training. Ranya’s new online dance and performance skills studio, the Ginger City, offers live and prerecorded courses on baladi, Breathwork for Performance, Arabic musicality, and other topics, along with coaching group series, talks and discussions. The Ginger City membership reopens soon for access to recorded and new classes with Ranya and guests (join the email list at, and Facebook group Ginger City Community).