Tarik Sultan is one of the World’s best known pioneers of male Oriental Dance in the world and has been the most vocal advocate for the validity of male Oriental Dancers. His articles on their role both in the professional and social arenas throughout history in the cultures of the Middle East and North Africa have been translated into several languages. He is also known for adamantly acknowledging the dance not as a generic form of entertainment, but as a cultural and historical product of the Egyptian people and their neighbors. He believes strongly that in order to understand the dance in its proper cultural and historical context, the focus of attention needs to be on the dance traditions of the ordinary people which form the foundation of the Oriental Dance of the professional entertainers.
Tarik’s introduction to Oriental Dance began with his love of Arabic music. After many years of listening to the various styles of music from Egypt, Lebanon and Turkey, he decided it would be fun to dance to it. He began studying and researching Oriental in 1985. In 1988 he traveled to Egypt for the first time where he saw not only the legendary stars such as Sohair Zaki and Nagwa Fouad, but the dance as done by the ordinary people, which is the foundation of the performance style.
Tarik began his teaching career in the early 90’s while continually expanding his knowledge and understanding of the dance. Over the years his talent and dedication to the art earned him a reputation as a dynamic performer, and patient, inspiring teacher and choreographer. He has taught many successful seminars across the USA as well as The UK, Japan, Australia, Trinidad and Argentina.
Tarik’s international credits include the Jerusalem Festival, the Dar America Assoc in 2003 he became one of the first male dancers to perform at the Ahlan Wa Sahlan Festival in Cairo, Egypt. He has also performed at the United Nations, Lincolin Center and The Museum of Natural History. He has also been a featured performer in some of the top nightclubs in New York City such as Casbah Rouge, Mehenata, Horus, and The Habibi Lounge, Feluca and LeSouk.
In addition to his regular classes and performances, Tarik continues to travel to the Middle East and North Africa in order to increase his knowledge of the dance and the music. You can view some of his research and interview videos from Egypt on youtube under Tarik Sultan