Ahmet Lüleci is a choreographer, dance teacher and performer as well as a researcher of Anatolian culture.
Since arriving in North America in 1985, he has taught many workshops and camps throughout the U.S. as well as Canada, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Europe, Brazil, Argentina and Australia. In Turkey, Ahmet also served as Director of Dances for Hoytur, long considered Turkey’s leading dance association. Since the age of 8, he has danced with numerous school ensembles and private associations, many of which won outstanding awards in city-wide and national/international competitions. Between 1973 and 2003, he participated in international dance festivals and competitions throughout Europe and North America.
Ahmet’s college major was music, and his fascination with dance led him to conduct scholarly research into the historical, social and cultural background of the costumes and spoon dances from Turkey’s Mediterranean coast. His efforts resulted in a 400-page study which earned first place in a national competition.
Ahmet is the founder/artistic director of the Boston-based group Collage Dance Ensemble. He and Joe Graziosi co-founded the World Music and Dance Camp in New York. This will be Ahmet’s first time as a member of Balkanot teaching staff. We are excited to have him here with us.
Sonia Dion e Cristian Florescu
Cristian Florescu was born in Bucarest, Romania. He started dancing in 1982 with different Romanian folk ensembles, and studied with various specialists including Theodor Vasilescu.
Sonia Dion was born in Quebec and has been a professional dancer for over 20 years. She was lead dancer and choreogreapher for Les Sortilèges Dance Company, Canada's oldest folk dance ensemble with whom she developed several new productions.
Cristian and Sonia have been guest performers with the Collage International Dance Ensemble of Boston, have been regular teachers at l' École supérieure de danse du Québec and have been selected to be part of the Artists in the Schools program sponsored by the Quebec Ministry of Education. In recent years, they have developed a specific interest in working with recreational folk dance groups in Canada and the United States to share their love of Romanian folk traditions. Throughout 2005 and 2006, they have taught workshops in all parts of Canada and the USA and have choreographed Romanian suites for performing groups including the world-renowned BYU Folk Dance Ensemble.
Roberto Bagnoli is a master teacher of international folkdance with a specialization in traditional and modern Israeli dance.
He discovered his love for Israeli dance many years ago in Rome when he started dancing with the Jewish community there, and then began performing with “Sasson Ve Simcha” and teaching classes at the Jewish Community Center. He subsequently studied Israeli dance in workshops throughout Europe, the United States, and in Israel under the guidance of various choreographers and teachers.
In 2000 he co-directed and choreographed the performance “Mazal Tov” and a few years later, founded the association “Folk Atelier Reggio Emilia”, dedicated to preserving and promoting folk dance and other folk arts.
The association is responsible for dance classes throughout Italy, and Roberto himself teaches weekly classes in Reggio Emilia, Modena, Cremona, Crema, Piacenza and Imola. He is the director of two highly successful camps in Italy each year: Balkanot, the first ever Israeli and Balkan dance camp, which takes place every January, and Camp Yofi, Israeli dance, which takes place in July. Roberto conducts workshops and seminars throughout Europe, Canada, and the United States, and has been on the teaching staff of Stockton International Dance Camp for five years. In the fall of 2015, Roberto will return to Japan to teach his fifth workshop there.