The Dubai Community and Arts Centre (Ductac) is presenting an exhibition of photographs by Dubai based photographer Stephanie Moukarzel, taken during the Sharmila Dance Extravaganza 2017, held at Ductac earlier this year.
The exhibition features candid shots of the dancers taken during rehearsals and backstage, as well as pictures of the final performances on stage taken from the audience. It takes viewers behind the scenes of a truly homegrown event that is one of the highlights of the cultural calendar of Dubai, offering them a glimpse of the intense preparation that goes into the show, the excitement of the performers and the joy they derive from their shared love of dance.
Sharmila Dance is one of the oldest dance companies in the UAE. It was founded in 2006 at Ductac by Sharmila Kamte, an accomplished dancer and choreographer, who has been teaching dance in the UAE since 1999.
She has been organising the Sharmila Dance Extravaganza every year to showcase the talent of her students who range from newcomers to professional dancers. The show features a mix of Hip-Hop, contemporary dance, classical ballet, street jazz, Afro-jazz, Dancehall, B-boying and Latin American styles, reflecting the diversity and the wealth of talent within the local community.
This year, during the preparations for the 17th edition of the show, Moukarzel spent a lot of time with the dancers, photographing them in different moods and moments.
Her images capture the passion and creativity of Kamte and her team, the hard work put in by the dancers, the grace of their movements, the beauty of their costumes, the nervous excitement before the curtains are raised, and the thrill of all the effort coming together in a breathtaking performance.
Moukarzel’s photographs are also an important documentation of the UAE’s evolution as a cultural hub that brings together people from various countries and cultures to create and innovate.
The exhibition will run at The Gallery of Light, Ductac, Mall of the Emirates until September 13.