Oriental Dance Weekend (ODW) is one of the biggest international festivals of Portuguese Oriental Dance. It emerged in 2012, by the hand of Maria João Soares and Mário Araújo (Dançattitude organization) with the aim of bringing to Portugal the Arab culture and, with it, the magic of the ancient art of Oriental Dance.
The International Festival has already brought to Portugal big names in Oriental Dance, such as Jillina Carlano, Amir Thaleb, Saida Helou, Amar Gamal, Yamil Annum, Dariya Mitskevich, Aida Bogomolova, Esmeralda Colabone, Karim Nagi, Artem Uzunov, Alex Delora, Diva Darina, Yulianna Voronina, Vaagn Tadevosyan, Zomzom Mustapha, Rosadela, Hayal and Acia Legras. Initially, the event was presented itself as “Night of the
Stars” and featured some workshops and a show. However, the great demand and interest she gained from the Portuguese Oriental Dance Community and from the international guests, made the event a three-day party with various activities.
The competition marks the start of Oriental Dance Weekend. Amateur and professional dancers from Portugal and from different parts of the world have the opportunity to show their work to internationally renowned masters – the headliners who will be the judges of the competition. The winners of each category are rewarded with prizes including costumes, performances and advanced training at recognized international festivals, trophies and cash prizes.
ODW also has as its mission the formation, and for this it, promote several workshops given by the headliners. These artists teach in blocks of two or three hours for two days (Saturday and Sunday morning and afternoon), and the participation of the dancers gives them, at the end, certificates of participation. These advanced trainings are a unique opportunity for dancers to be in tune with each artist’s style and to be aware of the best in Europe and the world in terms of dance and always follow a theme related to Oriental Dance. The Opening Gala takes place on Friday after the contest and the International Gala on Saturday, where after the first workshops are held, the headliners and other international and national guests will perform.
Oriental Dance Weekend stands out not only for its quality – as it is the event that brings today’s biggest artists in the field of Oriental dance to Portugal – but also for the caring way we deal with our guests, competitors and the public. The aim of Dançattitude is to make Oriental Dance Weekend evolve and consolidate itself as an internationally renowned Oriental Dance Festival.