Rhode Island Dance
Who's Who
Updated June 12, 2007
Teacher & Performer
Middle Eastern Dance

Kanina has studied, taught and performed Middle Eastern dance for 35 years and has been greatly influenced by the Arabic, Turkish and Armenian traditions.

She began her studies with Adonna and Morwenna Assaf of Boston and has taken ongoing seminars and master classes from nationally recognized experts such as: the late Ibrahim Farrah, Riskallah Riad, Morocco, Sereena, Yosri Sharif, Phaedra of Boston, Nourhan Sharif and Mahmoud Reda. Travels to Greece and Morocco have enhanced her knowledge and appreciation of the art.

Kanina has taught over 1,000 students and was the first in Rhode Island to open a studio dedicated solely to the study of Middle Eastern Dance. Her classes in folkloric, belly dance and costume design emphasize respect and understanding of the dance, music and culture of the Middle East.

From 1976 to 1991 Kanina served as director and choreographer of the Beledi Dance Troupe, which performed both the cabaret and folkloric dances of the Middle East. From 1985 to 1988 she was on the board of the Boston-based Near East Dance Theatre where she also performed and contributed choreography. The NEDT presented performances at Boston College, New England Life Theater, Boston, and Ziterion Theater, New Bedford and earned the praise of such luminaries as Mrs. Anwar Sadat, who attended a performance while visiting from Egypt.

As a soloist, Kanina has performed at Middle Eastern night clubs and cultural events throughout New England. She was the featured performer at Arabian Nights, Holiday Inn, Aruba, and a guest artist at A Tribute to Mahmoud Reda, Boston, honoring the famed Egyptian choreographer as he toured the United States.

Through dance, Kanina has supported local arts, education, medical research and social service agencies with performances that benefitted: the Leukemia Society of Rhode Island; Trinity Repertory Company; Child's Play Nursery School; St. Mary's Academy, Bay View; and the Veteranís Hospital of Rhode Island to name just a few.

Over the years she has appeared on WHJJ Armenian Radio Hour, WHJJ Music of the Mid East, WJAR and WPRI Evening News, WJAR Noontime News, WPRI Front and Center, WJAR Talk About, WHJJ John Martin Show, and the Arabic Hour, Boston to promote the beauty and artistry of Middle Eastern Dance.

Bill Gale of the Providence Journal has called her "...a leader in the rejuvenation of the art [of Middle Eastern Dance]." and the Providence Journal has published several feature articles about her, her students and her dance company

Kanina teaches group classes in Providence, East Greenwich, North Kingstown and Wakefield. She is available for private and semi-private classes by appointment only.

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East Greenwich
East Providence
South Kingstown


Phone: 401-837-9892
Website: www.Kaninadance.com