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OUR SCHOOL IN CAIRO

“Grounded” has never been an easy word for me; it will be that I had an "itinerant" childhood between Florence, Livorno and a thousand other Italian cities where my father went for work and where we often planned to move.

The work of the dance, nomadic by nature, was the most natural thing I could do.

The strange thing is that it happens to feel roots in places other than those where we grew up; beyond things that I don't like at all, nature, art and above all the people in Egypt make me feel "in the family"; a strange family, whose language I don't understand, but where I find myself in the gestures.

The latest Dance to Live® Method for Dance Therapy training held in Cairo between September and October was a succession of extraordinary days. At the beginning of the work we found ten young women waiting for us to start the programme: referenced curricula, professionals in the psycho-corporeal, artistic and communication fields, some of them working in crisis areas and active for human rights in a country that is certainly not easy . They entered the work with an availability and trust that almost stunned me; I've gathered glimpses and stories from women who are trying to survive a lack of opportunity and recognition. Sometimes they entrusted me and our program with all the desire to take oxygen and nourish hope.

I was moved several times and several times I felt the fear of disappointing them.

During the working days we took care of our bodies, to take care of ourselves; we have relied on strong, tested techniques that have endured many trials and crossed several eras: modern dance, contemporary dance, bioenergetics, ethnic dances, meditation and then lots and lots of dance therapy by Maria Fux. There are many theoretical, symbolic and poetic references.

At the end of the working days we opened the doors and many people came to dance with us: different people, different in religion, culture, often even nationality, as happens in Egypt. We danced mixing, like little girls and boys, their faces were radiant and surprised, it seemed like the end of a war... a covered woman finally came to me, she hugged me for a long time, she cried and thanked me. She told me some in Arabic, some in English that she knows when people have God inside them and that we danced to thank him; in tears she asked me to go and make disabled children dance in a Montessori school in Cairo, her son is there. I promised her that as soon as I get back, I'll go.

Hour after hour a beautiful, strong, varied group was born, necessarily based on female empowerment: they are still busy following the online part of the program, the distance of 4000 kilometers does not seem to stop them.

We will soon return to them, we will continue the journey and we will try to accompany them in the exams and in the internal and external battles to which they are subjected, even if only for the fact of dancing.

We will also have to respond to the many invitations received to bring Dance Therapy to people of all places and conditions, with the simplicity that Maria taught me.

We will try, with immense joy and immense gratitude.

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