Our Teachers

AL Sarab Dance School Teachers

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Dr Nadra Assaf

Nadra Assaf received her M.F.A. in Dance from Sarah Lawrence College, and a Doctorate of Education from Leicester University. She has been teaching at the Lebanese American University since 1991 where she is currently the associate chair of the communication arts department. Her recent dance productions include: INFLUX (2015), STS: Space-Time-Shape (2012), I Matter: An Audience Interactive Performance (2010), The Faces of EVE (2008-2009), and Majnoun Leila (2007). She is the Artistic Director and founder of Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School (1991 to date) as well as the Artistic Director of Al-Sarab Dance Company. In April 2011 she organized and implemented the first annual International Dance Day Festival in Lebanon. Among her publications: The Meanings of a Modern Dance: An Investigation into the Communicative Properties of a Non-Verbal Medium (2009); “I Matter”: An Interactive Exploration of Audience-Performer Connections (2012), (Not Without My Body: The Struggle of Dancers and Choreographers in the Middle East (2015).

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Started dance at the young age of 6. He studied with his sister Nadra Assaf for 14 years and also studied creative movement and improvisation in Shreveport Louisiana in 1990. He has been a teacher at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School since 1998. He has performed with Al-Sarab Dance Company both nationally and internationally from 1991 till 2004. He has directed several of the company’s shows including: Life Two, Adaptation and the Quest. He continues to work with the company as a choreographer and director.

Samir Assaf

Started dance at the young age of 6. He studied with his sister Nadra Assaf for 14 years and also studied creative movement and improvisation in Shreveport Louisiana in 1990. He has been a teacher at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School since 1998. He has performed with Al-Sarab Dance Company both nationally and internationally from 1991 till 2004. He has directed several of the company’s shows including: Life Two, Adaptation and the Quest. He continues to work with the company as a choreographer and director.

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Born in 1987, He started dancing at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School in 1991. He, in parallel, began to take gymnastics at Buddha Club. He obtained his dance degree from Al-Sarab in 2005 and continued to study in the teaching program until he obtained his teaching diploma. He graduated in 2008 from Balamand University with a BA in physical education. He is currently a member of Al-Sarab Alternative Dance Company as well as a teacher and Chief Executive Officer at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School. He has been in several Sarab performances, both nationally and internationally, since 2002. He is the first Choreographer to adapt the vertical dancing style in Lebanon through a combined show with USJ, AL-Sarab Alternative Company and X-Ploriders.

Jimmy Bechara

Born in 1987, He started dancing at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School in 1991. He, in parallel, began to take gymnastics at Buddha Club. He obtained his dance degree from Al-Sarab in 2005 and continued to study in the teaching program until he obtained his teaching diploma. He graduated in 2008 from Balamand University with a BA in physical education. He is currently a member of Al-Sarab Alternative Dance Company as well as a teacher and Chief Executive Officer at Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School. He has been in several Sarab performances, both nationally and internationally, since 2002. He is the first Choreographer to adapt the vertical dancing style in Lebanon through a combined show with USJ, AL-Sarab Alternative Company and X-Ploriders.

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Christel Farah began her dance studies at Al Sarab Dance School since 1992 in Modern and Contemporary dance. Throughout her dance career, she was exposed to other types of dance including: Classical Ballet, Jazz, Latine and Ballroom Dance, Oriental, Dabke,and Gymnastics. She joined and performed in Lebanon and Abroad with Al Sarab Dance Company since 2007, and started teaching in the Al Sarab Dance School since 2008 after recieving her teaching dance diploma in Modern Dance. She performed with several local and international choreographers including: Nadra Assaf, Omar Rajeh, Zei Khauli, Malek Andary, Rain Ross, Catherine Cabeen, Beau Hancock, Renee Smith Cheveallier, and Matt Henley. Her passion towards movement and space brought her to persue her studies at Notre Dame University. She recieved her BA in Architecture in 2013 with a Senior Project distinction on Improvisational and Experimental Dance Space. She is currently practicing and experimenting in both design and movement through different mediums to express this interconnectivity through choreography, improvisation, performance, space embodiment, and architectural design.

Christel Farah

Christel Farah began her dance studies at Al Sarab Dance School since 1992 in Modern and Contemporary dance. Throughout her dance career, she was exposed to other types of dance including: Classical Ballet, Jazz, Latine and Ballroom Dance, Oriental, Dabke,and Gymnastics. She joined and performed in Lebanon and Abroad with Al Sarab Dance Company since 2007, and started teaching in the Al Sarab Dance School since 2008 after recieving her teaching dance diploma in Modern Dance. She performed with several local and international choreographers including: Nadra Assaf, Omar Rajeh, Zei Khauli, Malek Andary, Rain Ross, Catherine Cabeen, Beau Hancock, Renee Smith Cheveallier, and Matt Henley. Her passion towards movement and space brought her to persue her studies at Notre Dame University. She recieved her BA in Architecture in 2013 with a Senior Project distinction on Improvisational and Experimental Dance Space. She is currently practicing and experimenting in both design and movement through different mediums to express this interconnectivity through choreography, improvisation, performance, space embodiment, and architectural design.

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Ornella Saliba, born in Lebanon, graduated from the Lebanese University. She studied in the fine arts departement for the program of theater after having accomplished a year of intensive courses in contemporary dance, in Montreal, Canada at LADMMI. After finishing her BA in theater, she started working on her Masters degree and planning to get her PHD. Ornella was a dancer since childhood and at the age of eleven, she started dancing at Al Sarab Alternative Dance School. Many years later, she became a part of the dance company and joined them in many national and international performances. She teaches: Modern, Modern Belly Dancing and Classical teacher at Al Sarab. She loves belly dancing but created a new style for herself by mixing it with modern dance techniques. Her goal in life is to keep dancing, teaching at high levels and working on the concept of improvisation to give it more importance. She believes that: “A performer is a body with an unlimited language, be different.”

Ornella Saliba

Ornella Saliba, born in Lebanon, graduated from the Lebanese University. She studied in the fine arts departement for the program of theater after having accomplished a year of intensive courses in contemporary dance, in Montreal, Canada at LADMMI. After finishing her BA in theater, she started working on her Masters degree and planning to get her PHD. Ornella was a dancer since childhood and at the age of eleven, she started dancing at Al Sarab Alternative Dance School. Many years later, she became a part of the dance company and joined them in many national and international performances. She teaches: Modern, Modern Belly Dancing and Classical teacher at Al Sarab. She loves belly dancing but created a new style for herself by mixing it with modern dance techniques. Her goal in life is to keep dancing, teaching at high levels and working on the concept of improvisation to give it more importance. She believes that: “A performer is a body with an unlimited language, be different.”

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Ghimar Merhy is a 28 year old Lebanese dancer and dance teacher besides her professional career as an
electro‐mechanical engineer. She lives in Jbeil, Lebanon. She started practicing dance as a hobby at 5
years old at Al‐Sarab Alternative dance school where she has become a teacher and an active company
member.
Not only she managed to obtain both her dance and teaching certificates at Al‐Sarab, but she also
pursued her studies in electrical and mechanical engineering at “Ecole Supérieure des Ingénieurs de
Beirut” (ESIB) of Saint‐Joseph University (USJ). She also obtained her Masters’ degree specialized in
Renewable Energies from Saint‐Joesph University in collaboration with the Lebanese University.
She currently works in the mechanical engineering design of substations and power plants, and teaches
modern dance in Al‐Sarab school.

Ghimar Merhi

Ghimar Merhy is a 28 year old Lebanese dancer and dance teacher besides her professional career as an electro‐mechanical engineer. She lives in Jbeil, Lebanon. She started practicing dance as a hobby at 5 years old at Al‐Sarab Alternative dance school where she has become a teacher and an active company member. Not only she managed to obtain both her dance and teaching certificates at Al‐Sarab, but she also pursued her studies in electrical and mechanical engineering at “Ecole Supérieure des Ingénieurs de Beirut” (ESIB) of Saint‐Joseph University (USJ). She also obtained her Masters’ degree specialized in Renewable Energies from Saint‐Joesph University in collaboration with the Lebanese University. She currently works in the mechanical engineering design of substations and power plants, and teaches modern dance in Al‐Sarab school.

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Sarah Fadel received her MFA in Choreography (with Merit) from the University of Roehampton - London, UK (2017). During her studies she choreographed and collaborated with other artists on many pieces including “…Not Really.” (In a collaboration with the writer Lloyd Slinger), and “THAWRATH” in collaboration with Sophya Polevaya (composer). Her Thesis performance "Zekra" was based on her practice to incorporate methods of translation in order to generate movement and earned her a "first" grade. Her interest in translation, languages, and movement stems from her BA In translation which she received from the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (2011).

In addition to the two degrees she holds, she took courses at the University of Paris VIII in dance studies. She also has a Dancer Prima Diploma and a Teaching Certificate from Al Sarab Alternative Dance School where she taught Modern and Hiphop dance from 2007-2013. She has been part of the Al Sarab Dance Company since 2007 and had choreographed and performed in several company productions.

Sarah Fadel

Sarah Fadel received her MFA in Choreography (with Merit) from the University of Roehampton – London, UK (2017). During her studies she choreographed and collaborated with other artists on many pieces including “…Not Really.” (In a collaboration with the writer Lloyd Slinger), and “THAWRATH” in collaboration with Sophya Polevaya (composer). Her Thesis performance “Zekra” was based on her practice to incorporate methods of translation in order to generate movement and earned her a “first” grade. Her interest in translation, languages, and movement stems from her BA In translation which she received from the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (2011). In addition to the two degrees she holds, she took courses at the University of Paris VIII in dance studies. She also has a Dancer Prima Diploma and a Teaching Certificate from Al Sarab Alternative Dance School where she taught Modern and Hiphop dance from 2007-2013. She has been part of the Al Sarab Dance Company since 2007 and had choreographed and performed in several company productions.

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She began her dance training at the age of four in Byblos, Lebanon at Al Sarab alternative Dance School under the direction of Dr. Nadra Assaf. She obtained her teaching diploma from Al Sarab in 2008, and in 2009 she graduated the School, joined the company and started teaching. She’s been performing with the company ever since, joining them in their performances of: I Matter (2009), Space Time Shape (2012), This.Is.How?It.Happened!(2016). Also she performed with Al Sarab Dance Company twice abroad: Carnival de Nice (France-2012), Influx (New York-2015).And in several scattered performances around the country. Laetitia graduated from the architecture program at the Holy spirit- Kaslik in 2017 and is currently enrolled at NDU where she is pursuing a BA in Photography with a minor in Marketing and Advertising. Her love for Photography started from an early age and she’s been specially fascinated by the capture of movement. In 2015, she became the Community manager of Al Sarab.

Laetitia Hakim

She began her dance training at the age of four in Byblos, Lebanon at Al Sarab alternative Dance School under the direction of Dr. Nadra Assaf. She obtained her teaching diploma from Al Sarab in 2008, and in 2009 she graduated the School, joined the company and started teaching. She’s been performing with the company ever since, joining them in their performances of: I Matter (2009), Space Time Shape (2012), This.Is.How?It.Happened!(2016). Also she performed with Al Sarab Dance Company twice abroad: Carnival de Nice (France-2012), Influx (New York-2015).And in several scattered performances around the country. Laetitia graduated from the architecture program at the Holy spirit- Kaslik in 2017 and is currently enrolled at NDU where she is pursuing a BA in Photography with a minor in Marketing and Advertising. Her love for Photography started from an early age and she’s been specially fascinated by the capture of movement. In 2015, she became the Community manager of Al Sarab.

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Myriam Georges Barakat is a senior architecture student at USEK. She started her dance lessons at the age of 4 at Al-Sarab Dance School. In 2009 she obtained her dance diploma in Modern Dance with an emphasis in Gymnastics. In 2010 she joined the Teaching Training program at Al-Sarab and graduated in 2014. Since her graduation she has been a full time teacher at the school and teaches both Modern Dance and Gymnastics at different levels. She is currently a dedicated member of Al-Sarab Dance Company

Myriam Barakat

Myriam Georges Barakat is a senior architecture student at USEK. She started her dance lessons at the age of 4 at Al-Sarab Dance School. In 2009 she obtained her dance diploma in Modern Dance with an emphasis in Gymnastics. In 2010 she joined the Teaching Training program at Al-Sarab and graduated in 2014. Since her graduation she has been a full time teacher at the school and teaches both Modern Dance and Gymnastics at different levels. She is currently a dedicated member of Al-Sarab Dance Company

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Lena Kokareva-Rizk graduated from the National College of Dance in Moscow with a Diploma in Choreography and Ballet. After graduation she joined the Grande Theater Opera and Ballet Moscow as a Prima Ballerina for 15 years where she was also an assistant choreographer for 8 years. She teaches in several schools in Lebanon including The German School and Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School.

Lena Rizk

Lena Kokareva-Rizk graduated from the National College of Dance in Moscow with a Diploma in Choreography and Ballet. After graduation she joined the Grande Theater Opera and Ballet Moscow as a Prima Ballerina for 15 years where she was also an assistant choreographer for 8 years. She teaches in several schools in Lebanon including The German School and Al-Sarab Alternative Dance School.

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Rosanna Lahoud, born in July 1978. A Frères Maristes school student. She got her Bachelor in Cinema Radio-TV from Holy Spirit University in 2000. Worked in Directing and Production in many companies and televisions as well as in theatre and events in Lebanon and  abroad. Basket Ball player for 14 years. Member of Al Sarab Dance Company since June 2003. Currently, she is the adviser of the General Manager of Tele Liban in Programs and Studios and the PR Manager of Home of Ciné Jam

Rosanna Lahoud

Rosanna Lahoud, born in July 1978. A Frères Maristes school student. She got her Bachelor in Cinema Radio-TV from Holy Spirit University in 2000. Worked in Directing and Production in many companies and televisions as well as in theatre and events in Lebanon and abroad. Basket Ball player for 14 years. Member of Al Sarab Dance Company since June 2003. Currently, she is the adviser of the General Manager of Tele Liban in Programs and Studios and the PR Manager of Home of Ciné Jam

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Born in 2000, Lebanon, Marita started dancing at the age of eight , and graduated in 2018  as an official Sarab dancer, 10 years laters after taking  technique classes. She then completed her teaching training diploma, and  can’t wait to share her passion with the generations to come!! She has been dancing Modern Contemporary style and attended different workshops , as well as intensive classes in Lebanon (IDDFL..) and abroad (Amsterdam/The Henny Jurriëns Foundation and in London/ London Studio Center) .
Finally ,  she is  currently studying modern languages and translation in Usek. 
She believes that Between Dance and  human race exists a special reciprocal connection that either lets you evolve as a Living or lets you experiment this world through your outside skin and senses.

Marita Matar

Born in 2000, Lebanon, Marita started dancing at the age of eight , and graduated in 2018 as an official Sarab dancer, 10 years laters after taking technique classes. She then completed her teaching training diploma, and can’t wait to share her passion with the generations to come!! She has been dancing Modern Contemporary style and attended different workshops , as well as intensive classes in Lebanon (IDDFL..) and abroad (Amsterdam/The Henny Jurriëns Foundation and in London/ London Studio Center) . Finally , she is currently studying modern languages and translation in Usek. She believes that Between Dance and human race exists a special reciprocal connection that either lets you evolve as a Living or lets you experiment this world through your outside skin and senses.

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Yara Mansour,
Born in 2000, is a modern contemporary dancer at Al-Sarab Dance school for 10 years. She participated at many workshops held at LAU or even at Sarab with national and international teachers and attended two summer intensive classes in Amsterdam and London. She is studying nutrition in LU (she is well concerned about the body as a dancer)
She can’t handle her excitement to be part of the teaching team!!! And she belives that each one is unique :)

Yara Mansour

Yara Mansour, Born in 2000, is a modern contemporary dancer at Al-Sarab Dance school for 10 years. She participated at many workshops held at LAU or even at Sarab with national and international teachers and attended two summer intensive classes in Amsterdam and London. She is studying nutrition in LU (she is well concerned about the body as a dancer) She can’t handle her excitement to be part of the teaching team!!! And she belives that each one is unique 🙂

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Joelle Daou is a Marketing Graduate from the Lebanese American University. She started her dance lessons at the age of 6 at Al-Sarab Dance School. In 2011 she obtained her dance diploma in Modern Dance and joined the Teaching Training Program in 2015. She used to perform in the Fadi Reaidy Show and has been a part of “STS” show and danced in the “Carnaval de Nice” in 2012. She is a passionate and devoted member of Al-Sarab Dance Company, who other than her career in Project Management, is now a teacher in Al-Sarab Dance School.

Joelle Daou

Joelle Daou is a Marketing Graduate from the Lebanese American University. She started her dance lessons at the age of 6 at Al-Sarab Dance School. In 2011 she obtained her dance diploma in Modern Dance and joined the Teaching Training Program in 2015. She used to perform in the Fadi Reaidy Show and has been a part of “STS” show and danced in the “Carnaval de Nice” in 2012. She is a passionate and devoted member of Al-Sarab Dance Company, who other than her career in Project Management, is now a teacher in Al-Sarab Dance School.

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Joelle Choueiry Youssef received her teaching diploma in physical education and sports in 2006. She had been teaching dance at al sarab alternative dance school since 2003 and sports in various schools since 2007.
She joined and performed in lebanon and abroad, with al sarab dance company since 2002 with local and international choreographers.
In 2003 she received her teaching diploma in modern dance from al sarab and in 2006 she received her ballroom dance certificate from nameless dance academy. In 2007 she became a certified personnal trainer.
Throughout her dance and sports career she was the choreographer and main presenter of a kids TV show on LBC. Later on in 2012 she established her own kids entertainment company "Hip Hip Hurray" and produced kids TV shows on SAT 7 KIDS channel.

Joelle Choueiry

Joelle Choueiry Youssef received her teaching diploma in physical education and sports in 2006. She had been teaching dance at al sarab alternative dance school since 2003 and sports in various schools since 2007. She joined and performed in lebanon and abroad, with al sarab dance company since 2002 with local and international choreographers. In 2003 she received her teaching diploma in modern dance from al sarab and in 2006 she received her ballroom dance certificate from nameless dance academy. In 2007 she became a certified personnal trainer. Throughout her dance and sports career she was the choreographer and main presenter of a kids TV show on LBC. Later on in 2012 she established her own kids entertainment company “Hip Hip Hurray” and produced kids TV shows on SAT 7 KIDS channel.