Cairo is not ready for the Flavor takeover, said Yashreeka Huk, cofounder of the new Flavor Project.
Mahmoud Shoukry, the other cofounder, said, “Flavor’s aim it is to celebrate hip-hop and contemporary art in Cairo.
The two recently held auditions at Move Dance & Fitness Studio in Mohandiseen. Yasmine Riad, owner of Move, is sponsoring the project. “When I first heard about Flavor, said Riad, “it sounded like a brilliant idea. I am happy to sponsor and support Flavor.
Huk and Shoukry explained that the Flavor Project will apply various elements of performance, including dance, beat boxing, poetry, MCs and more. “Though hip-hop will be a big factor, said Huk, “it is just a starting point. The Flavor Project is aiming much higher.
“Anyone who is serious about performing is welcome in the project as long as you take yourself seriously and have a professional attitude, said Shoukry. “We want to get you on stage and show Cairo what you’ve got. It is not just about performance, it is also about growth, and we will all learn from each other.
At the informational meeting, Huk and Shoukry explained to nearly 50 applicants the goals of the Flavor Project.
“We are calling this a project, said Huk, “because we all have a stake in this. If the project fails, we all fail. There is no ownership here, we just want you all to grow as artists.
Those performers selected for the project will pay monthly dues to be saved up until a February performance. Huk and Shoukry will organize the rehearsals and public relations for the February event.
The Flavor Project, according to Shoukry, “will exhibit to Cairo an amazing performance with a message. Music and performance have become so commercialized, and our goal is to bring something different.
Huk and Shoukry met through one such performance. Huk said, “The cool thing about performance is that it is so universal, that I, as an American, could meet Mahmoud, an Egyptian, through this kind of venue. This is a universal feeling that is springing up everywhere, independent of any other movement. One of our aims is to bridge cultural and religious gaps.
The audition was a clear example of the universal aspect to which Huk was referring.
Ruqaya, a British native auditioning for the Flavor Project, said, “I was not expecting to do anything like this in Egypt. When I heard about the Flavor Project, I was really excited to be able to bring an art form that not many in Cairo have heard about which is Slam Poetry.
Nurmeen, an Egyptian student, heard about the Flavor Project on Facebook. “My reaction was, oh my God, they’re bringing a ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ [an American TV dance show] to Egypt. This can bring me one step closer to my dream of becoming a professional dancer.
Bryan, an American, said that he was “hoping to bring a little hip-hop flavor from the United States. I want to share my American MC flare with Egypt.
Soraya, a Malaysian native who dances jazz, ballet, and modern, said, “I am extremely thankful that this project is underway. It sounds like a lot of fun.
Ava, a classical dancer from Germany, said that she was “eager to learn new styles of dance by working with the Flavor Project and to share with everyone what I got.
The idea of the Flavor Project started brewing in October. “The idea of fusing together many aspects of performance has always been fascinating for me, said Shoukry.
Huk added, “It’s going to be quite amazing to see a belly dancer and a break dancer together on stage, dancing to a live DJ. It’s gonna be dope.
“The intention of the Flavor Project, said Shoukry, “is to gain enough publicity and momentum to start a performing arts company. In the meantime, it is Move Dance & Fitness providing the logistics and funding for the project.
According to the Flavor Project’s Facebook page, “The culmination of this endeavor will result in a banging performance during the month of February with several exhibition performances leading up to the event.