Past Events



International Dance Concert Series


Who: LifeDance Dance Theater

What: The Festival of World Holidays International Dance Concert Series  

When & Where:

 November 25-26th, 2006


Lorna Zilba, Artistic Director

LifeDance Theater

Direct: 415-661-5866

Cell: 415-317-4745

Toledo Museum of Art

The only touring program of its kind in North America , THE FESTIVAL OF WORLD HOLIDAYS International Dance Concert promises to become a new holiday tradition that is as educational as it is entertaining. The concert features over 35 world-class artists and appeals to an intergenerational, interdenominational and intercultural audience base. Because holidays represent some of the most colorful and memorable times in life, the concert resonates with humanity and delights with its feast for the eyes and the ears.  More importantly, it warms the heart and inspires the spirit, showcasing the world’s cultures in concert and in peace.


Developed  by LifeDance Theater as an annual tradition that offers a global view of holidays, THE FESTIVAL OF WORLD HOLIDAYS International Dance Concert features exceptional artistry through music, dance, spoken word, story-telling and authentic costuming to bring to the stage the multi-faceted cultural celebrations from around the globe. Theatrically presented, each segment features unique aspects of the world’s variegated holiday festivities and the symbolism and sacred links that are integral to each and all of them.


  The concert series on Thanksgiving weekend will be held at the Toledo Museum of Art beginning on November 25th at Noon in the Great Gallery with excerpts of the main concert featuring international artistry from Asia , Europe , Native America and the Middle East . The event is free to the public. On Sunday, November 26th, a full length concert will be performed in The Peristyle at 2:30 PM . Two bonus arts-in-education mini concerts will be presented on Tuesday, November 28th  (K-8 @ 11 AM and high schools @ 1 PM .) 


From engaging soloists to full troupes, The Festival of World Holidays brings the global village alive on stage and leaves the audience with memories and inspirations to last a lifetime. The cast of world-class artists presents a feast for the eyes and the ears with exceptional craftsmanship, authentic costuming and mesmerizing music. This concert gift-wraps the world in a unified holiday celebration showcasing our common humanity and our uncommon diversity. Holidays represent some of the world’s richest legacies and “rites of passage” throughout the year. They integrate generations and unite entire nations as well as stimulate cross-cultural exchange. In a world that is in desperate need of appreciating the diversity and common ground of its global village, this concert offers audiences an entertaining and educational opportunity to see the world and its traditions share a common stage.

Under the direction of LifeDance Theater Artistic Director, Lorna Zilba (former Toledoan residing in San Francisco) and National Director Annamarie Zilba, the concert features some of the world’s illustrious ethnic artists including Asad Shahsavari, master Persian oudist and avaz singer, Vladimir Riazantsev, Honored Artist of the Russian Federation, Ann Woo, Artistic Director of the Chinese Performing Artists of America, Darkhia Damba, award-winning Mongolian dancer, Gregangelo, Director of Velocity Arts & Entertainment and world renowned Dervish dancer featured with Cirque du Soleil, Dallas Chief Eagle and Jasmyn Pickner, world champion Native American hoop dancers, “Bear Heart” Marcellus Williams, multi-tribal spiritual leader and medicine person of the Muskogee Nation-Creek Tribe, Omayra Omaya, Andalusian gypsy and flamenco artist, born into the family of the legendary Carmen Amaya, Chaksampa Tibetan Opera and Dance Company, and more…


The concert also takes pleasure in the special moments of humor and poignancy in life, such as the Siberian Nanaika in which two boys are caught wrestling each other to a fun-loving finish...a favorite Eskimo mime-drama and the athletic antics of the Chinese Lion Dance or the ever-popular Native American Hoop Dance that tells of the sacred hoop and the tree of life all the while the dancer intricately maneuvers the hoops into delicate designs, never missing a beat of the drum.

The main concert in The Peristyle will feature an elaborate cast of artists representing nations on four continents including Spain , India , China , Israel , Russia , Uzbekistan , Native America, Persia , Mongolia , Egypt , West Africa , Lebanon , Siberia and more.... Individual excerpts for the Great Gallery event will present include regions from Asia , Europe and the Middle East . International musicians, singers and dancers will perform favorites from the fabled Chinese Lion Dance to Spain ’s fiery flamenco to Egypt ’s mystical whirling Dervish and the Sephardic Jewish men’s popular Bottle Dance, among others.


Musical interludes include the ancient melodic tones of the classical Persian oud and avaz singing, the forerunner of modern opera, the bayan, Russia’s version of the beloved accordion, which the dancer plays while performing intricate dance movements, the flamenco guitar which draws its soulful melodies from the Moorish influence in Spanish history and the gypsy elements of north India’s Kathak traditions and Rajasthani ancestral roots and the doumbec of the North African genre, which pulses in rhythms to the indigenous heartbeat of all peoples, from the sands of the Sahara to the plains of Oklahoma.

Reserved seats for Sunday’s full length matinee concert of The Festival of World Holidays in The Peristyle are $35, $25, $18, with special discount packages being offered to seniors, students and groups. Tickets go on sale October 1st through Brown Paper Tickets, the nation’s first and only fair trade ticketing service. Log onto: or phone: 800-838-3006.  Enter The Festival of World Holidays into the Search Box to purchase tickets online.



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