chilliwack_december_2012With a background in Jazz & Ballet, “Kiya” started bellydancing with Tamara in January 2004. She performed with Egyptian Breeze off and on until 2011. She danced with Kim Pechet and Albe al Wadi for a short while until she decided to focus more on being a solo performer.

Kiya has been highly influenced by the many wonderful Egyptian Dancers and her teachers include Tamara, Kim Pechet and Hadia but she has also learned from Sahra Saeeda, Delilah, Sema Yildiz, Reyhan, Zelia, Sarita, Lava, Maki and Leona. Kiya’s preferred dance styles are the more traditional Egyptian dances including Raks Sharki, Raks Beledi and Raks Assaya but she also has a great love for silk veils and works extensively with them.

Kiya was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008. Treatment included a radical mastectomy followed by a series of chemotherapy treatments and reconstruction. In an effort to help her upper body recover from the surgeries and subsequent scarring/swelling, Kiya decided to learn voi (veil poi). After a lengthy poi spinning lesson with David Yates of Night and Day Dance in Vancouver, she spent many hours studying voi and poi videos and you tube clips and of course practiced a great deal.