New York, New York
Djahari Clark’s specialty is in creating collaborative productions with a strong base in storytelling, sensational immersion, and experimental movement. She loves performing and creating with other inspiring individuals. She's been doing this for a long time.
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With a strong background in theater, Classical Persian Ballet, and Middle Eastern Dance (M.E.D.), Djahari weaves the aesthetics of Middle Eastern and Western cultures.
With a predilection for finding the human element in folkloric characters, she delves into the traditions of ancient culture to pull out the invisible thread that connects us all. Her work has evolved into creating original stories that personify the struggle against boundaries, real and imagined.
Djahari studied at Will Geer Theater’s Academy of the Classics (’86 – ’91), led by a repertory of renowned theater professionals specializing in techniques of Voice, Movement, and Text (including Ellen Geer, Susan Angelo, and Melora Marshall). She earned her BA in the School of Theatre, Film and Television at UCLA in 1996. She enhanced her theater endeavors with continuous training in Modern, and Middle Eastern Dance, with an emphasis on Classical Persian Ballet. She has been featured on India TV (2005), The History Channel’s “Wild West Tech” (2006), HBO’s “OneLegUpNYC” (2006), and was winner of the WEHO Award for best new artist (2004).
Her expertise in theater and movement has taken her all over the world performing and teaching workshops to actors and dancers alike. She has worked with such companies as The Hidden Room Theater (winner of Austin Critic’s Table Awards 2011), Burning Galileo Productions (WorldFest Houston Award Best Thriller 2001, Best Cinematography – International Cinematographers Film Festival, and Eastman Kodak sponsored film at Cannes 2004), Ya!Helewa Dance Company, and as a principle dancer for 10 years in Abdollah Nazemi’s Pars National Ballet Company (Mr. Nazemi is a renowned Iranian ballet choreographer and instructor from the Iranian National Academy of Ballet, himself trained in the 1950’s by William Dollar and Ivon Patterson from the American Ballet Theater and Anna Cox Sandra Zolan from the Royal Ballet in London).
In 1999, Djahari founded Desert Sin as a means of merging her love of theater and dance with an “outside the box” approach. Desert Sin was created at a time when Middle Eastern Dance experimentation was just beginning to emerge. Branching outside of the traditional forms of M.E.D. by combining social commentary, intricate story telling, puppetry, and more, Djahari has not only branded Desert Sin as one of the most prominent experimental M.E.D. companies in the world, but also has refined her skills as a successful collaborator, director, and choreographer.
She has produced, directed, and choreographed several productions including "Musée des Femmes” (2004, 2005, 2008), “Sita’s Fire” (2006), “Twitchers” (2009), "Sex and Taboo" (2010), “Winter in the Woods” (2011), and "Cloud Cuckooland" (2014, 2016) in such venues as Hollywood’s Ivar Theater, Henry Fonda Theater, House of Yes, Galapagos Art Space, Dixon Place, Bushwick Starr and in 2008, and The Zipper Factory Theater. In 2015, she completed two different Work-In-Progress Performance Residencies at Dixon Place in New York City. Djahari is currently developing "The Ballad Tree", a theatrical presentation of the Appalachian ballads she grew up listening to.
I have been in the industry since 1973.