Stichting New European Cultural Collaborations
Shimmy Shake activities are conducted under the governance of the New European Cultural Collaborations Foundation.
Mission according to the Statues: The support and stimulation of projects of a high artistic quality that break through the boundaries of traditional ideas about art in all its forms; and any activities that can directly or indirectly aid and assist this process.
Vision: Stichting New European Cultural Collaborations (StNECC) presents and promotes innovative, fusion arts and culture focusing on crossing the boundaries of art forms within a wide range of disciplines.
Initially St. NECC was set up in 1991 to produce theater performances with non-mainstream and non-white talent, producing many major works with, amongst others, Micheal Matthews’s Frank (what makes a man different and how does being closed out result in violence?) and This Sporting Life with composer Rob Hauser (a marvellous music theater reworking/update of the themes of Porgy and Bess).
The first major events initiated and produced by St.NECC started in 1996 under the name - Culture Coalition, set up with the support of the Amsterdam City Council and the National Art Fund. This foundation stimulated, supported and produced new work, events and festivals, where the multicultural nature of big city life was showcased. Culture Coalition provided a fresh look at the multi-cultural society not as a possibility but as a reality to be celebrated with many great enriching effects. Many projects were launched including Strong Stories (4 ethnically different women told their stories of surviving and thriving between dual cultures, one at home and one outside), Masala in the Mix (UK DJs cooperating with local Hindustan musicians), Cheese and Couscous cabaret duo (Maroccan comedy shows addressing the situation on the street), City Life Festivals and the still very active Spin Off – Breakdance without Boundaries.
Since 2005 St. NECC organizes various events and projects that showcase, support and develop the new art that is being created thanks to the influence of the current Diaspora from (Middle) Eastern lands to the West. This was done within the context of a festival – LiteSide, to counteract the negativity that had arisen about citizens with Eastern backgrounds/Muslim culture. Started in 2006 the well-known LiteSide Festival highlighting the top contemporary artists from the Arabic, Turkish and Iranian world living in Europe and helping to innovate and renew Western culture St.NECC initiated and produced. LiteSide was a multidisciplinary festival and helped launch the careers of many now famous performers, writers and artists. Some of the projects were Words as Weapons (literature), Sacred Street Art (responsible open air art works instead of ugly grafitti), Hammam Stories (theater by women over their lives performed during a Hamman ritual with the public) and more.
In 2007 Shimmy Shake began as a competition for amateur cross-over belly dancers as a project of the LiteSide Festival. Inspired by Shakira (pop singer) the aim was to discover which dancers were experimenting with crossing belly dance with their own personal style that mixing East with West, making a new dance genre. The response was overwhelming making the Shimmy Shake Cross-over belly dance competition a yearly event for amateurs and professionals. The interest continued to grow and so has the concept developing into a yearlong multi-layered Dance Development program including coaching, workshops and master classes at all levels, festivals and events, career management, artistic exchanges touring and producing shows. Shimmy Shake International Festival started in 2014 and is now a well-known European festival of importance. Since 2016 we also organize the delightful Taletn Carnival – the closing festivity to show the coached dance acts from the Talent Search and celebrate this new dance genre.
Interest continues to grow and so does our concept. We are currently working on our co-operations with other European organizations and festivals to expand the scope for performing and learning of our dancers. We organize artistic exchange with Germany on a regular basis and want to expand our co-operations on these lines as well.We are already the go-to organization for advice on dancers in this genre, also bellydancers. In the future our dream is to tour a highly professional full-length theatrical dance performance to various theaters and festivals throughout Europe.
Thereby achieving for this genre the broad popularity it deserves.
Photography by multiple photographers, including Jean Van Lingen & Adriaan Kastelein. All photos an this site are either owned by St. NECC, the photographer or are provided by one of the participants. Contact us for details if you would like to reuse an image.
Talent Scouting, Coaching and Training, Workshops and Master Classes, Presentations, Productions and Touring, Artistic Advice and Programming, Exchanges, International Network, International Festival.