The Kufiya & The Quftaan
directed with original music & choreography by Karim Nagi

KARAMA (Arabic for dignity/respect) is an Arab heritage troupe based in Chicago IL. KARIM NAGI composes original music and choreography that authentically engage in the continuum of Arab tradition. With an ensemble of 8 musicians and dancers, the troupe endeavors to represent the diversity of Arab culture within this unique interpretation. The balance between ancestral customs and urban diaspora-based sensibility is vigilantly observed. The goal is to express the culture not as a standard tourist spectacle, but as a living art form created by inspired performers.

Their current program of THE KUFIYA & THE QUFTAAN is a pan-Arab dance excursion set to a live score of both traditional and original Arabic music. The iconic items of regional clothing create the scenes that feature dynamic community dances, along with performances on musical instruments of Arab tradition. The voyage starts with a humble interactive living room party, singing and dancing to traditional songs from various Arab regions. It continues onward to the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa, Egypt and Near East with troupe dances and full ensemble musical accompaniment. Dancer & Musician KARIM NAGI guides the audience with educational oratory and participatory joyfulness.

This video was filmed at Tibbits Opera House in Coldwater Michigan 9/22. We are exceedingly grateful for the opportunity they gave us to debut our troupe at such an iconic venue with a fantastic audience.

If you would like to help bring us to your venue or community, please CONTACT us.


Karim Nagi
percussionist, dancer, composer, choreographer, orator

Ronnie Malley - oud lutist
Emad Ibrahim - keman violinist
Naeif Rafeh - nay flutist
Indrani Hadia - dancer
Anita Darwish - dancer
Azeema Naheed - dancer
Soumaya MaRose - dancer, guest choreographer
Arti Ishak - dance understudy
Cee Mikhail - stage manager