Elie Akouri

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December 28, 2009
Elie Akouri the Teacher, choreographer, Costume Designer, former School Co-ordinator, and Founder of the Cedars of Lebanon Folkloric Dance Group, was born in Lebanon in 1953 and immigrated to Australia in 1972. His then adventurous spirit had profound influences on the state of the Folklore-dance art in Australia and overseas, portraying the beauty of the Lebanese Folkloric Dance with its rich heritage and culture. These influences on the state of the Folkloric –dance art in Australia and overseas, portraying the beauty of the Lebanese Folkloric Dance with its rich heritage and culture. These influences of challenge and struggle, and persistence ultimately lead to accomplishment. He has not only inherited the past realm of Phoenician Artistry but has expressed the represent state of the Lebanese identity through this “group art thinking”. The representation of this traditional art of the Folkloric dance has been an end goal. Six months after his arrival Elie embarked upon his initial Australian performance. The Arabic play entitled “A father’s Mistake,” was Elie’s first written production. The play was performed in Granville, was the first Arabic Dance theatre of its kind in Australia. In 1977 Elie founded the Cedars OF Lebanon Folkloric Group and went on in 1983 to establish the first Lebanese club named The cedars of Lebanon Theatre Restaurant which operated until 1986. Elie Akouri provides various audiences with Lebanese traditional entertainment and cuisine. As a teacher of the unique folkloric dance, Elie has had a long lasting impact on the Australian-Lebanese community’s artistic dance fervour and has continuously contributed to the formation and development of this art form. During his long established campaign of promotion and leadership of folkloric art form the “Dabki”, in a variety of settings, Elie has taught hundreds of youths and has bee a catalyst behind many performances in numerous venues. The traditional act of raising of the Australian and Lebanese flags with each and every performance has been enacted in schools, weddings private and public functions, commercial centres, carnivals, and festivals, both nationally and internationally. The specialist performances have also taken place at traditional Art venues, the likes of which include the Australian icon, Opera House and Sydney’s Darling Harbour. Not only has Elie Akouri used his art as an influential tool of multicultural artistic integration, but also as an instrument of humanitarian and charitable ends. The vast array of philanthropic causes have included televised Telethons aimed at improving conditions prevailing in the disabled communities within Lebanon and Australia and other programs aimed at alleviating the plight of the overseas orphans and under-privileged children. Elie’s efforts have earned him an achievement award from the Arab Heritage League in Australia for his long-standing service to the cause of multi-cultural arts development this Teacher, choreographer, costume-designer and founder of the Cedars of Lebanon Folkloric group. Elie migrated to Sydney, Australia in 1972. A few months after his arrival to Australia, Elie wanted to share the “ Beauty and Richness” of Lebanon’s Folklore with the Australian and Lebanese community. Besides promoting the Lebanese Folklore throughout Australia, Elie has founded The Cedars Of Lebanon Folkloric Group, He has also taught hundreds of children and teenagers, the Lebanese Dabki (folkloric dances), in different school, community workshops and gatherings.

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