Dances of the Silk Road & Beyond
The 5th Silk Road Dance Festival
"The Golden Road To Samarkand"
A timeless journey in dance to the heart of Central Asia and a fabled city at the crossroads of many cultures. Directed by Laurel Victoria Gray. Featuring Silk Road Dance Company with special guest artists.
Coming in May 11, 2019
Laurel Victoria Gray
Adjunct Professor of Global Dance History
George Washington University
Internationally recognized dance scholar, choreographer, performer, and costume designer, Laurel Victoria Gray specializes in women’s dances from Silk Road cultures and the Islamic World. Her scholarly articles have appeared in many publications including the Oxford University Press International Encyclopedia of Dance, the Encyclopedia of Modern Asia, the World Encyclopedia of Contemporary Theatre, and the Encyclopedia of Women in Islamic Culture.
Known as “the pioneer of Uzbek dance in America,” Gray has studied dance abroad, including two years at the invitation of Uzbekistan's State Academic Bolshoi Theater. She has lectured, researched, taught and performed dance on five continents, traveling to Egypt, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Uzbekistan, Australia, Qatar, Singapore, Canada, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the UK and throughout the US. Gray works closely with diaspora communities and embassies to accurately present their cultures. Her ensemble, Silk Road Dance Company, performed at the very first White House Nowruz celebration.
2018 Khiva Uzbekistan "Magic of Dance" Festival Jury Member 2016 London Open Central Asian International Festival Award
2013 Dance Metro DC Choreography Commissioning Project Award
2011 Toronto Tirgan Iranian Arts Festival “Arash” Award
2009 Fulbright Association International Dance Scholar Lecture
2006 Metro DC Dance Awards ''Excellence in Costume Design''
2007 Uzbekistan Ministry of Culture Recognition
2005 Embassy of Uzbekistan
Award for Strengthening US – Uzbek Cultural Ties
2003 International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance
2003 Kennedy Center Local Dance Commission Project Award
1999 International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance
Best Ethnic Dancer Award
1997 Samarkand Sharq Taronalari International Music Festival
Major Concert Works
2018 Wedding in Bukhara
2016 SHAHNAMEH: Adventures from the Persian Book of Kings
2015 Swede on the Silk Road
2013 Bollywood Fever
2009 Raqiset Shaabia: Folkloric Dances of the Arab World
2008 Legends of the Silk Road
2006 The Golden Road to Samarkand
2005 Haft Paykar: Seven Beauties
2003 EGYPTA: Myth, Magic, and Mystery
2001 Remembering the Legends: 3,000 of Women on the Silk Road
Shahnameh: Adventures from the Persian Book of Kings
Silk Road Dance Company at
WASHINGTON, March 11, 2015 UPI
by Danielle Haynes
"The Silk Road Dance Company performed Wednesday in the East Room of the White House in celebration of the more than 3,000-year-old holiday. The official start of the nearly two-week observance is March 21, coinciding with the Spring Equinox. "
Click here to read entire UPI article.