“Tarab”? What does it mean?

As is typical in any translation of words from one language (culture) to another, you will find almost as many different meanings as the number of people you ask.

One element seems to be consistent, however. It indicates an expression of intensity.

An Egyptian travel guide describes the word “tarab” (pronounced “Arab” with a “t”) as “the ecstatic emotion experienced by Arabs when listening to poetry and music”.

Other translations for the word “Tarab” include: soul shaking, ecstatic, overwhelmingly joyous, transporting...

To borrow a quote from Morocco (A.K.A.  Aunt Rocky):

“A better nuanced translation of Tarab, especially in relation to the Arts is: *so* moved by passion/emotion, that you can’t help expressing it via dance or singing or playing music to release it......”

Then I found a definition that clicked and distilled the meaning for me: “enchantment”.

I could find no word more aptly befitting the spirit of this joyous group of dancers, so “Troupe Tarab Middle Eastern Fusion Dancers” was born.



The classes are taught by the troupe’s founder and choreographer Julianne Battaglia, who is also the director and choreographer for Sahara Silk Middle Eastern Dance Ensemble.

The following link opens a new instance of your browser.  It provides class information, and also leads to Sahara Silk's web site.

Class schedule...