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Founder's Story

Desert Roses Founder
Lily Shi 石见瑄 


Lily Shi 石见瑄.JPG


In 2002, Lily first saw belly dancing at Clarke Quay by a friend and enchanted by the form of art while she was doing her Master's in Engineering in National University of Singapore. She started to learn the dance in her spare time since then. In 2004, Lily was already the regular belly dancer for the band of Al-Bedouin Middle Eastern Music Ensemble Singapore. Lily and the Drummers of the Nile (Al-Bedouin's student group) are regular fixtures of the Holistic Living Festival, having performed together for the last three Festivals. Lily has also performed for numerous events include Mercure Roxy Park Hotel Appreciation Night, NUS Prince George's Park International Festival, Light Up Bishan, Toastmasters International Anniversary Dinner, Kampung Senang World Harmony Day Celebration, Embedded Systems Conference, (Faculty of Engineering, NUS), NUS Centennial Celebration, Toastmasters Christmas Party, Little India Utsav, Dance Connection Christmas Party, and performed for the Nanyang Technological University Alumni Day. 


In 2005 she quit her PhD study in engineering to pursue her passion in Belly Dance. She was involved in Kids Fest Singapore 2006, as part of Singapore’s arts college Lassalle’s performing team. She also performed for National Arts Counsel’s Arts Exposure Programs for Singapore's local primary schools, secondary schools, junior colleges in Singapore together with Amit Gilboa's Middle Eastern music band Albedouin during 2005 to 2009. She has also performed in Canadian International school and American International School in Singapore and choreographed dance for United World College's (UWC) students' performance for the school's Racial Harmony Day . 


Lily has also performed as a Middle Eastern percussionist; she assisted conducting teambuilding workshops for such companies as IBM, OCBC as well as for 500 students at Nanyang Primary School, and performed as a drummer at the Pulses of the Northeast Festival in July 2004. 


Lily has also performed as a salsa dancer at events such as the Junior Chamber International Operation hope Fundraiser, NUS Prince George's Park International Festival and Citigroup Latin Fiesta. She has also assisted teaching Salsa in GSS-NUS and in Philips, as well as some other private parties. She also taught Belly Dance/Salsa in NUS Prince Georges Park-international student’s hostel during 2005- 2006. 


Lily also joined Al-Bedouin drummers and other dancers in the Vida Condominium TV commercial. Lily has also appeared on these Mediacorp TV programs: "Focus", "It's a small world", "Good morning Singapore", " 综艺Go live" "Hooked on Hanyu" for her endeavors as a passionate immigrate promoting arts and international harmony and appeared on many newspapers and magazines as well over the years. 


Internationally, early in 2005, Lily took private classes in Turkey and was invited to perform in Israel for kids, and also participated in the performance for Queensland Poetry Festival in Brisbane, Australia. She has performed with many international belly dance artists. In 2009 to 2013 she bridged master workshops between Turkey, Singapore and China to promote international arts communication and culture exchange. She also assisted culture exchange between Abu Dhabi and Singapore for Abu Dhabi Summer Festival in 2009.


In 2009, she also founded Desert Roses Belly Dance: Desert Roses Dance Studio together with Desert Roses Performance Group to promote belly dance as a lifestyle to benefit more women in body, mind and soul. 


To date, Desert Roses Dance Studio has taught thousands of students and fostered international belly dance champion for Singapore, also many highly qualified instructors working all over in Singapore. She has inspired belly dance art industry in Singapore in many ways towards a more prosperous direction to enrich Singapore's local life. 


Desert Roses performance group has also grown into Desert Roses Show Productions and absorbed more performing artists highly professional in their music and dance performance. 


Educational Background: 

Dance Training (2002- 2006): 

Lily began her belly dance training in Singapore under established dancers Claribel Ng, Fiona Hoo (Desert Rhythm) and Belinda Tan (Sahara Sundance) and also received private training in Istanbul from internationally acclaimed dancer Hale Cakir (Hale Sultan). 


Academic Background: 

Master in Engineering: National University of Singapore, Singapore 2005 
Bachelor in Engineering: Shanghai Jiao Tong University , China 1999 


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