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Monday, June 01, 2009

World-shaking Tarkan

By Adelind Osmanlı reporting from Munich, Germany

Kristin Rude, of Hanover, practices dancing with the crowd during the Shimmy Dance-a-Thon held by Ziva's Dance Studio at the Clearview Shopping Center on Sunday. The dance-a-thon helped raise money for the Red Cross in Hanover. (Evening Sun Photo by Shane Dunlap)Tarkan's kisses were heard out in Pennsylvania last Sunday, as local US paper The Evening Sun for the borough of Hanover in York County prints an article by Joseph Deinlein covering the Shimmy Dance-a-Thon held by Ziva's Dance Studio at the Clearview Shopping Center to raise money for charity.

The belly-dancing aficionados came out to help collect food items for the Greater Hanover Chapter of the American Red Cross in a collective dance, with all of the different moves put together to the famous pop star's signature tune "Şımarık" (Ölürüm Sana, 1997).

Deinlein explains that "the key motion [that] folks normally think of as belly dancing [is] the shimmy. Using the abdominal muscles, each hip is lifted one at a time. The goal is not to move violently, but to essentially make smaller and faster movements."

In the article, dancer Ziva noted the move was a good ab workout, and helped improve posture and relieve tension. "When in doubt, shimmy," she said.

The charity dance ended with all participants blowing a kiss.

Tarkan in Berlin

Hurriyet articleMeanwhile, Tarkan was in Berlin, Germany, to hold a summit with representatives of the World Bank, Iraqi wetlands establishments, Swiss, Austrian and German non-governmental organizations, on May 28 - along with Güven Eken, chairman of the Doğa Derneği (Nature Society) and campaign coordinator Erkut Ertürk - as he accelerates the campaign to save an ancient settlement in Southeastern Turkey from the building of a dam to flood part of the Tigris River.

Last year, with Turkish pop star Tarkan’s contributions, Doğa Derneği launched an office in the region with the aim to propose an alternative argument to funding countries and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who is the final person to decide on this subject.

Doğa and Tarkan came together again this year for a petition on May 14, which demands the Tigris Valley to be deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and which the famous pop star plans to present to Erdoğan, German Prime Minister Angela Merkel, Austrian Prime Minister Werner Faymann and Swiss Prime Minister Hans-Rudolf Merz. Turkish newspaper Hürriyet claims the petition has been signed by nearly 10,000 people so far.

Speaking to Hürriyet, campaign coordinator Ertürk said, "Tarkan, with his prudential vision, has helped Doğa Derneği carry its voice to the international field," and added, "The petition will not be over until [the areas are] declared world heritage sites."

Tarkan recently met with Culture and Tourism Minister Ertuğrul Günay and presented a report that proves the region can qualify as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The German, Swiss and Austrian funding for the dam project have considered withdrawing their support as a result of the increasing protests against the construction of the dam.

And Talking of Tarkan...

Finally, in an article by Hürriyet's magazine supplement Kelebek, Patricia Kaas - one of the most successful French-speaking singers in the world - has spoken about Tarkan.

Having represented France in the Eurovision Song Contest 2009 in Moscow, Russia, and asked whether she had heard of any Turkish artists apart from Turkey's 2009 entrant, Belgian-born Hadise, Kaas responded that she had only heard of Tarkan.

"I only know Tarkan, who had a huge following in France a few years back," she is reported to have said.

Kaas is set to give a concert in Istanbul on 10 June.

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