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Saidi and Stick Dance / Rakset el Asaya

A dance from Upper Egypt, Saidi may be danced by both men and women. For women, Saidi is traditionally performed in a floor-length, fitted dress with side splits and long sleeves. However, it is now commonly incorporated into cabaret routines with modern costuming. The Saidi rhythm is a strong, distinctive beat, somewhat slower than the rhythms used in most modern Egyptian dance music. Reflecting its folkloric origins, Saidi is a strong and earthy dance.

Often, Saidi makes use of a stick or Asaya. Use of the stick originates from stick fighting; the dance movements reflect the stick's purpose as a weapon, and indicate the wielder's strength. The stick may be used not only in Saidi but also for Stick Balady, Ghawazee, and the men's dance Tahtib.