VOX POP tête-à-tête –
11th December 2013 – Kibris Liners
By Engin Dervişağa
Recently I went to the Club Simena Hotel to catch up with the Kibris Liners who were having their weekly line dancing class.
I was treated to many dances during the time I was there and in between I managed to have a brief chat with some of the members.
Firstly I spoke with Liz Simpson who told me she joined the Kibris Liners around 2½ years ago. Liz has lived in North Cyprus for 6½ years and comes from Sheffield in the UK where she was a Nurse and Theatre Manager at a local hospital. Liz said she had a very stressful job which is the reason she decided to retire to North Cyprus to have a more relaxed way of life. Never having been involved with line dancing in the UK, Liz now loves the Kibris Liners and enjoys performing at the many Festivals they dance at during the year.
After some more dancing I sat with Elaine Perry who told me she came from Ludlow, Shropshire in the UK and had been with the Kibris Liners for 2 years, she loves line dancing, especially to Turkish music. Elaine’s hobbies are patchwork and quilting but she likes all types of craftwork.
I then spoke to Maria Chappell who I met recently at Tolga’s Restaurant when she was involved with a fundraising event for the Cancer Research Association (KAV). Maria comes from Essex, near the Sussex border in the UK and has lived in North Cyprus for 6-7 years and she has been with the Kibris Liners for 4 years. Maria’s husband had always wanted to live somewhere in the sun and following an illness and operation, she decided to concentrate her life around her husband and with the family grown up, they made the move to North Cyprus, which they both love. One of Maria’s favourite line dances is to the music “Come Dance with Me” but she also likes all of the dances and the variety of music.
Towards the end of the class I interviewed Chrissie Oktekin who has been running the class for 5 years after the original lady returned to the UK. Chrissie has lived in North Cyprus for 14 years, currently in Kayalar, and she has the family of her late husband here but none in the UK so she doesn’t go back. Chrissie said the Club has been using the Simena Hotel for 3 years and they look after them very well. She uses some of the traditional dances but also looks for new ones and different types of music. Chrissie said she hadn’t done line dancing previously but she did ballet in the UK from the age of 4 until she was 16 years old. The Kibris Liners have performed at a lot of Festivals through the year, including the Olive, Strawberry and Hawthorn and also for charity events such as KAV and for the Girne Belediye at their event at Baris Park. Chrissie said that all are welcome to join the Kibris Liners, irrespective of age and they will be made very welcome. As well as the Kibris Liners, Chrissie is also involved with Kyrenia Animal Rescue so her time is pretty well taken up with these activities.
I thoroughly enjoyed watching the Kibris Liners going through their routines and speaking to some of the ladies who enjoy the dancing and the social element of the Kibris Line Dance Club.