Carol Thay – 42
Hometown: Barnet, UK

Aiming to empower London-based women, Ozgen’s One Day in Istanbul presented by Dunya is an innovative community project that brings together a mix of amateur and professional dancers from diverse backgrounds to take part in an Ottoman Turkish-inspired dance theatre show at the Cockpit Theatre on 2nd December 2012. Carol Thay is one of our beautiful and talented cast members, and this is her story.

Tell us a bit about yourself…

My formal education qualifications are very much focused in law. My undergraduate and post-graduate degrees are both in law and I am a qualified solicitor. However, I decided to take a career break after returning to work after the birth of my daughter, and so at the moment I am a full time homeworker, looking after her and my younger son. I originally started belly dancing nearly 5 years ago, when I was looking for a local dance class to help me get back into shape after giving birth. I started taking classes in Turkish belly dancing with Aylin Webb and straight away I was hooked! It wasn’t long before I was learning choreographies which we all went on to perform at the Rakkase dance school’s stage show Stars of the Eastern Sky at Artsdepot. We were all encouraged to perform wherever possible and since then, I’ve danced at various haflas, charity events and festivals. I’m always keen to learn more, and have studied other styles of belly dance too such as Egyptian style, and using props like Chinese fan veils. I’ve always enjoyed dancing, and for me, belly dancing is my creative outlet and gives me the space to express myself.

Why did you decide to join the One Day in Istanbul project?

This is a unique opportunity for me to dance on stage and be part of a high calibre, creative theatre project.  As an amateur performer, I felt One Day In Istanbul would help to develop my performing skills in a way which I would not otherwise have the chance to do.

What has been the best part about participating in this project thus far?

Most definitely the positive attitude, support and high level of teaching from the production and creative team.

Support Carol Thay and the One Day in Istanbul team on 2nd December 2012. Doors to the theatre open at 7.30pm and the performance starts at 8pm.

Tickets are available from the Cockpit Theatre box office (tel 020 7258 2925). The theatre is located on Gateforth Street, Marylebone, London NW8 8EH. One Day in Istanbul is proud to be sponsored by Zara’s Zouk and Oriental Istanbul. If you would like to participate as a Sponsor, make a small donation or collaborate with us, please visit our Sponsume project page or contact Michelle Deniz at for details.