Dance or DieFrom Stateless Refugee to International Ballet Star: A Memoir
By: Ahmad Joudeh
Art is my identity. Dance is my passport.
Young refugee Ahmad Joudeh grows up in Syria with dreams of becoming a dancer. Neither bombs nor family opposition keep him from taking classes, practicing hard, and ultimately finding success on a Lebanese reality show. But then extremist's threaten him if he continues dancing, his father kicks him out of the house, and the war around him intensifies. Recruited by one of Syria's top dance companies, Ahmad persists in his dream, and gets a tattoo on his neck, right where the executioner's blade would fall, that says "Dance or Die."
A powerful look at refugee life in Syria, Dance or Die follows Ahmad from Damascus to Beirut to Amsterdam, where he finds a home with one of Europe's top ballet troupes, and where he continues to fight for the human rights of refugees everywhere through his art, his activism, and his commitment to justice.