Hassan Raai Badeeu (a.k.a Raai)
“Even in my darkest days, I will still dance. I can’t stand still for too many days.. I need to follow where my body leads me.”
Raai grew up in New Zealand, where his family moved when he was just ten years old. It was the eleven years he spent there that kickstarted his artist journey where he got to experiment and discover his own talent. After he graduated with a Bachelor of Performing Arts from Toi Whakaari: New Zealand Drama School, majoring in acting, he decided to move back to the Maldives to give back to his local community.
He is an actor, dancer, choreographer, and filmmaker. His stage credits in New Zealand include a north island regional tour of ‘The Night Mechanics’. He choreographed the musical ‘Once on this Island’ alongside world renowned musical director Mark Dorell. With that he has also choreographed for schools, competitions and dance crews in New Zealand. As a dancer he has competed in Street Dance New Zealand and Battlegrounds NZ. His screen credits include ‘Goblin Market’ and ‘Yukka’.
At Oaga, Raai’s main role has been to direct the theatrical dining experience offered at the specialty restaurant Samaasaa. Given that it was his first time directing a dining theatre experience, his main focus was to make sure that both the elements of dining and theatre coexisted hand in hand; whether it was the food or the performance, each element had to have the chance to shine and be part of the story. He looks forward to developing the team at Samaasaa, and have it become a world class show with a sold out audience, even perhaps have tours and take the brand to festivals around the globe.
When he’s not at Samaasaa, you can find him holding Oaga’s vibe either at Raa Baa, or with one his stellar flash dance performances at Kaa Kada. What he has been contributing to Oaga is in no doubt irreplaceable with the soul and heart he puts into each performance.
His draws his biggest inspiration from the surrounding nature, in particular animals that an actor can physicalise, detailing out the movements and shapes. His go to music surprisingly is country music like Don Williams. He dreams of leaving a legacy, a strong foundation and ultimately to explore musical theatre in either London or New York.