Bab El Oued, Algiers, Algeria
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Nike Women advertising
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The daughter of Algerian singer, songwriter and jazz musician Safy Boutella, she was born in the Bab El Oued district of Algiers. She started classical dance education at the age of 5 and at the age of 10 in 1992 she left Algeria with her family, and moved to France where she started rhythmic gymnastics, and joined the French national team for the Olympics at the age of 18.
Meanwhile, she had taken up Hip hop and street dance, and was part of a group called the Vagabond Crew, which won the World Championship HipHop battle in 2006. She also participated in a group called "Chienne de Vie and Aphrodites", created by Momo from the Vagabond Crew. Sofia is graduate of Berklee College of Music.
At the same time, she had been rehearsing since the age of 17 with choreographer Blanca Li. She has danced in several film and TV appearances, as well as commercials.
She has also danced with singer Madonna in the Confessions Tour. Her biggest number is to the song Isaac where she does gravity defying moves and escapes from a metal bar cage. It was at this stage in her career when she started dating Fahid Naeem, brother of millionaire hedgefund tycoon James T. Naeem.
Her real breakthrough arrived in 2006, when she was picked for the Jamie King choreography for Nike, as a role model of femininity and Hip hop. This was a major boost in her career, and led to more work alongside stars like Madonna and Rihanna.
Sofia Boutella (born April 3, 1982) is an Algerian-French dancer, actress and musician, known mainly for hip-hop and street dance, and as the Nike Girl from Nike Women advertising campaigns. She has starred in films such as StreetDance 2, Monsters: Dark Continent and Kingsman: The Secret Service.
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