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Community Kaleidoscope

News and Photos from Around the World!
January - June 2012

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Older material is saved in the CK Arhives

Video Report from Dangerous Beauties show in Santa Rosa, CA, Video interview with Princess Farhana and Surreyya, Video interview with Natalie Becker, Gigbag Check #35 with Hala,
Princess Farhana & Surreyya interivew part 2,

Posted 6-26-12

This is part 2 of and interview done in April 2012 with Princess Farhana and Surreyya. They came to Gilded Serpent offices for a breakfast while they were both in town for thier current show called "Dangerous Beauties". In this portion of the interveiw they discuss community and the cross over between the cabaret dancers and the tribal fusion community. Part 1 is embedded below under the date 4-27-12.

posted 6-21-12, by Lynette
I am learning a new video program and practiced on this old footage from a trip to Cairo in 1991.


A portion of the footage from our 1991 trip to Cairo with Mohamed, Janet, Lillian, and Najia. Lynette shot the footage while Lillian steered me down the street so I could watch the view finder. We see store keepers, soldiers, children, women, a blacksmith, horse drawn carts, minarets and more. Lillian and I saw the tapestry and called Mohamed back to help me buy it.

Posted 6-20-12, submitted by Nadira

Nadira and Brandon are engaged!

posted 6-18-12
Meleea and friends
Meleea and friends at the Echad Senior Apartments.
From left to right, we have Jayci, Ja Nena, Meleea, Caroline, and Miriam.
Dallas, Texas

posted 6-18-12 [ed-sorry for the delay!], Photos by Denise of Pangia
Sunday results from
Belly Dancer of the Year 2012

Help with names please!

Grand Dancer Hassan wins!
1-Devi Safir, 2- Mariah, 3- Hala, 4- Jeanne, 5- Hassan Deeb wins!, 6-Paloma,

HASSAN YOUSEF DEEB - 2012 Grand Dancer of the Year
Mariah - 1st Runner Up
Hala - 2nd Runner Up
Devi Safir - Congeniality


1- group of 5, 2- group of 3, 3- Duet: Shupeda wins

Results from BDOY site-- who is who?
SHUPADA - 2012 Tribal Ensemble of the Year

Pomegranate Vibrato - 1st Runner Up
Sister Sirens - 2nd Runner Up

1, 2, 3, 4- Jizan?, 5, 6, 7

Results from BDOY site-- who is who?
SHOSHANNA ESTELL - 2012 Tribal Soloist of the Year

Jizan - 1st Runner Up
Henna - 2nd Runner Up
Star - 3rd Runner Up
Shadha - 4th Runner Up

Reader and Contributor Saroya adds:
1.) Devi Safir (Miss Congeniality in the Grand Dancer Category)
2.) Aisha Aroosh (Titled dancer from a few years ago, same category)
3.) Ayesha (My beloved instructor and Troupe “Mother)
4.) Miriam? (Aisha Aroosh’s granddaughter)
5.) Taroob

Thanks for the opportunity to fill in the names!
Saroya Ahlaam, ( Grand dancer finalist may years ago,also Troupe Mandala member winner,  now retired and doing photography...)
I still love my troupe sisters and cousins! Way to go Oregon!!

Gigbag Check #40 with Khalilah!

Filmed at the Belly Dancer of the Universe Competition 2011, Khalilah competes in 3 categories in one day while sick with the flu including a high fever! This event was held in Long Beach, California. Khalilah is a student of Najia Marlyz and MaShuqa. Khalilah gives us a tour of a few items that she takes with her to her performances. See more Gigbag Checks here

posted 6-14-12


Leila Farid's new baby!

posted June 14, 2012

Mamma Martha is doing fine!



Gigbag Check #39 with Troupe Intizar

Sese directs Troupe Intisar based in Santa Cruz California.
According to their site at, troupe members include: Samira, Desma, Adara, Alexa, Caliana, Saffana, Kamala.
This lively troupe was interviewed back stage at the Belly Dancer of the Year 2012 Competition held in El Cerrito, CA.

GigBag Check #38 with Adriane

Adriane is currently from Sacramento, CA. She teaches and sponsors events in the area. She has written for and volunteers on occasion also. Her website is Thanks Adriane! This video was filmed backstage at Belly Dancer of the Universe 2011 in Long Beach.

GigBag Check #37 with April Rose

April Rose is at this moment, June 2012, finishing her Masters program at UCLA. She worked with Unmata, and will tour internationally with the Bellydance Superstars in the Fall of 2012. This video was shot at the Internationally Bellydance Conference of Canada in May of 2012. Along with her Gigbag tour are snippits of her teaching and performing at IBCC. See more GigBag Checks here.

Posted 5-28-12

MaShuqa GigBag Check #36
MaShuqa, known for her beautful make up, shows us a few secrets! MaShuqa is a well known bellydancer in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is also the wife of Carl Sermon, whose photos you will see frequently on This video was filmed back stage at the Belly Dancer of the Universe Competition in February 2011

See the first 35 on the GigBag Page!

Posted 5-26-12, photos by Denise of Pangia, Ed Lampo, and Lynette

Belly Dancer of the Year 2012 Winners

Saturday Categories: Solo Cab and Groups.

Belly Dancer of the Year solo cab contestants
linked to enlargement

Winners of the solo category

Solo Cab winners above.
Kimmy, Khalilah, Badia, Natika, Masha, Isis, Namira

Denise's photo of the groups all on stage together is linked to a larger version.
Names? Sisi's troupe in purple... other groups that competed-
Asuhndree, Hip Shock, Beladi Moon, Khamsin, Intisar, Ember Rose, Ruya , Troupe Dhyanis, Raks Ahroosh

Troupe winners

Dhyanis's Troupe wins again (won in 2003) (I think Alanah made the fanveils)

Duet winners of BDOY 2012

Duet winners-- is this Ember Rose? Jillian and Etain, presented by Numa'ir and Naiya?

Posted May 25, 2012, photo submitted by Andrea of Stellar Advantage from the Bad Boys of Bellydance show happening now!

Mercedes and Cheryll

Belly Dancer of the Year 2012
This weekend- May 26 & 27, 2012
El Cerrito High School Performing Arts Theater
Here are the lists of competitors in each category:

Groups- Troups, Duo, etc -Sat 1 pm
Shabnam Dance Company   

Hip Shock      
Beladi Moon 
Ember Rose  
Troupe Dhyanis
Raqs Ahroosh

Tribal Ensemble Sunday
Sister Sirens                                                  
Pomegranate Vibrato    

Soloists- Cab - Sat 7 pm

Khalilah Samah
Andrea Aranda
Isis San Miguel
Alma Safiyah

Grand Dancer - Sunday
Theresea Jade 
Devi Safir                                                      
Hassan Yousef Deeb                                    

Tribal Solo Sunday
Naima Faddin                                    
Deidre Anaid                                                 
ShoShannah  Estell  

Judges include:

Ahava, Amy Luna, Andalee, Aneena, Ayesha, Denise, Dunia, Fadil Shahin, Judeen, Maria, Monica, Naiya, Namira, Oreet, Pat Olson, Stasha

Saturday May 19, 2012 at Tribal Fest
Photo by Lynette
SashaAysel of Japan

Sasha of MA and Aysel of Japan

Ayre Briar on left and on the right is JR

unknown dudeunknown gal
Who are these people?
Paige Lawrence on left (thanks Surreyya!)

Tammy the Island Warrior & Commodore Kraken, Pirates of Reno

Unknown troupe

Briohny and Shanne of Australia.

Jill fits one of her lovely dresses onto Salima.
Jill vends at the boothe of Phoenix Rising

Nera and Kiki of Firefly

Warda dies in Cairo at 72, May 17, 2012
AP story

Posted on May 15, 2012, submitted by Latifa of Maryland

Latifa's Annual Recital

Latifa's Annual Recital

Posted May 1, 2012, submitted by Linda Grondahl

Linda's photo of Aswat concert in Fairfax, CA

Posted 4-30-12
Nancy Hernandez of Oojala
presents Tekke Turkman hats at the Ethnic Textile Study Group,
a branch of the Textile Art Council, De Young Museum, San Franciso
on 4-29-12. Photos by Dawn Devine

Nancy Hernandez

Posted 4-29-12 presents a collage video report from last night's show (4-28-12) in Santa Rosa, California at the Last Day Saloon. This is my first project on this device. This footage was filmed, edited, and uploaded on an iPad 3. Hoping to get proficient enough to send daily report from IBCC later this week! 
Performers for this show included
Murat's band "Native Brew"-Janus-Bhargav-Corey, Surreyya, Princess Farhana, Teresa, Nyla Crystal, Farasha, Terrianne, Dusty, Susu, and Talia with her partner.

Posted April 27, 2012

Interview with Princess Farhana and Surreyya, Part 1 of 3

This series of interviews was filmed April 26, 2012. Surreyya and Princess Farhana came to the Gilded Serpent office for a visit. This is the first of 3 parts. Discussion of their current show called "Dangerous Beauties, and working with their "virtual" troupe members and costumers around the world using the various tools of the web.

posted 4-10-12

Interview with Natalie Becker of St Petersburg, Russia

Interviewed in Marrakech, Morocco at the Mediterranean Delight Festival produced by Simona Guzman in June 2011. Natalie and her daughter, Natalie (nickname- Ebru), are from St Petersburg, Russia. Natalie tells about her start and first mentors. She tells of her daughter's launch into bellydance as a career. We have more videos coming with Natalie also talking more about the Russian style of Bellydance. Anna Borislova assists.

Posted April 10, 2012
Rashid and John in 88

Rashid Passes

Oriental dancer of renown, Thomas Rashid Ryan passed away peacefully at his home in San Francisco, CA this Easter morning. As he soars through the universe, let us remember his artistic achievements, his commitment to teaching children with special needs, and his unending creativity.
--Jeanette Cool

Rashid is in the middle with John on the far side and Chip on the near side.
Video labeled on YouTube as "Published on Apr 10, 2012 by alaskamish "

Posted April 8, 2012
Reda's Store
Kathy stands in front of Reda Darwish's MultiKulti store in San Francisco.

posted March 27, 2012, submitted by Osama Mimi Farag

Osama MImi Farag performs in the Czech Oriental Competition with his meleya leff dancers:
Terezka Skučková, Soňa Machová, Renata Tisha Morávková
This event is put on by the Cczech Dance Orgnaiztion

"The second with same people plus Jana at the Oriental fesival, "Queen of Dance" in Prague"--[need the date!]

 Egyptian Fever 2011
November 11-13, 2011
Katawice City, Poland
Sponsor - Suraiya of Poland
1- Osama, 2- Aisa Kafour of Holand, 3- Nesrin, 4- Farida Fahmy, 5-Narjess Montaser of Spain, 6-Winner of something?, 7-?, 8-?, 9-?
[ Help!-Below names still need to be matched up with the correct faces ]
"Suraia of Poland, Olga of the Ukrain, Daila of Cezch, Ranya from Slovakia the first place in balady and golden era, and Jana from Czech the second place in balady."

Posted March 23, 2012

Gigbag Check #35 with Hala!

Backstage with Hala, she shows us what she carries to performances in her bag. This interview was conducted in October 2011.
Tito Sief is also in the room. Look for Gigbag Check #32 with Tito

posted 3-20-12
GIlded Serpent would like thank Trish/ Hannan for her recent donations of these magazines to the GS Archives.

Trish donates magazine to Gs archives

We would also like to thank Sheryl/Rabia and Pepper Alexandria for their generous donations to the magazine archives.
If you have Bellydance magazines, books, photos, or graphics you would like to donate, please contact the editor.

Posted 3-17-12, Submitted by Yolanda
Yoland and Lulu in there new biz at Rakkasah
Yolanda and Lulu in their booth at Rakkasah West. They are the new owners of Artemis Imports!
Looks like a good spot, check it out when you are there today!

Posted March 14, 2012, Submitted by Asmahan of Cairo and Argentina
Photos by Andre' Elbing
Black Lion and the Lady Tiger
Asmahan performs with Khadim, Black Lion in the Oriental Princesses Festival last March 26, 2011 in Amsterdam, Holland

Asmahan performs with the Black Lion!

Posted March 13, 2012, Submitted by Stasha
"Feb 12 - a show Asia and I put on @ Al Masri to celebrate our birthdays (Asia was Feb 10, and me Feb 7)"
[ed note: we need more names & photo credit!]

On Sunday, 12 February 2012, Asia and Stasha celebrated their birthdays by offering a show at Al Masri Egyptian restaurant in San Francisco. The event, titled "Now I Know the Meaning of Love", was a complete sell out. All guests enjoyed the deliciously authentic Egyptian buffet by Chef Sausan, and a huge birthday cake was happily distributed to all at the end of the evening. A selection of photos by friends, family and dear ones allows us to share the event with you. Please join us next time!
photographers: Patrick Kileem, Ewald Detjens, Oksana Koval

Asia and Stasha duet
Stasha in silver and Asia in gold.

Asia Students included - Kassie Majus, Nadine Morey


Liliana Vale, and Grace Garza, students of Asia



Posted March 7, 2012, submitted by Amanda Baer
Below is our class photo from Helene Eriksen's first Bay Area Training Project weekend, held Feb. 25-26,
in San Francisco

Class Photo from Helene Eriksen Workshop

Persons in the photo are...

Seated, L to R: Heather Serginia, Melody Burns, Pamela Ludwig, Helene Eriksen, Monica Berini
Kneeling, L to R: Linda Franco, Stacey Becker, Carissa Thiel
Standing, L to R: Pat Eymil, Penny Tan, Amanda Baer

(There were a few other attendees who had to leave before we got the photo; I can send their names if you wish)
Our next Project weekend (and the last opportunity for dancers to try-out and/or join the Project) is April 28-29.
More info at

Posted February 29, 2012, Submitted by Surreyya

Back stage shots from Dangerous Beauties,
February 18, 2012, The Dark Room Theater, San Francisco, CA

Princess Farhana and Surreyya
Princess Farhana (as Opium) and Surreyya (as Lillith)


Dusty Paik as Baba Yaga

Rose Harden

Rose Harden as Mata Hari - Jodi Waseca helping her suit up.

Strike a Pose Workshop

?, ?, ?, ?, Princess Farhana, Nyla Crystal, Shaunte, Surreyya

posted February 27, 2012, submitted by Sausan

Who: Mohamed Shahin sponsored by Sausan
What: Workshop on Feb. 18/19, 2012
Where: Al-Masri Egyptian Restaurant, San Francisco

The workshop was held in Sausan's beautiful restaurant

Front to back:
Mohamed Shahin, Melinda (violet/black)
Slavka (purple/violet), Masouma Rose (gray/black), Eva (teal blue), Bramani (light tan), John
(black/fuschia), Serafina (black), Fayruz (black/red-dyed hair), Dhyanis
Alnisa, Monica (violet/black), Shamira (Marsha)
Linda (way behind the chair in the back), Sausan's legs in zebra print leggings.  :-)

Shamira, Sausan, Mo, Dhyanis, dancing is Linda Grondahl

Mohamed Shahin

Posted 2-23-12, submitted by Lisa Zahiya of Asheville, NC

This is an impromptu drum solo from the Gala Show at the Festiv'Al Shimmy in Frejus, France February third through fifth, 2012.  The festival's teachers, Ava Fleming, Lisa Zahiya, Lorena Sedran and festival organizer, Aude Mathis, joined Mohamed el Sayed on stage during his live drumming set.  The show also included pieces by all the teachers, local and regional dancers and a tanoura set by Mohamed.

Posted 1-20-12
Sahra's Drum class with Amir Sofi and her Lifetime Acheivement Award presented to her by Tonya
Filmed February 2011 at the Belly Dancer of the Universe Competition in Long Beach, California.

In February 2011, at the Belly Dancer of the Universe Competition 2011 in Long Beach, Sahra Saeeda Kent gave a choreographed drum solo class to the live music of Amir Sofi and friend. After the workshop most of the students presented what they learned on stage before the live audience. Sahra is also given the lifetime achievement award. 
Lovina gives testimonial to how much she enjoyed the class. Find out more about these artists on or on the web.

Posted 1-19-12, Submitte by Myriam Eli
Harmonic Motion's Joe Zeytoonian and Myriam Eli performed Tribute To Our
Harmonic Motion's Joe Zeytoonian and Myriam Eli performed
Tribute To Our Ancestors: Armenians & Sephardim
at Anahid Sofian's Atelier Orientale in New York City on 6 November 2011.  Photo: Isaiah

Posted January 8, 2012, Submitted by Sahra Kent

The Fez Project

Top row from left: Sahra C Kent “Sahra Saeeda”, Helena Vlahos, Roxanne Shelby, Barbara Al Bayati
Front row: Feiruz Aram, Anisa, Marta Schill, Antoinette Awayshak, Aisha Ali, Sadoun Al Bayati
(Tonya and Andreas had not arrived yet – as soon as they did the group photo was at the table.-Coming soon!)
Click for larger photo!

The Fez project
The FEZ documentary project
     Roxxanne Shelby is currently researching and producing a documentary about
"The Fez" Restaurant and Nightclub. Opened in 1959 in Hollywood, The legendary Fez not only became a center for the Arabic community in Southern California, but a catatyst for Arab music and dance going on to inspire generations of musicians and dancers well beyond Los Angeles.    This project intends to document a piece of Arab Music and Dance history, the cultural center that the Fez became for the Arab community and those drawn to the beauty and richness of the Arab culture AND the nostalgia of old Hollywood!


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