AmarGilded Serpent presents...
Bellydance Superstars
Our Plans for 2006 by Miles Copeland
2005 Photos by Monica Berini

Something happened to The Police on their first American tour--8 weeks playing every night was like magic glue that pulled the group together both as individual performances and as a unit playing together. There is nothing like consistency and constant pressure to deliver at your best each night to weld a group or troupe together. After over 300 shows in 16 countries, I am seeing a Bellydance Superstars entity that is not the Bellydance Superstars of late 2003.

This is a new animal altogether. If the old saying “practice makes perfect” is true, it is certainly proven with the Bellydance Superstars.

Success has been particularly strong in Europe even to the point that dancers began to have screaming fans. Security is becoming an issue as never before. I suppose I should be thankful, but it scares me somewhat. On the good side, seeing people come to multiple shows (even Prince Albert of Monaco came to see the show twice) is very encouraging as is the growing number of Arab audience participation.

MilesWe are very excited about this US tour (our first one in one year) and about the new show. I think people will be surprised how far this troupe has come and how well this art form can work on a big stage.

I have the feeling that this year we will see Bellydance finally crack the barriers that have existed for so long. The #1 selling world music magazine, Global Rhythm, has the Bellydance Superstars as the front cover of their March issue with its headline: Bellydance Coming of Age in America with the Bellydance Superstars. (This issue hits the newstands on Febuary 1)

On a separate note, my daily 1-hour Arab music show, “The Casbah with Miles Copeland,” begins on XM Radio on Channel 29 (Upop). I am also making a documentary on Arab music commissioned by PBS, which will be on the air at the end of the year. This means that interest in Arabic arts will be increased generally, which will also help in the growing popularity of Bellydance.

Bellydance still faces challenges, especially in the Middle East, but I can feel a definite improvement in they way Bellydancing is being accepted by mainstream business.

This has been a long time coming, but definitely, it’s happening.


Monica catches Bellydance Superstars at Herbst Theatre in San Francisco in early 2005
Sonya & Jillina
PJ behind Trigal faction
Amar & Georgette
Jillina does Bolluwood
Sonya's favorite pot!
Fat Chance and Tobias ham it up for finale
Fat Chance guest stars at SF show
Sharon sways
Helm backs up FCBD
Helm plays for FCBD
Mystic Tribal Trio
Hair Toss
Issam approves
Jillna emotes
Jillina Sizzles
Jillina does cane
poor drummer!
PJ resolves
Issam and  Rachel support
Tribal Hunt

Fat Chance Belly Dance, Tobias, and Isabelle exit stage after finale

Don't miss these BDSS events--

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Check the "Letters to the Editor" for other possible viewpoints!

Ready for more?
3-3-05 The BDSS Experience and Miles Copeland; Doing What He Does Best by Sausan
Even though Miles Copeland’s vision is similar to that of mine and the majority of belly dancers I have canvassed in my lifetime, he and I differ in our mission approach to elevating the dance, and this is where the discussion became a heated debate.

2-14-05 Taking Good Care of our Stars by Miles Copeland
Most of all, as we now need them consistently; we have to free them from financial worries by giving them job security including such things as health insurance.

1-25-05 Intruder, BEWARE! comic by Lynette
"How dare they pollute our pond!"

3-12-05 Keti Sharif’s A to Z Advanced Stage Instructional DVD and booklet review by Monica Berini
It is rare that an instructional video marketed to advanced dancers follows through to actually challenge experienced students or performers. This one does.

3-3-04 Bert and Amaya Workshop Photos by Ed Lampo and Report by Monica
“He makes you feel special and sexy!”, one participant was overheard to exclaim.

1-11-06 Return to India – This Time it’s Personal! by Michelle and Sandra
We thought that the misfortunes associated with our previous performance tours of India were simply anomalies in the blissful and glamorous world of dancing overseas.

1-10-06 The Dina Show! Photos by Catherine Barros, Slideshow coding by Tammy Yee
Event sponsored by Little Egypt on May 28-30, 2005 at the Crowne Plaze in Miami, Florida

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