Carnival of Stars 2011


Sacramento belly dancer Nyla Crystal at Carnival of Stars 2011

Carnival of Stars is an annual belly dance festival and comic book convention held in Richmond, CA. The event organizers Alexandria and Latifa do a great job of  mixing the to genres, which makes for a fun and interesting experience. This year we tried something new and added belly dance workshops to the event. Organized by the amazing Surreyya Hada, Helena Vlahos from Pheonix, AZ, Seleena Kareena from Truth or Consequences, NM, Farasha from Las Vegas, NV, Ginnina from Las Cruzes, NM, and Shria from Iowa City, IA all traveled to the San Francisco Bay Area to teach workshops along with Terry Del G from San Rafael, CA, Surreyya, and I. The lineup was fabulous and covered topics from debke to Turkish 9/8 to Isis wings to quarter rolling.

The quarter rolling was definitely a unique workshop topic and taught by Guiness book of world records holder Helena Vlahos! Check our her quarter rolling!


Helena Vlahos – Nine Quarters Act

I could not get my quarters to roll at all, but I was able to learn spirited Greek belly dance from Helena and later a Golden Age Egyptian choreography from Selena Kareena.

After all the workshops and Carnival of Stars performances by the “Southwest Invasion”, we headed out to San Francisco for a fun instructor’s Carnival of Stars after party at Al-Masri. More fun and dancing ensued until it was way past my bed time on Sunday night. It was worth the lack of sleep and I decided not to do any hazardous experiments at school Monday morning.

• Meet the Author • Nyla Crystal


Dr. Nyla Crystal holds a Ph.D. in biochemistry and performs family-friendly shows for weddings, birthday parties, and corporate events in the Silicon Valley portion of the San Francisco Bay Area. She also co-directs the international award-winning Troupe Scimitar and the Dangerous Beauties Belly Dance show. Learn more about Santa Clara belly dancer, Nyla Crystal.


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