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==>   Reserve Your Spot Now for the next Bellydancer of the Universe Competition -- Open to the Public!

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The 12th Annual Bellydancer of the Universe
Competitions and Open Dance Festival -
Views and Reviews of the 2002 BDUC

DAVID HERNANDEZ, 02/17/02: "The Bellydancer of the UniverseS? Competition (BDUC) was held on February 16-17, 2002 at the Grand Willow Center in Long Beach, California. As the husband of one of the contestants, I had an opportunity to be both a member of the audience and someone with a 'backstage' perspective. Here are some of my thoughts regarding the event:

First and foremost, I found Tonya and Atlantis to be enthusiastic, kind, supportive, active, professional, and friendly. If you have ever tried to run a major event, you know how difficult it is to find that kind of balance while trying to give everyone your attention and smiling (sincerely) all the way.

They seemed to know what was going on in every part of the event, all at once. They were attentive and caring, while maintaining control as they guided the weekend to a tremendous success.

Having attended belly dance events and showcases previously, I still found myself unprepared for the amazing amount of talent that contestants and guest dancers shared as they performed over the weekend.

It went far beyond competition between peers - this was truly the outward expression of inner power and beauty. This was creativity, style and technique taken to the highest levels. Each dancer was sharing a deep, personal part of themselves, while at the same time willing to be judged by a panel of the industry's finest talent.

That is the give that each dancer gave to those who watched them - they gave themselves, wholeheartedly. To each other, they gave support and encouragement.

If you did not attend this year's event, I encourage you to make it a priority in 2003. You may find it to be an uplifting and life-changing event. I did."



"Tonya & Atlantis,

I wanted to thank you for making this year's Universe Competition such a wonderful experience!

I appreciate all of the hard work you, the judges, and volunteers put into such a top class event.

I look forward to working with you in the future.

Thank you again, Aziza."

(Universal Winner, 2002)


"Dear Tonya & Atlantis,

Such a pleasure meeting you both. Just wanted to THANK YOU for the opportunity to perform in such a lovely environment and at such a successful event.

Here's wishing you only the best of all worlds.

Warmest regards,

Chappell Westlake"

(Entrant 2002)


"Tonya and Atlantis,

I want to say 'Thank You' for honesty and encouragement each time I entered the competition, especially since many people around me were discouraging me from entering. I'm so happy that I listened to you.

It does take a certain amount of bravery to enter, and of course a risk, but I feel that there really are no losers. The first time I entered the Egyptian category, I did not make it to the finals.

But after buying and watching the video, I was able to see exactly what I needed to work on by comparing my performance to the finalists. This was a hard lesson, but more effective than any amount of classes. Sure enough, the next time I entered, I won.

The competition has helped me in many ways, especially my self-confidence. Please know that you can count on me anytime to help support the competition.

Love, always, Rania "

(Winner, Egyptian Category, 2002)

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