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Arthur Murray Franchise Dance Studio February 10, 2006

Posted by MM in Dance.
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They are an international ballroom dance franchise studio. Their dictionary is quite nice to know different dances.

San Jose (this one is quite near home and a free introductory private lesson for new students!)
1035 South De Anza Boulevard Suite #3
San Jose, CA 95129
phone: (408) 873-0369

Redwood City (about 20 minutes drive away from home)
2065 Broadway Street
Redwood City, CA 94063
phone: (650) 216-7501 fax: (650) 216-7504


America’s Ballroom Challenge February 9, 2006

Posted by MM in Dance.
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Amercia’s Ballroom Challenge is a great ballroom dance competition in USA. It features four major styles of competitive ballroom dancing: America Smooth, America Rhythm, International Standard, and International Latin. Six top finale dancers in each category competed to enter the “finals” – only the top three couples can perform a solo showdance. Each couple vyes to be named champion of their dance style and four champions of each style will compete across dance styles for “America’s Best Ballroom Dance Couples.”

International Standard and American Smooth both feature the “traveling dances,” in which the couples travel counterwise around the floor (Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot, Viennese waltz, and with quickstep only for International Standard). The International Latin and American Rhythm, with two exceptions, are “spot dances.” International Latin includes Cha-cha, Rumba, Samba, Paso doble, Jive, while Amercian Rhythm has Cha-cha, Rumba, Swing, Bolero, and Mambo.Onthefringe

To know more about each finalist, http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/ballroomchallenge/competition-finalists.html

It was so pretty and exciting! Great competition! Now I know why mom likes dancing competition so much. Although I still feel that sometimes it is really hard to say how the judges come up with the results, the show dance is definitely entertaining and worth watching.

I love to see those creative costumes and choreography from each couple. They are truely amazing and innovative. Love them! Now I want to dance too!

It is also fun to see the costume and I saw this http://dreamgowns.dancepages.info/ website that sells costume design.

Tango class in the South Bay December 22, 2005

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Bay Area Tango Association (http://www.batango.com/)



SF Dance Performances December 21, 2005

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YEAH! Many dance company performances! At first I thought SF won’t be an art/entertainment center like LA. But I might be wrong! There are several performance centers that have a lot of good shows and performances:

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA)
Very close to where I work in downtown SF.

San Francisco Performances
They organize good shows and productions and some of them perform in YBCA. I subscribed to the Dance Series and will update the show’s information. The first time being a subscriber, I feel happy for the seat is pretty good.

Stanford Lively Arts
They have good performances too!

SF Dance Class December 21, 2005

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I still miss the classes in Edge Performances in LA. Still haven’t got a chance to check out SF’s classes yet. Did my homework already:

San Francisco Dance Center

Rhythm & Motion Dance Center

ODC School (a little far)

Shan-Yee Poon School (too far)

San Jose Dance Center

USA Entertainment Unions September 13, 2005

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SAG: Screen Actors Guild is the nation’s premier labor union representing actors. http://www.sag.org

AFTRA: “The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.” Union representing professional actors, dancers, singers, and broadcasters. http://www.aftra.org

A branch of Associated Actors and Artists of America, AGMA

American Guild of Variety Artists


So You Think You Can Dance September 1, 2005

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I am so addicted to Fox’s new reality TV show “So you think you can dance.” I watched it from when they had the final 16 dancers. And good lord, I love watching those dancers dancing so much! I feel so happy watching the dances on the show.

However, the show does have some serious flawas. At first I wondered when they had the final 16 competitors, what are the rules they use to eliminate the dancers. It turns out that they let the dancers randomly pair up and randomly draw a dance form to perform and four judges will pick the bottom 2 or 3 pairs. Then those bottom dancers have to do a solo. Then the american get to the phone and vote for their favarites. It is by far fair for them to judge like that.

Many web blogs reveal the concerns and frustrations. For example, http://www.realitytvcalendar.com/recaps/thinkdance/jk-sytycd-8-29-05-p2.html?submit=Continued+On+Page+2

metions that

1) Contestants should have new partners every week
2) Contestants should have to dance a new style every week
3) Contestants should be judged on an individual level and not on a partner level. Why not choose the 6 weakest dancers of the night, not the 3 weakest pairs?
4) Contestants who are dancing styles completely new to them should be judged less harshly than those who are dancing in their comfort zone.
5) Performance shows should be aired LIVE on Wednesday nights and results shows should be aired LIVE on Thursday nights.

I was extremely unhappy to know from some blogs that some producers or judges try to manipulate the voting results. Come on, although it is an entertaining reality TV show, since there is competition envolved, it should be fair and square. Every dancer should be given a fair shake. Some phenomenal dancers were dragged to the bottom 4 or 6 only because their partners suck at it. Come on, is that fair? Should the dancers really take the shame for picking up a partner out of a hat? I think the above suggestions make extremely sense.

The producers need to draw the hard line that this show is about dance. But suddenly it is all about “entertaining.”

The following will be some recaps:

16 to 14

Sandra and Jonnis were cut. Well, not very hard feelings since I just started watching the show.

14 to 12

Snow (ballroom dancer) and Jamile (hip hop dancer) danced quick step. Of course Jamile didn’t look as elegantly and framed as he was supposed to do in the ballroom dancing. Snow did great. I think the web blog I mentioned above is a little too harsh on Snow, which I will explain later.
Destini (mordern dancer) and Blake (mordern dancer) danced lyrical, which they partnered and danced in the previous week. That really blows off some justidy. You will think that to make the competition fair, they should not be allowed to partner with the same person twice in a row and pick their strongest dancing form in a row. Don’t misunderstand. Personally I don’t feel against these two, although a lot of blogs say they are too cocky. I just think the game should be fair. Blake did extremely well – he is in my top two list. However, although the judges gave good comments to Destini, I think she was weak in the performance. She should still be thankful that Blake was her partner.
Melody and Craig (both lyrical or jazz dancers) danced Hip Hop – it is not their speciality and I think they did a very good job, especially Melody, she is a hotty. However, Nigel bombed them saying that it is not hip hop. BTW, their choreographer Shane Sparks is in the “Let’s learn to hip hop vol. ,” and he is a good hip hop choreographer.
Michelle and Nick (jazz dancer) danced quick step. Wow, I think for the first timers, they look fabulous. Although it is not Nick’s speciality, he did a great job. He is in my top two male dancers. And I like his personality a lot. If he had a more masculine voice, he would have been the perfect idol.
Ashley (jazz dancer) and Artem (ballroom dancer) danced lyrical. They were good.
Melissa (jazz dancer)