Hollerado – behind the scenes

Hollerado is a Juno Award nominated Canadian indie rock band formed in 2007 and originally from Manotick, Ontario, Canada and recently released their latest music video “Got to Lose”. They needed a bevy of ladies to help out, and who better to ask than the Atomic Cherry Bombs!! Nikki Marvin and Evonne Tan-Marvine worked their booties off to get the choreography done (and redone, and done again, and done again, and for a final time) in time for the shoot, working up until the moment of the shoot. I think they did a brilliant job with the choreography and I can only imaging how stressful it must have been to get costumes and change choreography for 18 girls up until the last minutes. What superstars!!

The video!!

Here are some of the behind the scene photos that Stephanie Albo of Intuitive Image Photography and Evonne took during the excitement!

 

 

Congratulations ladies for a job exceptionally well done. I can only image what it must have been like behind the scenes. From the video and the pictures, everything looks fabulous, fun, easy, and a blast. I’m sure it was that, and more. ๐Ÿ˜€
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Here is our new video. Just like Americanarama, it was directed by the president of awesomeness, Greg Jardin. Once again it was done in one take, with one camera. We love doing one take videos with Greg because they make us feel like we are in elementary school gym class. This shoot was basically a giant obstacle course that we had to try and figure out before our two days of shooting time expired. The cameraman also had a really hard job because he had to memorize the choreography for everyone so that he could follow it all.

The dancers are from an awesome troupe called the Atomic Cherry Bombs. They worked for weeks on this choreography and refused any payment besides flowers and cupcakes. Also, one of the dancers holds the world record for the largest collection of Bruce Lee paraphernalia.

We shot the video in the studio that Charlie Chaplin built almost 100 years ago. Later Jim Henson took over and used it to throw awesome muppet parties. This explains how our drummer Jake is so effortlessly channelling the ghost of Animal. I also found it funny that the two days of the year that it rains in Los Angeles happened to be the same two days that we shot a video where the only props were 53 umbrellas. Maybe it was Charlie Chaplin’s way of wishing us good luck.

directed by GREG JARDIN | http://www.gregjardin.com

choreography by NIKKI MARVIN and EVONNE MARVIN | http://www.nikkimarvin.com

dancers THE ATOMIC CHERRY BOMBS | http://www.atomiccherrybombs.com

produced by GEOFF McLEAN and DEREK ROBERTO

executive producer JENNIFER HEATH

production company VISION ENTERTAINMENT / RADICAL MEDIA| http://www.visionfilmco.com| http://www.radicalmedia.com

cinematographer LARKIN SEIPLE | http://www.larkinseiple.com

art director SUSANNAH LOWBER | http://www.d14productions.com/susannah-lowber.html

Thanks also to MuchFACT for the $$

http://www.HOLLERADO.COM
http://www.facebook.com/hollerado
http://www.twitter.com/hollerado
http://www.myspace.com/hollerado

BUY MERCH ONLINE: http://www.galleryac.com/hollerado-record-in-a-bag.html

Travel Days

What an impressive set of Travel Days I have had in the last two and a half weeks!

Here’s the run down on what it takes to be me (*tooting my horn):

May 17, Monday: 9:25am flight from Berlin to JFK. Arrive into Pittsburgh at 6:30pm.
Finally coming home from Europe! Can’t freaking wait! I’m basically coming home so I can rehearse for Camp Jitterbug and do some laundry.

May 20, Thursday: 7:00pm flight from Pittsburgh to Minneapolis. Arrive into Seattle at 11:30pm.
The idea was that I’d have time to spend with my family. Instead, I run errands for the next few days all over town.

May 24, Monday: 2:30pm flight to Orange County. Arrive 5:30pm.
Man, I love direct flights! They rarely seem to happen. It’s also fun to run into people I know, like Ben Morris. I want to rehearse with The Atomic Cherry Bombs before our performance on Friday night. Nikki was kind enough to let me work with the girls for about 2.5 hrs. We do a full dress rehearsal. I try to scare and motivate the girls ๐Ÿ˜€

May 25, Tuesday: 12:00pm flight to Seattle. Arrive 2:45pm.
Direct flights are fabulous! I rehearsed again before I left for Seattle. I continue to run errands until the day of the show.

May 28, Friday: JUMP SESSION SHOW 7:30pm
ROCKED IT. I was so very, very pleased with my ladies and myself. Sharon’s Bell Boy Routine went well and so did Stratosphere.

June 1, Tuesday: 5:00pm flight to Los Angeles. 10:30pm flight to Sydney, Australia.

June 3, Thursday: 6:30am arrival into Sydney. 9:15am flight to Perth. Arrive at 11:25am.
It’s glorious in Perth at the moment. Oh how I’ve missed the sun shining. I have class to teach from 8-10pm that night.

And there you have it. A rather crazy 2 weeks, wouldn’t you say?

What have I gleaned from my last two weeks?

  • It’s important to get your frequent flyer miles.
  • With those miles you don’t have to worry as much about over-weight luggage.
  • It’s important to pack layers.
  • Just because it’s “Spring” on the calendar doesn’t mean Mother Nature is going to play along.
  • Having gloves on you is never a bad thing.
  • “Days Off” are really just days to do all the chores I wasn’t able to do previously (translations: not really days off)
  • I must remember to schedule “Lazy Days” where I am just sitting around doing nothing. My scheduled “Days Off” aren’t working out the way I had hoped.
  • If you’re planning on performing something with a group of people, it’s worth the money, time, and effort for YOU to travel and go see them. It would have been a terrible idea to have not seen the Cherry Bombs before the show.
  • Never underestimate the power of a cupcake, especially when your best friend brings you one “just because.”
  • It’s important to run things full out. This means costume and body movement. Doing that the hour before the show does not mean you are well prepared. Remember, your building muscle memory when you’re rehearsing, so make it count AND you’d want to know if your who-ha was going to be showing before you got on stage.
  • (Ladies) Every performer should own false eyelashes and glue, bobby pins that match their hair color, hand mirror and fabulously bright lipstick.
  • Be gracious and understanding. It goes a long way.
  • Keep pushing. You’ll get to rest eventually.
  • Claire Pedroza might be a Vintage Hair Genius. She did my hair for CJ and it was in great shape until I left for Oz. Tons of compliments. She rocks.
  • Empty flights are a godsend.
  • Getting to sleep horizontally is awesome.
  • Too many bobby pins set off security alarms.
  • Nick Williams travels more than I do.

And there you have it! Two more things I think it’s important for you to know: how to pack for 10 Days in a Carry-On and What Happens to you crap after you’ve left if on a plane. Great reads, so check them out ๐Ÿ˜€

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Honolulu at Jump Session

EEEEk!!! I did it! WE did it!! Thank you Atomic Cherry Bombs for working so hard to get this number together. Nikki, thank you for all the extra time you dedicated to this number for me. This number wouldn’t have been half as good as it was if I didn’t have you and your girls. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Two notes about the video: this is not high quality footage, but it is footage nonetheless. The lighting made filming this number rather tricky.

Jump Session Show 2010 – Honolulu from Jo Hoffberg.

I am so very pleased with how this turned out. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some high quality footage of this number. Let me know if you find anything!

The story behind Honolulu:

I’ve had the idea in my head for the last year or so that I wanted to do a tribute to Eleanor Powell by recreating her Honolulu number. Unfortunately, I couldn’t tap and didn’t have the choreography broken down. About 3 months ago I finally started breaking down the first third of the routine and even though it was difficult, I had such a great time doing it. The routine is broken down into three parts: jazz, hula, and tap. I performed the jazz section at Swingin’ in Spring in Gotenborg, Sweden. The following week, the Icelandic Volcano erupted and I got stuck in Sweden for another 10 days. In that time, I managed to break down the tap section.

Mind you, I still don’t really tap and I am not a trained dancer – two very important pieces that would have made my life significantly easier. I downloaded the clip off of youtube and then frame-by-frame went though the entire routine and tried to learn the shapes as best as I could. I first learned the general outline of the leg movement (for the tap section), then added arms, and then tried to add in the actual taps. Luckily for me, the wildly talented Nathan Bugh helped break down some of the tap for me months ago and I used that as a starting point.

Relatively, the choreography wasn’t that difficult, but refining the details of my movement was (and still is). Eleanor Powell has technique up the wazoo and trying to learn her signature mannerism was very challenging. The way she holds her shoulders, her hand shapes, her arm positioning, her natural body movement, and her ability to spin are things that I have to constantly keep an eye on when I am running the routine. I often record my rehearsals and then go through them frame-by-frame and look for the missing details. Talk about tedious (but oh-so necessary)!

The greatest challenge for me has been learning how to spot. Before working on this routine, I could basically spot my partner, but in general, I’ve always had a pretty good awareness of where my partner was in relation to me and didn’t use spotting all that often. Eleanor Powell, on the other hand, spots like her life depends on it! Just check out this clip (fast fw to 5:05 and watch from there)!! So needless to say, I wasn’t going to be able to learn how to spin and spot like that in a month (in heels no less), but I certainly tried my best.

All the while I was working on the jazz and tap portion of the routine, I had to break down the choreography for the supporting dancers. This is where the amazing Nikki Marvin and her Atomic Cherry Bombs come into play. I sent Nikki some crappy videos of me trying my best to break down the supporting part, and nothing about that process was easy; from breaking it down, to emailing; from music cutting to uploading, all if it was a hassel. I’d send videos (which were filmed in mirror image – thank you MacBook camera) and emails trying to explain what I wanted, but really, Nikki watched the clip just like I did and broke the stuff down. She did such a great job and so did all of her ladies. To top it off, the Monday before Camp Jitterbug, I flew down to OC and rehearsed with the girls. Dang….I am sooooooo glad I did that.

I am thrilled with how it came out. Now I just need to find us more places to perform it!

On a final note, I must give a shout out to Claire Pedroza for doing my hair. I wouldn’t have looked that gorgeous (* toot toot) if it wasn’t for you. Thank you for making this (*running hands up and down body) look good!

Cherry Bombs

Dear ladies,

You did a wonderful job at rehearsal tonight. Thank you so much for taking the time and putting in the effort to learn Honolulu. And Nikki, thank you so-very-much for learning this routine via video (that was poorly recorded off of my mac), emailing back and forth with me, and doing all the additional work on the side. You did an outstanding job with all my emails and video clips, and you’ve done an outstanding job with the girls. Thank you for working so diligently to turn my “hawaiian dream” into a reality. I hope you are proud of your girls and what you’ve accomplished.

Girls, I am so excited for you! Regardless if this is your first performance or your 100th, performing in the Benaroya Hall is an incredible opportunity, one that you’ll always remember. Be proud of yourself!

View Photos

Click on a photo below to enlarge.

Benaroya Hall

S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall

Here is the song we are using: Honolulu routine Camp Jitterbug Cut Please download this and LISTEN TO THE BEGINNING over and over again. It might be hard to count, but it’s easy to hear (once you know what to look for).

Here is a reminder of what you’re doing:

Good luck girls!!

xo

Jo

LAST NOTES:

– Make a check list of what costume pieces you need. LITERALLY write down the costume pieces you need and check them off after you put them in a bag. Do the same for each routine you have.
– Double check that you have all the pieces. Don’t forget your shoes, stockings, bows, hair pieces, and appropriate underwear (super important).
– Space backstage will most likely be small and hard to come by. Bring a brightly colored bag or something to keep your belongings in. Get into the habit of putting your things back into your bag in between numbers so you don’t lose your stuff.
– Black anything (i.e. bras, underwear, tights, bags, etc.) will disappear into the abyss of backstage. Just an FYI.
– Bring a hand mirror. You don’t want to fight for mirror space any more than necessary.
– Eat before you get there. Have a snack bar on you as well. Don’t forget water or a water bottle.
– Set your hair the night before or the morning of.
– Have your base makeup on.
– Ask yourself “What else do I need so I can be self-sufficient? What else do I need to be awesome?” and then figure out the answer. ๐Ÿ˜€
– Remember, you’re part of a group and you need to do you part. Be watchful of your partners and remember to smile.
– When you’re performing, don’t fuck up. Haha, in spite of my warning, just keep dancing regardless of what happens. No one will know you missed something unless your face tells the audience otherwise. Smile and be confident in your movement!
– Listen to the music if you get lost. You can find your spot again….don’t give up!
– Don’t worry if you have a crappy run-through right before the performance. If you hit it perfectly before the show, you’ve probably already used up your good one. Save your best for last.
– Remember to have fun while you’re performing The audience wants you to succeed and they want to cheer for you. Everyone is there to support you. Enjoy your moment on stage and don’t stress too much.

And a final shout out again to Nikki. None of this would have been possible if it wasn’t for you. Thank you for putting so much time in effort into getting this done. xoxo

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Sea Swing Sensation 2010

Back in January Kevin and I taught on a cruise with Nikki & Shesha Marvin . We left out of Los Angeles, went down to Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas, and then back to Los Angeles.

I had never been on a cruise before and I wasn’t quite sure if it was going to be for me, but within an hour of being on the boat, I was having such a great time. Kevin and I had a cabin on the inside of the ship which made it awesome for sleeping, but not so awesome for waking up. The shower in our room was pretty awesome as well. Nikki & Shesha had a room with a window and so did Kevin’s parents (his family came along).

Kevin and I taught a few classes while we on board, otherwise we worked out at the awesome gym (which during sea swells made me nauseous), had spa treatments, did internet (but only 250 minutes worth…that was a $100 package….eeek!), rehearsed, and ate. Speaking of which, there is LOTS of eating. Good heavens, so much eating. I think you can eat at every hour of the day on board and there are soooooo many different options. Furthermore, there were a lot of overweight people on board (I am talking clinically obese) and having access to food the way we did I think was a little overwhelming and lead to lots of people eating irresponsibly (I was also totally guilty of that).

Ok, so all that aside, I had a great time. I got to hang out with Kevin and his family (they are super awesome), Nikki & Shesha and their baby girl (I adore all of them), went zip lining (thanks Shesha!!), met some great people, got to dress up (a favorite!) ate some great food (thanks Chuck!), and performed with part of The Atomic Cherry Bombs. Here are some pictures from my trip.

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Pictures from Cat Cetrone, Jesse Mergenthaler, and Steve Wilcox.