Lone Star Championship 2011 – Invitational Competition

Invitational Strictly – Spotlight 1

Invitational Strictly – Spotlight 2

You might notice that I dressed differently than I typically do. Lisa Casper (New Orleans) outfitted me from head to toe. That is her yellow bandanna, yellow top, and skirt. The fun thing about that skirt is that she made that herself! I think this might be the making of a new clothing designer in our scene!! (And and and, in a very short while I’ll be selling hair accessories handmade by her!!)

RESULTS

1) Nick Williams and Laura Keat
2) Peter Strom and Naomi Uyama
3) Todd Yannacone and Jo Hoffberg

Jack and Jill!!!!!!

What set this competition apart from all the others was the music. We danced to a lindy hop song and then something that fell into the karaoke/soul category. Nick Williams and I were brave enough to choose Karaoke Grab Bag, and to be honest, I think it was a great choice. 🙂

FAVORITE MOMENTS:
1) Sucking on the lindy hop portion and then finding total redemption with a Star Lift. To top that off, Nick’s “fork in the garbage disposal” moment. And I have to give Chia-Wen Lin a shout out for being such an awesome team player as well as Carla for continuing to play along.
2) Andrew Thigpen and Carla Heiney dancing to “Summer Nights” from Greece (14:41). She made such a great Sandra Dee and they both acted the crap out the song!! Hahha, and getting to be backup singers….man… I’ll never forget that.
3) Peter Strom and Mia Goldsmith’s dance was……so many things (21:39)!! One way to describe it is “not work appropriate”. Another: daaaaaaaaannng! Just watch everyone’s reaction in the background. Funny stuff. 🙂
4) Nikki Marvin swivel moment (28:30) shortly followed up by Jeremy Otth’s circle slide (28:35) and finger point (just to make sure you saw it dancing to Footloose (28:56). When he undid his suspenders….we all nearly lost it! He made such a great Kevin Bacon….it was ridiculous!

Naomi Uyama also did a fantastic job picking out the music!! People we so well suited to the music they chose. Love it!

RESULTS:

1) Chance Bushman and Karen Turman (6:00)
2) Nick Williams and Jo Hoffberg (9:47)
3) Peter Strom and Mia Goldsmith (19:56)

Lindy Shock 2010

This was definitely one of my favorite events of the year, if not favorite. Marcell, the organizer, did a wicked-good job of covering all the logistics and knows how to run a tight shift. All of his past research clearly paid off.

First things first, the line up. There were great teachers AND the DJs were fantastic. When you have the combination of great teachers and great music, more often than not, great dancers show up to dance with the instructors to the awesome music. It almost felt like the Who’s Who of Europe came to the event. Don’t believe me? There were 800 people at the event and it’s only in it’s 4th year. The numbers were up 40% since last year. “Dang!!!” is right (*head nod). So here’s the list: the main teachers are Andrew Sutton, Dax & Sarah, Hasse & Marie, Juan & Sharon, Kevin & Jo, Skye & Frida, Vincenzo & Isa, Zack & Maryse. Our taster teachers are Alf & Eli, Ali & Katja, Fedor & Inga, Nejc & Katja. Jamie Cameron, Deeb from Lithuania, Luc Prunet from Toulouse, Paulo BrotherSwing from Paris, Laurent Meirieu aka DJ Lolo from Toulouse were just some of the incredible DJ’s that held down the musical front.

SOME DETAILS ABOUT THE EVENT
From a teacher’s stand point, things were fantastic, other than auditions. That being said, auditions are never “super fun!” so it’s not like this was a special case. (I’ll write another post just on audition, but in short, we don’t want students to feel bad about where they were placed and have it affect their ability to learn. The process itself is also slightly stressful. Other than that, it’s necessary to put people into appropriate levels so that the learning environment is consistent and the teachers are the best people to do that.)
What was so fantastic, you say? The rooms on the boat were teeny, but cute. The shower actually had hot water and good water pressure. The sound systems worked in all the classrooms. The floors were nice in all the classrooms. The students arrived on time and were ready to learn (you might think that is obvious, but it is not always the case). Food was easily accessible, and so was dessert after we asked Marcell. We were given money for drinks. The music was fantastic (there were 5 different rooms playing music so everyone was bound to find something that suited their mood). Terrific people were there. Competitions were super. And finally, we were given a great place to party with our friends. A men!


Photos by Eric Esquivel, Tatiana Satsenya, and Eran Tobi

CONTESTS

Short and quick: The contests were fantastic! I saw so much solid and inspired dancing…..it really jazzed me up. Congratulations to everyone who competed!!

Showcase

William & Maeve – 1st place

Mindaugas & Gierdre – 2nd place

Strictly Lindy Prelims:

Performances

Kevin St. Laurent doing Hungarian

Joysse being amazing

Teachers being impressive

[videos go here….but where are they??]

More video to come!!!

Marcell, thank you for putting on such a fantastic event. To the students, thank you for coming ready to learn and for asking some really great questions! To everyone that attended, thanks for being there and helping make my year. To the competitors, thanks for kicking ass in that tiny space!! To the DJs, thank you for playing the stuff that makes me want to dance! To the boys, thanks for buying drinks! To my friends, I love you and I’ll see you somewhere around the world. 😀