Monthly Archives: August 2009


T-minus 3 1/2 hours till I’m on a plane to D.C. to ILHC

Hope to see a lot of you there. I hope to dance with you!

I’m just really excited and I haven’t slept and now there’s no point in even going to bed…

Anyhow, wish me luck!

Camp Hollywood Photos

Here’s some badass picture of me during some of the competitions at Camp Hollywood 2009! WOO HOO!

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Click here if you can’t get enough.

Camp Hollywood

The most anticipated lindy event in the LA area… well, after they postponed the Catalina Jazz Dance Fest till next year and Inspiration Weekend was canceled this year… so the only large lindy event in the LA area… is now over. Yes, Camp Hollywood.

Camp Hollywood – July 30-August 2nd, 2009

It was badass. Even more badass than last year, but that’s probably because I was an idiot last year. Man, I really hope I say that every year.

The Classes

The classes were alright. They were not mind blowing or innovative, they were alright. I took an aerials class and that sucked, because there were maybe 60 couples in the room. If you ever need to learn aerials, which is probably a bad idea anyway, you should take a private because it’s impossible to learn something so technical and so heavily dependent on follow-leader connection in a group workshop or class.

The Music

But the DJ’s were AWESOME. Mary Freitag was unbelievable. It was 3:00 AM and every song was so perfect I never wanted to go to sleep.  She DJ’s often at Third Saturday Swing.

As for the bands, they played very fast, very long songs for the shag and balboa dancers which isn’t too much fun on a crowded floor. That’s no surprise. I might have danced a few interspersed songs (yes, even to Jonathan Stout!) to practice balboa, but I saved the real dancing till late night because that’s when you wanted to dance and actually had room to also.

The Contests

Some pretty awesome things happened surprisingly. Must be because of Mikey Pedroza last year. Kim and David’s eight helicopters in a row, One2Swing Jitterbug’s routine which brought tears to peoples eyes (including me), Andrew Hsi’s and Sarah Breck’s routine, and other such things that cannot be summed up in words.

Californians swept the awards, maybe that’s because there weren’t as many people from out of town (perhaps due to the economic situation and most lindy vagabonds having spent their last dimes on Frankie 95). But I have to say that Andrew’s routine blew my mind, amazing. There should be more stuff like that instead of the same old trickery we see all the time with bad technique and no variation or musicality. Yawn.

I had a good time, no, I had an excellent time. Thanks to Charlotte who’s awesome in every way imaginable, Mikey Pedroza for giving me the best dance of my life so far, and to Mike Faltesek who I actually tricked into agreeing to dance with me. HA, sucker!

Future Plans

August 22nd, 2009 – Le Hot Sauce III
August 27th-30th, 2009 – ILHC
September 18th-20th, 2009 – Cowtown Jamborama (Still deciding on this one, depends on how cheap the flights get!)
October 8th-11th, 2009 – ULHS! (WooHoo!)
October 23rd-25th, 2009 – LA Blues (If I can volunteer…)
November 26th-29th, 2009 – US Open (ONLY if I can volunteer and get in for free.)
December 3rd-7th, 2009 – SF Bal Fest (Need to get a room together…)
December 27th-23rd, 2009 – Lindy Focus (Haven’t registered yet…)
January 10th-17th, 2010 – Sea Swing Sensation Cruise! (With my mom!)

I’m gonna drop out of school due to lack of funds soon… *sigh*

Camp Hollywood Recovery Time

So I had a killer headache yesterday and most of today and that’s why I’m late posting this.

Camp Hollywood was last weekend (July 30th – August 2nd, 2009)  It was a blast! I had even more fun than last year, but then again I knew nothing about anything last year. I’ll re-live it in some glorious and not so glorious detail next week.

I love it whenever there is a camp or event in LA because all the rock stars come out to dance to regular dance venues and (at least for me, I find) it’s easier to ask them to dance at a social venue than at a camp when they are kind of put on a pedestal because everyone knows that they’re the teachers. But maybe I’m crazy. But I’m sure of this: the only way to get better is to dance with people who are better than you. As Jonathan Stout put it, it’s like troubleshooting; if it doesn’t feel right it must be you since they probably know what they are doing. Also, without being too intrusive, you can ask them for tips and advice after the dance! It’s like a mini-private lesson minus the bankruptcy. Score! I’m actually too shy about asking for tips because I already had the nerve to ask them to dance (or I just stalk them all night until the feel that they have to ask me because I won’t leave them alone if they don’t. No, that doesn’t work), but if you start the habit of asking for tips early you won’t feel awkward about it.

Another thing about LA, we have a badass scene. It gets overshadowed but hotshots comming from Seattle (Mike Faltesek, drool, Bethany and Stefan, more drool) and DC (Skye Humphries, the man every one tries to dance like) but we have quite a bit cookin’ down here. When I went to NYC in May for Frankie 95 I had the opportunity to talk to people from many different places about their dance ‘scenes’ at home. This really opened up my eyes to how fortunate I am to be around enormous amounts of talent all the time! For example: Nick Williams, Laura Keat, Jeremy Otth (more like OTTH-ome), Mikey Pedroza (awesome in human form),  Nikki Marvin, Shesha Marvin, Sarah Breck, Debbie Gitt, Patrick Fredrickson (the best most unknown leader on the planet), Justin Zimmerman, and the list keeps going…

People to seek out on the dance floor while you are in LA (apart from those mentioned above…):
Charlotte Woertler – she’d  be smoking up the dance floor in the Lindy floor even though she claims she’s a "blues dancer’. I don’t believe her either. She’s helping to organize LA Blues, a one of a kind expedience. Yes, a blues event in LA!
Morgan Day – Dancer extraordinary, a triple threat; shag, balboa, and lindy. The term ‘badass’ certainly applies in all three areas of expertise. Catch him on the Sea Swing Sensation Swing Cruise! IT’S GOING TO BE MIND BLOWING!

Peace out!

Tranky Doo

Ahhh. Back from Camp Hollywood.

So just for Eric, here’s another Bethany and Stefan clip. Plus Mike Faltesek.

Easily the best Tranky Doo performance caught on film. You can see they are not just going through the steps, but they are putting their own personalities in to the choreography which elevates their performance to have it’s own character and not just a string of steps that anyone else can repeat. Brilliant and so simple.

I wanted to post a solo dance clip this month because I’m trying to work on that a bit more as I’m tired of taking classes where the other partner does not understand the concept being taught which compromises me understanding and being able to learn the step. So in short, I hate people and would much prefer to dance by myself. 😀

This spawned my new passion for solo dance.

What are your favorite solo dance clips?