Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dance Hawaii Instructors Appreciation Dinner

Yeah! I got scooped again for taking my time in getting this blog on the way. This time by my friend and fella blogger Jimbo. So if you want to get more news on the Dance Hawaii Instructors Appreciation Dinner just scoot over to Jimbo Blogging at Moanalua Corridor blogsite. Here's just a short recap with some added photos......

Since it was an appreciation dinner to honor the dance instructors, I've posted only the instructors photos (who were at the dinner) and photos of the DeeJays who spin the good selections of dance music. Also please note that Reggie is also a DeeJay for Dance Hawaii.

Dance Hawaii Prez Maurice was the EmCee throughout the evening and who introduced all the dance instructors who were actively teaching in 2010.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

IBDI 2010 Christmas Dance

What an entertaining rare treat to celebrate IBDI's Christmas Dance at the Palladium last night. Amid the ono bentos served, the friendly greeters, social dancing to the excellent selections of dance music by DeeJay Henry Lee with Assistant Jane, door prizes of gift cards topped with assistance from Santa and helper Marsha, and wall to wall happy dancers, the traditional Horseshoe dance, and the Snowball dance, came the entertainment part of the program...the Dance Exhibitions which received huge amount of applauses for its entertaining and thrilling performances. But before cruising any further.......

It was a big shindig for the second to the end of year celebration for IBDI (next bigger than big shindig is the New Year's Dance on the 31st at the Pacific Beach Hotel). My main girl Lani and I picked up our tickets (prepaid) at the reception table, thanks to the coordination between Marsha and Dance Hawaii Prez Maurice and of course the workings of cyberspace.
While we were waiting to get into the Ballroom it was a good time to pick up our bentos. Again I say you gotta give those bento servers a pat on the back. They stayed on their post while others are dancing in the Ballroom.

Extend those kudos to the greeters at the door and the Reception Table, the hard-working gals in the Kitchen, and the DeeJays.

Special recognition went to Herbert Omizo and Annie Fergeson for selling the most tickets to this event. Most recognizable at any dance venue is Grace Nohara...first she's at the door with greeter Steven Sambrano and quick as a flash she's in the kitchen with the other helpers.

Also being recognized were behind-the-scene supporters of IBDI Edith Kanetake, Ki Wun of Dance Fever Oahu, and IBDI NewsLetter Editor Nancy Shen.

General Social Dancing continued till about 8 bells when Prez Christopher Jay who also was the EmCee of the evening opened the program with a welcome message and introduced the presidents of the various dance organizations who were in attendance. Somewhere along the timeline, lucky numbers for door prizes were tickets for the ladies and blue tickets for the guys till it merged for the grand prize of big bucks which went to a lucky lady.

The Dance Exhibition Program started with a sizzling Samba by Ed and Charlotte Bugarin from Friends of the Ala Wai. If you can merge sexy and sensuous with the speed of action, I gotta say this dynamic duo had thrilled the audience last night.

Dance Hawaii's Richard and Lynn Nakamura kept the pulse going with a Medley of the International Waltz and Tango. Better known in Lani's and my book as Mr.& Mrs. Quickstep, Richard and Lynn danced with finnese and excellent control in this medley as they floated around the entire ballroom floor....very enjoyable performance.

Introduced as (visiting) Professional Dancers, Jun Lim and Sharon Liu showcased a beautiful International Waltz. Their lines, posture,and footwork in the Waltz as they too covered the entire dance floor was the makings of Professional that was enjoyable to watch also.

Sergio and Renna Villanueva of Dance Appeal have always thrilled audiences with their showcases of group formation and solo exhibitions. You can count last night's performance of the Night Club 2 Step Group Formation in that realm. Very well performed by Robert & Rosy Schiff, Ted & Lyn Sodaria, Kona Mann & Faith Villanueva, and Sergio & Renna Villanueva.

Dance Appeal continued with solo dance exhibitions with the Jive by Ikaika Villanueva & Kailana Reese, the Swing by Sergio Villanueva & Rosy Thomas, and the Merengue by Ikaika Villanueva & Kyla Mann. The dances were well choreographed by Sergio and Renna and it was good to see young dancers appearing in the Dance Appeal showcase.

Social Dancing resumed while refreshments were served on the lanai. Looking at the large number of dancers at this IBDI Christmas Dance, I predict that Prez Christopher Jay and his capable staff will be zooming for higher heights in membership and promoting and teaching Ballroom Dancing in 2011. As a reminder, IBDI has one more dance to conclude this year at their New Year's Dance on December 31st.

IBDI has been a big monetary supporter to maintain and improve the Palladium. Thanks to IBDI Editor Nancy Shen for sending a copy of the IBDI NewsLetter for this month. It sheds light on some important issues...please read on......

(Left click on photos and graphics to zoom in)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pan Pacific BDS Christmas Dance @The Palladium

Meanwhile across the Ala Wai Canal, the Pan Pacific Ballroom Dance Society hosted their Christmas Dance at the Palladium a day after on Saturday. Complete with General Dancing, 3 Dance Exhibition Performances, Door Prizes for Lucky Number Winners, and Bento. Oh yes, Santa was there with a couple of his little helpers passing out candies.

Lani and I got to the Palladium a little before six...just in time to pick up our bento from the bento servers Marie, Amadeo & Stephanie. Gotta give them a pat on the back for working while others are dancing in the Ballroom. The guys and gals who man the Reception Table, Greeters at the door, and the DeeJays also should be appreciated.

Not too many dancers on the Ballroom floor. In fact there were a lot of parking spaces in the parking lot and lots of vacant chairs in the Ballroom. Most of them had a funny looking picture of a big bare foot taped on the chair....don't really know what it meant but someone said that those seats are reserved. Hmmm! must be a new Pan Pacific Ballroom Dance Society Policy.

(Left click on photos to zoom in)
Fortunately, there were seats available near the dressing room without the funny picture of the Big Foot. Thanks to Reggie Gascon, we were seated near our friends from Dance Hawaii (aka Dance Aliamanu). There were other dancers that we knew and many others that we continue to see at the Ballroom but can't recall their names. But the main thing is that they were there to support the dance club and enjoy an evening of good music and fine dancing.

The Dance Exhibitions were nice to watch but somehow I gotta agree with Geoffrey that the Palladium dance floor is too large for exhibition dancing. Most of the time the performers were in the middle of the floor and facing the kitchen so those on the stageside only saw the performers' backs. We saw the Pan Pacific Formation Dance Team perform the night before at the Divino Ritmo 2nd Annual Grand Ball and Showcase at the Sheraton Waikiki and they again performed like clockwork...smooth like butter.

A new addition to the dance scene was a couple from the mainland who performed the Salsa with more moves that you can shake a stick at....well done. Ed and Charlotte Bugarin performed an exciting Latin dance and once again I gotta say they are always a crowd pleaser....always performing with that WOW factor.

Door prizes of potted ponciettas and wrapped gifts went like hotcakes. No calling of lucky numbers...only those tickets that had a red or yellow dot were the winning ones. What an innovative idea.

This Saturday (12/18) IBDI hosting their Christmas dance at the Palladium. For those on the Westside, Dance Hawaii hosting their Christmas Dance at Aliamanu Middle School this Saturday, also. For more info, please surf over to Jimbo Blogging at Moanalua Corridor.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Divino Ritmo 2nd Annual Grand Ball & Showcase Act II

I guess I waited too long in getting Act II back on the road. Just like when I wanted to dance with Marie Laderta and waited too long, someone comes around and beat me to it. So if you're aching to learn more about Divino Ritmo Dance 2nd Annual Grand Ball and Showcase, I encourage you to surf over to Town Dancer and get a gander at David Easa's excellent blog on the event. David has got a memory like a steele trap and writes so descriptively it'll make you feel as though you were actually at the Sheraton Waikiki enjoying the show. Kudos to David Easa!

Well, the wheels didn't fall off the Showcase Bandwagon. Act II became increasingly intense. But before I go on, there was a gentle person who was dressed as a custodian or janitor who preluded all the numbers in the Showcase with a bit of a history of each Night Club in the Big Apple. I didn't get his name but he sure was a good storyteller and introduced each of the plays. David Easa's blog has his name as Bailey. Now days a person with only one name is a super star...maybe he is. And another gentleman that I didn't mention in the previous blog who was the EmCee. He, too, I didn't get his name but thanks to David's blog, he won't go nameless. And now here's the parade of photos taken of the dancers receiving awards for their performances in Act II. (My humble apology if I missed anyone on the show).

DRD Formation Team performers are Paul & Marie Laderta, Rolando & Gloria Padasdao, David Easa & Shervelle Flynn, and Cole Horibe & Emi Matsuoka.

The Award Ceremony soon followed after Cole and Yanna's explosive Paso Doble performance. Then it was time for Social Dancing till the final Act.

The Professional Show "West Side Story" featured professional dancers and teachers Billy Fajardo & Katie Marlow and Lucas Jaime & Yanna Samkova accompanied by DRD Junior Ensemble dancers Yumi Hirasami, Jarryd Julian, Francis Londono, Shervelle Flynn, Robert Holsen, Rachal-Jean Firchan, Monegan Dejesa, Marilyn Cariaga, William Liu, Cole Horibe, Keala Fung, and Jessica Klein.

It was a perfect ending to an enjoyable, exciting, entertaining, and fo' sure explosive evening of showcase and exhibition dancing that will be long remembered till the next DRD Annual Grand Ball and Showcase on December 3, 2011.
(Left click on photo to zoom in).

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Divino Ritmo Dance Scores High On West Side Story

WOW! What a tremendous production of an exciting showcase of multi-talented dancers produce and directed by Divino Ritmo's Yana Samkova and Lucas Jaime at the Sheraton Waikiki this past Friday. Lani and I were guests of Dr. Paul and Marie Laderta, who are students of Yanna and Lucas, and also participated in not one but several of the showcase numbers. Mahalo to Dr. Paul and Marie for the tickets.

Lani and I got to the Sheraton Waikiki a little after 6PM. We haven't been to the Sheraton since our days with HBDA when most of the dances were held at the Hawaii Ballroom. And we didn't anticipate the traffic leading to the Sheraton Parking but as luck held on, we weren't the only ones getting there after the doors were opened. Parking wasn't too bad considering we found a space on the 6th floor and took the long joy ride to the ground floor.

We checked in at the Reception Table and got our table assignment and had our parking ticket rubber stamped with validation.

Showing our tickets to the door checkers got us the pass to enter the Ballroom.

Not too much going on...just a few couples social dancing to the music of Dee Jay Michael Yap. Then more dancers got into the swing as they filtered into the ballroom.

(Uncle) Wesley greeted us at our table and proudly pointed out the wonderful props of a New York Night Club and the West Side Story created by Dr. Paul Laderta.

Of course, my main squeeze had to be coaxed for a shot with the West Side prop. Got one with exhibition dancers and friends Ed and Matilda Felix, also. But didn't stop there 'cause I needed to get one with my host Marie (in green dress) and her friends.

A lot of time for social dancing before the serving of dinner at the table. It was good to be served for a change. Made us feel like we were dining at a high class restaurant. The food was ono and there were friendly people seated at out table. We had small talks but then that's part of socializing and meeting new faces.

SHOWTIME started about 8 o'clock after the dinner and somemore social dancing. There were three acts. The 1st Act, New York-The Concrete Jungle featured the following performers:

The Pan Pacific Formation Team dancers were: Eric & Luby Brienzo, Robert & Amy Lau, Ed & Matilda Felix, and Jim & April McDonald.

Intermission and Social Dancing followed before Act II. I'm gonna take an Intermission Break too at this point before this blog gets too long and boring. So keep tuned in for Act II.
(Left click on photo to zoom in)