Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Kessler & Company Presents Broadway Revival

Kessler and Company Presents Broadway Revival played at the Pacific Beach Hotel Grand Ballroom last Friday and what a show it was featuring Mr. Kessler's students, students from the Koko Head Dance Studio, a couple from Dream To Dance Studio, and a couple from the Hawaii Gardenia Circle dance organization. Only two professional dance teachers graced this Revival.....Mr. Kessler, and Joe Shorba. It was a fresh treat to watch performances done by dancers at the amateur level. Lani and I had heard through the grapevine that Mr. Kessler always puts on very entertaining showcases. So this was our first time at Mr. Kessler's dinner, dance, and showcase.
Lani and I got to the Pacific Beach Hotel about 5:30PM. The Grand Ballroom doors were already open and sitted at the Reception Table to welcome guests were the mother and daughter team of Millie and Diana.

A few dancers were already on the dance floor as we entered the ballroom.  As usual, my main squeeze couldn't let a good Rumba music go by without us getting into the mix. After the Rumba more sweet and mellow music echoed throughout the ballroom played by DeeJays Nicholas, Nick, and Willy from Starpoint Productions. My girl was in the mood and I felt that it was gonna be another weekend of Dance My A** Off.

The ballroom was beautifully decorated with a rainbow like arch of the event's theme "Broadway Revival" hovering over the centerstage. Each of the tables had strings of colorful balloons anchoring a large star shape mylar balloon as a centerpiece.. 
Lady EmCee was Shari Berinobis, a gal with a delightful personality who kept the program and nonprogram part of the Revival running smoothly and on track. She also said the invocation before the buffet
and also handled the calling of lucky ticket numbers for door prizes.
There were three Acts in the Broadway Revival Showcase and before the first Act started, EmCee Shari called all the performers to the dance floor. All nineteen performers paraded around the perimeter of the ballroom floor......what a colorful and impressive sight!
The FOXTROT to the music "YOU & ME"
Sharon Wong and Mr. Kessler.

       From Koko Head Dance Studio the TANGO
       was danced by Jeannette Mitobe and Joe Shorba,
       Owner and Director of the Koko Head Dance Studio. .
The BOLERO to the music "BALI HAI" from
SOUTH PACIFIC featured Fukami Thompson
and Mr. Kessler. 
Amber Dubois and Mr. Kessler danced the
RUMBA to the music "LAST NIGHT of the

From the Koko Head Dance Studio, Tessi
Cabral and Kenji Iwasa danced the SAMBA.
                   From Dream To Dance Studio, Veronica Munez
                  and Vince Debina danced the NIGHT CLUB 2
                  STEP-SAMBA Medley.
A short intermission followed for the call  of lucky numbers for door prizes.


The WALTZ to the music "BAUBLES, BANGLES,
and BEADS" from KISS ME KATE was danced
by Sharon Wong and Mr. Kessler.


From Hawaii Gardenia Circle, Dr. Nancy Luckie
and Ivan John danced the TANGO with variations
from other popular TANGO styles.

The BOLERO to the music "I'VE GROWN
and Mr. Kessler. 
The SAMBA to the music "DANCING QUEEN"
from MAMA MIA was danced by Amber Dubois
and Mr. Kessler.

The CHA CHA to the music of "HOUND DOG"
from SMOKEY JOE'S CAFE was danced by
Patty and Mark Dela Cruz.

WALTZ" from CAROUSEL was danced by
Debbie Nobler and Mr. Kessler.
A short intermission followed  while more lucky numbers were called for door prizes.

The TANGO to the music "TANGO MAUREEN"
from RENT was danced by Debbie Nobler and
Mr. Kessler.

From Koko Head Dance Studio, Ellen Ostler
and Professional Joe Shorba danced the TANGO.
The WALTZ to the music "CRAZY WORLD"
from VICTORIA VICTORIA was danced by
Fukami Thompson and Mr. Kessler.

The TANGO to the music "PHANTOM of
the OPERA" from PHANTOM of the OPERA
was danced by April Patricio and Mr. Kessler.

At the Finale, Robert Timosko and Mr. Kessler
      danced the FOXTROT to the music
Trophy Awards were presented to the participants of the Broadway Revival Showcase at the conclusion of the program.

Then a large cake was wheeled onto the dance floor to celebrate Robert's birthday, and the anniversary for Robert and Mr. Kesler.

General dancing continued on but the Electric Slide brought even more dancers onto the hardwood floor. Then the Korean Gingham Line Dance followed that kept most of the line dancers on the floor.

 More general dancing continued on but for two senior teenagers, it was time for Lani and me to leave the fantasyland of Broadway and the wonderful and very entertaining showcase. One thing fo' sure, we enjoyed every bit of the Broadway Revival Showcase, the fantastic performing dancers, and the Broadway musical scores. Mr. Kessler's "MASQUERADE BALL" will be on October 25 and it's one that we won't miss.

(Left click on photo to zoom in)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Hawaii Gardenia Circle Latin Festival 2013


Another BLOCKBUSTER of a dance event at the Palladium on Saturday (3/16) hosted by the Hawaii Gardenia Circle (HGC). Credit goes to all HGC members who pitched in to make this a successful affair and a huge honor goes to Gayle Kawahakui for spearheading and organizing this event that brings some of Hawaii's top Latin Competition Dancers under one roof.

It has happened before and it has happened once again....my trusty camera malfunctioned during the showcase. So there will be no photos wth this blog. Hopefully someone in Pepe's blogspere will post his or her photos to show how colorful the Latin Festival was and the various techniques and energy of the participants. 
David Mayman and Haruko
Lani and I got to the Palladium while the ballroom was filled with dancers...all moving to the mellow music of DeeJays Henry Lee and Jane Umeda. We were greeted by Hawaii Gardenia Circle 1st VP David Mayman who was at the Reception Table with Haruko. We were given tickets for bento in exchange for our prepaid admission tickets. It was a good size crowd...some of the guests were at the IBDI Inaugural Ball at the Pacific Beach Hotel the night before. General dancing continued until HGC 1st VP  David Mayman took to the microphone to welcome all the guests.

EmCee Kay Yahiku
EmCee for the program was Kay Yahiku, that diminutive dynamo who has a big voice. (When Kay speaks, everybody listens). Much thanks to Kay for providing the names and info of the participating dancers in the Latin Festival Showcase. The dancers (mock) competed in the Cha Cha, Rumba, Samba, Mambo, and Jive. Some dancers did all five dances while others did as few as one. The largest group to compete were from Sergio and Renna Villanueva's Dance Appeal Studio. Sergio danced four different dances with four different ladies, and Renna danced three different dances with three different guys. All others had their regular partner.

At the start of the Showcase, there was a dance exhibition of Latin Medley by Jacbo Himoto and Gisella West. Mr. Himoto is the Dance Director for the Arthur Murray Dance Studio Honolulu, and Ms. West is the owner of the Arthur Murray Dance Studios Honolulu and Kailua.

The dancers in the Latin Festival Showcase were five dance participants: Edwin & Charlotte Bugarin, Mike & Lorri Chun, Richard & Lynn Nakamura, Calvin & Debra Ota. Four dances participants without the Mambo: Jackson Cho & June Choong, and the youngest dancers Ikaika Villanueva & Brandee Nakamura. Two dances participants in the Cha Cha and Rumba: Romeo & Karin Navares, and Gene & Karin Peles. Renna Villanueva & Robert Schiff danced the Rumba and Mambo. Renna & Jesse Armantiad danced the Samba, and Renna & Alvin Kutara danced the Cha Cha. Sergio Villanueva & Susan Hiwa danced the Rumba. Sergio & Bernie Keliia'a danced the Cha Cha. Sergio & Becky O'Reilly danced the Mambo. Sergio & Stacie Jo Stanley danced the Jive.
I think everyone enjoyed the showcase performance coming from the loud applause and encouragement. It was a very good showcase with seasoned performers  ....colorful with some dynamic moves. Hopefully, at next year's Latin Festival the lights in center of the ballroom will be turned on brighter during the exhibition dancing and (mock) competition.

Monday, March 18, 2013

IBDI 2013 Inaugural Ball

Haven't you ever set a time to leave the house to go somewhere, in this case to a Big Time dance ball at the Pacific Beach Hotel and you find yourself leaving the house half an hour later? When I was younger, the old timers in the sugar plantation called it Filipino time. No pun intended for my racial background. Got to the Pacific Beach at 5:30 PM hoping to find a parking space before the big crowd got there. The Kuhio Avenue entrance was closed with a big sign "Limited Parking! Use Liliokalani Entrance." Circling around Waikiki was a driving adventure fo' sure.  
Da lovelies Delia, Nancy, and Dana were at the Reception Table. As usual, you can always get a smile and a hello from them whether at the Palladium or at the Pacific Beach Hotel. And if you're a member of IBDI, they got a good memory of your name.

The participants in the dance showcase were practicing their routine. So the "watchman" Stanley was on guard making sure that no one entered the ballroom. Of course with diplomacy and with a smile.  
The doors were opened for guests at 6PM and dancers were testing the floor to the sweet music from DeeJays Henry and Jane. The excellent sound and selections of danceable music were top notch.
About 6:30 rolled by as the sound of heavy drumming echoed throughout the ballroom. It was the formal opening of the program with a Dragon and Lion Dance by the young kung fu students of Yeung Dak Dragon & Lion Dance Association. The Dragon and Lion made their tour of the ballroom as guests fed them with the green stuff to bring the traditional good luck to the dance organization.
EmCee for the evening was Curt Young who handled the program with ease and humor.
Then it was time to munch down the onolicious buffet that Pacific Beach Hotel is famous for. Renna Villanueva gave a lengthy and meaningful invocation and it was worth the wait. Social dancing continued as others lined up for the buffet.
Dinner all done. To continue the program, EmCee Curt Young introduced Misty Kalai, Executive Director of the Mayor's Office of Cultural and the Arts who pinch-hit for the mayor who was not able to attend the function. She read the Mayor's Proclamation about ballroom dancing and the physical benefits that one can attain through dancing. A  wonderful proclamation by our mayor.
It was time for the Installation of Officers part of the program. EmCee Curt called the present officers and members of the Board to the floor. Then he introduced Toni Robinson, Director of City & County Parks & Recreation to install the new Officers and Board Members.
The 2013 Officers are President: Christopher Jay, 1st Vice President: Marsha Ninomiya, Secretary: Eugene Shen, and Treasurer: Diana Vo. 2013 Board of Directors are Robert Diana, Dawn Le, Arnold Lee, Beverly Mau, and Dana Morey. Congratulations to all.
Prez Chris Jay took to the podium and gave the President's Message. You gotta appreciate this man for his energy and leadership he has given to IBDI. I think 2013 is his 8th tour as President of this fine dance organization.
The ice-breaker "snowball" dance soon followed. This time with a Latin flavor to the Cha Cha Cha....a good choice to get the seat-warmers on the dance floor. 
The Dance Exhibition had two parts. Part One brought Professional Greg Henry with Emi Matsuoka to the dance floor dancing the BACHATA/SALSA Medley. Ay Caramba!.....the moves and the energy was so crisp and sure enough Greg and Emi burned the floor to the delight of the audience...a perfect dance to set the mood.

I think among of all the International Standard dances, the Tango is supreme because it has passion, and display of strength and control. I've seen Gayle and Jun exhibit their rendition of the Tango before and Lani and I enjoyed each of their performances.  Gayle and Jun's International Tango had impeccable style and drama.
I've always enjoyed watching youngsters dancing in showcases. They are not professionals by a long shot but they sure move like rising stars. Ikaika Villanueva and Brandee Nakamura were magnificent in dancing a Latin Medley...a potpourri of the Samba, Cha Cha, Jive, and Rumba.
Concluding Part One of the program were Richard and Lynn Nakamura with the International Quickstep....another Standard dance that requires good control as well as technique. And Richard and Lynn had those qualities as they danced this high octane Quickstep with non-stop finesse.
Social dancing continued during the Intermission.
 The short intermission was a good break for most everyone to get on the dance floor for a good stretch and relish the dance exhibition performance of Part One. The dance floor was always filled with dancers but everyone moved with care....no accidental bumping.
Dance Exhibition Part 2.

Part Two opened with Professional Joe Shorba with Ellen Ostler dancing the American Showdance Rumba. This performance was indeed a well choreographed and a superbly performed Showdance Rumba that was ingrained with exotic, and seductive moves.

Professional Renna Villanueva with Robert Schiff opened the next act with the American Smooth Showdance Foxtrot. This dance performance had a touch of Broadway that was playful and fun to watch.....fresh, bold, ritzy and a bit of sassiness that made it all the more entertaining due to Renna's impressive magical creation and a touch of dance fantasy.

Ed and Charlotte Bugarin has always put on a good showing whenever they performed in a showcase. They came on the floor ablazed with their firey International Samba...full of vigor and vitality. Fo' sure their performance was totally fierce and magnificent and filled with passion of the dance..

Closing the Dance Exhibition part of the program were Glenn Okazaki and Anne Ho with the International Waltz. All the Stars that performed in the showcase tonight glittered with brilliance and it was a good choice to have Glenn and Ann perform at the end of the showcase. It was a big treat to watch competition champions at their best. Glenn and Ann danced so smoothly and effortlessly with excellent control and technique in every movement....creating a beautiful moving picture of two sparkling bright stars floating over the ballroom floor.

General dancing continued till about 11:30 with a short break to award each table's centerpiece to the guest whose birthday was the closest to March 15th.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

IBDI 2013 1st Term Student Party

Last night, IBDI held their first of the year Student Party at the Palladium with lots of general dancing and including the "snowball" ice breaker led by IBDI instructors. DeeJays for the evening were Harold Kaneshiro and Joella. EmCee was IBDI President Chris Jay who was assisted by wife Charlene when lucky ticket numbers were called for door prizes.
General dancing was in full swing when Lani and I got to the ballroom. First thing was to pick up our prepaid bento. Did a few dances to warm up since it was the night for our Rumba students and students of other dance classes to demonstrate what they had learned during the 7 weeks of lessons, and also a preview of the 2nd Term Dance Schedule by dance instructors.
I participated in the Rumba demo with one of the lady students and from Lani's view point, our students did good. The students of the other dance classes did good also. Then it was time for the instructors to demonstrate what they will be teaching for the 2nd Term. George Suetsugu was first to demonstrate the International Rumba II, and followed by Lani and me with the Night Club Two Step. Then Jimmy and Mae Matsumoto came on the floor with the International Samba I, followed by Ernie and Karen Choy with the International Foxtrot II, and then followed by Candido and Yvonne Jorge-Cuan with the International Cha Cha I. I thought the  demos by the instructors went pretty good. And with the addition of the American Tango, the  schedule of classes are well balanced with American and International style of dancing. General dance continued till closing.
During the break, President Chris Jay announced the upcoming International Samba Workshop by Yanna Samkova that's scheduled for next Monday (3/11) for IBDI members. Registration for new members and for dance classes will be on that same evening. So if you're planning to enroll in the workshop be sure to register for membership by 6;00PM.
The email that follows is from IBDI President Chris Jay........   
Aloha, IBDI Members,
On Monday, March 11th, at 7:00 pm at the Palladium, a special one hour workshop on International Samba will be conducted by professional Yanna Samkova. Focus will be on technique and a short sequence will be taught. Cost is $5.00 per person. What a deal! The class will be held on the Diamond Head side of the room while registration for 2nd term classes will take place on the Ewa side. Please join us. There will be no general dancing that night. Thanks for your support.
Chris Jay
IBDI President