Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Tale of "All That Jazz" a.k.a.IBDI Inaugural Ball 2014

Once upon a time, there was a President of one of the largest dance clubs in Honolulu that wanted to retire to a more relaxing life with his First Lady, Charlene. After all it has been nine years he has held the position and guided the dance club with expertise. And it was time to hand over to the younger generation the rein and leadership. So one day, he called a meeting of his Officers and Directors to make known his intentions. After much discussion and with hesitation to accept the President's decision, the team decided to make the send-off a big time affair.  "They all decided that the location should be one that is a popular one and very accesible to all guests, the theme of the event should be a jazzy one instead of the over used 'Inaugural Ball', the Reception Table greeters should be ones that are people-friendly, the music DeeJay should be one that has one of the best selection of dance music, the EmCee should be one that is eloquent with excellent personality and be a man of all seasons that have his thumb on the pulse of what's going on in the dance community, secure a person who have expertise in organizing and selecting a delicious menu for the dinner buffet, a program coordinator to keep the event running smoothly, and invite professional dance clubs to perform in the dance exhibition showcase for the enjoyment of every guests". A mighty tall order and the announcement went out far and wide in the social media and word of mouth. The wheels were spinning till the day of the event.

And it came to past, that the long awaited day March 22 finally came. Everything discussed at the team's meeting was in place. The theme "All That Jazz" party a.k.a IBDI Inaugural Ball 2014 was held at the Ala  Moana Hotel Hibiscus Ballroom with free parking at the adjoining Ala Moana Center which was accessible for all the guests. (No more meeting the challenge of encountering heavy auto and pedestrian traffic like those in Waikiki).
Greeters at the Reception Table and at the entrance of the ballroom were the people friendly Dana Morey, Delia Tom, and Marsha Ninomiya.

Inside the ballroom, dancers were burning the hardwood floor to the sweet selection of dance music of professional DeeJays Henry Lee and Jane Umeda.

General dancing continued until the event's EmCee Dr. Paul Laderta took to the mike and welcomed everyone for coming to celebrate the accomplishments of the out-going President and installing the new IBDI Officers and Directors. (Although there was another popular event at the Palladium that same night, many Presidents of the various dance organizations and owners/teachers of professional dance studios were at this "All That Jazz" party.

After a short spell of general dancing, it was time to hit the buffet line for the delicious dinner that was selected by Emi Matsuoka, President of the Salsa Dance Club. Emi  also made the beautiful table Centerpieces that were given away to the person whose birthday was closest to March 22. Invocation was said by Event Chair and incoming 1st Vice President Beverly Mau who is eloquent in her own right. It was the most inspiring prayer of thanks and encouragement that cover the expense space of the past, present and future of IBDI.

General dance continued during and after the dinner period. Then it was time for the Installation Ceremony. 1st VP Beverly Mau introduced the Honorable Senate President Donna Mercado Kim to perform the Installation of Incoming Officers for 2014. After a short speech from Ms. Kim, the installation of Officers and Directors continued. Installed were President Marsha Ninomiya, 1st Vice President Beverly Mau, 2nd Vice President Edward Matsuda, Secretary Eugene Shen, Treasurer Diana Vo, and Directors Arnold Lee, Dana Morey, Dawn Le, and Hong Wang. Leis by Sawaye Wong were presented to the Officers and  Directors.

Then Outgoing 2013 President Chris Jay took to the mike and gave his farewell speech. It's been nine successful years of guiding IBDI and although he was stepping down, he and wife Charlene will continue to be a vital presence with IBDI. At the end of his speech, everyone stood up to honor Chris Jay by singing  "For He's A jolly Good Fellow" song.

EmCee Dr. Paul Laderta introduced the Incoming 2014 President Marsha Ninomiya. Just as he had revealed some untold bio of Chris Jay when he introduced outgoing President Chris Jay, Paul also revealed some untold bio of Marsha that only a man of all seasons who has his thumb on the pulse of our dance community could gather. The revealed info was in jest that brought laughter and approval and applause from the guests as well as from Marsha. Then President Marsha Ninomiya came to the podium with her President's Message.

The Dance Exhibition Showcase featuring Professional Dancers soon followed. I was not able to capture any individual portrait shots of the performers but I hope the following candid shots will identify who they are.

Professional Joe Shorba and Ellen Ostler from Koko Head dance Studio performed the Mambo.

Matt Gochenouer and Susan Young from Koko Head Dance Studio performed the Viennese Waltz.

Professionals Greg Henry and Maki Mikami from Salsa Hawaii performed the Salsa.

Fil Padilla and Elvie Pascacio performed the Hustle/ West Coast Swing Medley.

Marie Laderta and Professional Lucas Jaime from Divino Ritmo Dance performed a Showdance called "Hawaii," International Rumba Medley.

And there you have it! A wonderful conclusion to a top notch event to honor a President who had devoted many years of dedicated service to IBDI, and the Installation of 2014 Officers and Directors. But alas all "Tales" must come to a happy ending. I'm sure this one did. General dancing continued till 11:00 PM.

Pau fo' now!