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Mike Song | Stranger by Skrillex

Mike Song is a dancer and choreographer who I admire just from watching his work on YouTube. I thought I would never be able to take a class from him because of the difficulty of how meticulous his work is, but when I found out that he was teaching at Focus Dance Center in Irvine, I knew I had to take his class. To be honest, I was really scared because it’s MIKE SONG. He is one creative artist who is so talented that it’s intimidating. I just thought his class would be so hard but it was totally what I did not expect.

He broke down every 8 count so thoroughly that it was easy to remember. Now, the challenging part about the class was to make the moves look good. I couldn’t overcome that challenge because I just don’t have that swag yet. What I cared the most was remembering the choreography. Because I haven’t danced in a long, long time, my memory in picking up choreography isn’t as quick as before. But because he took the time to explain every move clearly, I was able to catch on! Thank you, God!

We learned a fun piece to Stranger by Skrillex. Here’s a clip of what he taught us that night:

After watching him do his solo, I realized that what made the dance look so good was the fact that there were small and natural movements that created a powerful statement. For this choreography in particular, less was more.

Chelsea, this is for you. Check out one of his most popular videos that got him to Ellen Degeneres’ show with his mom:

Ok, one more video! Check this one out also:

If you want to take Mike Song’s class in the future or any other classes hosted by Kaba Modern, feel free to join me at any time! April is a perfect month to take these classes since Kaba Modern is hosting 12 classes this month in Irvine. Each class is $10 to drop in or you can purchase the package for $40 to attend all 12!

Thanks RPM for challenging me this month to be active by trying a new physical activity! Also, thank you Kat, Daniel, and Andrew for joining me spontaneously! Lastly, thanks Mike Song (if you read this), for making this class so much fun and memorable for me and especially for my friends who were first timers in taking a dance class!

Ballerina Diana Vishneva

Cindy and I spontaneously attended the World Premiere Diana Vishneva on The Edge at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, formerly known as Orange County Performing Arts Center, on Wednesday night. Before the show, I saw brief clips of her previous performances and I was in awe of her technique. So I was more than excited to see her performance live.

Diana Vishneva's Show at Segestrom
The first performance of the show was called “Switch”. Cindy and I were actually pretty confused about it. Unfortunately, we didn’t read the storyline in the program ahead of time. So as we were watching, we were completely lost in the choreography and the emotions involved. I thought there was a love triangle in a Matrix themed choreography but Cindy thought it was about a family drama between a mother, father, and a daughter. We were both completely wrong.

Diana, the main character, was trying to live in such freedom as she watched a couple enjoy life. She tried to find enjoyment within art and life, but she struggled to find a balance within both. At the end, you could tell she felt defeated for not being able to live in solitude within art and life as she took off her pointe shoes.

There were heavy emotions involved of frustration and restlessness within Diana. After reading the storyline, everything all made sense!

Her second performance “Woman in a Room” was totally a different story with more confusion for me and Cindy even though we read the story behind it. Both performances were almost like looking at a canvas that only has a splat of paint on it. You stand in front of it with a pensive look on your face wondering what does this splat of paint mean? You come to a conclusion that you have no idea how this became an artwork. Well, that’s basically how Cindy and I felt about the whole show. We had no idea what was going on.

We weren’t the only ones who felt like this about the show. We overheard some other audience members leave the show with a question mark and an unsatisfying performance. Perhaps that is what Diana wanted to leave us with. The whole show was more philosophical than I expected it to be. I was hoping there to be more classical ballet with traditional techniques involved, but it was mainly contemporary ballet. It was an experience watching today’s classical ballerinas go for modern day ballet choreography.

Thanks Cindy for watching this performance with me! I know it wasn’t what we expected it to be but I hope it broadened your understanding of what ballet or in general dance in mean. It can mean anything!

I’m sure you wanted to watch Diana Vishneva perform more of a classical ballet like this:

Spring Symphony Orchestra Concert

Wow, I can’t believe a semester of music classes went by in a blink of an eye! I have to say that I am pretty proud of myself for surviving IVC Orchestra. The many hours of practicing throughout the week to prepare for potential pop quizzes of playing in front of the whole orchestra and of course to prepare for the concert was all worth it! Sorry neighbors for playing late at night…

The concert started with a piece by Don Giovanni called Overture. It began with heavy emotion but grew to be more awakening and upbeat. I was definitely challenged by this piece because of the technique and tempo involved. Oh man, I had a love-hate relationship with this piece. When it comes down to it, I’m really thankful to have played this piece.

Another piece that was performed at the concert was Romance, Op 85 composed by Max Bruch. Prior to hearing this piece, I was indifferent about the viola. I was actually not too fond of it because it was almost a hybrid of two different instruments. It was almost the sound of a cello in a violin form. But performing this piece actually changed my opinion of the viola greatly. The spotlight of this piece was heavily on a viola solo. Because of the soloist’s graceful performance, I now have a huge respect for the viola instrument. I’ve never heard the viola played in this manner until this piece. The whole orchestra performed throughout the piece, but in the YouTube video below, it’s primarily focused on just the soloist. The YouTube video will help you understand the beauty of this instrument:

We played several student pieces that really blew my mind. Ever since I joined the orchestra, I was always in awe of the students who composed their own music. Where did they find such creativity?

We ended the concert with Paul Simon Medley by Paul Simon which brought us back to the past. Within the medley was one of the most popular songs, Mrs. Robinson. In addition to that, there was Bridge OVer Troubled Waters, The 59th Street Bridge Song, and The Song Of Silence. Performing this medley was a great way to conclude the concert leaving the audience with a smile on their face.

My experience joining IVC Orchestra has definitely been a memorable one. I’m so glad to have put myself out there and use the other side of my brain to play some good music. Gabriel, my music stand partner, has made my journey back into music less intimidating but more fun than expected. Thanks Gabriel for your encouragement and for being a comedian in class!
Gabriel and I.

Thank you to Dasom and Kat for surprising me at the concert!

L to R: Dasom, Tina, Kat

L to R: Dasom, Tina, Kat

If you haven’t played the violin or any other instrument for 7 years and you want to get back into it, then I encourage to really go for it! It may seem daunting to get back into music, but your muscle memory will hopefully still be there. The challenges you face will all pay off after more than enough practice.

Coffee Time with Julie

The last few times Julie and I have been hanging out, we’ve been hitting up new coffee spots. The first one that we went to was the hipster Portola Coffee Lab. This is located right off the 405N, a little past South Coast Plaza. SoCo, the name of the plaza where PCL is located, mainly has furniture stores there. But somehow, there’s a random hidden spot of hipster-land. There are some cute little boutiques, cafes, and hang out spots for hipsters.

So we got coffee kind of late, around 5 or 6PM which was a horrible idea. Never again. I can’t remember what we both got, but you could really taste the quality of the coffee and the flavor too. At first, my coffee just tasted like any other coffee. But once I tried Julie’s, I was able to taste the difference. You just have to sip and be pensive for a moment. Then the taste will just hit you and you’ll realize, “Oh got it. That’s what it is.” I don’t ever drink black coffee because it’s just too strong. So I added some sugar. I added a little too much actually. I ended up not being able to sleep until 3 or 4AM. I think the next day, I was just wide awake at work. The caffeine probably did not leave me for a few days.

I think people like Portola Coffee Lab because of its hipster environment, unique way of making coffee in a scientific procedure, and probably because it tastes good for coffee addicts.

I actually don’t ever really drink coffee. I drink lattes. They’re different. But anyway. After our hang out, we went over to her place and watched 500 Days of Summer. Good movie. Ugh Tom…but that Summer…

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For our next coffee adventure, I suggested we hit up Coffee Code in Buena Park. I’ve been meaning to go there since last year. No joke! So it worked out perfectly that I was going to Coffee Code with a coffee person, Julie. If you don’t know anything about Buena Park, well then let me share a little something something with you. Buena Park is known for Knott’s Berry Farm but also Korean people. There’s a ton of Korean restaurants, stores, and anything else related to Korean, it’s most likely there.

We walked into Coffee Code and they said hi to us in Korean. It really threw me off. They just knew that I was Korean. They just knew… I got Eiskaffe which was a double shot of expresso and two scoops of ice cream. I only asked for one shot because I didn’t want to get all caffeinated like last time. What they did was put in the two scoops of ice cream and poured the expresso on top of the ice cream. It was an unusual concept at first but I ended up really liking the vanilla ice cream covered in expresso. It obviously turned into coffee ice cream.
Coffee Code 001

We shared a parfait that was colorfully layered in fruity pebbles. The yogurt had a different texture than the usual yogurt/parfait taste where it’s suppose to be thick. The parfait here was liquidy or soft like ice cream.
Coffee Code 007

I wouldn’t mind going back to Coffee Code again for another drink. Next time, I want to try the sweet potato latte. Downside about Coffee Code is that it may be a tad bit expensive by a few bucks than typical coffee places. For two coffee drinks and a parfait, we paid a total of about $20. It’s definitely a great place to check out for some coffee and sweets.

Thanks Julie for checking out Coffee Code with me! Glad we went there together!

My Date with Jeremy Lin

When I got inside the Staples Center, I was starting to get major butterflies in my stomach. They probably weren’t even butterflies. I’m sure they were birds flapping their wings in my stomach making me feel all nervous and excited about my date with Jeremy Lin. My date was pretty intimate as I watched him play against the Lakers from my nose bleed seat.

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Ok fine. I obviously didn’t go on a date with Jeremy Lin. This game was pretty special to me though. The last time I went to a Lakers game was about 3 years ago and they were playing against the Rockets. I remember seeing sprinkles of red jerseys at the Staples Center. There weren’t many Rocket fans out there in LA at the time. But. The Lakers vs Houston game I went to recently had a lot of Rockets fan. In particular, a lot of Asian Rockets fan. I was actually surrounded by Rockets fans from where I was sitting rather than Lakers. It was eye opening to see how one person can shift the image and culture of basketball in particular with the Asian American community.Jeremy Lin didn’t play the as well as he did back in the beginning of the Linsanity Era when he was on the New York Knicks. It’s ok though. I still think he’s a great and humble basketball player.

Overall the game was fun to watch but a little nerve wrecking because there were moments where I thought the Lakers were going to lose. Watching James Hardin play like a beast got me worried about the Lakers. It would have been nice to see Coach D’Antoni and see Steve Nash play. It was good to see Kobe play and watch him save the game as always.

Thanks Nicole for joining me last minute to watch the game! Hopefully next time we will get free tacos!

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My First Post!

Hello, hello to all or to no one 🙂

I’m really excited to start this blog! I have so much to share about everything and anything from food to attractions to current events. I enjoy trying new things and simply sharing with others my experience and tips. I’m a low maintenance, low budget, non-picky eater type of a person. I hope my blog encourages you to try new things!

Since this is my first entry, I probably should share some things about myself. I don’t plan to share with you my whole life story in this first entry. That would just take forever. I thought it would be funny to take one of those Myspace questionnaires that I used to do back in the day. If you never had Myspace, well then, you missed out! Basically on Myspace, people would post up these questionnaires that they filled out and all their Myspace friends would read it and answer it themselves and re-post.

So I went back to my Myspace and found that all those posts were gone 😦 Luckily, there’s Google! So here goes the survey:

  1. Name: Tina Kyung Yun
  2. Birthdate: August 20
  3. Location: A city where leaves pick themselves up off the ground, the road is repaved every other day, and you see policemen everywhere. That is Irvine.
  4. Height: 5’6″. People say I’m tall for an Azn.
  5. Piercings? Yes! Just got them pierced for the first time in May!
  6. Tattoos: I have a tattoo that says: Made by God. It’s on the bottom of my right foot. Just kidding!
  7. Food: Korean food! I just need kogi and tofu soup. Then I’m good to go.
  8. Number: 2 and 20 because 2 is part of 20 and 20 is my birfday.
  9. Color: Red because the red Power Ranger was my favorite.
  10. Pepsi or Coke: Coke because I just grew up with Coke.
  11. Summer or winter: Summer! But I’m starting to appreciate the winter weather.
  12. Scary movies or funny movies: I like getting scared but I love to laugh. So funny movies, please.
  13. First thought of waking up: I don’t want to get up!
  14. Fears: Germs and more germs.
  15. What country do you want to visit? I would say Africa but that whole Kony deal is confusing me!
  16. Favorite ice cream: Vanirra. I rike to keep it simple. After that, then maybe Cookies N’ Cream!
  17. Something you do when you’re bored: Look up dance YouTube videos…
  18. Dog or cat: Ruff ruff.
  19. Short or long hair: I have short hair. I donated 11 inches to Locks of Love in December!
  20. TV shows: As for now, I’ve been watching the news a lot and The Voice pretty consistently. The shows I like to watch but don’t watch much include: Modern Family, Glee, The Office, Undercover Boss, Say Yes To The Dress, and many more…

I hope this survey was fun to read! Thanks for reading my first of many posts!