ballet

Dancing In The Dark

There are some dances out there online that I can watch on repeat for hours and hours especially when the dancers can evoke such deep and raw emotions for the viewers to experience. I recently watched one that gave me the chills and brought me into a pensive mood. Watch Dancing In The Dark performed by Matt Luck and Emma Portner:

Did this dance just change your mood or what? Did it make you pause and think for a second? It sure made me reflect on the lyrics and the emotions that built up within me. Even though I’ve seen this so many times, I am constantly in awe by the artwork of this dance. You can feel the story they are telling us because Matt and Emma are so honest in every movement within this dance. They dance so effortlessly and flawlessly that their story is told naturally.

Thanks Chelsea for sharing this beautiful dance with me! Oh man, I’m definitely going to watch again now.

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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:

Surprise Chelsea!

Chelsea’s husband texted me earlier in the week about doing a surprise for Chelsea. Chelsea told Eric, her husband, how she wanted to see the Nutcracker and that the last time she saw it was with me. So Eric, the loving husband that he is, thought it would be a great idea for me to surprise her at the door and then take her to watch the Nutcracker together. Great idea, huh? Uh-huh.

When I arrived in Diego, I texted Eric that I had just parked. He responded that he was going to “poop” so that Chelsea could open the door.

I knocked on their door and looked down on the ground so that she would not see my face through the peep hole. She opened the door and I actually don’t remember the first thing I said to her exactly. But I must say she was definitely surprised to see me! She kept asking me what I was doing at her place. I responded casually saying, “I was just around the neighborhood.” She kept asking me the same question why I was there. At some point I asked her if I could come inside since I was just standing there with my bag of Korean pears to give to them.

Eric and I ended up explaining the whole surprise to her. She responded, “No wonder Eric kept telling me to get ready!” I told her that we only had an hour left until the show starts. So she quickly got dressed up and we were off to downtown San Diego!

We grabbed a quick bite at Sushi Deli which is Chelsea and Eric’s favorite place. Service was great there. Since we were in a time crunch, we couldn’t order a lot but we ordered enough. We literally had 15 minutes left until the show started. We told the waitor our time crunch situation and he was definitely understanding and was quick to give us our food in less than 5 minutes! So we got some California Rolls and garlic edamame for about $6. I need to try that garlic edamame again the next time I’m in San Diego. They were really good!

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Luckily the theater was one or two doors down from Sushi Deli. So we power walked to Spreckles Theater. Yup, it’s called Spreckles. Don’t ask why. I thought the same too. We made it right on time for the show to start!

This Nutcracker performance was definitely one up than our previous Nutcracker show. There was live music and the story line made more sense than before. We’re hoping to start a new tradition to step up the quality of the Nutcracker as we get older! I already can’t wait for the next one!

20121225-232059.jpgThanks Eric for planning all of this! Chelsea, it was so good seeing you! Glad we were able to watch this together!

Photography Ain’t My Thing

Recently, my sister got a new digital camera. I wanted to use it and see how creative I could get from using it. But the thing is, I’m not an artsy type of a person at all. For me to be creative, it takes a lot of time and effort. When it comes to photography, the most creative I can get is with the help from Instagram. Yesterday, for once I was not going to depend my creativity on Instagram. I had my friend Andrea be my model for the day! I gave her a make-over yesterday, just hair and make-up.

After the make-over, we went to an open grass area by my house to take pictures. I had this vision to take pictures of her doing dance poses since we used to dance together. We took a bunch of dance poses, but the pictures were not what I expected. I was challenged by the sunlight and the lack of a pretty scenery. Here are a few photos that I thought looked dancey:

Once our dance pose session was completed, I wanted to try some head shots on her. Taking head shots was actually really fun. I basically improvised from the top of my head on how to take these head shots. I told her to sit this way and that way. Look here and there. This is how the photo shoot turned out.

If you think Andrea’s legs look unusual, don’t mind that. She’s just wearing tights! That was my first photo shoot ever. It was definitely fun working with Andrea since she was so cooperative. I definitely want to do more photo shoots for fun and try to improve on everything.

One last thing. I would like you to get to know my friend, Andrea! Here’s a little Q&A from her:

1. What’s your name? Andrea Ashcraft
2. How do you know Tina? Tina and I used to dance together at Irvine Dance Academy when we were younger and then became much closer when we both attended Irvine High School.
3. What do you spend most of your time doing? I spend about half of my time working (I have 2 jobs). The other half I would say is mainly spent at home doing everything from eating to Facebook to video/board games with my dad. I try my best to balance work and play — but it is a daily struggle.
4. What are 3 random facts about yourself? I love baking, no need for a special occasion. I am very OCD about my fingernails among other things. There is a 17 year gap between me and my next sibling.

 Alrighty, thanks for stopping by!