Sunday, October 14, 2007

High Hair Hop

Saturday was a teams gig up in Beverly Hills at the Slimmons studio. Richard Simmons was hosting a conference/retreat there, and people from all over the country flew in to take part. Our role was to host the "High Hair Hop" on Saturday evening, which meant leading some dances, drawing the crowd into the dancing, and some performances.

First off, we performed some choreography done specifically for the event, a mix of songs from the Hairspray musical or 2007 movie (not clear which). I missed a practice on Thursday evening, so was behind on the new choreography, and never really caught up. :-( That's ok, it went fine. Ian told me that he and Molly were doing it with about an hour of prep, so I was ahead of them...

We came in for added practice at 10:45am to work on the gig. I got some help on what I missed, but the group couldn't really slow down to walk me through things that I'd missed. I got to about 70% by the end. Jerry asked for Big John's Special solos, so Michelle and I worked one out:
Swing Out
Swing Out with Apache Stomp
6-Count Circle
Chase Entry into Tandem Charleston
Tandem Charleston Push-out
Push-out Exit From Tandem
8-Count Circle
Charleston Basic

We worked on that during the Swing 1 class, but also did the Jeep Jockey Jump choreography when the Swing 1 team ran it. Ran through Big John's Special too. Push-out exit plus over-rotated circle is still only 70%.

Swing 2 team runs Jeep Jockey Jump a couple times, and it's effortless now. Well, my boogie section could use some technique work, but other than that... We then run Big John's Special a bunch of times with Michelle and I doing our solo. It works really well, I think. No aerials or anything, so it's better as the very first solo. Maybe get it on video on Thursday?

We walk through the Atomic Routine, which is awesome for me. Jeremy is leading this section, and Patty and I are the only ones who are working on it who don't already have it all the way through. I feel guilty, but this it the point of the class: to get us up to speed on the Swing 3 choreography. I work through my tap section issues, but need to practice on my own a lot more. We actually get through to the end, and I have a lot to chew on there.

We break, but I don't get to eat as we work on Slimmons gig material right away. We set partners, and re-work formation kinks out. This choreography is cheesy but so much fun! We work on some Salsa and Casino Rueda. Salsa Jill & Jack. Finally break for food and costume (black pants, white shirt, black skinny tie). I picked up a 16.5" x 34/35" fitten dress shirt from JC Pennny's on the way in. The fitted look is the way to go.

I drive Michelle's mini-van to the gig, with Tim, Karen, James, and Liz in tow. Rockin' the bad-date stories on the way up. I have such a gape in my dating years, that I don't have a good one. Oh wait, I should have told the Winter dance my Senior year in high-school story. Forgot about that.

Gig was tiring but awesome! Screwed up Hairspray a lot. Big John's Solo was good, but I forgot the triple-kick section just after jump-Charleson. I got back on, and finished strong. JJJ went really well. Line dances were lots of fun, Rueda went well, and the mixing with Slimmons retreat people worked really well.

Trip after to Bob's Big Boy in Burbank.

That's Jerry with the awesome Eraserhead hairstyle!

We did a mini Lindy-bomb of the parking lot (Big John's again) to thank a party who found our gig payment in a menu and returned it.

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