May 28, 2011 ed.
Greetings from the Greater NY Chapter of USA Dance!
In this edition:
- Join Us for a Summer Luau on June 11
- NY USA Dance at Dance Parade
- And the Winner of DWTS12 is ….
- Vote for Your Favorite Costumes Made with Swarovski Elements
- The Giulianos Make the Final in the Edison Ballroom Dance Contest
- George Gee Swing Orchestra Plays at the USS Intrepid
- Midsummer Night Swing Schedule Released
- Dance Parade on YouTube
- Looking to improve your dancing?
- Looking to social dance?
- Looking for a Partner?
As we approach the Memorial Day Weekend, the unofficial start of the summer season, a wet spring gives way to the first hints of warm summer days ahead. What better way to celebrate the arrival of summer than with our annual summer luau? We are doing it again this year at Manhattan Ballroom Dance studio. It will take place on Saturday, June 11, from 8 pm to midnight. We plan to have the usual assortment of wonderful dancers, music you can dance to, light refreshments and some dance performances. Admission is $15 for USA Dance members and students, $20 for the general public, with $3 off if you dress in your best Hawaiian luau gear. Mark the date and make plans to join us there!
Last Saturday, about 30 dancers from NY USA Dance joined approximately 9000 dancers who registered to dance in the Fifth Annual Dance Parade. We were one of about 160 dance organizations representing more than 70 unique dance styles at this celebration of dance in the streets of Manhattan.
NY USA Dance entered the parade at 21st and Broadway, again right behind the massive Dance Manhattan Float, and proceeded to dance down Broadway, past Union Square, made a left turn to head east on 8th Street, where we stopped briefly at the Grandstand between Fourth and Third Avenue to be announced to the audience seated there. We quickly danced on down to Tompkins Square Park in the East Village, where the parade route terminated. A Dance Fest took place at the park but our group was done, and we were hungry, so most of us headed over to Dallas BBQ nearby for some lunch and libations.
We were proud to represent ballroom dance in the parade. Thanks to all the dancers who took part, including many for whom this was their first time. We are grateful also to the many dancers who returned to dance again with us in Dance Parade. Thanks to Naomi Geller, our own Queen of the Dance Parade, for coordinating our chapter’s participation in this great event. Thanks to Rosalyn Hansrisuk for taking some greate shots: here is a link to part 1 of her album, and here’s a link to part 2. For some of my photos from the event, go here. To see some videos from Dance Parade, see the YouTube section below.
Our gang of DWTS fans convened at the Upstairs Pub on Monday and Tuesday night to watch the final two episodes of season 12. Monday night was just an hour and included each of the finalists first dancing the dances that the judges wanted to see them dance again and then dancing the freestyle. The hour passed quickly and after all the hype last week about past memorable freestyles, none of the current freestyle performances stood out.
On Tuesday night, the show started at 9 pm and would run for two hours. Much filler occupied the first hour plus. The Go-Go’s performed -- anyone remember them? -- and I felt shocked to see how they’ve aged, not unlike my reaction at seeing former World Professional Latin Champion Donnie Burns turn up as a guest judge a few weeks ago. I can hardly believe that a full three decades have come and gone since they released “Beauty and the Beat,” their first album. Now I really feel old. Alas, I digress … (a sure sign of aging).
The finalists came out in the second hour and each danced a dance that they wanted to do again. All three teams received perfect scores, even though none truly deserved them, completely neutralizing the judges’ scores and leaving the outcome in the hands of the voting public. Once again, the popularity contest aspect of the show kicked in, leading to Chelsea Kane coming in third -- a bad result in my opinion -- making Kirstie Alley the runner up and Hines Ward the season 12 champion. I’m happy that Hines Ward won, and I think he earned it. That makes two first place finishes for Kym Johnson, the first time with Donnie Osmond, another likeable performer who was a decent dancer.
Overall, season 12 felt like it came and went quickly, with some so-so theme weeks and one awful one. The level of dancing was surprisingly close, with no couples, especially after the midpoint, really dominant, presenting some semblance of a level playing field.
Thanks to everyone who came out over the course of the season to join us at the Upstairs Pub; you made the experience fun and enjoyable. Stay tuned for DWTS 13 .…
For the 2011 USA Dance National DanceSport Championships, Swarvoski Elements sponsored 10 top USA Dance couples from across the United States, including many from New York and New Jersey, to wear costumes designed by four designers featuring the new Swarovski stones made especially for DanceSport. Check out the Swaroski Elements Facebook page to see vidoes of the couples in their magnificent costumes, worn during the Championships events from Junior II through Senior I. While there, be sure to cast your votes for your favorites. So far Eric Rosenberg and Nicole Akhmerova from San Jose, California are in the lead with 1,169 likes. The winners will be revealed in a special VIP press event in New York on June 8. Take a look and vote today!
Paul and Louise Giuliano, USA Dance National Senior II Championship Latin, Senior III Championship Latin and Senior III 10-Dance Champions, danced in the last preliminary round of the Edison Ballroom Dance Contest on May 13 and secured a berth in the semi-final last Friday, on May 20, and earned a position in the finals coming up next Friday, June 3. During the prelim round two weeks ago, Paul and Louise took the wild card dance, the tango, and last Friday, they took the wild card dance, the hustle, and combined they garnered $600 in prize money from those two wins. Congratulations to Paul and Louise for their wonderful results!
If you’d like to catch the finals next Friday at Edison Ballroom, go to this link for more details. The website says “invite your friends to help you win” so it sounds like if we can get a group together to cheer on Paul and Louise we may be able to help them take first place. There is a VIP rate of $125 which includes a 4-course dinner and a $45 rate after 9:30 pm which includes drinks and hors d’oeuvres. The flyer also mentions an unspecified group rate. If any of you out there are interested in that option, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s see if we can get a group together for a Friday night outing of dining, dancing, drinking and cheering on Paul and Louise.Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum yet, now may be a good time. Running from May 25 through 30, Fleet Week at the Intrepid features displays and performances, including from Broadway shows. For fans of swing and the George Gee Swing Orchestra, that band will be playing on Sunday, May 29, from 5 pm to 7 pm. The Facebook page says the concert is free, and while that may be true, I suspect that you may need to pay for admission to get on the USS Intrepid, docked at Pier 86, on West 46th Street and 12th Avenue. For more information and to see the full schedule of events, check out the Intrepid museum website here. Midsummer Night Swing at Lincoln Center returns next month starting on June 27, running through July 16. Music from around the world will be featured, encompassing music and dance styles far beyond swing to include Irish dance and 80s new wave. Ballroom dancers, with their deft versatility, will surely find something to their liking. The entire calendar is on view at this link. Consistent with past practice, dance lessons are given from 6:30 to 7:15 pm, music and dancing starts at 7:30 pm and runs until 10 pm. For those who want to dance on the dance floor set up by the bandshell in Damrosch Park, tickets and passes may be purchased. For all others, dancing al fresco under the stars has worked out just fine. MNS is one of the best features of summer in New York City, so check out the calendar and make plans to come out for one or more of the nights of outdoor dancing to some terrific live bands.
- Raphael Pungin’s compilation of the wide variety of dancers and groups that took part, including NY USA Dance;
- Basic Ballroom entered a Hustle Flash Mob, and ahead of it USA Dance National Junior I Gold Latin Champions Matthew Kheyfets and Kyla Dzhaniashvili impressed the crowd with their cha cha;
- And here’s my footage of NY USA Dance in Dance Parade from our waiting on 21st Street just east of Broadway, to our dancing down Broadway all the way the end of the route in the East Village (embedded below).
- At Brooklyn DanceSport Club, Maria and Eugene will be teaching Open Junior/Youth Seminars on Mondays from 7:00 to 8:30 pm, and Open Adult Seminars on Tuesdays from 7:00 to 8:30 pm. They will also hold regular run-through Latin rounds on Tuesdays from 8:30 to 10:00 pm and Thursdays from 8:00 to 9:30 pm. There will also be Standard run-throughs on Fridays from 8:30 to 10:00 pm. The studio is easily accessible by subway, via the N train, 18 Avenue stop. From there, it’s a short walk to the studio.
- Stepping Out holds an International Standard and American Smooth Practice session on Tuesdays from 9:30 to 10:30 pm, and the cost is just $3 per person or $5 per couple. On Saturdays, they hold a Standard pratice session from 5 pm to 6 pm, at the same cost. Just show the front desk your USA Dance membership card to take advantage of these great rates, and ask them what other USA Dance discounts are available for their other programs and events.
- Become the best ballroom dancer you can be for your partner by working on yourself first. ISTD Fellow Michael Choi shows you how with his Ballroom Barre, at Chelsea Studios, every Wednesday, starting at 8:30 pm. Just $25 per person for USA Dance members. The classes are non-sequential so drop in any time; no partner required, all levels welcome. For more information, contact Michael at email@example.com.
- Manhattan Ballroom Dance studio runs Standard rounds on Thursday , from 9:30 to 10:30 pm and Latin Rounds on Friday nights from 8:30 to 9:30 pm.
- Basic Ballroom holds a Competition Run-through Class supervised by former World Professional Latin finalists Paul and Olga Richardson on Friday nights from 8 pm to 9:30 pm. Just $20 for USA Dance members.
- Check out the special rates for USA Dance members at Basic Ballroom: just $79 for a 10 session card and $90 for their unlimited monthly card.
- DanceSport offers a $100 monthly floor fee card for amateur dancers: Unlimited practice space Monday to Friday 10 am to 5 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 2 pm, and Sundays 11 am to 7 pm for 30 days.
- Dance with Me Soho can no longer host practice sessions on weekdays due to space constraints. Dancers are welcome to practice on weekends for $15 per hour per couple. Also, you may want to try their practice parties on Wednesdays at 9:20 to 10:10 pm (salsa theme) and Thursdays same time that covers all styles.
- WayGee Ho teaches a weekly beginner salsa lesson on Wednesday evenings starting at 8:00 pm at the New York Chinese Cultural Center, 390 Broadway, just one block from the N/R Canal Street Station. The 4-week cycle begins on June 1. For just $45 you get four weeks of salsa lessons and a party. What a deal! If you’re interested to find out more, visit chinatownsalsa.com.
- Tonight, Swing 'n Salsa Saturday at YSBD/Club 412, with two live bands in separate rooms. Lessons at 7 pm, dancing starts at 8 pm.
- Tonight, mixed ballroom dancing at Manhattan Ballroom Dance studio, starting at 7:30 pm with a free lesson, dancing from 8:00 pm to midnight.
- Sunday, May 29, Sunday Tea Party at Manhattan Ballroom Dance, mixed ballroom dancing starting at 3 pm.
- Monday, May 30, Salsa at Taj, with live band and special performances. Arrive before 7 pm and get in for $6 (admission price doubles after 7 pm).
- Tuesday, May 31, mixed ballroom dancing at the Saloon, on York Ave., between 83rd and 84th street, from 8 pm (free lesson at 7:30 pm).
- Tuesday, May 31: Hot Salsa, West Coast Swing and Hustle Tuesdays at Club 56, in Farmingdale, LI. Wonderful buffet, friendly dancers, reasonably-priced cash bar, dance lesson. Best of all: just $10 for USA Dance members!
- Thursday, June 2, Thursday Night Dance Club at Mirelle's, in Westbury, featuring Latin, Hustle and West Coast Swing. Lesson at 7:30 pm, dancing starts at 8:15 pm. Admission just $10 per person for USA Dance members (present your card at the entrance to get the discount).
- Friday, June 3, Hot Salsa Friday at the VIP Lounge at the Iguana. Doors open at 6 pm.
- Friday, June 3, Edison Ballroom Dance Contest, dinner, drinks, dancing to a live band. Cheer on Paul and Louise Giuliano in the finals! (See above.)
That does it for this week. Happy Memorial Day Weekend, everyone!
(NY USA Dance)
General disclaimer: Please note that, other than events organized by NY USA Dance, the listing of events in this newsletter is purely for informational purposes and does not carry with it any endorsement, sanction or seal of approval, express or implied. If you have any questions about an event other than one organized by NY USA Dance, you should direct them to the organizer of that event. NY USA Dance has no control over any of the events listed herein, other than those events which NY USA Dance itself organizes. NY USA Dance bears no responsibility for the content, conduct, quality, management or operation of any of the events listed in this newsletter, other than those events organized directly by NY USA Dance.