Connecting Generations: SYTYCD

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It was so refreshing to see J.T. Church and Robert Roldan’s jazz performance to “Stand In The Light” by Jordan Smith on last night So You Think You Can Dance: Next Generation!

There was a depth of emotion and maturity emanating from the youngest contestant who stood on the shoulders of his dancer mentor Robert and jumped in tandem. It was touching to experience the strength behind mentoring the next generation in support and encouragement to share their gifts and be who they are.

Connecting with someone younger or older than you can grant you a unique perspective that inspires you to grow. The beautiful relationship between all-star and contestant was highlighted in the acceptance of doing life together with the exchange of power and blessings.

I am so thankful for my mentors who have given me wings to fly and are leaving me a legacy of wisdom to help grow my character. Who can you mentor or what generation do you need to reach out and connect with?

For more dancing and great partnerships tune in to Mondays on Fox at 8pm.

These are the opening lyrics to “Stand In the Light”
Didn’t I tell you I hear what you say
Never look back as you’re walking away
Carry the music the memories and keep them inside
You laugh everyday
Don’t stop those tears from falling down

This is who I am inside
This is who I am I’m not gonna hide
Cause the greatest risk we’ll ever take is by far
To stand in the light and be seen as we are
So stand in the light and be seen as we are

With courage and kindness hold on to your faith
You get what you give and it’s never to late
To reach for the branch and climb up leaving sadness behind
You fight hard for love
We can never give enough

Have an awesome rest of the week where you can share and be yourself! Encourage someone to own who they are!

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Thursday Television: Limitations, Challenges and Glee

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Limitations are just guideposts.  They may signal different routes or different ways to reach a destination.  But they won’t prevent us from getting there, unless we empower them to do so.  -Patrick Lindsay

Outshine Your Limitations

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Gina Rodriguez won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a TV Comedy for her work as Jane in The CW’s television show “Jane the Virgin.” She is a shining inspiration for her refusal to accept limitations potentially placed on her by Hollywood’s vision of what audiences want to see and expect.  She pursues her craft with integrity and dares to tell stories that connect and inspire.

Jane the Virgin is renewed for season 2 on the CW!  You can catch up on all the episodes this week or online!

Find Glee in Being the Best You
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The sixth and final season of Fox’s television Glee started to air last week.  The show has been known for spotlighting the underdogs with their endearing vulnerability and bright personalities as they overcome expectations and difficulties together. They go for their dreams! Last week’s episode was filled with memorable quotes such as what the character Will said to Rachel.

“Have you ever seen a guy shoot a bow and arrow? The power is created by the bending of the bow.  The more the bow bends, the more potential energy is created.  Life’s challenges age not just bending of the bow.  The bigger the challenges, the more the bow bends, the more potential you create to do something amazing.  All you have to do is find a purpose, find the arrow that you’re gonna put in that bow.” Will to Rachel from Glee

Catch Glee tomorrow! Friday at 9pm on FOX

Happy Thursday!

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Thursday Television: “The Sound of Music-Live!”

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One of my favorite musicals is “The Sound of Music.” Now a new audience will get to experience a live televised version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s  original staged version on NBC  tomorrow Thursday, December 5 at 8 p.m. live ET/tape-delayed PT.

Maria played by Carrie Underwood chooses to embrace life with an open heart and persevere through adversity with ingenuity and spirit.

One of the most dramatic songs is “Climb Ev’ry Mountain” sung by Audra McDonald as Mother Abbess.

“Maria, these walls were not meant to shut out problems. You have to face them. You have to live the life you were born to live” – Mother Abbess.

To download music from the NBC Television Event “The Sound of Music-Live!” click here to go to the iTunes store.

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Friday Film: “Oklahoma!” Beautiful Mornings

One of my favorite musicals is the filmed 1998 version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Oklahoma!” starring Hugh Jackman as Curly. The musical opens with Jackman richly signing the song “Oh What a Beautiful Mornin’!”

“Oklahoma!” launched the collaboration between the composing and writing team Rodgers and Hammerstein and celebrates its 70th anniversary this year. beautifulmornings2

I like how the musical opens with a song about finding beautiful positivity in the morning and later explores the message of tolerance.

How do you start the day with beauty? Happy Friday!

The taped 1998 version starring Jackman can be enjoyed in high definition this Friday, November 15 at 9 p.m. on THIRTEEN’s Great Performances as part of the PBS Arts Fall Festival. Please check local listings.  If you miss it on PBS then watch it on YouTube by clicking here.

TV Thursday-Michael J. Fox and Robin Williams

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michaeljfoxMichael J. Fox is one of my favorite actors who continues to reach others through his artistry and boldness.  I gravitate toward shows that involve family and it will be interesting to see  “The Michael J. Fox Show” premiere tonight on NBC with back-to-back episodes at 9/8c.

Besides for his acting work Michael J. Fox is known for battling Parkinson’s disease.

“I turned myself around.  In fact, Parkinson’s has made me a better person.  A better husband, father and overall human being.  Life delivered me a catastrophe, but I found a richness of soul” said Fox.

“The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease through an aggressively funded research agenda and to ensuring the development of improved therapies for those living with Parkinson’s today” according to the foundation’s website.

He is using his craft and circumstances to make choices that make a positive difference!  Thanks for being a shining inspiration!

For more information about the foundation and Parkinson’s disease please click here.

I like what Fox said about family–shedding light on family dinners, dynamics and importance.  “The oldest form of theater is the dinner table.  It’s got five or six people, new show every night, same players.  Good ensemble; the people have worked together a lot.”

crazyonesRobin Williams is also coming to television tonight in “The Crazy Ones” focusing on another family dynamic this time between father and daughter set in the advertising world.  The show will air tonight on CBS at 9pm.  I love the use of the lightbulbs!

 

Don’t Walk Dance!

dontwalkdanceI am thrilled that the choreography category was included in the live telecast of the Emmy’s last night.  Congratulations to Derek Hough!

I liked how this dance incorporated the television shows and how it was a collaborative effort between the nominees.  The quick changes added some cool flair!

“So You Think You Can Dance”-Top 20 Dance

jasmineLove is patient and kind but is love really blind?

High Point: Yesterday’s episode of “So You Think You Can Dance” featured a contemporary dance number showcasing dancers Jasmine Mason and Alan with Travis Wall choreography.  The dancers were blindfolded adding another layer of intimacy where raw touch was the vehicle that let each dancer see into each other.  The lifts with the rise and fall drew upon a foundation of trusting each other and themselves.  I liked how Jasmine fearlessly dove backwards into Alan’s arm illustrating the idea of “leap and the net will appear.”  It appeared that each dancer’s hearts were open to reality in accepting each others flaws and moving onwards as a unit.  We shall if both dancers move onwards in the show when voting results are given next week.

fictionSurprise moment: Fik-Shun (name pronounced fiction) dancing contemporary with dancer Amy and Sonya Tayeh’s choreography.  It was nice to see a male dancer outside his dance genre inhabit the spirit of the dance.  Fik Shun’s commitment to movement and partnering elevated Amy’s performance making for a mesmerizing routine and partnership closing the night out.

Looking Forward: It will be interesting to see how America votes and I hope to see dancer Nico in another dance genre other than hip-hop because he has great potential. Tune in next week on Fox Tuesday 8/7c.

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.” -Helen Keller

 

“So You Think You Can Dance”-Top 20 Dancers Revealed

sytycd-season-10-all-starsThe auditions and Vegas week are over and the live performance shows are just around the corner!  However, last night Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance” revealed their top 20 dancers!  It was nice to see choreographer Mia Michaels back and the more diversified dance genres represented this year.  The judging panel included executive producer Nigel Lythgoe, Mary Murphy and Adam Shankman.

High Point: The Top 10 guys perform a routine choreographed by Christopher Scott.  I always enjoy the use of music by Nathan Lanier used in SYTYCD routines such as “Ra,” Velocity,” or “Resolve” because it has an intensity that sets the stage for impactful movement.  The use of the sand served as an extension of the dance’s story and was handled with ferocity and delicacy.

sytycd1Surprise Moment: Hip-Hop dancer Mariah Spears performing a Luther Brown routine.  We did not get to see much of her in Vegas this year and I was delightfully surprised by her fierceness and personality.

Looking Forward: I am excited to see the new dance pairings and the new performances next Tuesday. Amy Yakima and Jenna Johnson already won me over and it will be nice to get to know the other dancers better when they dance outside their comfort zone.

What was the high point for you during the show and what are you looking forward to? Tune in next week to see the Top 20 perform live for your votes on Fox at 8/7c.

 


Tuesday Tunes-“The Voice” Finale

NBC’s singing competition “The Voice” will declare the season four winner tonight at the end of the live show 9/8 Central.  Last night,  The Swon Brothers and Danielle Bradbery from team Blake and Michelle Chamuel  from team Usher sang three songs in hopes of winning over America one last time.  The show not only has a unique format but factors in the amount of iTunes downloads of a singer’s performance with other forms of voting.

Danielle has a mature innocence that might translate into endorsements or television work in addition to singing.  Michelle has a loveable quirkiness with a unique relationship with Usher that creates magic.  The Swon Brothers have a likeability factor where trust and believability in who they are emanates from their brotherly bond.

Tune into tonight for “the Voice” finale to find out who America voted for and to celebrate an end of a season that saw Shakira and Usher as two new coaches.

Cee Lo Green and Christina Aguilera will return with Blake Shelton and Adam Levine as coaches for the fifth season of “The Voice.”

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” Musical +Tony Awards

Laura Osnes, nominated for Best Performance by an actress in a leading musical role for the 67th Tony Awards, plays the title role of Cinderella on Broadway.  However, the iconic character has been played by some other lovely ladies and has a history with the music and lyric team of Rodgers and Hammerstein.  The fantasy based fairy-tale of Cinderella fits perfectly with the bigger than life musical that pulls off songs such as “Impossible” and “Ten Minutes Ago.”

1957: Rodgers and Hammerstein cast Julie Andrews to play the lead role in the made for television adaptation– five years before “Mary Poppins” was released.  Watch Julie sing “In My Own Little Corner” here.

1965: Rodgers and Hammerstein create television magic again with Leslie Ann Warren as Cinderella.

 cinderella21997: My favorite televised “Cinderella” adaptation by Rodgers and Hammerstein is released with a multi-ethnic cast.  The cast included Brandy as Cinderella, Whitney Houston as the Fairy Godmother, Bernadette Peters as the Stepmother, Whoopi Goldberg as the Queen with Jason Alexander, Victor Garber and Paolo Montalban in other important roles.  Want to watch the whole film?  Click here.

Fun fact: Rob Marshall was the 1997 film’s choreographer known for his work on the film of “Chicago” who is now working on the film adaptation of “Into the Woods” that incorporates Cinderella’s story.  So far Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, Johnny Depp, Chris Pine and Jake Gyllenhaal have signed on.  The “Into the Woods” screenplay reading included Laura Osnes as Rapunzel and Anna Kendrick as Cinderella.

2013: Cinderella’s first production on Broadway with a book by Douglas Carter Beane and songs from Rodgers and Hammerstein starring Laura Osnes (nominated) , Santino Fontana as Prince Topher (nominated) and Victoria Clark as fairy godmother Marie (nominated).  To see Broadway.com and Laura’s backstage videos click here.  It is a version where characters have flaws and are more humanized.  The production has been nominated for nine Tony awards.

2014-2015: The newest musical version of “Cinderella” is slated for a national tour.

The Tony Awards will air this Sunday June 9 on CBS at 8 p.m.-11 p.m. live ET/delayed PT from the Radio City Music Hall.  Watch on Sunday for special appearances by the casts of “Chicago,” “Newsies,”The Lion King” etc. and for performances from the nominated musicals including “Cinderella.”