Backstage at “A Taste of Los Angeles Bellydance”

Last Saturday January 21st, was the premiere event for the new Los Angeles chapter of MECDA (Middle Eastern Culture and Dance Association).  It may have been called “Taste of Los Angeles Bellydance” but we all left satiated.    There was over 8 hours of performances and workshops by Devilla, Heather Shoopman, Mandala Danceworks, Princess Farhana and … Read more

Unlimited Splendor in Russian Dance

  Los Angeles is a great place to be for a dance connoisseur like me. On October 16, 2011 I had the pleasure of attending Old Pasadena’s Cultural Dance Festival.  They showcased Brazilian, Mexican Folklorico, Chinese, Hawaiian, Taihitian, Russian, Russian Gypsy dances on stage.  Meanwhile, in a nearby location they had FREE dance classes in tap, … Read more

Dancers Who Drum

  A week after writing about the relationship between dancers and drummers and the importance of knowing your music I saw a most spectacular display of dancers who were the drummers.  The 38th Annual Los Angeles Korean Festival sponsored the sponsored the Yeosu City Dance Troup from (South) Korea to perform.  Sadly, their time slot … Read more

Nisei Week 2011

I don’t know if I’ve ever had such a blast while feeling so awkward.  Dancing is what I do, and I own it.  But this time I was dancing unfamiliar dances in a barely familiar style in front of thousands of people.  Plus I’m a tall white girl who was dressed in street attire amongst … Read more

Literally “carrying on” a cultural heritage

“Ten Suitcases” There’s undoubtedly countless unsung heroes that carry on cultural heritage.   I’d like to congratulate and honor Bruce and Jida Sukpradit who shared with me their valiant effort to conserve and perform traditional Thai dance.  Bruce (Jida’s husband) told me that with no grant or aid, they went to Thailand and meticulously collected costumes … Read more

Thai New Year (Songkran) in Los Angeles 2011

Walking into the Wat Thai Temple in North Hollywood, I was surrounded by color, music and smell of delicious Thai food. Soon enough I found myself surrounded by colorful people who wanted to share their story.  As they set up chairs I set up my camera to capture their beauty and explore what Thai dance … Read more

A New Year and a New Project

What a great start to my current project of learning about culture, history and music through dance in Los Angeles ethnic communities! Last month, I went to ThaiTown to celebrate Thai New Year and discover people who were passionate about Thai Dance.   Known as the “Biggest Cultural Event Outside Thailand”, the 8th annual Songkran Festival … Read more