Tag Archives: Dance

Hula Hooping: Not your Grandma’s Gym Routine

7 Nov

By Kylie Bovenzi

For this week’s section, I am going to veer slightly to the left and bring you into the wonderful world of dance, specifically the rising trend of Hula Hoopers. If you ventured outside over the summer to one of the parks Cheyenne or Laramie has to offer, you may have seen the occurrence of hula hoopers more and more. Certainly if you have traveled to any music festival you saw not only spectators engaged in dancing with a hoop, but also performers, onstage alongside various musical acts, shaking what their mama gave them with some flashy hoops along for the ride. Although hooping is not a new thing, it’s resurgence among live music lovers has catapulted this exercise into a whole new genre of performance art; and it doesn’t take years to gain knowledge of the hoops powers.  In fact, at the end of these five steps, you guys will have all the essentials needed to tape up your own hoop and start experimenting with some moves!

Hula How To: Five Steps to Boogy

Brooke Gritten with her $400 LED Hoop. I could not make this stuff up.

Brooke Gritten with her $400 LED Hoop. I could not make this stuff up.

  1. Every great Hooper (and believe me, there is one residing in you) must first procure their greatest asset: the hoop. Although your first thought may be to run to Walmart, those hoops are not heavy enough to keep a solid momentum up. You would be shaking your hips to no avail, while simultaneously cursing me for suggesting a fun “easy” past time. The best route is to make your own, which is extremely simple. Size the hoop to your liking, insert a connector piece, tape that baby up and BOOM. You are ready to start moving your hips. For a step by step guide, click here. If arts and crafts aren’t your thing, buy some cheap practice hoops here.
  2. Now that your hoop is ready to be hooped, there is one other must: music. If you are outside, I recommend putting in earphones. Pick something you enjoy, and something you know you can’t help moving around to. Hooping technique is important, but the hooper themselves is responsible for the dance and the feelings portrayed. It’s not about being perfect, but about moving around to your music and forgetting about other stresses for ten minutes at a time. This isn’t exercise, it’s YOU time.
  3. With your hoop in hand and music blasting, it’s time to start with some basics. Although it seems like common sense, practicing keeping it up around your hips is a must. This seems simple, and a bit redundant, but basic waist hooping must be perfected before you can even DREAM of some fancy isolations or tosses. The best stance to take initially is with your feet shoulder width apart. Isolate your waist and abs, concentrating on using those two parts of your body to guide the hoop in a circular motion. Hooping is more comfortable on one side rather than the other, much like being left or right handed. Practice both sides until you can keep the hoop up for longer spurts of time. Don’t feel discouraged if it doesn’t happen right away; this is the most basic and most frustrating part of hooping. Once you get comfortable though, tricks are easier and easier to learn.
  4.  While waist hooping, begin to alternate sliding one hand in and out of the gap the hoop makes as it is circling your waist. This is called ‘finding your gaps’. Being able to slip your hands all over the place without disrupting the flow of the hoop is a must for tricks; many tricks, like throwing the hoop over your head, entail seamlessly grabbing the hoop and guiding it up and around your body.  It is important to know the timing of when you can reach your hand(s) down or behind you without disrupting the hoop. Practice putting your hands in front of you and behind you.
  1. Practice practice practice! Hooping does not take much skill initially, and knowledge is gained extremely quickly. You will get out of it what you put into it, and even ten minutes a day will enable you to be better. Don’t move on to another trick until you have one down. For a list of tricks that are fun to try, click here.
Another one of my superior friends, Hanna Schulz, demonstrating hooping on the foot while performing at a show in Fort Collins... let's just say I would not look like this!

Another one of my superior friends, Hanna Schulz, demonstrating hooping on the foot while performing at a show in Fort Collins… let’s just say I would not look like this!

The most important thing to remember is to have fun. Hooping is the type of thing that need not be taken seriously. This is not your ballet class from k-12. Rather, it is a way to get up and moving in a fun, danceable way. It provides a way to express oneself that is different from other forms of dance, and boy will you look fantastic spinning an LED hoop like this one at next summer’s family BBQ or that concert you’ve been waiting all year for.  Enjoy yourself, lose yourself in the music and the atmosphere, and see what it does for your state of mind.

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Fly Like An Eagle: LCCC Spirit

10 Oct
Model poses to show off Golden Eagle spirit inspired makeup.

A student takes a moment from studies to show off this Golden Eagle inspired makeup.

By Jessica Dawkins

Let School Spirits Carry Me

Homecoming is in full swing at Laramie County Community College! You may have noticed the special events being hosted around campus, many held in the student lounge. Students have been encouraged to participate in eating contests, timed competitions, team dodgeball matches and more. But maybe this isn’t enough for you to get into the spirit of being an Eagle. If that’s the case, keep reading for inspiration.

Tutus and Tattoos

Some students prefer to show their spirit in sublte ways, such as clothing or accessories sporting a logo. Others (like myself) may be open to more umistakeable gestures of enthusiasm, like face painting and hair dye. Sure, toole tutus in school colors are eyecatching and easy to DIY, but I prefer the makeup route when it comes to showing support for something I love. Cue the tattoo! The slideshow in this post will provide all the knowledge you need to create your own temporary “ink” for soccer and volleyball games, LCCC’s homecoming dance, and everyday fashion statements.

Why Cosmetics?

Makeup is relatively inexpensive if you know what brands to look for and exactly what products you need. Especially if it’s for a onetime use like a pep rally, you don’t need to buy Sephora brand cosmetics. Makeup is also a household item that can be used on anyone, guys and gals, young and grown, for special events and on different areas of the body as well. For example, my models include both sexes, one sporting a prominent facial “tattoo” and the other a more sublte bicep decoration.

Instead of clothes and accessories that usually come one way for everyone, makeup designs can be as discreet or as drastic as desired for each individual’s taste. The limit truly is your imagination, so the results are completely your own.

Supplies

Here’s a list of the items that I used for both pieces of artwork and thought you might want to include in your toolkit.

Eyeliner Pencil

Cream Eyeshadow or Eyeliner (both blue and black colors)

Powder Eyeshadow (I used dark brown, gold glitter, and gray)

Small Fluffy Brush (my favorite is the Setting Brush by Real Techniques)

Angled Brush (for cream bases)

You’ll also need a picture for inspiration. I just Googled images of golden eagle wingspans and found several useable photos to rely on for colors and shape. For the bicep tattoo, I found a great image of our lovely logo and went from that.

Optional:

Primer (before applying makeup)

Foundation (after the primer, but before the makeup. I found this helpful for the eagle mask to stay on better)

Setting Spray (after the makeup is complete. This is helpful for making the excessive product stay on for more than a selfie, but not required for good results)

 

Here is the link to my how-to slideshow. Directions are in the description box of each photo.

 

And if you try out my techniques—great! Send us a picture in the comments below, or just share your favorite part of homecoming so far.

P.S. I apologize if you have the Steve Miller Band playing in your head after reading this post. Here’s a link to the lyrics if you want to sing along!

Lindy Lessons Update

24 Sep
Kevin Bretting and Bonnie Robinson practice technique on the swing out.  Picture taken by Anne Guzzo

Kevin Bretting and Bonnie Robinson practice technique on the swing out.  Picture taken by Anne Guzzo

The first class for the Lindy Hop series met over the weekend and got a great lesson.  Attendees learned framing, positioning, basic leading and following skills, and got a sneak peek at Lindy moves such as the Shim Sham and Suzie Q’s.

Classes are every Saturday through November 9 at the Laramie Recreation Center.  If you’d like to sign up, call the rec center at 307-721-5269.

Swingin’ Good Time

21 Sep

Swingin Sign

Lesson

A good time was had by all at the swing dance last night with Swingin’ Around Town hosted by Blossom Yoga.  The night started with an hour long lesson that reviewed the basic jitterbug, tuck turns, a tandem Charleston, and a dip. The class was taught by Charles and Jennie Fournier.

Dance

The dance started off with a half hour of DJ’d music, followed by live songs played by the new local band, Angel Adam’s Preservation Society.  Experienced dancers showed off their moves, while beginners had a great chance to practice what they’d learned at the lesson.  A raffle was held for a gift certificates to the Copper Kettle and free entry for one couple to the next Swingin’ Around Town event.

More to Come

The next lesson and dance are scheduled for Friday, October 4, 2013.  More information will be posted as it becomes available.  If you don’t want to wait that long to start dancing, it’s not too late to sign up for the Lindy Hop series that starts this evening!

Swingin’ Around Town Update

19 Sep

Charleston Lesson

Remember to come to the Swingin’ Around Town lesson and dance tomorrow, at 7:00!  Tomorrow’s pre-dance lesson will be a 1920’s Swing dance style called the Charleston.  For this special session, the lesson time will be extended to an hour instead of the normal half hour.

For an example of some great Charleston moves, check out the video below.

Live Band

Instead of tomorrow’s dance being DJ’d as previously thought, a new band called The Angel Adams Preservation Society will be playing.  The dance begins at 8:00 and the band is scheduled to start at 8:30.  Since there is a live band, there will be an extra $2 charge for admission to the dance.

Information in the Details section below has been updated to reflect the change in lesson length and pricing.

Details

  • Swingin’ Around Town event: Friday, September 20, 2013
  • Charleston Lesson: 7:00-8:00  (Price for lesson and dance:  Couples $10, Singles $7)
  • Dance:  7:30-9:30  (Price for dance only:  Couples $7, Singles $5)
  • Location:  Blossom Yoga located at 152 N. 2nd St. in Laramie, WY.

***** Remember, you do not need a partner, and all ages and experience levels are welcome to attend.  Hope to see you there!  *****

Lindy Hop Lessons

18 Sep

What is Lindy Hop?

Monday I posted about a Swing lesson and dance in Laramie.  Swing is an umbrella term for a style of dance that began in the 1920’s and grew more popular in the 1930’s and 1940’s.  There are different kinds of Swing dance, one of which is called Lindy Hop.

Lindy Hop is one of the most popular kind of Swing dance.  It is very fast-paced, more difficult than the basic swing, and has infinite variations once you learn the basics of it.  Click on the video below to see an example of Lindy Hop.

I Want To Learn!

Well then, you’re in luck!  Local Lindy Hopper, Kevin Bretting, is teaching a progressive series of classes in Lindy Hop.  The classes are every Saturday at the Laramie Recreation Center.  Kevin will begin with the basics and progress through more advanced moves, building more skills with each lesson.  The classes begin this Saturday, September 21 and go through November 9th.

Details

  • When:     Saturdays from September 21 to November 9, 4:30pm – 5:30pm,
  • Where:    The gym at the Laramie Recreation Center
  • Cost:
    • Singles:  $40 for rec center members ($48 non-members)
    • Couples:  $75 for rec center members ($85 non-members)

To sign up, contact Kevin Bretting.    Phone: 307-760-6029    Email: kbretting@gmail.com

Swing Dance in Laramie

16 Sep

If you’re interested in learning to Swing Dance, now is the time to get involved!  Swingin’ Around Town has a lesson and dance the first and third Friday of every month, with the next lesson and dance happening this coming Friday.

Lesson and Dance

The night starts with a 30-minute lesson to get you started on the basics of Swing.  The lesson is followed by a dance that is sometimes accompanied with a live band.

No Partner, No Experience?

Don’t have a partner?  Don’t be shy – come anyway!  Attendees rotate throughout the lesson and dance, so everyone has a chance to dance and meet new people.

Beginning dancers are welcome.  This is a friendly environment and the lessons are geared towards people who have never tried Swing Dance before.  Experienced dancers won’t be bored though, as the lessons are a great opportunity to perfect your skills.

The Details

  • 1st and 3rd Fridays of Every Month
  • Next event: Friday, September 20, 2013
  • Lesson: 7:00-7:30  (Couples $8, Singles $5, Dance Included)
  • Dance:  7:30-9:30  (Couples $5, Singles $3)
  • *Note that $2 extra is changed on nights when there is a live band.  This Friday is a DJ dance so the extra charge does not apply.
  • Location:  Blossom Yoga located at 152 N. 2nd St. in Laramie, WY.

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Feedback

Let me know if you are planning to go.  I would love to meet some fellow LCCC classmates!