Sunday, 12 June 2011

Days of Dancing and Dream Catching


I think it was written in the stars that we were meant to do what we did last night. It was a little unreal, you may even think it desperate, how it all came to be. After our first and last show last June, me and my dancer friends ( I call them-my dancer friends-for want of a better term but they have become some of my closest girlfriends) had bonded so well that we decided to continue dancing together once a week. A few months later, we started  joking about how we really should look for another gig so that we could show what we had been practising. No luck, nothing, na-da. Until our 1st practice right after India when we were all joking, again, about our next show. Strangely when someone lamented when, oh, when, I told everyone, it will be in June.  



2 weeks later, a friend of a friend wrote to Yuch asking if she would like to participate in a dance competition organised by some obscure group called Dream Catchers Vision. As you can see from the brochure on top, the competition day was scheduled yesterday ie 11th June 2011. They needed a minimum number of 5 dancers per group. 

There were many factors against us joining. 

None of us like competitions, (not at our age, no, thank you), our choreographer was away in New York and would only be back on 30th April and up till sometime in May, we did not even have 5 dancers. The 2 most active dancers which included me were left to make the decisions on yay or nay and I voted yay. Largely for a self fulfilled prophecy. Everyone else except the choreographer was reluctant. I was left to communicate with Shalimah from the Dream Catchers to confirm. Then the 5th member called me and told me the date clashed with her planned trip home to Malaysia.When I told Shalimah, she said she would put us on the list still and was confident that we could get another 5th member in the end. Somehow I knew in my heart that we would do it and sure enough in the nick of time, the 5th member who backed out earlier confirmed yay too and postpone her trip home to Malaysia by one day. It was a little strange how the day she reconfirmed her yay was the day after Shalimah had asked me for her number hoping to persuade her herself to leave home one day later. I didn't give her the number, of course, not that there was any need to in the end. 


Now that it was a definite go ahead, there came the grill of dancing at least twice a week up till three times just before the competition. Our wonderful choreographer, YucH not only created the dance, she did the costumes and the props as well. YucH is the kind of person who could make someone like me feel completely uncraftworthy.  Would you believe that she made this Indian headgear with a sun visor? She tilted the shade of the sun visor upward so that you would wear it like a huge bunny ear on your head and then adorned the visor with cloth . We were assigned to add feathers. I had a mask so I used it for mine. 


These are the hand masks which we wore on our wrists. They are one half of a half mask with the eye portions covered with felt cloth and sequins. 


The Pièce de résistance was in my opinion, this dream catcher. This was entirely made by YucH and we only helped with the little things like sticking, cutting , stringing.  My greatest contributions to this major prop for our dance were my nieces' hula hoop and 2 of the peacock fans which I  had bought from Jaipur.  YucH made the center portion of the hoop with a belt organiser from Ikea she had( I don't know where she hangs her belt now).  The feather portion was mixed with cloth rugs of the right colour cut into small strips.  


This is us in the costumes completely sewn by YucH. Some of us sewed the sequins. I have to confess Fafa had to help me with mine as I was very ill and have yet to completely recover. 

Truth is it was not our best performance. I forgot my steps 3 times and the effort was a strain for me. My sister who was in the audience said I danced like I was trying to remember my steps. One of my closest girlfriends was shattered saying she ruined the dance by turning too early, another said she could not keep her balance and even YucH  said she turned the wrong way.  But we came in 2nd runner up and as my dad told me, that's pretty darn good, considering. Considering what, you asked. Considering our age, of course!

So why is this post here? Well, unbeknownst to us when we signed on for the competition, the organisers were actually from India working largely with the Indian community in Singapore. All but 2 of the dance groups had Indian element in their performance (mostly Bhangra) and the only media covering this event is the Vasantham Channel, a local tv channel catered to the Indian community. In some ways then, this dance is connected with India, that's why it is here. 

49 comments:

rosanna said...

Wow GO GO GO GIRLS !!!!!! I am so happy and proud that everything went so well ! YucH must be a magician, I'd like to meet her once in a life.
bad to hear that you've felt poor but I'm glad that you felt like dancing. I want to know more, please please please. Hugs Rosanna
PS what do you mean with "our age" ? we are girls at heart ;o)

Dark Squirrel Victoria said...

You girls look so pretty! Your costumes look Great! I am sure the judges were mesmerized by your beauty :)

Hugs
Victoria

The Old Maid said...

Even if it wasn't bound with India at all I would be more than happy to read about your other hobbies and specially about dancing, dear Sans! Congrats on 2nd runner up! I am sure no matter the mistakes you THOUGHT you made you all had a good time there :) You all looked great in the costumes! And I want to know the same what Rosanna wrote: what did you mean by "our age" ?!?! ;D Hope to read more about your dancing soon!

Rosamargarita said...

Una competencia de baile! Que bien Sans! el vestuario es divino y el atrapa sueños enorme es una obra de arte. Lo de los pasos olvidados, quiza nadie lo notó, Son unas chicas hermosas.
Un abrazo

Amy said...

You girls are completely inspiring as well as beautifully costumed and gorgeous-but for me the most wonderful thing about your experience is that you all went and did it-that you danced! I can look back and remember all the things I didn't try because I thought I shouldn't do them if they weren't going to be perfect, and I'm sorry now that I let them go. There's no joy, or courage, or adventure in perfect, is there? And that you danced even though you didn't feel well, you're my hero, Sans!

TreeFeathers said...

Congratulations, Sans! That's so great that you got out there and did what you love. :)

- Grace

Eva said...

Wow! I am impressed, you look beautiful! and the customs are brilliant, like a dream. All of you look so professional!! :) :)
I am happy that although the illness you could dance with all your family between the audience :)
Repeat with me....we are young...we are young...LOL

Meapuntoatodo said...

Sans, muchas gracias por aceptar mi regalo. veo que tienes muchas seguidoras en España ... nos encanta la fantasia y la belleza !
Este Concurso de baile ha sido una experiencia muy divertida y familiar. Estan muy guapas todas. Yo deseo que ya estés completamente bien.
Un gran beso. Mariajo

cockerina said...

Thanks, Sans, dear, for the sweet compliments on my last post, unfortunately my beauty fades with age, but the Church, which dates back to 1100 AD, is still wonderful!
too funny! there is a misunderstanding with the translator, I meant to say that the Chinese restaurant, we were in 4: me, my husband and my two children ... Not 4 restaurants! I like eating Chinese food, I love Chinese food, but my stomach would not hold up in one evening alone ... ah ah ah!
many kisses! Caterina

Pubdoll said...

I agree with the old maid, even if it hadn't been related to India it's fun to hear about you dancing. I love the costumes, they're fantastic! The turquoise is so bright it's almost luminescent. I would have wished for better photos of you though, you look so great in the little I see of you! And congratulations on the 2nd runner up, that's fantastic on a day when you weren't at your best! I hope you feel better soon!

cockerina said...

OPS! I forgot my comment to your post ...
dear now you're a princess dancing ... the costumes are wonderful, and the mask is beautiful!
I would like to see your dance, but I guess it was a fantastic experience, considering the age!,,, ha ha!
when you dance, you're young at heart the soul ....
many kisses! Caterina

Plushpussycat said...

How fun, Sans! So proud of you for doing it. It all came together in the end. Which one is you in the group photo?
Jennifer

Ascension said...

Quiero video......quiero video....!!!!!
El 2º puesto!!!!!
Sois las mejores...a cualquiera se le puede olvidar un paso.
Me encanta como ibais vestidas, ese atrapasueños es precioso.
Una gran idea lo de utilizar la mitad de una mascara para lucirla en la mano.
Quiero viedoooooooooooo!!!!jejeje
besitos ascension

Drora's minimundo said...

Second place? That's great! Keep dancing it's the best activity to be happy and healthy. Hugs

Flora said...

Sans, you never stop to amaze me :-)
I wish I had half your energy and spirit of enterprise, half of your colors and your smile ...
Today was not a great day for me, but now, seeing you, I understand that we are, and we alone, to make our days, days to remember :-)
Mini hugs, Flora

Margriet said...

That must have been a wonderful experience..I would have loved to see you dancing! You look wonderful in your costumes!!!
When is you next performance?? ;-)

Hope you're feeling better now!
Love, Margriet

Glenda said...

Brave, gorgeous and fabulous!!
That's what makes life worth living - just doing it and enjoying!!:D
I hope your health is improving, dear Sans :)

BiWuBär said...

Congrats for making 2nd place... you girls looked gorgeous, I really wish I'd have been among the audience... But it's sad news to hear you still have health problems... hope you'll recover very soon... I have an idea, I'm sending you some health and a virtual hug via blog! Watch out - here it comes: Woooooosh...!!!
;O)

Greetings
Birgit

Sans! said...

Rosanna I am sure you will meet YucH one day. She talks faster than you and can go very high pitched when excited ..hahaha. She is also one of the kindest, most considerate and generous person I have ever met. God is fair when he gives her talent , beauty and brains . :)

It was my father who said anything about age. Ooops, guess I did too when I said we didn't like competition..hahaha

I will try to see if I can give you more :).

Sans! said...

Vic, if the judges were really so mesmerized by our "beauty" , they would have given us all three prizes instead of just one ..teehee.

Sans! said...

O Ewa, if all of you were in the audience, we would definitely have enjoyed it way more since I am sure your cheers will drown all the judges' grunts and grumbles and blind them to our mistakes.

But you are right, the journey here was a rich one :).

And you are right again about what age cos we still can get a prize over people half our age...mwahahahahaah :):):)

Sans! said...

Gracias RosaM:) (¿sabes quién eres) Y tiene usted razón también acerca de cómo nadie notó nuestros errores?. Le pregunté a cerca de 6 personas y todos dijeron que no vieron los errores:). No puede ser sólo en nuestra cabeza? Pero estamos agradecidos.

abrazos

Sans! said...

Amy, it is precisely because I was just like that- you know, not wanting to try something unless I could excel- that I had never crafted or ever drew when I wasn't required to in school until just 2.5 years ago! And when I found out just now that I can , I wonder why in the world I didn't start earlier but it's always better late than never right? Especially as how it is now my 1st love (non-human)(teehee, I have an OCD problem here about being precise when it comes to love) .

I have been performing on stage since I was in kindergarten so maybe this dance competition is not as much a challenge as say blogging about my minis and having the world as my audience. Thank goodness audacity comes with age and I am old enough to forget what being shy is like :):). haha And YES! This has been one heck of an incredible journey.

And Amy, I don't remember having been anyone's hero, ever. Not in any real sense. So even if it is just words , I am overwhelmed when you said I am yours. I didn't do anything great , I just did something all of you would do if you were in my situation in order not to let your friends down. Because you know they would do the same for you.

Sans! said...

Thank you Grace :)

Sans! said...

Yes we are Yes we are Yes we are EVA!

Don't you think we look more Vegas than Indian?

haha

Maria Blanca"AyamontinoMaria" said...

¡Que guapas chicas! ¡felicidades por ese 2º puesto, seguro que nadie notó si os equivocasteis, solo admirando vuestra belleza y esas mascaras tan bonitas que llevabais! Espero que disfrutaras mucho..Un beso.

Piikko said...

OuWow Sans! Congratulations!!! You all look SO pretty. And you have been very brave. Well done! Applauses! We want more!!!
piikko

Daydreamer said...

Dear Sans! I am sorry I didn't comment here sooner.... it has been a very busy week for me! I wish we could all see your dancing... I am sure I would be impressed! The only kind of dancing I ever learned how to do was the 1960's silly dances you do without ever needing a partner! So I admire people who can really dance! Your costumes look fantastic! I am sure the energy you put into it is what got you the prize.... sometimes love and enthusiasm beat perfection! It is good for the spirit to follow those dreams!

Snowfern said...

omg when is it airing on vasantham!?!? do you have vids?? is it on youtube?? why you hide your face??? :P :P :P i really hope you're fully recovered now. *huggles*

Sans! said...

Mea Hola! A través de blogs, he hecho muchos amigos maravillosos en España. A pesar de que usa Google Translate para escribir en español, pero también estoy tratando de aprender el idioma. Cuando visito España, espero poder cumplir con muchos de ustedes a temblar las manos, darle un abrazo y beso tu cara con jajajaja besos.

Gracias por tus elogios dulce:), Mea. Me has hecho feliz.

Besos y abrazos

Sans! said...

Caterina :):) you know how some beauty are ephemeral and how some are forever . We only hope we have enough of the latter. After seeing those grand palaces in India, it is clear that even these great architecture age but somehow I love the scars time has left on those buildings way more than the glitter. As long as we have enough of the everlasting beauty, it matters not that many moons have passed? Is it not our wrinkles, our sags and our varicose veins that make us bolder, less awkward and more confident as we no longer have petty concerns like whether our hair is in place, there's food in our teeth and if the lipstick needs retouching?

Of course there are times when I wish I'd believe that more ..haha but it is true I think :).

Thank you for your compliments, Caterina. I will pass all your sweet words back to the other dancers.

Sans! said...

Helene, I am feeling much better now. Just the remnants of flu, cough and sore throat :).

We are all suffering a little dance fatigue here and I don't think I want to go to another practice until next month .

And you don't want a clearer pic of me. I looked like a total wreck after the show, you know mascara running, sweaty and tired eyes. My nieces dragged me out to eat after the show in my make up and costumes . I have people staring and giggling but I was too tired to care. When I came home, I looked into the mirror and saw that I had panda eyes , literally. The mascara had run so badly that I looked like I had 2 black eye from a fight!

Sans! said...

Thank you Jennifer. I am very happy myself for still going out there to do this after all these years and an extra 10 kg :):).

I am the 1st one from the left with my face covered :).

Sans! said...

Jejeje vídeo? Ascensión ..... no sé. Veré lo que puedo hacer. El traductor dice "segunda"? En realidad se quedó en tercer lugar. La confusión del idioma Inglés. Segunda finalista terceros medios:).

La máscara de la mano es mi pieza favorita del traje también. :)

Usted sabe la Ascensión, en mi programa de primera, me olvido de mi paso una vez. Este espectáculo, en tres ocasiones. Mostrar el siguiente, 5 ????? Me estremezco al pensar!

Besos y abrazos

Sans! said...

Drora, we came in third :) not 2nd :). I intend to dance for as long as we can :).

Sans! said...

O Flora, are you feeling better today, my dear? Often I spent my down days online too in blogland :). Reading and answering comments usually cheers me up, that and reading blogs for inspiration:). And then making minis :).

And Flora, if I have half YOUR energy, I will be a mum :):). I look at my sister with her 3 kids, my mum with her 4 and as far as I am concerned, Mothers rank way up there on the ladder of superwomen and people like me, we are quite a few steps below :). You have a tough and sometimes thankless job! But I see my sister with the children and I totally understand how she can keep doing this.

But you have the added talent of writing fabulous stories. I hope you will never stop doing that cos I really love your stories.

Sans! said...

Margriet,:) Come to Singapore in October and I will make sure you get front row seats :).

Our next performance is a charity event for the Association of Women For Action and Research (AWARE) . My choreographer wants to do another old song (sighhhhhh...been trying to get her to work on a song that's not more than 5 years old but she's the boss :)). Have you heard of En Vogue's Free Your Mind? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i7iQbBbMAFE

Sans! said...

Glenda, my mum is leaving for Japan tonight with my sister and the kiddies. I would have gone if not for my health! I have always been quite fit and sometimes take my health for granted. This time, I let a bacteria ran amok without attending to it earlier!

Anyhoo, this year has not been so great for my health so I have asked mum to go to the shinto temple and pray for my health :):)It should get better after that ? teehee :)

Sans! said...

Wow Birgit, your virtual hug is not a hug at all! You know Chinese kungfu? I've just received the most amazing virtual qigong slam on my back releasing all my bad qi. In the Chinese movies, it will be at this point when I vomit out something black and squiggly and my face change colour into a healthy pink.A smile breaks out and I live to be a 100!

Woooohooo! Thank you Birgit!

Sans! said...

Gracias María Blanca! :):) Esta es tu primera visita? Bienvenido:)! Tiene usted razón, la gente que pidió no se dio cuenta de la mitakes. Ni siquiera mi hermana o mis sobrinas que estaban en el show:). Me gustaría que realmente han ganado segundo lugar (porque no es un premio en efectivo para el 2 º lugar .. jejejejejejeje), pero no lo hicimos. Tenemos 3 º lugar. Pero todos estamos muy contentos con los resultados.

abrazo

Sans! said...

Thank you Piiko *curtsey :):) :) I even got flowers that night *blush :)

Sans! said...

Betsy, do you mean line dancing ? :):) How many of us remember "The Hustle"?

oooooooh ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
do the hustle!

step right, step left, turn around, slap your back

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFz2WkVAk38

Gawwwwd, that song still does that thing to me, you know, hit me with a sense of nostalgia so strong I can feel a lump in my throat, thinking about my school days , puppy love, pimples and homework. haha :)

Has your week let up, Bets? :)Been thinking of you ;)

Sans! said...

Cindy, I hide myself because I wanted a picture of us in our costumes for this post! Knew I wanted to blog about it but didn't want to show you my mascara streaked face ..teehee :)

Vasanthan must have aired something that night cos the Mediacorp crew came . But I knew we wouldn't know whether it did come on or not cos who in the world amnogst us watch the Vasanthan channel, not even the Indian girl in our group....sheeeeesh! maybe you watch and tell me..mwahahahaha.

Anyhoo, no full recovery. I am at the very contagious stage now. Coughing and sore throat. See you when I fully recover?

Ana Anselmo said...

I love everything in your wondeful and inspired posts, always like a fantastic painting full of colour and joy....all of you look fantastic, beautiful and young!!!
lots of hugs
Ana

Tallulah Belle said...

Wow way to go girls...i KNWO you'll be just fabulous.

Yes you are a little bit Vegas...best get yourself over here huh ...only up the road from me :-)

Hope you will be feeling much better soon xxx

Sans! said...

Thank you Ana :). We all feel young. This was the introduction they used before our performance : (we are called Groove-hahahaha)

"Groove is a motley crew of stay at home n work from home moms, professionals and one retiree...The girls are firm friends through their love for dance and each other. So keen on dance are they that an average age of 44, 4 children and 18 cats have not and will not hold them back from doing what they have so much fun doing. "

:)

Sans! said...

Jayne, you are a sweetie! Thanks for the faith, girlfriend! Get us a gig in Vegas and you betcha bottom dollar we'll be there!

I have a niggly cough and sore throat but am otherwise better,much better!

Daydreamer said...

Hee Hee, Sans,..... I am not thinking of the "hustle" but of the "monkey" and the "swim" and the "pony"... dances from when I was eleven and had a friend who watched "Hulabaloo" on the TV..... I am THAT ancient.... I know most have forgotten those really silly dances... :)
I hope you are getting better... it is so sad to miss going to Japan with your family! My week is maybe going to be a little easier now.... it is a busy time of year at my work.... and the garden... and my Sister has been visiting ... she is doing okay, but her health has been scary....! I am so looking forward to a quiet weekend of making minis!!!!! (Thank you for thinking of me!)

Sans! said...

Hey Bets, I have been meaning to visit your garden...right after this comment I will. I am feeling much better! Was busy working on the Rolla's kitchen :).

I will have to google "monkey" "pony" and "swim" as dance forms. I am giggling just by reading the names...teehee ! But I think I know what a "swim" was. I believe it was an "A-go-go" move ..hahaha

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