Monday, January 26, 2009

LifeChance 2009

(Above: Seia Rassenti and Brooklyn Mack. Below: Joseph Watson, Seia, and Brooklyn.)

On Saturday night, January 24, 2009, Steve and I went to LifeChance at the Koger Center. LifeChance is an annual evening of ballet presented by Radenko Pavlovich's Columbia Classical Ballet. The one-night only performance features invited guest dancers, the company, a silent auction, and promises some of the proceeds to a local charity. (This year the funds go to Children's Garden.)

The company performed a very nice, newly choreographed version of Rite of Spring for the first act. The intermission went by quickly. The second act was tremendous. The celebrity dancers dazzled the audience with a series of classical and modern works, including Le Corsaire, Don Quixote, and a hilarious Bumble Bee. The finale ended with a well earned standing ovation.

I used to write my totally unofficial "review"...which I never called a "review". I always wrote my impressions. As a result, I've received some very, very nasty blog comments. (Most have been deleted....too foul to allow public viewing. Click here to see one remaining, earlier post....and the comments). One person very close to the artistic director has gone so far as to throw sarcasitic comments at front of others....just trying to embarrass me. Yet, I'm hardly embarrassed; I've only ever spoken the truth.

As a result, I resolved never to write about ballet in Columbia again. (I'm only writing this because Steve mention a "possible review" on his blog!) Afterall, my personal blog posts still appear on the first page when googling Columbia Classical Ballet company or its artistic director. These posts are two years old....pathetic! If these people can't handle the impressions of a mere ticket holder, fine! I don't have to bother writing about it. These people aren't that important. As far as I'm concerned, Google search engines prove it.

Of course, this time it is a shame that I'm not writing. The production was excellent; but, I'll say no more. I won't cite the individuals and their efforts. Why bother?

What is important to me about Saturday night is that Steve and I brought Seia Rassenti and her boyfriend Joseph Watson, two dancers from North Carolina Dance Theater, to the show. Seia graduated from the Kirov with Mathias. She hadn't seen Brooklyn Mack since he graduated two years earlier. There were hugs all around and I got to be an excited fan with a camera...asking them to pose outside the green room. It was a wonderful way to end a great evening of dance.

CYBER FYBER Weekend photos

(Above: Sonya and Steve in front of a wall of fiber postcards at CYBER FYBER. Click on any image to enlarge.)

There's no way to cover January on my blogs at this point. CYBER FYBER consumed the month. From Christmas until the opening we were obsessed with the preparations. From January 8 - 20 I was totally busy with the exhibition and all its associated events. Since then, Steve and I have been swamped with the finishing work....dismantling the show, mailing packages across the globe, filing end-of-funding paperwork, and trying to piece together all the Mouse House work and everything else that had been neglected earlier.

(Above: Sandi and Pat Parise with me at the opening reception.)

Fortunately I was able to share these exciting weeks with my mother and sister Sonya who came from Pennsylvania. My sister Wanda was with us in spirit, through daily email messages and blog comments, and through the Decision Portrait I stitched of her.

(Above and below: Sonya and I posing with the portrait of Wanda.....Why two photos....well, we had two cameras!)

One of most amazingly special things that happened during the reception was Alex and Erica's arrival. Estranged from us but informed of the special day, Alex even dressed up for the occasion.

(Above and below: Erica and Alex. Why two photos....well, we had two cameras and absolutely no idea when any of us might see Alex again.....definitely two photos!)

For some reason there just aren't many photos of my mother. I guess that's because she was one of the people with a camera! She took some great shots. Sonya took most of the other photos during the reception. All these images were used in creating a video of that evening. Mom is always really, really helpful....just see below!

(Above: Mom and Sonya arrive early for the reception....bringing a much needed trash can!)

My cousin Joann's daughter Jamie also came for the reception. We all went out for dinner the next night too. Jamie's boyfriend took the image above. My mom took the one below.

The reception food was a visual delight. My dear friend Suzy Sheffield catered the event. The spread was a work of art in itself. Later Suzy said the bed of parsley went to feed animals!

Below is the only photo of Mom, me, and Sonya together....but we all look it's just fine that it's the only one! Behind us are more of the CYBER FYBER postcards.

I was totally thrilled to meet Jill Rumoshosky Werner who came from Kansas for the show. I've admired her work for a long time. Her conceptual approach to making art has been quite an inspiration. She challenges me to THINK before I just jump into stitching and this has helped me ways I'm still discovering!

(Above: Me talking to the incredibly gifted art quilter Jill Rumoshosky Werner.)

By the end of the evening we were all getting a little giddy....tired....and full of outright laughter. Above is a photo of the local arts reporter for The State newspaper, Jeffrey Day, myself, and my friend Denise....all sporting our unique leg wear!

Finally, the "Eight-Hour Only/Four Inch Heeled" shoes had to be retired in favor of my soft, felt house slippers. Well....these really aren't HOUSE slippers anymore. Mathias and Laura-Jane got me a new, hot pink and fuchsia pair for Christmas. These older slippers are now my STUDIO slippers!

The next day was FIBER DAY at CYBER FYBER. Creative Sewing came from West Columbia with all sorts of complicated machines and also the newest Embellisher model. The Embellisher really isn't a machine at all. Machines are suppose to be serious, solid, highly functional, industrial, and all sorts of other useful descriptions. The embellisher is hardly a machine in those words. It's a toy. It is full delight, whimsical, light-weight, fun, and does absolutely nothing necessary. One is suppose to PLAY with it. The new models have 12 barbed needles to mesh together raw fibers and most materials.

These photos are of Sonya trying out the new Embellisher. I hope she remembers what she if it was difficult!....because Mom bought two models. One is for Sonya. One is for me. Mom now has my older embellisher. I feel like I've hit cloud nine and I can't wait to see what Sonya and mom produce! Thank you Mom! I LOVE IT!