Gallery Mondays: “Knickerbocker Ave” by Ryan Peltier

Knickerbocker Ave mta art Ryan Peltier

If NYC had an underground Halloween/macabre dance party, I think it would definitely look like Ryan Peltier’s “Knickerbocker Ave”. Especially if this underground party took place at a Brooklyn subway stop.

“Knickerbocker Ave” is one of those subway art cards I can’t stop staring at. Whenever I look at it, I notice something more and more absurdly funny every time!

The characters in this piece by Peltier are based on friends and neighbors he remembered during his time living in Bushwick, Brooklyn. The birds flying above the characters are also based on real subjects (pigeon people) he would see at the Kickerbocker Avenue stop.

Awkwardly contorted dancing aside, what is going on with the snowman-like figure in black? And the woman to his left with her hair covering half of her face? Is that even safe to be dancing so close to the yellow line with only one uncovered eye?!

Important questions!

See more of Peltier’s work here.

And, of course, if you like it so much that you want one for yourself, you can buy “Knickerbocker Ave” here.

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Leo Dicaprio is Having Too Much Fun at Coachella 2015

Feast your eyes on what soon could become a new meme: Leo Dicaprio’s Coachella 2015 dance moves.

The actor was spotted at the Neon Carnival this past weekend busting some pretty cringe-worthy moves. It’s like a fist bump mixed with nerdy side shuffling and Taekwondo.

The Leo Bump and Shuffle Sucker Punch?

The man’s got the hat over his eyes, drink in hand (God knows what he was sipping on to induce this craziness), and that awful beard goatee thing on his face.

But why?!

In any case, TMZ caught some of it on video, and Getty got high-res photos of the mess, which I made a lovely infinite loop GIF out of for your viewing pleasure.

Leo Dicaprio Coachella 2015

make animated gifs like this at MakeAGif

 
Somebody get Leo a professional dance partner. Stat. And a barber for that beard too, please.

Movie Review: ‘Lovestruck: The Musical’

So last night I spent some time sitting on the couch in front of my beloved flat screen to watch Lovestruck: The Musical on ABC Family.

lovestruck

The movie looked promising, featuring actors like Drew Seeley, Chelsea Kane (known as Chelsea Staub pre-2008; still not sure why she changed her stage name) and Jane Seymour.

This film contains high levels of singing, dancing, romance, and beautiful scenery. Those ingredients are all I need to be glued to the television screen for two hours!

The movie starts out with Mirabella (Sara Paxton) rushing to dance class to break the news to her mother, Harper (Jane Seymour), about her decision to quit the show in order to live in Italy with her husband-to-be, Marco. Harper trips on stage during the opening number, “Just Dance”, originally by Lady Gaga, due to her bad knee. She then sends her dancers to find her some aspirin as she goes off to the back room to deal with her daughter.

Here’s where the plot line becomes almost too predictable. Harper is now concerned (as most mothers would be) that her daughter is making a huge mistake. She therefore proceeds to threaten a lawsuit against Mirabella for deciding to quit the show. Mirabella then bans her mother from the wedding, and her mother decides to make it her business to show her that Marco is not the type of guy who will leave his “Playboy” lifestyle for her.

Meanwhile the dancers find Harper not only some aspirin, but a small bottle of Vitality Tonic as well.

We all know what happens next.

Harper gets on a flight to Italy, where the wedding is to take place, messed up knee and all, to then realize that she doesn’t have her aspirin. So what does she do? You guessed correctly: the woman resorts to drinking the Vitality Tonic. The potion turns Harper into her younger self (played by Chelsea Kane), and this gives her all the more advantage in seducing Marco.

The morning after successfully seducing Marco on the night of the bachelor and bachelorette parties, young Harper, who is at this point pretending to be a distant cousin so as not to blow her cover, goes to the bridal shop with Mirabella. After a while she notices that the potion is wearing off, so she rushes back to the house. On the way back, Harper overhears Marco telling his best man about the kiss he shared with her the night before. Unfortunately, Mirabella happens to be walking across the bridge as the conversation between Marco and his best man continues, and she is left to believe three things: her mother was right about Marco, she cannot marry Marco, and her maid of honor, Noelle (Adrienne Bailon), is the girl that turned her fiance unfaithful.

The events of this film are hilarious. The Vitality Tonic only lasts for a certain amount of time, and each time Harper takes a dose, her body reacts weirdly. The first time she drinks the stuff she faints, hyperventilates, and begins blowing into a little baggy, all while in the restroom at the airport in Italy.

I had a good laugh at this movie.

Ok. Now for the things I disliked about this movie:

1. When Mirabella sings “Like a Virgin” along with the rest of the bridesmaids during the bachelorette party, she sounds like a dying baby seal.  Did they forget to do the autotune or something for this girl’s voice?! Young Harper sings it again while seducing Marco and her voice was magical. My God. I don’t know what happened to Sara Paxton during that scene. The rest of her singing parts in other scenes were fantastic though. Just that one damn song! Ugh!

2. Speaking of young Harper seducing Marco, it all happened way too quickly for me. He was supposedly drunk, and just willingly went along with the whole kiss. It seemed a bit unreal.

3. There were not enough scenes where the Italian language was spoken. In fact, there was only one scene where the seamstress calls Mirabella back to have her dress fitted in Italian instead of English. I wanted to hear more of that beautiful language!

And now for the highlights of the film:

1. When Harper’s ex husband, Ryan, arrives, even though she is in younger form, he knows his ex wife is there because of the Chanel No. 5 perfume lingering in the halls. So romantic!

2. The moment I was waiting for: when Harper drugs Ryan with some of the Vitality Tonic so that he won’t blow her cover and he turns into young Ryan, played by Drew Seeley. I think my popcorn bowl was filled with drool at that point.

3. When Harper and Ryan dance to “DJ Got Us Fallin’ in Love” (originally by Usher and Pitbull) at the rehearsal dinner! MUST SEE MOVIE MUSICAL MOMENT!

4. The scenery. Italy is just pure beauty. I totally want to visit one day, and this film reminded me how much I want to go there for my honeymoon when, and if, I get married someday.

And can we all pause for a second just to appreciate how amazing Jane Seymour looks with that blonde bob?!

jane bob

All in all, I think this movie was a crowd-pleaser. The music selection was okay. They could have picked some better pieces, but the dances were definitely well choreographed. Dancing with the Stars surely taught Chelsea Kane a thing or two!

lovestruck soundtrack

Download the soundtrack on iTunes!

I do wish that they had played up the concept of immortality at the end of the film. When Harper is faced with the decision to drink one last dosage of the Vitality Tonic, an action that would turn her into a young adult forever, I began to realize that sometimes the aging process is a part of life that you might not want to give away. Mirabella would never have happened had she chosen to take that third dosage, and this is something I wished were emphasized to a greater degree in the movie.

Best quote from the movie:

“I know that ass, I fell in love with that ass. In fact, I spent the better part of the 80s worshiping that ass.” – Ryan, Harper’s ex husband

Wondering who catches the bouquet? Well I guess you’ll have to watch the movie whenever it airs again on ABC Family to find out!
Enjoy this dance featurette!

Holi Spring Festival of Colors

ImageMy buddy Sauani (you may have read about her in my ceramics post) invited me to play Holi at Hofstra today. I had a blast, got really dirty and in between all the fun I managed to get some footage of the event. The Holi Festival of Colors was held in the intramural fields on the North side of campus from noon until about 3pm this Saturday April 6th, 2013.

Holi is a religious spring festival observed by Hindus. It is called the Festival of Colors because you basically throw Holi colors (dyed powder) and water at your friends. It’s so much fun! Although, at one point they started throwing Pepsi, but I don’t think that’s part of the tradition so I politely scooted over and out of the war zone whilst that ensued. The festival originated from the Hindu Legend of Holika and Prahlad. Click here to read the legend.

Enjoy some of the pictures I took while getting Holi color thrown all over me!

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Happy Holi!

The Very Viral “Harlem Shake”

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you’ve probably heard about the “Harlem Shake” videos that are taking over YouTube. They began in early February 2013, and I have to admit, I can’t get enough of them!

The “Harlem Shake” videos are usually performed with one person dancing to the fifteen second intro of Baauer’s track titled “Harlem Shake” as a group of people sit around him or her doing busy work such as texting, reading etc. When the beat drops, there’s a jump cut to the entire group dancing like crazies for another fifteen seconds. The crazy dancing ranges from plain old jumping around to flailing one’s body parts all over the place. The best videos include people wearing random costumes. It looks extremely fun, and practically anyone can do it.

As reported on USA Today, “According to Kevin Allocca, YouTube trends manager, Harlem Shake video uploads have skyrocketed in the last few days. He writes that as of Feb. 11, 12,000 Harlem Shake videos have been posted this month” About 4,000 “Harlem Shake” videos are uploaded daily.

The man behind the music, Baauer, an electronic musician from Brooklyn, is mind-blown by the success these videos are bringing to his single. “Harlem Shake” reached number 1 on the US iTunes chart and number two on iTunes in Australia and the UK.

Here are a few of my favorite “Harlem Shake” videos! (In no particular order)

1. Harlem Shake Ryan Seacrest, Kendall & Kylie Jenner Edition

This “Harlem Shake” video was filmed in the studio with Ryan Seacrest, the Jenner sisters Kendall and Kylie and some other people from the radio station. It starts off with a guy wearing a sweater that says “Rich Fashion Advisory” walking from behind where Kendall and Kylie are sitting while thrusting his hands in the air. When the beat drops, everyone goes wild and the funniest person in the video is the guy wearing what looks like a frog suit who’s bouncing a turkey up and down. Hilarious!

2. Harlem Shake (Radio Station Edition) | talkSPORT

This one starts off with a guy wearing a pink onesie and a motorcycle helmet bouncing around casually. When the beat drops, boy you’re in for a laugh! I can’t tell which is funnier: the guy in the bubble wrap, the guy with the scream mask and the teapot, or the guy with the fisherman hat who’s banging the table with God knows what in his hand!

3. Harlem Shake Onesie Parents

As soon as I saw the baby during the intro for this video I knew it would be hilarious. A woman in a pink robe and motorcycle helmet flails her arms around while standing behind the couch as a man plays with a baby. When the beat drops, things get seriously weird and funny. Some extra people appear in onesie pajamas to join the fun, but the two to keep your eyes on are the man in the zebra onesie and the woman in the red onesie PJs. After the 0:25 second mark, these two are the only ones left in the room and they seem to be having a plant fight. You have to see it for yourself to understand why I can hardly type as I describe this video!

4. Harlem Shake @ Facebook

Facebook goes against the norm in their version of the “Harlem Shake”. The intro features a guy wearing a yellow smiley face head dancing while another guy wearing a mariachi hat bicycles around him in circles. Once the beat drops an extremely large crowd of people from the Facebook offices appear and the funniest two to watch for are the person in the penguin costume and the guy lying face down on the pavement.

5. UGA Men’s Swim & Dive Harlem Shake

I don’t know how they managed to do it but they did! The UGA Men’s Swim team did the “Harlem Shake” underwater! To be frank, the fact that it looks awkward while trying to wiggle around in a pool makes this version amusing on its own. Add a fifteen second intro with a guy on a table wearing nothing but swim briefs and a mask and you’re in for a good laugh. The guy under the table when the beat drops will have you rolling on the floor laughing!

6. Harlem Shake (Grandma Edition)

The guy in the fifteen minute intro can’t even keep himself from laughing as he dances! He knows we won’t be able to contain ourselves when the beat drops! I’ll just let Jackthegamer02’s comment sum this one up for you: “The [grandma] on the right looks like she’s trying to swat a fly”!


7. The Harlem Shake v69 (foreveralone edition)

This last “Harlem Shake” video features one of my favorite YouTubers, Connor Manning, doing the shake forever alone style. He breaks all the rules, rebel that he is, by starting off the video with a fifteen second intro of him sitting on a couch sipping a drink. When the beat drops, he put on the most ridiculous face imaginable and sways across the screen all alone! It’s so awkward and fun! I love it!

Which “Harlem Shake” video is your favorite?