Hear From The Framers

Blog Eat Well Wednesday

Hey Framers!

Ms. Catalina Molnari told us one of her favorite local spots in Houston. The Jade Garden Classical Chinese Medicine. If you’ve had a stressful day/ week, this tranquil abode offers soothing teas and healing services including chiropractic, massage, bodywork, re-connective healing and yoga. These holistic classes infuse 2,000 year old traditional medicine methods that help their weary visitors reduce their stress and boost their energy levels.

Frame Dance’s Catalina says it’s a great place to simply relax with a fresh cup of herbal tea after a satisfying session in her martial arts class. Instead of heading home right after work and suffering through Houston traffic, try The Jade Garden Classical Chinese Medicine in the Heights. It must be a great place because Catalina told Frame Dance if she’s not at work or home it’s she’s at The Jade Garden.

 

Click on the picture to find out more!

 

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Frame Dance Productions’ Beginner Adult Workshop According to a Non-Dancing Framer

Blog Frame Dance Classes

 

Still not sure about attending the Beginner Adult Workshop?

 

I understand how intimidating it can be to go to a dance class and feel completely overwhelmed. You feel awkward and even slow at times, but this isn’t your typical dance class-it’s better. We weren’t just learning simplified dance moves. This class allows us to forget the mundane calculating world and just lets us enjoy being creative for a day. One of the best things about this workshop is the fact we are not only getting in shape through dance and yoga but we also get the opportunity to expand our creative minds. That’s not something most dance classes teach. That’s why I say this workshop is better. It offers a variety of things that people normally don’t find in typical dance classes.

I’m not a professional dancer so I was very thankful our first session wasn’t dancing at all. We simply walked about the room to loosen up. I could do that! We then learned about the various parts of our feet and I honestly had no idea how complex the human foot was! I found out we have outer, middle and inner parts to our heels, arches, pads and even toes. It felt great stretching each part of my foot. I felt each individual toe move as we walked and it really relieved stress in our backs as well. I enjoyed the first session. It was a great break ice breaker to get me ready for Jackie’s intro to modern dance class.

It was nice having one of the Framers teaching us about basic modern dance steps and exercises instead of having a third party teaching it. It made me feel more connected to the Frame Dance team by seeing how they dance/train and use simple body movements to create beautiful dance routines for different shows. I especially liked the fact we spent so much time lying on the floor doing stretching exercises. Who wouldn’t love that if they went to a dance class?

I loved learning new easy ways to stay in shape that didn’t involve spending a lot of money on equipment. That’s one of the other great things about this workshop! We can learn new skills that require no experience and no special gear. Jackie taught us very basic, what felt like ballet moves. Now don’t worry you’re not expected to perform Swan Lake by the end of the class. They were very simple and we did them several times. It wasn’t like other classes where they show a move and they see if you can get it by the second example. Jackie would put on fun music and we would travel across the room. The moves were kind of a mixer of ballet and basic waltzing moves. I know it sounds intimidating when putting them together but they were very easy to pick up.

After Jackie’s intro to modern dance session, it was time to move onto yoga! Yoga mats out and ready to go! The yoga portion of the workshop was very rewarding physically and mentally. As much as I enjoy doing yoga at home, I wasn’t the most coordinated person in the class, but I had fun. I felt skinnier the more we did it! Definitely worth it! I liked the idea of having a session that everyone was used to. I looked forward to that particular session because it was something I already knew and felt comfortable doing. Plus, everyone got to take a short “nap” in the dark dance studio as a part of yoga. Now that should definitely make you want to go to the workshop. Great idea Frame Dance!

After a great lunch at the Vietnamese restaurant across street, we teamed up with another Framer-Alex, who taught us fun creative exercises that expanded our imaginations during the creative writing portion of the workshop. As I stated before, these workshops aren’t typical. I thought we would just sit around, write in our journals and that was it. Nope! Alex had us walk around the room in any direction we desired and would play word association games. We were still being physically active while being mentally tested.

But my favorite part about the creative writing tutorial was plastering colorful sticky notes all over the dance studio with words or phrases of inspiration. But he took it a step further and made us add onto each others’ work and in the end producing a very original short stanza or poem. That was just amazing to see different people with different levels of written creativity come together and create this beautiful and coherent piece of art. It was amazing to see!

The final part was just fun. I don’t know how to describe it in any other way. Lydia Hance, one of the co-founders of Frame Dance, taught us how to take the words/ phrases we produced from the creative writing class and portray them through dance moves. We basically just built on what we learned from Alex but instead of writing, we used our bodies to convey a story.

We had four people in the final session and we each came up with a different dance move. It was incredible how many stories we could tell just by using four dance moves. Sometimes the story would be about controlling one another like puppets on strings or opening someone’s eyes to the beauty of life. All from four dance moves. Amazing. The best part was it was all from our own creativity. No one was telling us how our part should be or how our part fits into the story. We simply told stories.

All in all, this adult workshop is a wonderful idea for anyone looking to get into shape but not wanting to spend the money on a gym. It’s educational, productive and yet relaxing. This class offers the chance to expand creative minds and stay in shape in fun ways. Tap into your artistic side for a day before heading back to the black, white and gray world of responsibility and math. The Framers did a great job in coordinating a friendly and unique workshop. And it’s only $60 for the whole day! Cheap and easy! What more could you ask for? I hope to see all of you on October 25th at the MET Dance Studio. Until then, keep dancing.

 

Click on the picture and register today!

Frame Dance - Multi-Gen Class - Discovery Green Water Promo -  Photographer Lynn Lane-65.jpg

Hear from the Framers

Blog

Hey Everyone!

I hope all of you are enjoying your Tuesday. If not, it was because you didn’t know about Danielle Garza’s Quick and Easy Overnight Oats recipe!

It’s tough sometimes trying to find something healthy in a world of fast food and high carbs. Even breakfast items! The most important meal of the day and it’s too unhealthy and can make you sluggish. Some snack companies claim to be “healthier alternatives” but in reality are actually higher in carbs than the “bad stuff.”

It really can be challenging when you’re trying to stay fit and sometimes you just don’t have time to prepare an easy meal (or your like me and just don’t really care to cook).

Well, no fear! Here is a low-carb alternative that you can put your personal spin on.

 

Quick and Easy Overnight Oats

 

  • Fill mason jar with 1/2 cup oats, 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup almond milk, raisins and chia seeds.
  • Blueberries and Bananas (Or any fruit you love)
  • Optional: Add cinnamon or sweetener.
  • Then put in the fridge over night and have a great breakfast ready in the morning that keeps you energized throughout a busy day! Or at least until your next meal 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Food for Thought

Blog Eat Well Wednesday

10 Interesting Facts About Caffeine

 

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People may not think of caffeine as the most popular mood-altering drug in the world, even those who use it daily, by drinking coffee, tea, sodas or energy drinks as part of their routine.

Whether it’s brewed from a K-Cup, sipped in sweet tea, savored in chocolate or downed in cola, caffeine is a mild stimulant to the central nervous system that has become a regular fixture in everyday life. 

 

Cari Nierenberg, a Live Science Contributor, writes about 10 Interesting Facts About Caffeine. This article covers topics like “How Long Does it Stay in Your System?”, “Withdrawal Issues”, “Can People Truly Be Addicted?” and others.

 

Click on the images to find out more!

 

 

 

 

 

What Do You See?

Blog

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#Houseeit

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Do You Have TunnMysterious tunnel to the lightel Vision?

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Find out every Monday and Wednesday at Noon

in the Downtown Tunnels of Houston

beginning October 5th

 

jercho

 

 

 

Where’s the Easy Button?

MFA Mondays
photo by Lynn Lane
photo by Lynn Lane

Shortly after the big event in November 2013, I began telling inquirers that I would be taking a personal time out to rejuvenate personally and creatively. Much to my surprise, this idea did not go over well with others. I was met with resistance and warnings. New phrases began racing toward me such as ‘you can’t stop now,’ ‘don’t lose momentum,’ and my favorite ‘it will be so much harder to start again.’

Knowing that my pattern of plowing through from one project or idea to the next was no longer an option, I had to begin again. Most importantly, I had to become okay with the idea that what came before was not WRONG and what comes next may not be RIGHT. The duh! stick had knocked me all the way back to my graduate school AHA moments. However, this time the focus was not on a composition class or a movement study, but rather on me as a person and an artist.

Lets take a moment to review my graduate school AHA moments.

  1. What is your intention? How do you make that as clear as possible? 
  1. There are no right or wrong answers; only clearer choices.  

 

In retrospect, I can clearly see a subconscious three-step process that began with re-flecting. When all the lights, costumes, and applause get stripped away and the audience goes home, what is the artist left with? Often times after an event would close, I was left with a great sense of dissatisfaction. (That is a whole other blog) This particular performance left me questioning what it was all for in the first place.

photo by Lynn Lane
photo by Lynn Lane

Why do I enjoy creating thought provoking, emotionally stirring works by sharing my life experiences with a bunch of strangers? The short answer… we are all connected to a much larger community and I want to make that connection clear and relevant. However, I was constantly ‘sharing’ yet not really taking the time to understand if it was valid or effective. Was I really making the connection I desired? And the biggest question of all, does the audience even want what I am offering?

Step two… re-evaluate! After understanding the Why, I began to ask the How. How do I make it clear that I want a connection between myself, the art, and the audience? I do not feel this understanding comes from the work itself, but rather the relationships that we create with our audience. This happens before the concert, during the concert, after the concert and through additional programs that engage and invite our audience into the process itself.

 I must let you in on a little secret. I am making this sound so easy by giving you a synopsis of the process. Steps One and Two have taken a total of eighteen months and to be honest, I am still re-flecting and re-evaluating as I move forward into step Three… re-launch.

Was there a time in your life that you had to stop and take inventory? What was your journey to re-launch like?

 


 

MFA rightAmy Elizabeth, named one of Houston’s 100 Creatives and Top 10 Choreographer in 2013, is currently an adjunct dance professor and artistic director for Aimed Dance since receiving her M.F.A from Sam Houston State University. Her work has been presented at DanceHouston, Dance Gallery Festival Texas, Houston Fringe Fest and venues throughout Texas, Louisiana, and Arizona. Additionally, she has had the privilege of setting works at Lone Star College, Rice University, Lamar High School and will be working with San Jacinto College Dance Ensemble this fall. Stay in touch at www.amyelizabethdance.com.

Frame Dance Performance!

Blog Performances/Screenings

HPB_bdg_logo_neAbout Frame Dance’s next performance: Bayou Greenway Day on April 4

 

We hope you will join us at an exciting new community event from the Houston Parks Board: Bayou Greenway Day 2015 presented by Noble Energy! This free, day-long event will offer families the chance to walk, bike, run, stroll, play and paddle between park sites along Brays Bayou Greenway in the East End.

 

Event “hubs” in Mason Park, Spurlock Park, Gragg Park and Fonde Park – and the Brays Bayou Greenway trail in-between – will host fun activities for all ages. You will be able to start at any of these locations, enjoying activities and exploring the trails that connect the parks.

 

Activities will include 5K fun run/walk; bike rides, rentals and decorating; Zumba classes and dance performances; an interactive campsite; kayaking (for a small fee); giveaways and more!

 

Frame Dance will perform a work that travels along the bayou with elaborate time-lapse costumes by Ashley Horn.

 

Come experience the transformation happening along Houston’s bayous as part of Bayou Greenways 2020! Visit www.bayougreenwayday.org for additional information and an event map. Most activities free; April 4, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The Framers perform at noon starting at Mason Park.

 

Bayou Greenway Day 2015 is a project of the Houston Parks Board in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Special Events, the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, and the office of Council Member Robert Gallegos.

8 Lessons for Dancers in Higher Education

MFA Mondays

MFA right

 8 Lessons for Dancers in Higher Education

by Sarah Wildes Arnett

1. Dance is not a terminal field, even though the MFA is. Most dancers (and performers in general) know and accept this as truth – dancers are students their entire lives. There is always a way to improve and become better as our bodies change and as the field evolves. I accepted this long before making the decision to go back to school. What I did not realize until much later was that this applies to my creative work as well. As I went into my thesis work and now, as a professional and in setting choreography on my students, I started the process of reworking old choreography. I’ve now taken what was originally a sextet and translated it into a duet (which works much better that way) that has been reworked at least five times on different dancers, each time finding out new information about the piece. The piece has evolved from a general exploration of rhythms and patterns to being about a simple relationship to death and the afterlife. I’m pretty sure it’s not perfect yet.

2. It’s ok to beat a dead horse (figuratively). Not every piece has to be a masterpiece and you don’t have to make work about something new and different every time. Some things are worth investigating again and again. Just because you tried something once doesn’t mean you are done and that you cannot do it again.

3. Age is just a number. I went to school with people from all walks of life, including those in my MFA program and the undergraduates working on their BFA and BA degrees. I truly believe that there are things to be learned from each other, no matter what the age as everyone brings in their own experiences and ideas. One of the best collaborators I ever worked with in graduate school (and best friends I’ve ever made) was an undergraduate student, Megen Burgess. We still work together and talk weekly about dancing ideas even though we live 9 hours away from each other.

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4. Not every rehearsal has to be in a studio. Megen and I created an entire duet (and mind you, a very physically challenging duet) without managing to spend but maybe a total of 4 hours dancing. Sometimes you just need to have rehearsal at El Carreton. Sometimes you just have to draw a dance.

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5. Write everything down. I cannot tell you the number of brilliant ideas (and I mean brilliant – I should be Trisha Brown by now) that I have forgotten because I didn’t write them down. Continue reading

Links We Like Friday: Tiny Dances

Links We Like Performances/Screenings

Week 3 in our series that came from our installation at Fresh Arts.  The piece was called The Black Space, and included these tiny silent dances meant to be seen on your smart phones.

 

The Black Space: Tiny Dance 3 from Frame Dance Productions on Vimeo.

MFA Monday: Surprises of Grad School

MFA Mondays

MFA rightBiggest Surprises of Grad School

 by Amanda Diorio

 

I would make friends

I thought when I went back to school to get my MFA that I would be entering an uptight academic environment.  I was so preoccupied with the idea of school and relocating my life that I forgot I would be entering a community of like-minded peers. In undergrad, even among dance majors, I was considered the “dance nerd,”   In grad school I was surrounded by not only dancers but specifically  “dance nerds,” people who wanted to explore, dissect and reveal as much about the art as I did.  This community turned out to be a vital support group throughout the process of completing my degree.  Having others to bitch to, socialize, laugh, and share my fledgling art with became essential for my survival during this stressful time.  These bonds were not only a lifeline during the process but created many long lasting friendships and an excellent network that stands strong long after graduation.

 

The teacher/student relationship has evolved

When you enter a graduate program you have already passed a test in the eyes of the faculty.  You have already completed one major academic step and have decided to continue onto another. There are fewer grad students for them to keep track of and you yourself are probably a much better student.  For me this reduced a lot of the intimidationI felt with my undergraduate professors.  Continue reading