Every year, I write my words or praise over Stompology… and this year is no different. Why? A bunch of reasons:
1. Rochester. I spent 6 years of my life there and made some really great friends. All of whom I get to see again when I go back. It feels like going home.
2. The vibe. The energy over the weekend is so freakin’ high. Everyone’s excited and inspired. And everyone feels comfortable. There’s no -I’m at a big event and there’s such big name people here, oh I feel awkward -- feeling. The instructors are approachable, and just as silly as the rest of us.
3. Solo Jazz. Well, solo jazz just always makes me happy. It feels like I’m really working on something. Particularly when it’s something out of the norm. Making my body move in ways it’s not used to feels great.
My personal highlights of the weekend:
1. Sharon and Juan’s Ballin’ the Jack routine class. It was a recreation of a Gene Kelly performance. I can’t wait to see a video of the end of class performances. But here’s a clip of the man himself:
2. Bethany’s Chi Chi routine. That was very different from the standard jazz movement we’re all used to -- by that I mean it was flowy motion, instead of sharp, and rhythmically was kind of like hip hop. It made me work hard, mentally and physically. I liked it.
3. Jams at the late night. As usual, lots of dancers have ventured into musicianship and a jam broke out in Mike’s room. It was nice to hear and sing along, and have a chance to chill out away from the crowd.
4. Baby Soda. They absolutely killed it at the Saturday night dance! I wanted to never sit down. Wish I could hear them more often.
5. Grill Jam. Always a great way to wind out the weekend. Grillling, haning out, and spontaneous sing-alongs? Yes, this year there was some spontaneous piano bar style karaoke involving jazz standards, classic rock, and even showtunes. In addition, Juan wowed us with some sweet card tricks, and Mike presented some rare clips he recently acquired. The night ended with a few of us sharing stories, and other random happenings. What a great night.
This is why I try to never miss a Rochester event. They’re always my favorite.
Here’s a video of the post-class performance of Ballin’ The Jack!