Rhythmics Performing Arts

What Moves You?


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Just Karate, Mom

Posted by rhythmicsonline on August 12, 2010 at 3:46 PM Comments comments (73)

I'll admit it.


 When I found out that Nate was a boy, I was a little worried..  My older two are girls.  I'm a dance teacher by trade.  I don't really like dirt, cars, trains, or war games all that much.  The idea of having a little boy was waaaaaaaaaaay outside my comfort zone, to say the least.  (Now Jerry on the other hand, was thrilled- heck, even the dog was a girl.  He was ready for someone else who wants to sit in the recliner with a pizza & belch loudly while watching college football).


Girls were my universe, to say the least.  I was a master of all things sponge roller, nail polish, big bowed & smocked.  Boy clothes weren't NEARLY as cute, and all the good stuff was gone long before a sale.  Plus, how was Jerry going to react to our son's dance education (because he WOULD dance, doggone it!)?


Well, as it turns out, Nate has been, by far the easiest going of my 3 children.  Every day is a party, he's excited about everything, he has true wonder.  (And thankfully, he's really into dance, but it's breakdancing- my husband breathed an audible sigh of relief).


I worried that I wouldn't be able to identify with any of Nate's loves/obsessions- over time it's been trains (or more specifically Thomas the Tank Engine), cars, T.V., movies on the big screen, & of course, karate.


Nate's love affair with karate began when he was 4.  Everything was about karate.  On Monday: "Is today karate day?"  On Tuesday: "Is today karate day?" On Wednesday:"Is today karate day??"  On Thursday: "TODAY is karate!!" 


Unlike so many children his age (Including my girls at that age) he is incredibly focused on karate & karate only.  When we opened RPA at our current location, we decided that doing only dance was for the birds.  We wanted to be able to offer accessible programming that would interest a wide variety of people.  One of our additions was a karate program.  When I interviewed Mr. Bob, I knew he was the ONE.  And I have to admit, I had a really personal motivation behind hiring an awesome karate instructor- Nate, karate kid extraordinaire.  And true to that first impression, Bob has built a program that is terrific!  He is so incredibly nurturing to Nate (now 7).  Every time the belt test comes around, the shine in Nate's eyes is incredible.  He is so proud, so motivated & so inspired.  I love that he is so in love with karate, and that he has such an incredible instructor.


I recently asked Nate, "Do you want to try baseball this spring?"  To which he replied, "Nah, that looks boring, it's just hitting a ball with a stick!"

So I tried a new tactic, "Nate, would you like soccer? Timothy (his buddy) plays soccer"

Nate: "Nah."

Me:  "Well, what sport would you like to try?"

Nate: "Just karate, Mom.  I want double karate!"


It must be a boy thing :)

Art I Heart

Posted by rhythmicsonline on August 5, 2010 at 10:08 AM Comments comments (1)

Throughout my life, I've been known to be a little eclectic.  I was never a khaki pants & white shirt kind of girl.  Anyone who knows me can atest to the fact that my taste is a little, well, different.  In fact, I keep tossing around the idea of taking Mrs. Becky's art class- my kids love it- but I'm afraid I don't meet the age requirement.  Maybe she'll do an adult class.  Anybody else up for some "art therapy" with me?


I was that girl in high school with the clunky jewelry & platforms (long before they were popular the 2nd time around, young people).  I was also known to sport a blonde wig on occasion- maybe I'll dig that photo out of the file one of these days...


As with my taste in clothing, my art taste is incredibly varied!  With regard to visual art, I am a great lover of all things Renaissance, especially Dutch artist Jan Van Eyck.  Of all of his work, this is my favorite:


 Arnolfini Marriage

I had my first encounter with this painting on a trip to Washington D.C. when I was in high school.   I was mesmerized by the detail, the richness of color & the study in perspective.  To this day, it remains a favorite of mine.

Another artist I love: Modigliani.  I'm a sucker for a portrait (in fact, the strange "heads" I have on my wall drive my mother crazy...she is of the ilk that art in your home should be part of an over all theme and should blend in.  Needless to say- that's not my motto).

http://www.abcgallery.com/M/modigliani/modigliani105.JPG&t=1" style="WIDTH: 107px; HEIGHT: 176px" />                       


And then of course, there's the Funky Chicken Man.  Ernest Lee peddles his wares here in Columbia.  Google him and you'll see that he's quite popular with his brand of outsider folk art.  I personally LOVE his funky chickens, and own several.  His website is: www.chickenmanernestlee.com


Here are my funky chickens (with random Ernest Lee palm tree):



Other work by Ernest Lee:



For one reason or another, each of these artists move me.  I find myself profoundly in awe of Van Eyck, personally in love with the style of Modigliani, & inspired to be just a little "funky", like Ernest Lee.


So, I ask you-

What moves you?


Let me know,




Lexington Arts Scene 101

Posted by rhythmicsonline on August 3, 2010 at 8:17 AM Comments comments (2)

Man, I hate moving.  And right now, I am moving- ugh.  I suppose on the upside, I can purge all of the junk that accumulates when you have a husband, 3 kids & a dog! 


When I was a kid, my mother used to ransack my room, dumping out tons of my "paperwork" (i.e. notes from friends, pictures, etc), tossing out Barbies with no arms, My Little Ponies with matted hair, markers that were dried up- you know, all that junk.  I would watch her in horror as she mercilessly dumped my treasures in the trash.  Guess what- that madwoman is now me.  And yes mom, you were right.  I will admit however, I'm sneakier than my mom was- I do all of my purging when the kids are having their fun time with Nana!


But I digress.  Now that we are true residents of the great town of Lexington, I've taken to exploring some of the great places around.  I see stores I never knew existed, little parks that peak my interest, and places that I go home and Google just to find out what they're all about. 


Being the artsy sort of gal that I am, I've begun to really research the arts scene in Lexington, and I've been pleasantly surprised by what I've found!  Did you know we have a very active community theatre?  We also have a symphony orchestra, a choral society, and some awesome places to view & buy art!  I am thrilled, and I can't WAIT to get out there and experience what Lexington's arts scene has to offer!


I came across the Village Square Theatre's excellent website, where I found their 2010-11 season.  What a full & varied season!  I am so looking forward to seeing their productions!  From Beauty & the Beast (junior production) this fall, to It's A Wonderful Life in December (a classic!), to The Wizard of Oz & On Golden Pond in spring, I am pumped up!  An interesting side note- I actually played Chelsea in the Sumter Little Theatre version of On Golden Pond many moons ago- come in and let me know you read this in my blog & I'll give you a treat!  Do yourself a favor and check out their website: www.villagesquaretheatre.com

Hopefully I'll see you there!


I was also surprised to find the Lake Murray Symphony Orchestra.  I had no idea!  Their website was very helpful- they are having a "Wine & Waltzes" program at Saluda Shoals on September 30, which I must attend!  How can I turn those two down?  Check them out at www.sclmso.org


Of course, my first love is singing- it's what I majored in when I was in college.  For years I've said I wanted to join a chorus, but between marriage, pregnancy, childbirth, raising children, starting & running a business, it's just been pushed further down my list.  BUT- after investigating Lexington's arts offerings, I have discovered the Lexington Choral Society!  Maybe you guys can come see me sing with them- tune in for more updates.  In the meantime, check out their season at www.lexcochoralsoc.org


As for visual art, my favorite local artist is Becky Blair, our own art teacher!  Becky is magnificently talented, and makes some of the most beautiful jewelry I've run across.  Her website, www.inspiraled.com has tons of great stuff.  If you want to buy me a gift, my favorite of her items are her "Asia Vu" pendants.  And here's a secret: if you ask Mrs. Becky reallllly nice, she'll do a custom necklace for you (and it can be ANY theme, not just Asian).  While you're checking out inspiraled, take a look at Mrs. Becky's collages as well.  She can customize those too and they are really neat.


I also discovered some really awesome work by local artists at Sandlapper Art.  Check out their website at www.sandlapperart.com.  I'm totally into the metal crabs!   I also found another site that showcases local art called The Art Spot in the Old Mill (I Heart The Old Mill!).  Check them out at www.artspotoldmill.com

 (Oh yeah, and while you're at the Old Mill, stop by Rainy Day Pal books- what a great little treasure trove of new and used books!  Annnnnnnd- drum roll please- you can consign your own used books there.  I'm in heaven).


As Lexington grows, it's need for an arts centre also grows.  There has been talk about building an arts centre in town for a while, but it needs your support.  To check out informatoin about the Lexington Arts Center, click on www.lexingtonartscenter.com .


Sadly,  there is no professional dance company based in Lexington.  Maybe that's where RPA can make a difference!  Look for more talk of professional dance companies in future blogs!


Happy Creating!

Mrs. Blake


Gearing Up For Dance

Posted by rhythmicsonline on August 2, 2010 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (1)

Hello All!


I don't know about you, but I am seriously ready for summer to end!  I always love it and look forward to it, but just like a family vacation, toward the end, I'm always ready for things to go back to normal.  I always look forward to a new school year; the excitement, the expectations- who will my teacher be?  will I make the honor roll? will my friends be in my class?  I still get excited about new school supplies, new shoes, and new bookbags!  Sadly for me though, this is the first year that I haven't had crayons on a child's supply list.  As much as I love the fact that my kids are growing up, when I saw Nate's supply list was void of crayons, I teared up a little.


Part of my "fall fever" is always the beginning of a new dance season!  This year, our dance season will begin on Tuesday, September 7!  And let me just say- this year is going to seriously ROCK!  Our staff is excited, motivated & ready to bring on the dancers! 


We have some really awesome new additions to our dance schedule this year as well!  In addition to the perennial preschool favorite, the tap & ballet combo, we are adding a "tiny tap & jazz" combo for our smallest dancers on Monday evenings.  Mrs. Shannon will be teaching this class, and I can't imagine a better teacher for our little groove shakers- she is soooooo full of energy, and she is hands down one of the best instructors that I have ever had the pleasure of working with (and yes English hounds, I just ended my sentence with a preposition).   I cannot WAIT to see them shake it up at recital time! 


We are also adding a new combo for our elementary age dancers, a jazz & ballet combo!  For the dancer that is "so over" tap, this is a great class! 


And- for the dancer that wants to make LOTS of noise with their feet, don't forget about clogging, taught by Mrs. Erin!  Mrs. Erin does a jam up job teaching clogging to the young & the old.  If you haven't had the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Erin, stop by and see her on a Wednesday night!  She is an awesome instructor with a heart of gold!


For those students who are more interested in ballet &/or lyrical, we have some new class offerings for them as well.  We'll be teaching a beginner and intermediate lyrical class.  For those of you that are not familiar with lyrical dance, it's a great ballet/jazz fusion that focuses on more contemporary music & movement with a balletic base.  We are also offering a pre-pointe class (for students that are ready to begin training to "dance on their toes"), and a pointe class (for students that have been approved to "dance on their toes").


And, of course, we have our old favorites: tap & ballet combinations, tap & jazz combo, hip hop, breakdancing (Mr. Mike is SOOOO ready to get busy!), jazz, movers & shakers, & ballet.


The 2010-2011 schedule is now up and ready, so enroll NOW!  Remember too- if you need new shoes, leotards, tights, bags or "stuff", we have it here (or we can order it for you!).


And last but not least- refer a new student to us, and receive a $10.00 credit to your account!  Make sure they use you as a reference of you won't get your credit!


Happy dancing!!!

Mrs. Blake