Interview with a Dancer #17 – Barney Helendale

As I have reported before, there seem to be more men performing in dance troupes these days.

Barney is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet – he’s friendly, entertaining, and a real sweetheart. 😛

Barney Helendale 2015

 

 

SL Name:  Barney Helendale
Display Name:  Barney Helendale
Rez Day: July 9, 2008

 

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
BH:  Another method to reach people and make friends, entertain the public, so I joined a dance theatre and became involved.

Where do you dance?
BH:  Guerilla Burlesque and Starlite Theatre.  I also do dance routines with some of the model agencies I am a part of.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
BH:  30 hours per week.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
BH:  10 hours per week – 33%.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
BH:  I have not had much experience at building sets, yet.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
BH:  Abranimations.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
BH:  Isomotions.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
BH:  Ultimate & Barre.

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
BH: Strut It Model HUD.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
BH:  I build my own sets.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
BH:  Don’t worry, if nothing is working, just keep going.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
BH:  I have emoted. Another skill I have learned in SL.

Where do you find your music?
BH:  YouTube.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
BH: No.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
BH:  At this point, movers. As I am learning, it takes time to be comfortable. Small sets, limited exposure to other props.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
BH: The Bare Rose.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
BH: Not fully rezzing.

What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
BH: Sharp dressed, great presentation.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
BH:  Be patient, do not expect to be “perfect” al the time, we roll with how events unfold. Don’t Worry, Be Happy. 😀

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
BH:  45 minutes, depending on how many routines.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
BH: Home.

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.)
BH:  More groups.

You can catch Barney dancing at Guerilla Burlesque during their season and at Starlite Theater every other Monday at 7pm (next show is Feb. 9).

Interview with a Dancer #16 – Lil Angels

I thought Lil had retired from dancing in SL.  Boy, was I glad to find out I was wrong!! I can’t wait to watch her light up the grid again. 🙂

Lil 2015

 

 

SL Name:  LilAngels
Display Name:  Lil
Rez Day: June 12, 2011

Location: USA

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
LA:  Way back in the day, on an older avi, I did the whole stripping thing.  The owner of the club took a bunch of us to a show – I think it was an early incarnation of Ellie’s.  We thought it looked like fun, and a couple weeks later, we were doing shows.  Back then, we had no idea of HUDs, so our screens were outlined with dances, and we manually clicked them, along with copy/pasting our emotes, hoping the whole time that we didn’t lag too bad to finish.

How long have you been dancing?
LA:  I don’t really count those earliest shows, we knew nothing.  This time around, 2-1/2 years.

Where do you dance?
LA:  Velvet Vixen is my home, but I’m excited to be a part of the new Le Artiste troupe managed by Yummy!  It’s a troupe made up entirely of Artiste HUD owners to showcase all of the neat tricks we’re able to conquer with it.  It’s very exciting to be a part of!

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
LA:  That depends, some much more than others.  Just depends on what all I’ve got going on.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
LA:  Generally most of it.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
LA:  Some are easier than others.  I can totally dive into a set and have it done in a day….or it can take up to a couple weeks or more.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
LA:  It depends on what I’m looking for.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
LA:  Generally Purple Poses for single, static poses, but for anything else, I look all over til I find it.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
LA:   Right now, it’s mainly Spot On.  I like the ability to do multiple groups, all with their own timer – that was kind of a big selling point for me.  I did recently purchase the Artiste Performance Suite, so I’ll be tackling that next.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
LA:  I use Spot On for movement as well, but will be exploring the Artiste way.

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
LA: As I said earlier, starting to learn the Artiste HUD, and of course, I’ve used the Barre in the past as well.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
LA:  I generally build most of my sets myself, but thankfully I’m blessed with some amazing builders as friends, and they’re willing to help pull me out when I think I’ve gotten myself in too deep.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
LA:  DO NOT let SL glitches in your set get you down.  As long as you know how it looked on a perfect run-thru, and it made you dance in your seat, that’s all that matters.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
LA: It depends.  (I’m answering so many of these questions with that!)  Sometimes, emoting does help tell your story, but at the same time, you don’t want emotes so long that your audience is only able to read your emotes and not actually watch your set.

Where do you find your music?
LA:  Everywhere

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
LA: No, not that techy.  🙂

What is your stance on the issue of music copyright in SL (and also in YouTube videos you might post)?
LA:   I’m certainly not making anything from my shows.  It’s just a passion!

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
LA:  Once again I find myself answering with “it depends.” It’s all about the individual set – some need effects, some dont; some need emotes, some don’t.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
LA: There are too many to name, I’ve found so many great designers for all types of sets.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
LA:  I think the shorter list would be what HASN’T happened to me during a show.  🙂

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
LA:  Yes and no.  for the first year, my computer was terrible all around – I lagged, had horrible graphics, but I pushed through.  Even though shows were a struggle, I knew what it looked like during my own practices.  After getting a really good computer that handles SL quite well, I tend to go for what looks good to me with my graphics maxed – just cause I can!

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
LA:  Do not let small obstacles deter you….there are so many people and resources out there that are willing to help you with anything.  All you gotta do is ask.

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
LA:  No more than 2 hours….and to last 2 hours, it better be a complete show where you want to stick around that long.  People get bored easily in SL.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
LA: You mean there’s time spent away from dancing?

The Velvet Vixen just had their first show of 2015, here’s looking forward to many more with the wonderful Lil.  😀

Interview with a Dancer #15 – Myth Raven

This next dancer certainly lives up to her name – a puzzle, wrapped in an enigma, shrouded in mystery.  Or is that Myth-stery?  Please welcome, the one, the only – Myth Raven!

Myth Raven 2014

 

SL Name:  Myth Raven
Display Name:  Myth Raven
Rez Day: January 22, 2011

Location: Cottonwood

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
MR:  Many moons ago, when I first started SL, I just happened to visit a wonderful Cabaret/Burlesque show called  “BEAUTIFUL FREAKS”. When Slappy Doobie took the stage I thought it was the most amazing thing I had ever seen in SL. From that point on I was hooked on cabaret and I became a regular at the shows. Of course I wanted to (do that), but knew nothing at that time. So I suppose I started as a host with a few DJ’s in several clubs, which developed quickly to doing dance spots at those (non-cabaret clubs) with DJ’s. I was doing a one girl show more or less at SL dance club venues. That led to becoming lead vocals for the all female SL Rock Tribute Band Phoenix. At that time I was developing free-style stage dance with the band as Tina Turner, Joan Jet, Anastacia, etc., while still doing the (DJ plus me) dance shows around SL. And all the while attending every cabaret show I could find. Then one day I just decided (I can do this now), and do it well. So I decided to go pro. All inspired by that one girl on stage, and my now friend, Slappy.

How long have you been dancing?
MR:  3 years.

Where do you dance?
MR:  Winds of the Sahara weekly, the Empire Room bi-weekly, Jagged Rock bi-weekly, guest dancer at the Paramount Playhouse, and guest dancer at Starlite Theater.  I also do special event shows with Elysium and Euphoria dance troupes.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
MR:  Probably around 30 hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
MR:  80%.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
MR:  Well… that all depends on what I’m doing – solo, group, stage sets, theme sets, etc. Theme sets and group sets can take days. A Vegas-style solo stage set I can do in a day if I have to, but I prefer to have 2 days.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
MR:  Abranimations, A&M, Henmations

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
MR:  Tuty’s and ##CI## for the odd animations I may use in my sets.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
MR:   Spot-On Director. Best performance I’ve found under heavy lag conditions. Lots of unique notecard options (dance layering for example) and made just for use with Spot-On choreography design system.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
MR:  I use the Spot-on Choreography Design System. I’ve never used another system so can’t compare. But I’m a hard core Spot-on Director fan and since the two systems go hand in hand, I would be hard pressed to ever change.

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
MR: Spot-On Costume Assistant, ankle locks, com huds, and various lightning/effects huds depending on my set.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
MR:  I build my own sets.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
MR:  Take it to the front of the stage . . . in their face!

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
MR: I do not. I want people to see my performance, not be distracted. Emote story sets have their place, but it’s just not for me.

Where do you find your music?
MR:  YouTube.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
MR:  I edit most every song I do in some manner or another. I may up the bass, clean it up, extend the intro, add sound effects, etc.  And I always adjust to a consistent 128kbits to make things more stable for SAM. I find everything I need in a search on YouTube.

What is your stance on the issue of music copyright in SL (and also in YouTube videos you might post)?
MR:   SL shows can be a means of direction. YouTube displays ads on your uploads. And a lot of those ads direct a viewer to buy the CD that your track is from. This is at the discretion of the rightful music owners. They can also elect to block your video if they want to. But most don’t because it is a means for possible additional sales and more exposure. So I hope some sales are actually made from these advertisements for the original artists. I also hope that my YouTube channel videos get hits from my SL shows. And I always post a disclaimer that my videos are for entertainment purposes only and that I do not own the music used in my performance.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
MR:  I’m a mixed bag of nuts. I do it all depending on my set. The exception is emoting, which I don’t do.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
MR: Avid.

Is there a particular artist (in SL or RL) that inspires you?
MR: Can’t name names here as there are several and there all my friends. Smile!!!

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
MR:  Sigh…  well…  I had a mover rez sideways once and had to cancel the set, lol.   But the most frustrating thing is what we all experience from time to time. And that is – you put a ton of work into a routine, and you have it perfect, smooth as silk, and here comes a lag spike and screws your routine’s timing up. You can hear me cursing two sims away!

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
MR:  Yes.  I do use effects from time to time, but always try to use the low lag gear. Trust me – there are different levels of lighting, fog, particles, etc.  It’s best to always shop around and test.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
MR:   *I hate going after you* hahahhaha.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?
MR:  YouTube and Blog.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
MR:  Learn how not to *slide* your dance routines. (My pet peeve – I hate seeing a person sliding across the stage from one end to the other.)

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
MR:  I think one hour to an hour and a half is about the attention span in SL.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
MR: The Lesbian Teahouse.  🙂

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.) 
MR: I’m not sure what I would like to see happen as far as the technical end. Less lag in heavy populated venues is perhaps a dream. However, on the social end I would love to see a non-biased ranking system in place for pro dancers.  What a can of worms that would open!  But, oh, what fun on the competitive end!  🙂

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?
MR: I love the community. There isn’t one dancer I dislike. I love you all!!!

And there you have it, straight from the mysterious lips of Myth herself!  A big thank you to Myth for taking the time out of her busy dance schedule and allowing me to interview her.

Interview with a Dancer #14 – Misse Tigerpaw

This next dancer is one known all over the grid for her fantastic sets and amazing particle effects.  If you haven’t seen a show at Club IMAGE, you’re missing out!  Please welcome Misse Tigerpaw (if you look close, you’ll see her rezz day is coming up, so if you see her, tell her happy rezz day)!

Misse 2014

 

SL Name:  misse tigerpaw
Display Name:  misse
Rez Day: December 19, 2007

Location: Club IMAGE

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
MT:  First I saw someone dancing with particles and I wanted to make the particles. I started making particles, then I started making the set and a year later finally I made something like an act with dance sequences.

How long have you been dancing?
MT:  Since September 2012.

Where do you dance?
MT:  Club IMAGE.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
MT:  About 40 hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
MT:  90%.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
MT: 1-4 months.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
MT:  Abranimations

What dance HUD do you primarily use? 
MT:   Barre HUD and HUDDLES EZ Animator.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
MT:  *NDS formation system – it has Japanese instructions and it’s easier for me to understand.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
MT: I make my own sets.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
MT:  Cache your animations before the show.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
MT:  No, I don’t.  We don’t usually emote in Japanese.

Where do you find your music?
MT:  YouTube, internet radio, iTunes, or some royalty-free music on the internet.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
MT:  I make some mixes using Audacity.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
MT:  I like small sets with particles, effects, faders, movers, and lighting.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
MT:  I guess I was nervous and my hands were shaking while I was dancing.  I accidentally clicked on something and I jumped out of the stage. That was kind of embarrassing.  Of course, I got back to the dance sheet right away and pretended like nothing happened. 😀

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
MT:  At IMAGE, we set our graphic setting to “High” and set particles number to 2056.  But we do not using “Advanced Lighting Model.” We try to make the effect work with lower settings as well. Also, we ask the audience to turn off their HUDs, face lights, and remove scripted objects to reduce lag and ensure everyone can view the show effects properly.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
MT:   Some people told me that they never thought we could do something like this in SL.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?
MT:  I have a blog and an instructional website for making particle effects.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
MT:  Start making something simple and take time making it and enjoy making it.   And remember, more practice makes it better. 😀

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
MT:  About an hour.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
MT: Shopping for hair!

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?
MT: I hope more people will start dancing and make more dance acts, and I hope more people will go to see dance shows.

I second Misse’s thoughts – I would love to see more dancers creating in SL.  Again, a huge thank you (Doumo arigatou gozaimasu – hope I spelled that right!) to Misse for allowing me to interview her.  Catch her amazing sets at Club IMAGE.  Their shows are on Sundays at 6am SLT.   (It’s early for some of us, but it’s well worth the missed sleep!)

Interview with a Dancer #13 – Diiar

I’ve never been to Denmark, but if the people are anything like this next dancer, I have a feeling I would enjoy myself immensely.  For the latest installment of ‘Interview with a Dancer,’ please welcome Diiar!

Diiar 2014

 

SL Name:  Diiar Resident
Display Name:  Diiar Dembo
Rez Day: August 20, 2012

Location: Denmark

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
DD:  My customary answer would be I’m not really a dancer, and I consider myself a host/emcee first and foremost. However, somewhere along the way from when Winds of the Sahara Cabaret was opened and now, I had the urge to try my own hand at making a performance.  Seeing all the talented ladies of SL dance grace the stage week after week was an amazing motivator and while I didn’t really feel all that passionate about dance in itself, I was very curious to see what I could do. Cyllene of course was a huge influence! She invited me to warm movers for her sets and I got a first hand glance at how a performance works.  I was soon to learn it wasn’t as easy as it looked, but by then I was already too busy learning to build, to chose dances and put it all together to stop again.  So I suppose the short answer would be curiosity, Cyllene and a chance to try my hand at some things in SL I had yet to explore.

How long have you been dancing?
DD:  Being the host of the (until recently) only show I perform at has it’s perks and a little research in my notes reveals that I debuted on September 22nd 2013 – so just over a year ago.

Where do you dance?
DD:  Primarily at Winds of the Sahara, but have taken the plunge and affiliated myself loosely with The Elysium Cabaret. Being European makes it tricky at best to fit the schedule of SL dance into a SL schedule.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
DD:  Now that is a tough question. I am not on any timetable when it comes to dance. I’m not in it for the money or the fame, but simply because I like making the sets. That being said, I can go weeks not doing a thing dance related except host at Winds, and other weeks I can barely be dragged away from my newest build. I really can’t give an average – when I do have a set in the making my best guess would be maybe 30 hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
DD:  Most of it if not all – 95% at least.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
DD:  Again – tough question. Since I’m not on any timetable (I only sign up to perform when I have a set ready and rarely take to the stage more than once per month), I mostly work in spurts. So it’s not really all that unusual for a set of mine to sit untouched for days, weeks, a few times even months and not ever get any closer to being finished. Until suddenly I feel like working on it again.  I haven’t really made many sets – the fastest I’ve been was 1-2 days (LOOONG days), 15-20 hours or so. And the slowest…gee, I’m not sure I ever want to reveal that…but it’s a lot more than 20 hours.  To be fair though – when I’m slow, I’m not very focused either. Building a new performance is nice and all, but I get distracted easily, so it’s not unusual for me to have a few IMs open, a few searches on marketplace for costumes or whatever, iTunes or YouTube running for some auditive distractio…I mean motivation, numerous Facebook breaks and other things more or less unrelated to the work in progress – WHILE I work on that…  And also – I barely knew how to build when I started out – and truth be told I am still leaning! Things that most consider common knowledge are in many cases things I’ve yet to discover or learn…Hell, I only just learned how to edit a texture only on one side of a prim…. That level of ignorant bliss is just bound to slow you down. *laughs*

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
DD:  I really like A&M! But recently I’d have to say my go-to store is Henmations.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
DD:  Errr…Marketplace? – though I do have a tendency to buy a lot from F*cking Ninjas (yeah – it may be the name that’s drawing me in).

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
DD:   I am in the process of switching from Barre to Director actually. I really like the control Barre offers – if something goes wrong you’re not bound as tightly as you are with Director – but I recently tried Director (and been testing it in the worst possible circumstances I’ve been able to find) and found that as long as you do your choreography design properly and start the sequence at that golden moment where it’s SUPPOSED to start – then you really don’t need the same level of control as you do with Barre.  So I’ve gone back and picked out my own favorite sets and converted them from Barre to Director (also gave me a wonderful opportunity to fix a few glitches that got on my nerves when I originally performed those sets – AND change the builds with my newfound knowledge. *laughs*). When I did Breath of Life – with 11 different movers, 7 dancers – doing 4 different sequences and a costume change (using the Spot On Costume Assistant) on a sim with 70 people and there was NO lag, NO delay…I knew I was switching from Barre to Director.  For the first draft of the dance sequence, however, I still use Barre and will probably continue to do so. With that I can do it wherever and whenever.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
DD:  I use Spot On Choreography System – and it’s the only one I’ve ever tried. I saw others using it before I started building myself, got it, tried it and since then it’s just gotten better.  I don’t own and probably never will own the Spot On Group Formation System though, even though I rarely make solo sets. Sure using the Choreography System for group performances is more work, but I much prefer the control it gives me to just make each path individually (okay, so now we’ve also established I am indeed a control freak)…

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
DD: I use the Spot On Costume Assistant (as mentioned earlier) when I have a costume change (obviously) – it is probably my favorite of all the stuff I use for a performance to be honest – I’m completely head over heels for it.  Besides that, no, not unless I am running some kind of effect.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
DD:  I make my own sets, from build to dance to costume. And frankly I think it’s lazy to not do so.  (Oh, I’m going to get unpopular now.)   Furthermore, I like that the sets are personal and the best way to do that is to just do it yourself (it may also have something to do with the aforementioned controlfreakishness….). I’ve even taken to scripting a tiny bit when there was something I needed and couldn’t get – but that really is a tiny, TINY bit.  I’ve had another builder/scripter make parts for me on 2 occasions, but normally if I can’t buy it or make it myself I find another way . . . blahblahsomethingaboutcontrolblah….

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
DD:  Have fun!  It’s a completely selfish notion really, but it’s great advice. If you’re in this to get rich you’ll soon be disappointed. If you’re in this to get famous you’ll soon learn that there are bigger ponds in SL (and life in general).  Yes, people have to watch what you put on stage, so don’t be boring. Nothing is worse than a solo act with 5 textured prims and a dancer standing in one place doing some dances (even worse if they aren’t cached *shivers*). But if you have fun doing this – then making something more than the bare minimum should be easy, and a pleasure!

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
DD:  On occasion, yes. Which is to say rarely, to be honest. I really like it when people emote, though.  One of my biggest pet peeves (and I have many) is that I like to see progression in sets, story – perhaps I see SL dance more as a mini theater. Emotes are a really easy way of achieving that. On the other hand, the more people have to read the less of the actual set they see, so emotes to me are something to be used in moderate doses.  I like to try and tell a story with no use of emotes – at most maybe a quote or the like somewhere in the build – not as an emote. But really it’s all about style – if I was a better emoter I probably would use it more, though.

Where do you find your music?
DD:  Yikes….All over really. YouTube is a huge sinner in that department for me. Movies and especially TV series too.  I rarely use songs I don’t like, so most of the music I’ve used and have on my to-do list are songs I picked up somewhere and fell in love with. Songs that spoke to me and put images into my head – but those songs can come from anywhere really.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
DD:  Mixes is perhaps a bit of an overstatement – but yes, I do make my own mixes at times when I feel the need for it. Mostly it’s just a matter of cutting 2 songs together though. Lastly I combined Jen Titus’ Oh Death with a remake of Bad Moon Rising for a Halloween set – both songs I found on YouTube and the bridge between the songs was just the last few seconds of Bad Moon Rising reversed and put between the two songs – I thought it gave a spooky sound effect that fit Halloween quite nicely.

What is your stance on the issue of music copyright in SL (and also in YouTube videos you might post)?
DD:  I really don’t think much about it. If I were to worry about copyright I’d just limit myself. But it’s hard to see the issue from where I stand – it’s not as if anyone claims the music is theirs just because they put a dance to it and made a build. In fact artists probably should be happy to see their music inspiring other creative souls, bringing joy to a number of people and even in some cases spreading their music to new audiences…

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
DD:  I stated this earlier – I like story sets! Emotion, story, personality are massive keywords for me when making a set and watching other people’s sets.  It’s not so important for me HOW it’s done – my own preference leans towards big sets though – multiple scenes (mostly using faders to change between them) and dancers (always on movers and at times with separate dance sequences), a few effects depending on the setting, and always lighting. Multiple scenes and dancers makes it easier to ensure progression in a performance, just as movers can ensure dynamics and effects depth.  Likewise it’s not so important to me that everyone makes story sets. It’s my preference and I’m well aware that others have different preferences. And being all blue-eyed I believe there should be room for everyone…as long as they bring some quality to the stage!!

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
DD: Hummm – I’m not sure I have ONE. *laughs* I shop all over and when it’s right, it’s right, regardless of the seller. I do really like stores such as Dirty Princess, Soedara, Graves, Ezura and N.A.M.E.

Is there a particular artist (in SL or RL) that inspires you?
DD: Many!  Patrick Rothfuss – author extraordinaire – whose settings, moods and character motivations are an ongoing source of inspiration for me when I perform. And whose wit and quirky ways with the English language on his blog is a never ending stream pouring into my work as an emcee.  Lykke Li – Swedish singer – whose musical melancholy have set the mood for many, MANY hours working on and thinking about my sets (yes, she may be the number one reason half of my sets are utterly depressing).  Scottie Young –  comic book artist – whose cheeky style always inspires me to keep a young mind, have fun with what I do and most of all try to think out of the box and be different – and proud to be like that!  And lastly, my father – who was taken from me much too soon, whom I miss every day and who had hidden talents in all the creative endeavours he set his warm and intelligent gaze upon (okay – so he was not strictly an artist, but take a walk through my mother’s house and see the paintings he painted, the glass he engraved or the wooden tabletop games he carved and perhaps you’ll agree that an artist was indeed slumbering there).

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
DD:  Oh God… Me and my nerves in particular really don’t like performing. While performing a set to Soon We’ll be Found I missed my mark, then trying to catch up I got ahead of the song, and then in panic I got even further ahead, then I forgot my costume change, then I forgot my faders…basically it ended up as one big messy pile of half faded scenes and a story that made no sense….  And that’s just the most frustrating that I know of – who knows what have happened that I didn’t realize myself… *frowns*

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
DD:  To be honest….no. I make the builds I like, I light them so they look nice to me, I rarely use effects so that’s not really an issue. And I’ve never had any reason to think other people saw something drastically different from what I see myself.  I do, however, usually see my own creations from 2 different computers and 2 different viewers and if I ever saw something completely wrong on one of them I might adjust whatever is off. But until then I go under the assumption that it’s impossible to meet EVERYONE’s different settings, computers, viewers, connections and so on, so rather than limit myself to try and please everyone I just do what I want to *laughs*

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
DD:   We did a themed show at Winds this summer – The Seven Deadly Sins. And I did a set about Wrath set to a song by Mumford & Sons – Dust Bowl Dance.  The set was 3 scenes – one of which was up twice. Starting out on a farm, sunny, warm and healthy. 3 dancers, 2 of them a little posh looking and the 3rd (myself) kind of average girl-next-door looking. When the 2 posh people left the stage the scene changed into a darker, worn down version of the farm with a foreclosure sign, the one dancer left then changes into a personification of Wrath (my version anyways). The scene then changes again – to a bank and reintroduces the 2 extras as bankers who took the farm away from the girl, she rages and finally shoots one of the bankers executioner style and hangs the other from the ceiling fan. Then she dances on their bodies (yeah…sick and twisted). Finally the scene changes back to the run down farm, where Wrath walks up to the house and sets it on fire, leaving the last 10-15 seconds of the song or so just as a still of Wrath standing and watching the fire.  It was an immensely personal set for me and I didn’t care one bit if people ever understood the meaning of it or the story of it – I made it solely for me. But after I’d done it someone IM’ed me and said something along the lines of “WOW – the changes between the scenes made the story SO clear – well done!” And suddenly I found that I DID care what people thought and it made me beyond happy that at least one person had appreciated it and understood the meaning.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?
DD:  You can find me on Facebook, the Winds of the Sahara blog, and YouTube (there are a few of my performances there; Allein Alene (which have recently been given a major overhaul) and I See Fire).

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
DD:  ASK!  It’s the best way to learn and improve! If you see something you think looks cool, ask how they did it! And no one is a bigger star than they are most likely willing to give you a few quick pieces of advice.  Besides that – watch, listen and warm many movers *laughs* (You’d be shocked at how much can be learned just by watching other people perform!!)

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
DD:  1-1½ hours tops. I advertise Winds’ shows at 1½ hours of length – and have worked very hard and insistently at setting a top at 8 performers per week. Any more and my concentration starts slipping and there is (in my opinion) too many for the audience to really appreciate the individual sets and dances.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
DD: Hard to say – anywhere there is an opportunity to shop, I suppose. Otherwise it might be at home. Used to be at Disparity – a dance club, but sadly they closed. *sniffs*

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.) 
DD:  Actually most of my most pressing desires were answered with the arrival of Director, so I’m not really sure. I’d love the ability to include multimedia into a performance, but honestly I haven’t looked into it at all, so guess it’s not really something I miss all that much. *laughs*

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?
DD: Yes! Never ask an emcee for a last minute comment…..  I was incredibly honored to be asked to give this interview! I don’t think of myself as a dancer in SL because I work sporadically, have far too many pet peeves and insist that if you can’t deliver quality you should at least aim to learn to improve!  That is the crux of dance for me – I am always looking to improve, try something new or learn. The very first set I ever made will also be the very last I ever do (only completely redone), simply because my learning curve from then to now have been insane! (No really, I didn’t know how to copy a prim back then, so I took the prim into my inventory, made a copy, rezzed it and placed it….). I firmly believe anyone can do this – dancing isn’t hard, but it takes time, effort and above all passion! I love to help where I can – if you’re willing to listen then I’m willing to share my secrets, and I haven’t met ANYONE who didn’t feel the same way.  Because of this I don’t see SL dance as something you can be “famous” in; it’s not an elitist game only for the chosen few, which is a paradox because as much as I hate a diva in SL dance, I also cannot stand the uninspired. The ones who think a textured box and 4 dances make a performance. Which in the end boils this final comment down to this – RESPECT.  Respect. Because none of us are perfect, NONE of us, and anyone can learn if they are willing to ask and listen, ANYONE! Even you! Even me! *smiles, waves and goes to pick someone’s brain*

A huge thank you to Diiar for allowing me to interview her!  Catch her at Winds of the Sahara Cabaret at their weekly shows – Sundays at 5pm SLT (if she’s not dancing, she’s MC’ing, and you’ll get a kick out of her either way). 🙂

Interview with a Dancer #12 – Lady C

If you’ve been to a burlesque show in SL, you’ve probably seen this next dancer.  Please welcome the lovely Miss Lady C!

miss lady c

 

 

SL Name:  Lady Correia
Display Name:  Miss Lady C
Rez Day:  5/19/2009

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
LC:  I came across a burlesque/cabaret club by the name of Lady Garden Cabaret and the owner invited me to perform there.  Since I have such a love for burlesque, I jumped at the offer.  I’ve been performing ever since.

How long have you been dancing?
LC: 5 years.

Where do you dance?
LC:   KiKi’s House of Burlesque.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
LC:  About 30 hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
LC:  About 50%.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
LC:  In the beginning it took a couple days, but now I can build a set in about 5 hours if I don’t take breaks.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
LC:  Henmations or MyANIMATIONS.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
LC:  I used to use Dance Control HUD which I really liked, but for some reason it stopped working for me.  Now I use Eve n Better Ultimate Dance HUD.  I use it because it isn’t complicated like some.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
LC: I build my own from scratch.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
LC:  I used to, but not anymore.  People commented that they came to watch the dance, not to read a book.  Having to read emotes takes people’s eyes away from the performance.  I always use female singers so the song tells the story.  I want people to enjoy the music, costume, set and dance movements, not have to concentrate on reading.

Where do you find your music?
LC:  YouTube.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
LC:  I prefer a medium size set with glitz and glitter.  Effects and lighting are always important to the performance.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
LC:  When the lag is so bad that I crash in the middle of a performance.  That just drives me crazy.

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
LC:  I realize that everyone has a bit of a different control settings or computer capabilities so I do my best to use low lag effects.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
LC:   That it is done very professionally.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?
LC:   I have a blog – Miss Lady C.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
LC:  Don’t give up and always do your best.  If your heart is not in it, give it up.

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
LC:  1 hour.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
LC: Shopping around SL.

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?
LC: I receive a special enjoyment from performing burlesque.  I like to stick with a more traditional burly act since that is what I did in RL.  I relive those good times here in SL now that I am retired.  It brings back very fond memories.

A big thank you to Lady C for taking the time to be interviewed!

Interview with a Dancer #11 – Zed Karas

This little lady has one of the wickedest senses of humor I’ve come across on the grid. 😛  Please welcome Zed Karas to the Interview with a Dancer series!

Zed 2014

 

SL Name:  Zed Karas
Display Name:  Same
Rez Day: February 1, 2007

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
ZK:  Very soon after coming to SL I rented a small skybox, just somewhere to base myself from and unpack and play with things I’d bought.  This included animations. I’d always have the radio on so I’d dance along in my chair (admit it, you do it too) and I just played animations from my inventory (apparently this is called Freestyle, who knew?) to songs I liked. As my collection of animations grew, I began to develop little routines to songs purely for my own enjoyment.

How long have you been dancing?
ZK: For my own personal enjoyment, since I came to SL over 7 1/2 years ago. I started performing at MJ’s Burlesque Review when it opened about three years ago as a filler as they didn’t have a huge amount of people to put on a full show; I still consider myself a filler act.

Where do you dance?
ZK:  Mostly at home and at MJ’s Burlesque Review.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
ZK:  80 – 100 hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
ZK:  About 5%.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
ZK:  This depends on my mood and motivation.  I’ve made a full routine including sequencing, set build and emotes in less than two hours. Usually it takes much longer depending on the idea and what resources I have to hand; most of the time is spent sourcing materials and textures.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
ZK:  MyANIMATION.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
ZK:  Kuso.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
ZK:   I use the Barre HUD v3.0. I like to see a visual representation of exactly where I am at in the routine and if, for whatever reason, something goes wrong, I can resume from the next animation. I don’t use a more recent version because I don’t need the extra stuff like group functionality and I’ve found it to be stable enough not to have to upgrade.  More recent versions seem to come with free bugs that I can live without.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
ZK:  Only if the routine demands it, which is rare. I use the Spot On Choreography Design System for very basic movements, I’ve never found it reliable enough for more complex routines.  Otherwise I move manually.

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
ZK: I’ve used many different HUDs in the past to control separate things like curtains or effects, but if I need something special now I script the object to work from my Barre commands.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
ZK: I build my own sets and edit scripts to suit. I’ve had scripts made in the past for specific tasks but I now write very basic scripts myself. I try to keep my sets simple; I’m a burlesque performer dancing on a stage in a small intimate club, not a music video star.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
ZK: I do emote. It’s compulsory at MJ’s, but I also feel that it can enhance a performance and explain the moods, emotions, or story of the performance. We’re stuck with sets of prefabricated movement in SL so subtle movements aren’t possible; a RL dancer may be able to convey a certain mood or emotion to her audience, emotes fill this void in SL. My routines are usually story driven with a comedic element so emotes are rather essential in that respect, whether people choose to read them or not is up to them, but they’re there if they do.

Where do you find your music?
ZK:  I have a vast personal music collection so much of what inspires me comes from there. I find new music from listening to various SL DJs, YouTube, Last.fm, and personal recommendations.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
ZK:  Yes, I do. YouTube has a surprising amount of sound effects, also, sites like Soundsnap provide royalty free sound effects that should cover pretty much any sound you’ll ever need.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
ZK:  Personally, I prefer small sets/ stages.  I’ve been to so many shows where it’s difficult to even spot the performer on the stage because it’s so vast;  fair enough if you have a large troupe on stage at once, they all have to be able to fit, but as a solo performer small suits me. I avoid particle effects; it seems that a lot of people use them for the sake of using them, combine that with a large stage and you have no chance of finding the dancer at all. Same thing applies to lighting and other effects, if the act needs them then use them, if not it’s just shiny for the sake of shiny.

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
ZK:  Always, as I mentioned before I dislike too many effects/ particles.  Everyone sees SL differently so lighting can look terrible to some people, particles can appear as little (or big) grey boxes floating about, even large amounts of high poly mesh in a small area can crash people with slower computers. There’s no point having a hugely complicated show if people can’t see it.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
ZK:   I’ve seen a couple of my acts replicated by others, almost identical sets and costumes.  You can see them inspecting things when you’re on stage; it’s kind of flattering but some credit would be nice.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
ZK:  Take a break when you get frustrated. Expect to hate your favourite song by the end of your choreography, be prepared to spend a lot of money and time making something, and don’t expect to get rich from it.

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
ZK:  No longer than an hour, people get bored very quickly in SL, no matter how good the show is. It’s better to leave them wanting more than have them fall asleep.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
ZK: On my own sim, I potter about building and playing with stuff, riding my horse, drooling over my coveted gacha items and counting cats.

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.) 
ZK:  I’d like to see walls, props, and bits of set that prevent people dancing through them or a sense of spacial awareness.  I’ve seen so many people dance off a stage into mid air or disappear through a wall.

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?
ZK: Gadgets/ HUD’s do not make a good show. People jump on the bandwagon to have the latest thing thinking that it will add that spark of “magic,” but if you don’t have the original concept right then it’s all for nothing. Don’t believe the hype people spout constantly, not everything that’s new is really new. You’ve always been able to move about the stage (Xpose), you’ve been able to change your costume at the touch of a button (any amount of RLV assisted wardrobe HUDs), even appearing to play an animation from somewhere other than the start has been possible for over two years (The PieceMaker).

A big thank you to Zed for taking the time to answer all my nosy questions. 😀  Stay tuned for the next interview!

Interview with a Dancer #10 – Sarah Elisebeth Brenham

This next dancer has been dancing for quite a while.  She dances at various venues, she is a budding choreographer, and she’s one of the sweetest people on the grid.  Welcome, Sarah!

sarahelisebeth Brenham Pic2

 

 

SL Name:  sarahelisebeth Brenham
Display Name:  Sarah Elisebeth Brenham
Rez Day: 09/08/2006

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
SEB: I actually don’t remember, but i got into choreography when i was forced to do a dance for someone

How long have you been dancing?
SEB: Many years.

Where do you dance?
SEB:  The Starlite Theater, The Night Theater and various competitions and exhibitions.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
SEB:  About ninety-six hours.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
SEB:  Maybe fifteen percent.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
SEB:  Maybe a day.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
SEB:  MyANIMATIONS

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
SEB:  Right now I’m using a HUD that I got from a dance troupe I was in previously, and the SpotOn Performance Directors HUD.  The HUD I got from the group I was in is so easy to use. The Performance Directors HUD, I was advised to use.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
SEB:  Yes, Spot On Choreography Design. It was suggested that I learn this.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
SEB:  I work with builders.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
SEB:  As long you love your dance, nobody else’s opinion’s matters.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
SEB:  Yes. I enjoy telling stories.

Where do you find your music?
SEB:  YouTube.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
SEB:  Depends on my mood.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
SEB:  Too many to list.

Is there a particular artist (in SL or RL) that inspires you?
SEB:  Again, too many to list.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
SEB:  I forgot to cache my dances.

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
SEB:  Yes.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
SEB:  That they love my work.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
SEB:  Love what you do.

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
SEB:  Two hours.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
SEB:  The Arbor.

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.) 
SEB: Better couple dances.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?
SEB: My fashion blog: SohhhSarah   My dancing blog: Dancing Submissive   My Flickr: Sarah Elisebeth Brenham   My Facebook:   Sarahelisebeth Brenham

A big thank you to Sarah for participating in my ‘Interview with a Dancer’ series!

Interview with a Dancer #9 – Ric Lyle

I’m so excited that this next dancer agreed to be interviewed – it’s about time for a male perspective, don’t you think?  He’s one of the nicest guys on the grid and you can find him performing with the Fusion Dance Crew.  My apologies to him for the extended delay in getting this published!

Ric Lyle

 

 

SL Name:  Ric Lyle
Display Name:  Same
Rez Day: 08/19/2007

 

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
RL:  I started going to clubs all over SL.  Music is one of the best things about SL.  I tried to really dance to the music and bought animations to match the type of music and tempos.  I joined Chippendales and became a Lead Dancer.  In those days we did routines.  I’ve been with a number of dance groups since then.  My style did not really fit burlesque.  I even became a Beautiful Freak for a while but never got the chance to do a routine.  I figured if I had my own dance group I could do whatever I wanted to do.  That’s when Fusion Dance Crew started, thanks to my RL wife and SL partner Feli Ibanez.  She is really the one who made it happen and keeps it going even now.  But, it all starts with the music.  You have to feel the music and dance the animations that fit the music..

How long have you been dancing?
RL:  I’d say 4-5 years.  I’ve been a dancer for about 5 dance groups before Feli and I started Fusion Dance Crew.  I also dance with La Performance these days, and occasionally will stand in if someone needs me.

Where do you dance?
RL:  At our club Fusion Performing Arts Center.  And I go to various clubs throughout SL whenever I can.

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
RL:  These days, not enough.  I’d say 6 hours a week, primarily on the weekend.

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
RL:  About 50%.  I like creating routines and sets.  And it gives me something to do in SL.

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
RL:  Depends on how elaborate.  Most I would say take me 4-5 hours.  I use parts from previous sets if I can.  I like building sets.  It’s another chance to be creative.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
RL:  I like 3 the most:  MyAnimations,  Henmations and A&M.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance anims.
RL:  I don’t use non-dance animations very much, so I don’t have a fav store.  I should use them more often.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
RL:  I’ve used Huddles for a long time.  Maybe one of these days I will switch to Barre, but I don’t have a lot of SL time to learn a new HUD.

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
RL:  I do use one.  I use SZi Formation HUD.  It is easy for me to use and here again I haven’t had time to research and learn others.

Do you use other HUDs?  What are they?
RL:  For dance routines I’ve used other HUDs at times, for sword fighting, ninja moves, various special effects, poofers, etc.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder?
RL:  I build my own these days.  I like working on them.  You can find so much good stuff through XStreet.  And I think I’m getting better at it.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?
RL:  Hmmm…”come to center” before changing animations.  I must say, however, that it sure helps having an SL partner who is also into dance.  She critiques my routines and I critique her routines.  And we are able to discuss routines and shows in RL.  Helps a lot.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
RL:  If by emote you mean telling a story in local, yes, most of my routines today have a story.  I write them myself.  They are the hardest part of pulling a routine together for me.

Where do you find your music?
RL:  Sometimes I hear the music on the radio in RL, or hear the music in travels around SL.  But most of the time I’m looking for a specific type of music and I usually try Amazon MP3 listings.  Feli helps me a lot with music choices; she is really good at it.

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
RL:  Yes.  I use the free version of Virtual DJ.  I buy sound effects and most music at Amazon.  Most of my routines have more than one song so I often have to blend songs together.

What is your stance on the issue of music copyright in SL (and also in YouTube videos you might post)?
RL:  I buy my most of my music.  I’ve just started taking music from YouTube, but the quality isn’t very good.  Music is everything so the quality has to be good.  Artists also need to get paid for their work, so I pay if I like it.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  – Large/small sets; particles/none; effects/none; faders/none; emotes/none; movers/none; lighting/none;
RL:  I, and the other dancers at Fusion Dance Crew, try to bring the “full package” to every routine.  By that I mean great costumes, music, dance animations, sets, story and special effects.  We use all the items you listed, except lighting.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?
RL:  There are some good ones out there, but I do a lot of my shopping for costumes through XStreet.  It’s faster than going from store to store, and I can usually find what I’m looking for.  Hey..I’m a guy, what can I say.  Besides, most of my costumes I put together using bits and pieces from several or more costumes.  I actually like putting costumes together.  I’m a straight guy..so don’t tell anyone this!

Is there a particular artist (in SL or RL) that inspires you?
RL:  There are so many good people in SL dance.  I admire all of them for contributing to keeping dance alive and well in SL.  There are two groups that have been an inspiration to me:  Pink Ladies and Tigers and Kittens.  No only do they put on clever routines, but they are a good group of people who have been together a long time and still like each other.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
RL:  Well..I have gone completely naked on stage a few times, by accident.  I change clothes sometimes 3 times during a routines and sometimes my timing is off.  But then again, I do get close to totally naked in a lot of routines, hahaha.  Sometimes I try to hide costume changes with poofer of one sort or another.

What is your greatest fear as a dancer?
RL:  I’m sometimes afraid that some of my stuff won’t work as expected.  Sometimes it doesn’t…

What is your biggest complaint about dancing in SL?
RL:  I don’t have any complaints about dancing in SL.  All dance in SL is good.

Are there challenges being a male dancer that female dancers don’t face? What are they?
RL:  Actually I think being a male dancer is easier.  Because women are the ones who dominate SL dance, they all cut me a lot of slack in my work because I’m a male.  I appreciate it.

Do you ever consider how an audience member’s computer setup might affect their enjoyment of your performance?  (ie. – particles, effects, lag, etc.)
RL:  Not very often.  I just do my thing and hope people can see it well enough.

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
RL:  I pride myself on being one of the better free style dancers out there, mixing the right animation to the music and making it smooth to watch.  When people recognize my skill at this, it always makes me feel good.

Have you ever done a dance you look back on now and think was awful?
RL:  Yes there have been a couple of “stinkers.”  But I usually go back and try to rework and update it when I can.

Do you have a favorite performance/routine?  What is it and why is it your favorite?
RL:  I like all my routines in my inventory.  I try to improve them whenever I perform them.  I usually do male oriented themes (e.g. Tron, The Barbarian, Ninja, Superhero, Robots) which I don’t think we see enough of in SL dance, because there aren’t a lot of guys doing routines.

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give someone new to dancing in SL?
RL:  Choose music that inspires you.

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?
RL:  I’ve come to the conclusion that an hour is about right.  I learned this by trial and error.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?
RL:  Feli and I go to Soul Mods club on Friday whenever we can.  They have a great group of people, most from the UK.  They are all very quick witted and verbose.  I’ve never seen a place generate so much local chat in a 2 hour period, all without gestures.  The music is generally Northern Soul and US Soul.  I look forward to our visit every week.

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance?  (Something that is not currently possible.) 
RL: It seems like we already have a lot of tools available to us, and the tools are getting better and better.  I am one of the few, I think, that actually like dance competitions.  I’d like to see more of this, I guess.

And there you have it, folks, the latest ‘Interview with a Dancer’!  A great big thank you to Ric and again, apologies for the delay in publishing!

Interview with a Dancer #8 – SexyS Quintessa

Continuing with the ‘Interview with a Dancer’ series – here is the latest installment:

You can find our next dancer all over the grid – she’s one of the most dedicated shoppers I know!  In addition to shopping, she loves to dance.  Please welcome SexyS Quintessa!

sexys promo 2014

 

 

SL Name: SexyS Quintessa
Display Name:  LOL I need no other name!
Rez Day:  July 20, 2008
Location:  San Francisco Bay Area

 

 

Questions:

What led you to/How did you start dancing in SL?
SQ:  Well,  I was at a club one day and my friend invited me on her HUD.  She had better dances in it than the club had.  At that time I believe the club just had some of the freebie dances.  Most clubs had those at that time!   I asked her how can I dance like her?  So she told me go and buy this HUD and go to this dance animation place and buy some dances to put in it.  I went to the landmarks she gave me.  I bought the HUD which was a HUDDLES.  I went to the dance animation place and found a bunch of dances that I liked.   I used it for club dancing mostly until Blue Moon Cabaret became a Burlesque Club!

How long have you been dancing?
SQ:  I have been doing dance shows since 2009.

Where do you dance?
SQ:  Blue Moon Cabaret is where I started and will also call home!   Guerilla Burlesque, A&M MOCAP Maniacs, Elysium, Euphoria, and the newest one – The Partyculars!

How much time, on average, do you spend in SL each week?
SQ:  Lol – too much time!!!

Of that time, how much (%) is spent working on dances/performances?
SQ:  95%.  The other 5% is shopping or seeking out gacha machines!

How long does it take you to create a set (start to finish)?
SQ:  It all depends.  I recently finished an act that I did for the Le Cirque de Nuit production which took me 3 months.  Some have taken just a week.  With dance in SL these days, it’s taking much longer because of the movers and special effects.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for dance animations.
SQ: A&M MOCAP Danceworks.

Name your ‘go-to’ store for non-dance animations.
SQ: Oracul.

What dance HUD do you primarily use?  Why?
SQ: Barre dance HUD because I like it best! Lol.  If you want me to compare or tell why I like it best from all the dance HUDs that are out there would need a whole other blog post!

Do you use a movement system?  Which one?  Is there a reason you prefer one over the other?
SQ:  Yes, I use a mover system.   I have used DB Dance System and used that until all the other ones came out.  I currently use 2 depending on the situation.  I like SZI because it is easy and fast to work with. So when I need to create something quickly, I will use SZI.   When I have lots of time and PATIENCE, I will use SpotOn.  I like SpotOn as well because it moves so smoothly and is low in scripts.

Do you use other huds?  What are they?
SQ: I have used the SpotOn Director’s HUD.

Do you build your own sets or work with a scripter/builder? 
SQ: I’ve done both!!

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten about dancing?  
SQ: Well in RL, my first Bellydance teacher told me something that really also can pertain to SL.  “Bellydance is a CUT THROAT business, so be careful out there and watch out!” lol.

Do you emote?  Why or why not?
SQ: I used to at Blue Moon Cabaret because it was required! lol  Now I don’t have to!!  I’m a dancer not a writer!!

Where do you find your music?
SQ: Most of the time I hear it playing and think – oohh, this would be great for an act!

Do you make your own mixes?  If yes, where do you find music and/or sound effects?
SQ: No, I haven’t ventured into this department.  I have edited music so it’s cut down from 7 minutes to 4 or less.  I had to do that many times with bellydance in RL.  I was taught how to do that by one of my teachers.

What is your stance on the issue of music copyright in SL (and also in YouTube videos you might post)? 
SQ: They made the music to share with us, so I don’t see any copyright issue unless someone was selling it in SL for profit.

What are your preferences when it comes to dance performances?  (Large/small sets, particles/none, effects/none, lighting/none, faders/none, emotes/none, movers/none?) 
SQ: All depends really on the song and what I feel should be present in the act. Also the song has a lot to do with what I put into the act. I want a visual of the song. One song may not require particles whereas another song would.

What’s your favorite store for costuming?  
SQ: I have many!!! One of my favorites is !deviousBeauty by Chandra Meehan.

Is there a particular artist (in SL or RL) that inspires you?
SQ: In SL there are so many people who inspire me! Diawa Bellic, Misse Tigerpaw, and Setsuna Hirano are a few! There are many more.

What’s the most embarrassing or frustrating thing that has happened to you during a performance?
SQ:  Lol embarrassing would be a RL performance when my bra strap came undone!  Luckily, my straps were made so there is an “X” in the back.  So it was just flapping around in the back.  If I didn’t have that X in the back I dunno what might have happened!  After that incident, I reinforced all my bra straps and hooks with velcro.

What is your greatest fear as a dancer?  
SQ: In SL, I haven’t really had that emotion.  In RL, that’s another story.  Remembering choreography is a big fear! Especially when doing it with a group because that is always more noticeable.  Also dancing for the general public is always easier than dancing before your peers.

What is your biggest complaint about dancing in SL?  
SQ: The LAG that is often associated with performances in SL!

What’s the best comment/compliment you’ve ever received about your dancing?
SQ: I’m trying to remember now!  I’ve had many.  I should start saving them on a notecard!!!

Have you ever done a dance you look back on now and think was awful? 
SQ: Yes, some of my earlier choreography.   I’ve redone the choreography.

Do you have a favorite performance/routine?  What is it and why is it your favorite? 
SQ: I love all of mine! They are all my favorite!!  Lol – Best Artsy fartsy would be my act with “The Cold Song” by Klaus Nomi.  Best comedy – this is a tuff one cuz all of them are epic!  My Jerry Springer act! ??  Best Fantasy would be my act I did to “Fantasy” by Aldo Nova which was also the set that I won best sets through Dance Queens Cutie awards.

Do you have a blog/website/flickr/facebook/other account you’d like to share?  
SQ: Facebook – Sixys Quintessa

What’s the most helpful piece of advice you would give to someone new to dancing in SL? 
SQ: Join Dance Queens group cuz there is a ton of information there!

How long do you think a show should be in SL?  Is there an ‘optimum’ max length?  
SQ: 1 hour tops – anything longer than that loses my attention.

Where is your favorite spot to spend time in SL if you are not dancing?  
SQ: Any kind of gacha fair, lol.

What is one thing you’d like to see ‘arrive’ in SL dance? (Something that is not currently possible.)
SQ: I know this is not possible because of the SL limitations but I’d like to be able to start an animation in the middle of it instead of from the beginning cuz there’s always an animation I’d like to use just the middle of or just the end of it! I’d also like a larger amount of group space please!

Any other thoughts/ideas/comments you’d like to share?  
SQ: Naiki is a fleabag!  He was my pimp before I got into performance dancing!!

And there you have it, folks – our eighth installment of ‘Interview with a Dancer’!  Thank you so much to SexyS for taking time out of her busy shopping schedule to be interviewed.  🙂