It was Friday night, and like many recent Fridays, SL was doing it’s best to drive us batty. First, there was the fact that you couldn’t log in due to unscheduled maintenance and then, once you got in….well….I’m pretty sure that the engineers have turned over their Friday night responsibilities to a group of malicious little gremlins who enjoy randomly jamming up servers….
Whatever those little buggers were up to….the staff and fans of the Empire Room were ready with patience and perseverance and one amazingly diverse lineup. Paul, Jilley and Gunner were out greeting and meeting, Wiz was getting out announcements and we were all warming up backstage. The dancers imaginations have taken off like the mint in my garden and what a feast for the senses they provided!
Gunner was our beacon of sanity as usual. He is such a fun presence in the front of the house, but he’s the soul of calmness in IMs when SL is being crummy. Adding a song here, tweaking an intro there, making sure everything is ok (my own set wouldn’t rez….) and even when his own SAM crashed, he just logs off, logs back in and BOOM we are sailing away as if nothing has ever happened. He’s a pro…and I know we all appreciate what an amazing job he does for us every week.
Jilley opened the show this week to The Spinner’s “Cupid”. She was joined by Jo and Corri as very beautiful and sexy butterflies in a fantasy mushroom patch and Paul as our intrepid and well muscled cupid. He was also wearing a strategically placed bouquet of flowers which led to much speculation as to what could possibly be behind said flowers…The set was gorgeous, lush and deeply colored with accenting particles and the ladies were in beautifully scarce flowers as well. The fun animations and toe tapping tune got us off to an inspired start.
I was up next with Sara Bareilles’ “She Used To Be Mine”. This song is from her Broadway debut where she wrote the music for “Waitress” based on the movie. The song is a heartrending tale of dreams lost over time and working to find your way back to who you know you can be. I started as a waitress in a diner, and faded to a huge sakura tree with plants and flowers and into a flowy dress as the person I saw myself as in my dreams. It’s sad, but also hopeful, which is what I hope you all saw.
Sexys was up next and if you know her at all, you know it’s likely you have no idea what’s going to happen, but it’s going to be great! She chose “Star Wars Daddy” and bopped out as Princess Leia with Fuki as Han Solo and Tomigun as Luke Skywalker. The set was very…deathstarish and fabulous, but I was glued to Tray and Gunner as Stormtroopers and Baby as Darth Vader. They all had funny name tags which explained that Han wasn’t Luke’s Dad, and Baby was and the song was hysterical…I loved the part about why no one told Luke that he was kissing his sister. It was brilliant and funny and I’m so happy SexyS is dancing with us, I can’t wait to see what that brain will bring us next!
Ayita took the stage next and her set was to Elvis Presley’s “Jailhouse Rock”. This set was built as part of a challenge last weekend at her Dancing Outside the Lines school. The song was picked by others and she had three hours to build, choreograph, recruit, dress and perform, as did others. An amazing idea! She was joined by Maia, Mona, Tia, me, SoCo, Kyshra, Rus and Nalani. Maia and Ayita were the police…at least they were wearing a sort of approximation of a police matron’s outfit..though there was nothing matronly going on there! The rest of us were the jailbirds and we worked the best looking orange jumpsuits ever! It was Elvis, there was great lighting and a general butt dancing pile of goodness and fun was had by all.
Corri was up and she chose Agonoize “Blood Queen”. Corri’s set was hot…like on fire hot. I can’t imagine what our insurance costs are lol, but Paul swears we are all paid up. Corri was a little devil…literally, in skin tight latex with adorable little horns and one wildly sexy set of dances to one wild metal tune. I learned that we have several closet mosh pit fans in the dancers group 🙂 If you were a little tired after a long week, you weren’t after this set!
Babypea brought us a little King Kong inspired set to Painkiller’s “Reborn” King Kong mix. She was a delicate captive, chained as snack food for the big ape, but as only our Baby can, with a set full of skulls and stones and a huge hand where she danced in the palm…she transformed and broke the bonds that held her. She uses particles so well to smooth her transitions, it was just amazing and beautiful. I’m pretty sure that the only word that I could come up with in group was WOW. I have to see this set again, I feel like I missed so much and want to chronicle every little thing she did so I can try to figure out how to do it myself:)
Kyshra was up next to Rez’s “Puscifer”. Ok…hot! Another set where the very building we were in was at risk of going up in flames. Add to that scenario the fact that Kyshra appeared to have purchased a bra that was seven sizes too small and you have an audience that was at risk of going up in flames by spontaneous combustion. I did notice that she used these amazing cool purplish particles to accent her deep blood red set. It was a great counterpoint for those of you who may have been focused on other “assets” that were available for viewing *winks*.
Wiz was up next with an amazing tearjerker of a set. The world seems to have gone a bit insane these last few months…well, more insane and at a faster pace than previous if you ask me. If the world was a serial killer, I would say that it’s decompensating. The weekend of the Orlando nightclub shooting, there was a shooting the night before of an up and coming artist, Christina Grimmie. Wiz chose her version of “Titanium” a song about tempting someone to “shoot her” because she was invincible because she was titanium….a metaphor for life no doubt, but on Friday, June 10th, the metaphor turned into a tragic reality; she was shot and killed in Orlando, Florida, the night before the nightclub massacre. Wiz chose to dance in a cut out phone while the story of her life was told on two other phones that surrounded him. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house. It was beautiful.
Mona was the last dancer of the evening with what may have been one of the cutest, most original sets I’ve seen. She was joined by Keko Heckroth and they danced to Phyllis Hyman “You Know How To Love Me”. They were the most adorable cut out paper dolls, and the set was that old fashioned (yep..I’m old and fashioned) lined paper from elementary school that changed scenes while our little lovebirds danced. I adored this…and kudos to content creators who make such amazing stuff for us to bend to our will during sets! Great find Mona 🙂
Imrhien did our crowd dances for us, and what a great round it was. She chose Tori Amos “Raspberry Swirl”, Robin Schulz’s “Sugar” feat. Francesco Yates and Razed in Black “I Want Candy”. Immi not only choreographed, but built three separate sets for the three songs…over achiever! The songs were great, the sets were great and it was another hip hopping end to the first day of the weekend.
On behalf of all of us, thank you so much for joining us again and we can’t wait to see you next weekend! Oh…note that Tray is wearing a tutu over his stormtrooper outfit…I have no idea what that’s all about, but I encourage you all to ask him!