My Super Gaz…

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To my amazing friend, confidant, teacher, trainer, critic, motivator, lover, HUSBAND,

There is no one like you, and even in my second life, I will search for you and be with you again. Happy Happy Birthday!

I am so proud of YOU!

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A Touch of Class

Last Sunday, 8th May, I was able to see the touring show of Ian Waite and Natalie Lowe in Bedford, ‘An audience with Ian and Natalie – A Touch of Class’. I was with my FitSteps ladies and we had an absolute fun evening, meeting them personally again (since my training) and watching the show. They were amazing! Congratulations to Ian and Natalie!

 

Remembering our Wedding day…

9th March, 2000 – our church wedding day in Manila, Philippines. It was our second wedding actually as we got married in civil ceremony in London in July 1999. We really planned our wedding in Manila as my family and relatives were mostly there. My relatives and friends came all the way from USA, Germany, Canada, UK, Cebu, Pangasinan. It was indeed a grand reunion of people closest to our hearts. Garry’s brother, Bob, came from London. That’s his first time in Asia and he had a blast.

I remember flying to Philippines twice in three months whilst planning our church wedding. I even spent Christmas with my family there and had a brilliant time. I don’t know how I managed to put an international entourage. All my best friends from childhood who are now in America, to High School, to College, were there. Out priest was the brother of my High School bestfriend. It was so special. But I guess when you know you have found the right person you want to be with for the rest of your life, suddenly everything seems to be easy.

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I was a beautiful bride, if I may say so. Ehem! Haha  My good friends made me look so beautiful in that beaded Indian silk gown, designed by my lovely friend. My make-up was just perfect as it wasn’t too dark, and it was very appropriate for a blooming bride.

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My parents were still around during our wedding day. My dad passed away in 2003, three years after my wedding. My Mommy passed away in 2012. Mommy was able to visit us in the UK, when I was due to give birth. She was able to enjoy her granddaughter, who was born in 2002.

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To my super loving husband who made me feel special all these years, I love you. I have no regrets after 16 years of being married to you. No one can ever replace you in my heart. Most of all, we were blessed with a beautiful daughter.

Happy 16th Wedding Anniversary, Garry!  ❤

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Remembering my Mum on Mother’s Day…

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Missing you everyday, Mommy.  I am very proud to be your daughter.  Rest in Peace. xxx

FitSteps fun…

I’m very proud of my FitSteppers. I have the best ones in class and they are all really lovely. Thank you so much everyone. I’m loving every moment teaching you FitSteps. Some routines can be challenging but they are all good. So keeeeeeep dancing! 😀

My classes are every Wednesday at 7:15pm, and every Friday at 11am, Brickhill Community Centre, Avon Crive, Bedford. See you there! 😀

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FitSteps FAB is coming…

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New Year started with a bang! FitSteps training with the pros, Ian Waite and Natalie Lowe!  What more can I ask for? I had a great time learning the new FitSteps FAB that will be launched in March 2016.

FitSteps dance, not part of creative arts?

I was embarrassed when I advertised my Dance FitSteps on Creative Bedfordshire group on Facebook as I ended up asking myself, ‘FitSteps is not creative?’ The moment my Ad was posted, someone said that dance fitness is not part of creative arts, and that FitSteps has got no cultural potential or possibilities.

I was shocked by that reply that FitSteps is not part of creative arts. First, it’s obviously a dance fitness. It is a ballroom and Latin dance based dance workout. Dance is a major form of creative arts as it is self-expression, not just merely doing movements. It’s common knowledge that dance is part of creative arts, so as drama, so as singing.

This group did not specify what kind of creative arts they are talking about. You probably meant – crafts, pottery, painting, etc – but they were not even mentioned in the description. You need to be specific so you don’t mislead people.

Cultural potential/possibilities. Ok, let’s see. FitSteps is based on ballroom and Latin dance. Now when you hear Latin, that is not obviously of English heritage. So there is culture already just from the word LATIN. All ballroom dance came from different parts of the world. Tango originated from Argentina, Rumba originated from Cuba, Salsa originated from New York with strong influences from Latin America, Waltz originated from Vienna, Quickstep was actually danced first in the Caribbean before developed in New York, Jive originated from African-Americans in the USA, etc etc etc. So do not even start with me about cultural opportunities when it comes to dance. My Italian friends’ son is based now in Canada as a Principal dancer in the Canadian Ballet Company. I came to Europe because of my dancing/singing/acting ability, hired all the way from Philippines to do a musical, so do not even underestimate dance per se not being creative enough. All forms of dances are creative arts whether ballet, modern, contemporary, hip hop, tap, ballroom, FitSteps, Zumba.

Maybe you just need a better exposure to improve your ignorance about creative arts.

 

Open letter to Open Mic UK

I have been observing Open Mic UK singing competition since my student, Elise De Wit, made it to the Grand Finals of Open Mic 2013 in Birmingham, without fighting for a position through wildcard voting. I have raised eyebrows so many times in this competition esp when I see people getting through to the next round, with no voice, who sing flat, no performance, no personality, except a guitar or a piano, and the judges would always say, ‘we want them to perform as it is not just about the singing.’

This year, I had two students in the 16 below category, and they both sang brilliantly in the Regional finals. Michael Cotter is only 14 years old and the only boy who sang amazingly in that category, and didn’t get through to the Area finals. His version of Sia’s ‘Chandelier’ gave a lot of people goosebumps as his voice was flawless. Ok not the pop voice but no one his age has ever done such style. Unfortunately, the judges didn’t see that at all. Even the presenter himself, gave an amazing comment to Michael. Having all men panel of judges didn’t see that at all. But what really annoyed me was seeing like four people who didn’t deserve to get through. One sang ‘Quiet’ from Matilda musical, totally flat, out of tune and got through? And I was right as when I saw the same kid during the Area finals, she was absolutely out of tune! I was so furious that she got through and Michael didn’t! What were you thinking judges? One played ukelele, whispered, and got through? Geeeez!

Now my other student, Mea Ellease, was absolutely nervous during the Regional finals. That’s for sure. She fought back when she won the wildcard voting. She sang ‘Love You I Do’ by Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls). Now if the judges were fair enough to notice that massive change in her performance and amazing rendition, and self-confidence, she would have gotten a place at the Grand Finals which was totally well deserved.  Yes, I understand about what you’re looking for, a style. What style? Whining? Play guitar and scream at the microphone? Is that what singing is to you? No control, no performance, nothing! You should have at least acknowledged the change in Mea. That girl who sang Ariana Grande’s ‘One Last Time’, she was horrendous! She couldn’t hit any of the high notes, cracking, and looked liked she was going to bed with that denim long sleeved shirt. What were you thinking?  Oh yes, she was giving the performance, but can’t SING!

I will no longer let my students join this competition as it is obvious that there is something political going on with your judging. Absolutely disgusted by what I have witnessed, and all money making.

Your wildcard voting charges £1 per text, XFactor charges 35p. And lastly, get a female judge in the panel to be fair. Men don’t listen to music, only wht they want to listen to. Men don’t think like women. Women judges are more fair and can see all angles.

 

My FitSteps journey…

FITSTEPS, a dance exercise based on ballroom and latin dance. Ian Waite and Natalie Lowe of STRICTLY COME DANCING started this dance workout. Ballroom has been a favourite in the UK and everyone just loves FitSteps. I am a massive fan of ballroom dancing. Since I was a child, I was exposed to this style as my Mom, uncles and aunties, cousins, knew Cha Cha, Salsa, Tango. I learned the basics from them. So when I heard about FitSteps, I went to do a class and tried this dance workout. I totally loved it!

I passed my instructor’s training two months ago and now I am ready to start my classes. After learning the routines, I finally found the right venues for my classes. I am so excited to teach it!

I have covered Aerobics classes when I was in my early 20s, but I never really enjoyed it that time as my first love was to perform on stage. My focus that time was to be on stage, and not to teach. Who wants to teach when you’re very young. Of course, you want to explore and do better. But now that I have found my love in teaching, since I became a mother, I am having an amazing time. I guess as we age, we change too. I had to give up performing to be there for my  daughter. I didn’t want to be like those mothers who see their kids one hour a day or just on weekends because they’re  on tour with a show. NO! I am happy to be free from doing 8 shows a week. Doing that for many years made my brain dead. I became a changed person since being free from the theatre world. I still love to sing once in a while but not to do it full time.

My FitSteps is going to be fantastic! I am very passionate about it.

So my friends and to all ballroom and latin dance lovers, please come to me FitSteps dance workout.

My FitSteps Classes in Bedford:

Wednesday at 7:15pm – 8:15pm  and  Friday at 11am – 12pm, Brickhill Community Centre, Avon Drive, Bedford, Bedfordshire.

See you there!

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RACE FOR LIFE 2015

My first time to join RACE FOR LIFE this year and it was amazing! I ran 5K and I had the most wonderful time. Meeting people fighting cancer, people who lost their loved ones with cancer, and people simply supporting Cancer Research UK. Thank you to all my amazing friends who sponsored me. I raised £115 in total. I exceeded my target which was £100. Great day indeed! xx

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