Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Behind the Scenes in L.A. Pt 1- Dancing Near the Stars

Delta music video shoot in L.A.:  Day 2 of choreography rehearsals at the International Dance Academy on Hollywood Blvd

Holiday E-Card Video Shoot in L.A.… Nationwide Casting Call for Delta Employees... Send in your video auditions by 5 p.m. EST...

I hastily responded to this notice by emailing my most recent Fred Meyer commercial (with on-camera acting and narrating credit) to the Digitas producer before leaving work for the weekend.  It came in handy that my smartphone was already stocked with a variety of samples from my acting/stunt work/modeling portfolio.

Congratulations on joining us for the shoot!  I am so glad you will be joining us in Los Angeles!

After reading this, I expected to receive a script containing my lines of dialog, I instead got an email on Saturday afternoon explaining that the role would “require a good amount of dancing." That seems random, I thought.  Indeed, the first day of choreography rehearsals would begin the next morning in Los Angeles, leading up to our Christmas-themed all-night video shoot on Tuesday evening.

At 3 a.m. on Sunday, I began my eight hour travel marathon from Portland consisting of Jeep driving, airport hopping, and taxis. The earliest connecting flight from Salt Lake City into L.A. forced me to miss the first two hours of dance choreography.  As a result, I had plenty of catching up to do after schlepping four days’ worth of luggage into the street level door of the L.A. International Dance Academy.

CameraZOOM-20121015131951380_edited-1The Hollywood Boulevard "Walk of Fame" was right outside of our L.A. dance studio at the International Dance Academy.

Tamarra and Nick, our enthusiastic dance choreographers, explained that I was flown in to L.A. a day early because the Delta ramp dancers had more dance steps to learn than the rest of the performers.  They quickly caught me up to speed as they taught everyone the remaining dance setups.

The ramp dancers hit Hollywood Boulevard after we wrapped the first day of rehearsals at the International Dance Academy.

On Monday morning, Delta flew in the remaining dancers: pilots, flight attendants, and passenger service agents.  CameraZOOM-20121015145525682_edited-1
We added dance solos and blended together the various routines.  It got sweaty and crowded inside our dance studio, especially later in the day when the production crew arrived.

Amidst the chaos, Tamarra and Nick (standing over Tamarra, who is laughing on the floor in the photo below) kept us riff raff under cool control.


By the time the director and co. showed up to observe our collective dance routines that afternoon, we had put together a show that everyone could be proud of!

The video shoot was only one day away.  Would sore, rarely used muscles recover in time?  Would everyone remember their dance moves after taking the morning and afternoon off?  Could the entire cast and crew even stay awake all night on Tuesday?

Check back here on BlogSpot in two days for the answers to these pressing questions, and more!

In the meantime, here are a few bonus freebies from the first two days of our L.A. dance rehearsals:

Choreographer Tamarra gets intense with the in-flight dancers on Day 2 of rehearsals at the International Dance Academy.

No known photos exist of the crazy night at Champions after Day 1 of rehearsals.  However, here is a photo from the following evening’s visit to the Hollywood Hills house of one of my favorite college buddies Joseph and his family, Candace and Liam.
While I was in town for the dance rehearsals, I dropped in on old friends Joseph, Candace, Liam, Angus, Liz, and Jacob.  The highlight of making the rounds was catching up with Joseph over dinner at Alcove.

And finally…our choreography rehearsals start to gel.

Click “Play” on the video above for a couple of rough run-throughs of one of our dance setups. I start out center frame wearing a striped v-neck, and then move to the right and back to center.  This was the second day of rehearsals at the International Dance Academy in L.A.

Coming Thursday on BlogSpot…

A peek behind the scenes of our all-night video shoot at the LAX airport!

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