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Alexandra Lund

#YouTubeLA

Google Creator Day #YouTubeLA

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As you may know, I have been really publishing a lot of videos on YouTube the past year. It is something that became part of my career development strategy when I became a professional dancer. A lot of it was inspired by Will Willdabeast Adams, and his creative director, Brazil.  When I started my channel, Willdabeast had about 500,000 subscribers. Today he has 1.5 million. When I started I had about 25, and recently I got the attention of YouTube when my subscribers neared 10k. I was the only kid invited to Creator Day at #YouTubeLA, so my dad had to go with me.

First Observation – 10K is a magic number

Because I am in the entertainment industry, I personally know at least 20 dancers that have more than 10k subscribers. Many, like Jordyn Jones have over 500k. Because their subscriber numbers are so launched, I really did not see my 10K as a big deal. However, I learned from YouTube that it is a big deal. It puts me in the top tier of YouTube creators in the world.

To encourage YouTube creators, YouTube has developed 8 film studios with legit equipment in major cities around the world including Los Angeles, London, Tokyo, New York, Sao Paulo, Berlin, Paris, and Mumbai. When you hit 10K, you can unlock the YouTube space and use their film studios for FREE!

IMG_3032Best Practices

At YouTube Creator day, I was joined by about 70 other YouTubers to learn about best practices, discuss collaborations with other creators, tour the studio, and layout content plans.

There are 10 Keys to Great Content

  1. Discoverable – Will the content be found through search or related videos
  2. Accessible – can every episode be fully appreciated by a new viewer?
  3. Sharable – will viewers want to share these videos?
  4. Collaborative – Is the channel working with other talents?
  5. Targeted – is the channel targeting a specific audience?
  6. Conversational – Is there an element of speaking directly to the audience?
  7. Interactive – is there a way to involve the audience?
  8. Consistent – are there strong recurring elements?
  9. Sustainable – If the fans love it, can you make more of it?
  10. Inspiration – Is the content coming from a genuine place of passion?

If you are a YouTuber, or a video creator of any kind – consider your video content against these 10 content fundamentals.

What is the Persona of your channel viewers?

For me, I started publishing my dance to YouTube primarily to market my skills to choreographers who I was likely to see at an audition. Video has also become a popular way of submitting for dance jobs.  I direct book some of my work with choreographers who know me, or select me from my video. I am pretty sure that it was a combination of knowing the choreographer and my video submission that helped me book the Justin Bieber Purpose tour.

As my audience grew, I began to realize that my target was being reached by my videos, but the true personas of my viewers are kids like me; mostly other dancers. 81% are female and 19% are male.

YouTube has a hard time tracking kids (see Terms of Use).  So I think that my age range statistics are off. 16% are under age 17, 58% are 18-24, 15% are 25-35, and it’s all downhill from there.

One think I try to do is answer every comment on all of my videos. There, I see that most of the audience that comments are girls my age and dancers.

Content Planning

YouTube suggests that channel owners manage their content creation into three categories. The first is called Hero Content. If you are a fan of my channel, you may know that I have been doing this once a quarter for about a year, sometimes more often. For me, Hero Content is when I work with a choreographer and a professional camera crew on a set location to build a concept video. If you look at my videos with the most views, those are the Hero pieces.

The second type of content is Hub content. For me, these are videos that were either from conventions or stuff shot in my studio. It is published once a week and typically on Thursday if I am not too busy.

The third type of content is Help Content. This content is aimed at inspiring your page viewers, answering questions and stuff like that. I have a series of dance training videos on stretching, some Q&A videos and stuff like that. These are also known as special video that occur every once in a while on your channel.

Collaboration StrategiesCollaboration

One of lessons from Creator Day is to Collaborate with other YouTubers. By working with other channel owners with similar or different fans, I can build my channel viewers and subscribers. I had the opportunity to meet a bunch of musicians and we know that they always need dancers. I have also done some collaboration with other dancers. They are super fun.  If you have a channel and you want to collaborate – let me know!

When We Were Young

Ellen Opportunity!

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Hey everybody! So.. BIG NEWS: My video has been posted on Ellen Tube! If you all share it, I could get on the show! This amazing video was choreographed by Robert Schultz, danced by Trevor Quezada and myself, and featuring beautiful music sang by Tanner Patrick. So… you should all share it on all the social medias! I mean, unless you’re too cool for that nonsense… Here’s the link!

Shout Out To The New Times

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Fullscreen_1_8_16__1_52_PM…….That moment when you look at the newspaper and find an article about yourself it it….

A BIG SHOUT OUT TO Ryah Cooley, the Arts Editor for the New Times. Ryah and her photographer Dylan Honea-Baumann came out to the SparkLab studio between Christmas and New Years Day to watch me train and to interview me for an article that came out today.

A few years ago, being interviewed for a newspaper article was nerve racking. Now that I have gotten the hang of it, it is really fun. Part of the fun is never knowing what they choose to write about.

I am really happy with how the article turned out. I think that Ms. Cooley did a great job of telling the story that I am just like every other kid – going to school and practicing my sport.  In dance, you do not have friday night lights, you have performances that sometimes, if you are lucky, make it to television. Short of that, I love putting videos on YouTube and it is fulfilling to watch my art engage so many people. Last month my videos hit over 1500 hours of viewing! That is just crazy.

Thank you New Times and thank everyone who pays attention to what I am doing. It is great to have so much support.

Check out the article http://www.newtimesslo.com/art/13285/cyberfamous-teen-dancer-from-arroyo-grande-hits-1-million-views-on-youtube/

 

 

Sean Lew and the Best Boys Ever

By | Dance, Friends, Stuff I Like | 2 Comments

There was a time when I was 8 or 9 years old when DPAC when to visit our sister studio in LA, Dellos Performing Arts. I met Sean Lew on Instagram for the first time. He is a year older than me and one of the best male dancers in the world. Sean and I were also both privately trained by Mr. Marco Cruz for years. Over time, I ran into Sean a lot at The Pulse on Tour and other conventions. We also often got calls for the same auditions and worked together from time to time, including The Voice. He and I are also teammates on #immaBEAST with Will Adams.

Sean Lew with Big Will Simmons and  Josh PriceThe dance industry is mostly competitive and cutthroat. But, there are a few enlightened kids that understand that is wrong. Sean is one of those. When I would travel by myself to train at conventions, I was alone and surrounded by kids that were there with their studios. Very few kids would go out of their way to make friends. Everywhere I have ever seen Sean, he has always been my friend and looked after me. I don’t have an older brother, but I imagine that if I did, he would be a lot like Sean.

There was a time a few years ago when Sean started choreographing his own solos. People had their opinion about Sean, some believing that he was too big for his britches. They were so wrong. Sean was born to dance and born to be a choreographer. His work is so good that he gave up competition after winning everything. As you will see from the video – his work is epic.

Today, Sean dropped one of the most amazing videos. Sean choreographed this trio with Bill Will Simmons and Josh Price. The three of them are easily in the top 10 dancers in America today and all #immaBEAST team members. These boys are the greatest and this video is sooooo good.

Watch this video and remember, “sharing is caring!” Share it on your social media so the world can see how talented these guys are!

How to Assist at a Dance Convention

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I am in an airport heading to the first Hollywood Vibe in St. Louis. I am so excited to see everyone again and begin the tour as Dancer of the Year. My dad and I had a conversation in the United Club lounge in San Francisco about the differences between this year and the last time I won dancer of the year. It inspired me to write this post because there is no manual for assisting or the other things that you do as a company member or DOTY for a convention. In some small way, you may want to use this as a guide.

Icon of the yearFirst of all, when I won Icon of the Year for Hollywood Connection, I was not really going for it. It was my second year on the competition team and my first year doing solos. My solo, Whatcha Want placed first place in San Jose that year and I won regional Icon of the Year runner up. I really had no expectation to win Dancer of the Year. I just went to Nationals and worked my but off and did the best job I could. I nearly peed my pants at the awards banquet when they called my name. It was a total shock. I was 9 years old at the time, and I toured with Hollywood Connection the next year and assisted in the junior room on stage in about 5 or 6 cities

That same year, I won regional Dancer of the Year for Hollywood Vibe and was invited to join Team Hollywood Vibe. Team Hollywood vibe members assist teachers. It also qualified me for Dancer of the Year. Last year at Nationals, after touring 4 or 5 cities with team Hollywood Vibe, I was fortunate enough to be selected as Dancer of the Year. This was totally different than Hollywood Connection. I wanted it. I knew that I would need to work really hard at home and at convention to elevate my skills to be a contender. It was my goal. Competition was fierce and I fought my emotions and doubt with courage and dedication. In truth, becoming a finalist would have been good enough. I don’t really know how they pick a winner when it is down to a few dancers. I can tell you that the other girls definitely were as good if not better than me in so many ways. It was a toss-up and I am grateful that I got it.

Convention as Dancer of the Year is a totally different experience. I do not compete, but I run my solo in each city. I will also be in the team Hollywood Vibe company dances. All of the company members are sent a video of the dance a week in advance and we learn it on our own. This is a really important skill to pick up. As a professional dancer, I am often sent video footage of a dance to learn in advance of rehearsal. We need to have the skills to learn a dance so that rehearsal is more about cleaning than teaching.

My dad asked me about the pressure I feel as DOTY. He wanted to know if it is harder to dance on stage in front of everyone versus being on the floor learning. The answer is “it depends on the choreographer,” and “it depends on what you are doing.” When you are learning the 8 counts, it is important that you focus on the movement and the timing so the dancers on the floor have a clear understanding of the choreography, especially if the choreographer doesn’t dance it. You need to rely on your body for technique. I try to go more full out when the dance is being taught, and less full out when running groups. Here is the idea. When the dance is being taught, they should be looking at the teacher and assistant on stage going full out. That is how you learn. But when running groups, the class should be going full out and we are there to give them the queues when they need it. I go at about 70 or 80 percent during groups and focus on accenting the details of the dance.

If you are assisting for the first time, feel free to DM me on Instagram with questions. I wish I would had a guide my first time. I was scared and uncertain and it would have helped to learn from someone that has been there before.

Happy Halloween

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Hi fam! I have three super fun things to tell you about my Halloween. First off, I was Flo from Progressive. Perfect, right?

Clark Center for the Performing Arts FoundationSecond, huge thank you to the Clark Center Performing Arts Foundation Board who provided me a scholarship to attend a ballet program this summer. As you might expect, these intensives are expensive.

Third, right after Hollywood Vibe in San Diego, we started work on a special YouTube video for Halloween to the song Animals by Nabiha (https://youtu.be/yT1bW3Cproc). The choreography was done by #immaBEAUTY Janelle Ginestra. We released the video on Halloween Day at noon.

A lot of my YouTube videos have been solo performances. Recently I have been changing that up because it is way more fun to dance with other kids. I cannot thank my friends enough for the hard work and time that they put into the video. There is normally one or two days of learning choreography. If you know Janelle, then you know that each rehearsal is about four hours and you go full out the whole time! If you think that taking a 1 or 1 ½ hour class at Millennium is intense – you have not lived. On top of that, they came back for a full day shoot directed by Helton Brazil Sequeira – or @directorBrazil.

I love every one of these girls and cannot thank them enough for their work #lilBEAST family rocks!

Jadyn Hernandez (@JadynHernandez715)

Jenna Z Alvarez (@JennaZAlvarez)

Savanna Kubat (@Savanna.Kubat)

Sofia Wylie (@Sofia_Dance10)

Tahani Anderson (@Tahani_Anderson) **Second Appearance – love her!

Vivien Lopez (@VivienLopez569)

Here is the video

Ok, wait – there is a fourth thing. 1 Million Views on YouTube – crazy right?

1 Million YouTube Views

 

 

 

 

Preview of Animals Dance For Halloween

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Hi Everyone!

The immaBEAST dancers supported me in the creation of this special dance for my YouTube page. The choreography was created by immaBEAUTY, Janelle Ginestra. @willdaBEAST was not involved in this project, but it is important to acknowledge that none of this stuff would not happen without his vision for supporting and creating opportunities for dancers. Thank you Will!

We are doing a really cool thing to launch the video. Each day between now and Halloween, a different instagram announcement will be dropped.

  • @jennazalverez
  • @vivienlopez569
  • @tahani_anderson
  • @jadynhernandez715
  • @savanna.kubat
  • @sofia_dance10

Thanks to @directorbrazil for all of his hard work producing these videos, and thanks to you for all of the support too.

Check it out

Summer 5 – Summer Ends School Begins and Some Big News

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If you missed the other posts in this series, you may want to go back and start at the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

Summer 4 – Dancer Palooza and BuildaBEAST Experience

While all of this was going on, a few other things happened. My work on the Voice put me over the limit on being a non-Union dancer. So at the beginning of the year I was invited to join the Screen Actors Guild. It is a great organization that really does a lot to make sure that professional actors and dancers are paid a minimum living wage of at least $250 per day.

BTB Management GroupI was signed by BTB Management and am now blessed to be managed by Nelson Diaz. No more momager or dadager! Not that my parents did not do an excellent job….. BTB manages many of the top dancers and actors in America. I am a long way from their experience, talent, and fame – but I am working on it. Nelson and the entire team at BTB are great to work with. He is always looking out for all of us and guiding our growth while he develops opportunities. My parents need the break anyway. They have their own work to do. PS – I now call Nelson’s wife Aunt Mary – that’s what it’s like!

 

 

MSA AgencyA component of getting a manager was that I switched from Clear Talent to MSA. This had nothing to do with anything related to Clear Talent. They were instrumental to all of my success the past few years and I would highly recommend them as anyone’s agent. @ShaynaBrouillard was fantastic and I love her.

The dance department there is top notch and they represent many of my friends who are super successful. Switching agencies is not like getting a divorce, but it is certainly a change. Everyone at MSA has been great so far and I look forward to being with MSA for a long time.

Somewhere in here I missed that I did a job for Nickelodeon and was featured on the front page of the San Luis Obispo Tribune. Both of these were lifetime firsts for me. I tried to put a lot of stuff on my Youtube page and on Instagram. If you scroll through those, you will see more. I was also selected to be a Sadie Jane ambassador. Along with Divina, they have some of the best dancewear.

I hope I am not forgetting anything. I certainly did not mention everyone that I spent time with this summer. But, I have been writing this post for days and it seems like this series will never end. This is like a short novel.

Skrillex_Scary_Monsters_-_David_Moore_Choreography_Mix___Sparkles_Lund___Friends_-_YouTubeStay tuned for some cool releases on my YouTube channel. I was the host for the season the Behind the Scenes shooting of #immaBEAST year three video. We are also shot a new hip hop video for the amazing David Moore. I have been rehearsing with my super talented friends, Tahani Anderson and my semi-twin pal, Kaycee Rice for a VH1 live show choreographed by Janelle Ginestra. We were Barbie dancers! Check it out https://youtu.be/nFVzWHxnbT8

Brand_New_Sound___Barbie_Soundtrack___Janelle_Ginestra_Dance_Choreography_-_YouTube

On the home studio front, I have been taking ballet classes at a new studio called Movement Arts Center in San Luis Obispo.  Big News is that Dellos Performing Arts Center is moving to a brand new studio! Can’t wait for another great season with my #DPACfam.

If you missed the other posts in this series, you may want to go back and start at the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

Summer 4 – Dancer Palooza and BuildaBEAST Experience

This is my first 5 post series. I hope you liked it! Stay tuned for more.

Summer 4 – Dancer Palooza and BuildaBEAST Experience

By | Convention, Dance, Friends | 2 Comments

If you missed the first posts in this series, go back to the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

Dancer PaloozaThe next week, we moved from Burbank down to Long Beach for Dancer Palooza. That is a weeklong intensive that, in my opinion, has the best collection of contemporary teachers you can find anywhere. I took classes from Mandy Moore, Mia Michaels, Sonya Tayeh, Teddy Forance, Stacey Tookey, Travis Wall, Dee Caspary, Benoit-Swan Pouffer, Andrew Winghart, and others. http://www.dancerpalooza.com/thecollective

Girls – dance aside – if you have not been to the expo at Dancer Palooza, you have not lived. It is the most number of booths that I have ever seen – its huge!

I did a haul vide with my loot! Check it out

Our #immaBEAST team also was invited to dance in the Showcase. We were rehearsing during Mini Muse and during Dancer Palooza, so after taking classes every day for two weeks, I also had rehearsals at night. I have never been in better shape in my life – 12 pack abs!

Liz_ImperioLiz Imperio and her new Fiancé came to the showcase. I love her and the support she gives me as a dancer, a friend and a coach. If you do not know Liz, try your best to meet her. She has a program called Breaking Barriers (http://breakingbarriers.dance/) that has been super helpful at helping me set my goals in life and as a professional dancer. Her coaching, advice, and heartfelt support she gives to dancers makes her a very special person. I can’t wait to get on tour with Hollywood Vibe where she is the creative director. #secondMom

Just to keep the flow going, the next week was the #BuildaBEAST Experience. What a switch from a week of contemporary to a week of hip hop. As an #immaBEAST and #lilBEAST, we were able to help work the event and dance. The entire week was filled with the best hip hop training I have ever had. I was surrounded by the best dancers from all over the world (like 22 countries or something insane like that) and across America. #immaBEAST is so much more than a crew. It’s a dance family like no other. The BuildaBEAST experience finished up with the auditions for #immaBEAST. The competition was so fierce and everyone worked so hard. I have no idea how Willdabeast narrowed down the hundreds of auditions to the team we have now (about 70 strong). The good news is that I was able to dance hard enough keep my spot on the team. I learned that there are no free rides in life. Just because I danced on the team last year was no indicator that I would be on the team this year.

Here is my Solo from the event – it was epic

PS – AirBoard was a sponsor at BuildaBEAST and I got one! Hurray. Super fun #christmaslist for you.

If you are keeping track of the weeks, by this point I have not been home at all since school let out in June, amounting to six straight weeks of being on the road! I should pause here and thank my parents for making this all possible for me. With two weeks left before school started, I stopped dancing 12 hours a day and was limited to #sparkkids rehearsals, auditons, #LASparks games, and rehearsals for the #immaBeAST season three video. We still were driving back and forth to LA multiple times each week and staying a few nights in LA each week, but I did actually get to sleep a few nights in my own bed and see my friends at home.

BuildaBEAST Season 3 Video

If you missed the first posts in this series, go back to the beginning.

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Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

Next up is the Summer Series Finale – Summer Ends, School Begins, and Big Announcement

Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

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If you missed the first posts in this series, go back to the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Leaving Las Vegas broke up the #teamlarkes tour for a few days. Grandma Anne, my mom, dad, @AustinDoodle and I took a round-about way down to Phoenix. We went up to Bryce Canyon in Utah then drove South down through Nevada along the Grand Canyon and through Sedona. It took us three days and we really were glad that my mom got a new comfy car. If your parents ever ask you if you want to go see one of these places, say YES! I cannot tell you how beautiful it was. Pictures do not do it justice. The size of everything is amazing. I liked Bryce Canyon the best. The Grand Canyon was huge, but it is really a big wide ditch. Definitely something to see, but the upward spires of Bryce Canyon and Sedona are more dramatic to me. We finished the three day tour in Phoenix where #teamlarkles was reunited.

Leah and her family are so nice. We stayed at an amazing 5-Star resort (my parents had free vouchers). We got to see  Leah every day since she lives in Scottsdale. One day we worked with a photographer  and got new headshots. Another day we took a private lesson with Leah’s favorite choreographer (kayci). Another day we splashed around in the pool. Another day we went to the Roga’s house for her brother’s amazing birthday party. It was a great visit. Phoenix rocks!

After Phoenix, #teamlarkes went back to Los Angeles for a week of training with Jessica Star for the Mini Muse intensive. Mini Muse is an intensive that is hard to get into because of the high standard of dance and the commitment to giving back by supporting anti-bullying. Here is a video highlighting the classes we took with amazing choreographers. Our anti-bullying video releases in October. It was shot on the Santa Monica pier! My favorite class was silks. If you have not taken a silks class, seek one out. Everyone at mini muse was wonderful and I met dancers from all over America. We had a blast and I hope to do it again. Check out the Muse Effect on Facebook or Instagram (MuseDanceCompany) for more information and follow them! Thanks again Jessica for being so flexible with my audition and work schedule. It is hard to do this stuff as a working dancer, but you made it happen!

Check back or subscribe to see post #4 in this summer series – Dancer Palooza and BuildaBeast

If you missed the first posts in this series, go back to the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Summer 2-  Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

Summer 2- Hollywood Vibe DOTY and Team Larkles

By | Competition, Convention, Dance | One Comment

If you missed the first posts in this series, go back to the beginning.

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

If you read my blog regularly, I won Regional Dancer of the Year for Hollywood Vibe. It is a huge honor to be selected by the Hollywood Vibe faculty as the top dancer of the weekend, but moreover it qualified me to compete for the National Dancer of the Year during Hollywood Vibe’s Nationals Competition.

Hollywood Vibe held their week-long Nationals in LA and the talent and competition was fierce. It was not really a drama, but emotions ran high. I loved dancing with so many friends from around the Nation, like one of my besties, Leah Roga from Phoenix.  Just for fun, our parents had #teamlarkles#TeamLarkles shirts made for us since we plan to spend many weeks together, and #TeamLarkles was born!  I tried to work as hard as I could so that I could dance well and show the teachers at the convention that I was deserving of the title National Dancer of the Year. I woke up my mom at 5:30 each morning to help me get ready so I could be there way before our call time 7:00 am. Liz Imperio, creative director of Hollywood Vibe taught me a lesson that I try to live by. She said that if your call time is 7:00 then 6:45 is “on time”.  If you want to be early you need to be there at 6:30 am.  I do my best to follow this rule whenever I am headed to a rehearsal or audition.

At the end of the week, they called up the top 5 dancers to the stage.  Then they announced the top 2 dancers in my Intermediate category to do a dance off. I made the top 2 list and it was very nerve racking, but exciting at the same time.  The next morning the two of us got to dance for all of the judges at the event and a large audience.  They didn’t tell us who won the award until the awards show that evening.

At the end of the night, I was the last dancer standing and was awarded the Hollywood Vibe National Dancer of the Year! There were so many dancers deserving of the title that it was a shock to win!

This year I am planning to go to as many Hollywood Vibe conventions as possible. It is a great honor to represent them. #TeamLarkles almost doubled up. Leah Roga was a finalist in Teens and won top solo overall. Her competition was REALLY competitive.  The Teen Dancer of the Year went to one of my immaBEAST teammates – Trinity Inay. She is a super sweet girl and a great dancer.  We got to know each other earlier this year when we  worked together on Dancing With The Stars (see video https://youtu.be/xQkAPpxDQB0?list=PLYVO53t5xTKUnxykgAK8wq_Qz88ujzrH6

).

Hollywood Vibe is my second National Championship as a dancer. The first came three years ago at Hollywood Connection; they call their national prize ICON of the Year. Here’s a little known fact for you.  Hailee Paine, one of the top 4 finalists on So You Think You Can Dance also won the Senior title of Icon of the Year at the same competition.  I absolutely love her!  She’s an amazing dancer and one of the nicest people in the world!  I was sad that she did not win SYTYCD, but getting to the final two for Team Stage is a huge accomplishment. She really shined as a versatile dancer, often outperforming many of the Team Street dancers in Hip Hop pieces. Amazing, right?  I’m so excited to see where her career is going to go from here!

Pulse Las VegasAfter Hollywood Vibe the #TeamLarkles tour continued at The Pulse on Tour in Las Vegas. We literally left the awards at HV Nationals and drove ALL through the night to get to Vegas. The Stutts family followed with us (shout out to Hannah and Pate). We did not get to perform in the showcase because we missed Friday, but the rest of the weekend was amazing – lots of friends and great training. A bunch of my friends including Leah became Pulse Protégé, which is a huge honor, but not me. Maybe I will win next time. You just never know. I really appreciate winning scholarships that have allowed us to continue going to Pulse in the future. The faculty, staff, and dancers go full out. It is a great place to learn and train. I am always exhausted when I leave. FYI, Bally’s Las Vegas is a dumpy hotel ☹

Be sure to check out the first post in this series

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

Subscribe to see the next post –  Summer 3 – Leaving Las Vegas

Summer 1 – LA Sparks and Trip To New York

By | Dance, Friends, Travel | 6 Comments

I am really sorry for not blogging in so long. My website was pretty messed up and I had a crazy summer. Now things are back to normal (well sort of) and I am back in school like most 12-year-old kids. The rest of my schedule is anything but normal, but it’s good to be home. Here is a recap of the summer. This will be series of posts that I’ll publish every couple of days as time permits, so hang in there and subscribe to get notified when Summer 2 is released – titled Hollywood Vibe Nationals, Drama and Team Larkles.

In the middle of June, I went with my school drama group to NYC. This was the beginning of a travel schedule that took me away all summer. We had an amazing experience. I have been to New York City once a year with my parents, so I know my way around Midtown and Times Square and have done all of the tourist-y stuff. I can tell you that it is way more fun to travel with your friends. (Sorry Mom and Dad!) We had a blast. I am releasing a video in the next few weeks that shows what we did. I lost the footage but just found it. Be sure and subscribe, or watch my YouTube channel. My favorite part of the trip was attending Broadway shows. At sometime in my life I hope to dance on Broadway (Hint Hint Chelsea Blake from MSA and Nelson Diaz from BTB Management). I also loved visiting the set of Saturday Night Live. I love comedy television and it would be amazing to be on that show! #goals. I guess the point of the trip was to dream big, and I am on it.

All summer long I have been dancing for the LA Sparks women’s professional basketball team as part of the LA Sparkids. The team just made the playoffs, so the season continues. The ability to work with choreographers like Brandee Evans and Jenna Frechette has been exceptional. And, who would not want to be on the court at the Staples Center! It is a legendary place for sports (aka home of the Lakers) and entertainment (Taylor Swift set a record for sold out shows this year). They are picky about posting video of our routines, so I do not have much beyond a few short clips on Instagram that shows the work. I made so many new friends on the #sparkids team and was able to work with a lot of the #sparkids that just made it to the #immaBEAST team too. I’m so excited that Im going to get to spend more time with them!

Be sure to subscribe if you want to hear the rest of the summer story. Next up is the Hollywood Vibe Nationals Drama and the introduction of the ongoing dream team – Team Larkles!

Click Here to read post 2 in the series now 

I Performed on The Voice Monday

By | Auditions, Work | One Comment

Sparkles Lund on The VoiceLike any other middle school kid, I got up Thursday morning and went to school. We are in the middle of state testing. At 1 p.m. my world took and unexpected turn and I was pulled out of class to head to Los Angeles for an audition. There was very little information other than it was a SAG job, small audition, and those two little words “The Voice!” After the audition, I went to Millenium Dance Complex and took a great class with Nick Demoura. My wonderful agent Shayna Brouillard called later that night to tell me that I booked it! It was late and I was tired, but the excitement was overwhelming.

I was not able to go to school on Friday because we had rehearsal. We met at Center Staging, which is a spectacular place. That night I met the amazing Hi-Hat – Grammy Award winning choreographer for people like Justin Bieber, Shakira, Rihanna, Willow Smith, Big Time Rush, Ke$ha, Selena Gomez, Missy Elliott, and my favorite – the Kia Motors commercial with the dancing “Hamstars” …..you get the picture. She’s got skills, and the opportunity to work for such a great choreographer is an honor. Here’s a twist. I also sang backup in front of a live audience with 14 Million TV viewers! This video is from the last time I sang in front of a live audience when I was 4. I hope I did a better job!

Here was my schedule for Saturday

11am – Call Time

11:30-11:50 – Rehearsal on Stage 6

11:50-12noon – Walk to Stage 12

12-1p – Rehearse on Stage 12

1-1:15 – Go to Suite F

1:15-3:15p – School (Suite F)

3:15-3:45p – Meal (Suite F)

3:45-4p – Go to Rehearsal Hall

4p-5:30p – Wardrobe Fittings (Rehearsal Hall)

5:30-6p – R&R

6p-7p – Pre Records (Suite G/H)

Sunday was a day off – well sort of. I had a meeting with my friend and choreographer Brooklyn Jai and Alix Garza. Sunday night I had an audition to be a dancer for the Los Angeles Sparks professional basketball team – they call the group SparKids. A lot of my friends are on the team – so it should be a lot of fun.

Monday Schedule

11:15-12:15 Dress Rehearsal

12:30-1:30 School in Conference Room

1:30-2:00 Meal in Conference Room

2:00-3:00 R and R in Conference Room

3:00-3:15 Walk to Stage 6

3:15-4:00 Team Hat rehearses with the kids on Stage 6

4:00-4:45 Glam touch ups

5 PM Live Show! 14 Million Viewers!

I was very excited for the show and glad that I got to work with my friend and fellow #immaBEAST and #lilBEAST Sean Lew. I have known Sean since 2009 when we were both Minis and we met at Hollywood Connection. He is amazing. Subscribe to his YouTube channel if you don’t already https://www.youtube.com/user/SarahSerrisSean

I cannot thank my parents and everyone enough who has helped to train me to prepare for these amazing opportunities.

Here is the video – I come in at the 2 Min mark right behind Hannah

DOTY Hollywood Vibe Regional

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, modeling | No Comments

I am writing this from Hollywood Vibe in Phoenix. This is my last city on Team Hollywood Vibe. Since we are only allowed to dance in the competition in our home city, there is time to chill at night and do homework or get caught up on my blog. Before I get started – you may recall that I am on @willdaBEAST #immaBEAST team. They are holding the audition July 28th – August 1st. You train for a week then comes the Audition on the last day. Using the code lund5 you can get a discount. Sign up here http://www.immabeast.co/buildabeast

As you know if you are a kid, the last month was brutal with the end of the quarter in school. Gotta keep those grades up! It gets harder and harder to juggle school, comp, training, and work. I guess that I should put it in the order of work, school, comp, training. When you book a job or have an audition, the best laid plans for the day or week go right out the door. Know what I am talking about? Somewhere on that list is keeping up with my blog, which becomes harder and harder to do. Hard work pays off though – Grades came in great and I was awarded Regional Dancer of the Year in Northern California (San Francisco) for the second year running at Hollywood Vibe! A huge hug goes out to the Hollywood Vibe faculty, especially Liz Imperio for all of their training and encouragement. My DPAC family are my roots and I love each and everyone for how they have trained me for this. So blessed! #DPACStrong

Sparkels Lund for TargetLast month was a whirlwind. If you have been following me on Instagram, you know what I am talking about.

I did this industrial shoot for Target – It was super fun to work alongside my friend Charlize Glass.  She ran the shoot ahead of me so it was great to watch her do her magic and build my confidence. She is such a pro. #goals.

Industrials are pretty interesting. It is pretty much “backfill work” for dancers. There is no audition, they pick you from your head shots and the photos and videos are used for pitching marketing programs. Sometimes, if they love you – you can direct book a national commercial from these. Wouldn’t that be nice?

I really did not understand the crossover between dancers and models. I know from the work that I did last year for Macy’s and for Otis School of Design that dance adds magic to the runway, but I am surprised by the amount of work that dancers get in print just because they are fit and healthy looking. Shout out to my supporters including Divina Dancewear, D2I skullies, Sugar & Bruno, and Sadie Jane. Seriously, as much time as I spend dancing, this gear comes in handy. Happy for the merch love.

OpportunityEarlier this season I started out working with the amazing Jillian Clark on a piece called Diamonds – Musical Theatre – great results – love that. Secondly, I have been working with Keara Blake Bolland on a lyrical piece called Opportunity. It is to a song that I fell in love with through the whole Annie Movie/Dancing with the Stars bit from last year. The music and the choreography fell together perfectly for what I want to do as a dancer.  More great results! Love that too. I have been working really hard with my two favorite red heads –  Juliana Keller and Taylor Costa on our lyrical trio. Hollywood Vibe was a break our performance for that number. I can’t wait to perform it again. It is so close to being epic! What a journey we have had so far. Next, I am working to pull together a hip hop piece. It is getting close.

@vyraldancetour - #immaBEASTApril hit with a bang! I was able to work with @willdaBEAST, @janelleginestra, and @antionetroupe at @vyraldancetour. It was a special day hosted by Nor Cal Dance – I came out of it stronger with an unbelievable addiction to Janelle Ginestra’s choreography. It hits hard but is still girly. Here is the YouTube video – the first one from our dance studio built in the garage. Hope you like it.

 

 

buildaBEAST by immaBEAST Workshop Announced

By | Dance, Friends | 4 Comments

BuildaIf you follow me on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, or Facebook (links at the top of the page)  you probably already know that I am blessed to be on a team called immaBEAST. Well, specifically the “imma”s are the older kids and young adults. Part of the immaBEAST team are the lilBEASTS (15 and under), and that’s me. The good news is that there will be a workshop that starts July 28th. On the final day, August 1st, everyone gets to audition for a spot on the immaBEAST team! You can get discounted tickets for the buildaBEAST workshop and immaBEAST auditon now if you buy them before they sell out! $400 earlybird special http://www.immabeast.co/buildabeast

Over the past year, training with the immaBEAST team has been really fun and amazingly rewarding. I have had the opportunity to train on a team that is 100% professional dancers. Everyone is freakishly talented.

My #lilBEAST Story

In 2013-14 I took some classes with Will WilldaBEAST Adams at Millennium, The Pulse, and 24-7 Dance. He called me out to do a duet at 24-7 which my dad recorded. It is really poor quality video (https://youtu.be/11b11nbtd88) but you can see that I was super inspired by the choreography. At the time, I felt really confident with my skills in Jazz and Musical Theater, but understood that I needed a lot more work on other styles including Hip-Hop. There is something about WilldaBEAST’s style of sharp footwork and hard hits blended with moments of smooth swag that I truly love. Anyways, after the class he told me about the audition to try out for his team. I was so excited that I almost peed my pants.

The Audition

I had been a professional dancer for a couple of years before the WilldaBEAST audition. I was used to going to big auditions with hundreds of people and young superstars. Don’t get me wrong. When I show up to these things and see dancers like Leah Roga, Boogie Tinay, Sophia Jahadhmy, Kaycee Rice, Jordyn Jones, Larsen Thompson, Soni Bringas, and so on, I know that I gotta bring it! But the WilldaBEAST audition was a whole new level. The talent level was so deep that even a great dancer could easily drown. WilldaBEAST says that 2400 people auditioned! Here is a video that recaps last year’s audtion https://youtu.be/z1dwkFL0EbY

Season 2 immaBEAST teamOn June 11th, WilldaBEAST announced the #lilBEAST team. Kaycee Rice, Lexee Smith, Gabe Deguzman, Larsen Thompson, Jaron Snyder, Josh Price, Taylor Hatala, Nike Tracreee, Tessa Brooks, Sophie Reynoldson, Phoenix “lil mini,” Kennadi Boese, Leah Roga, Kaylyn Selvin, Sean Lew, Kade Pait, Jordyn Jones, Big Will Simmons, Soni Bringas, Sophia Jahadhmy, Zealand Yancy, Boogie Tinay, Sierra Neudeck, Tati McQuay, Talin Silva and….. Sparkles Lund! Here is my blog post about it. http://sparkleslund.com/?p=353

The Journey – We do this just because we can!

  • July 2014 – lilBEASTS perform at The Pulse in Las Vegas for the closing show – win the Choreography Award! Killed it.
  • August 2014 – immaBEAST DVD released featuring the entire team. Becomes a top selling instructional DVD for hip-hop dancers http://sparkleslund.com/?p=413
  • October 2014 – worked one-on-one with WilldaBEAST and Janelle Ginestra http://sparkleslund.com/?p=17014
  • October 2014 – immaBEAST performed at DanceON in Los Angeles at an event featuring the stars of the upcoming movie Beyond The Lights. – Here is our video https://youtu.be/qYre6y7NJKs
  • November 2014 – on set for the filming of a video to Touchin, Lovin for Trey Songz featuring Nicki Minaj – http://sparkleslund.com/?p=17033
  • November 2014 – lilBEASTS do a video for @Ciara “That’s Right” https://youtu.be/ruAshPdTdrM
  • December 2014 – I book a job to dance in the season finale of Dancing with the Stars with fellow immaBEAST dancers Trinity Inay, Soni Bringas, and Jordyn Jones,  https://youtu.be/IuYmnhr8hEA
#immaBEAST crew selected for Dancing with the Stars

#immaBEAST crew selected for Dancing with the Stars

The Journey Continues

Being on immaBEAST is a blessing. Will is one of the most humble, hard working, generous, and genuine people I have ever met. He surrounds himself with people that are not only talented, but have big hearts. The team is really a family of people who help each other and I have made friendships that I expect to span a lifetime.

Kaycee Rice TwinningNo matter where I go – a convention, a competition, an audition, or even a class in LA, I am bound to run into another member of the immaBEAST family.

Join Us!

I hope that you can make it to the #buildaBEAST event. Again, be sure to get your tickets right away. It will sell out fast.

LADM Michael Dameski and Sparkles Lund

By | Competition, Convention, Dance | No Comments

Taylor Costa, Juliana Keller, and MeLast weekend, I traveled to L.A. once again for LADM, or LA Dance Magic for those who have never heard of it. I went with some people from my studio who also won scholarships last year, and I also saw a lot of my friends from other conventions. I performed my musical theatre solo, Diamonds – but it was for exhibition only. Juliana Juju Keller, Taylor Costa, and I also performed our trio and were awarded a platinum. The judges give us great critiques of things we need to work on.

As always – @austindoodle on instagram stole the show. I think every person there took a turn at petting him!

Jackie Sleight with my mom and dadLADM is ran by Jackie Sleight, who choreographed the Otis Parson’s School of Design fashion show that I participated in last year, and will be participating in again this year. I loved the experience, and can’t wait to do it again! If you want to look at the story I wrote last year about it, here is the link http://sparkleslund.com/?p=333. Anyways, back to LADM.

The faculty includes amazing choreographers like DJ Guthrie, Christian Vincent, Albert Cattafi, Eddie Moody, Will Thomas, and Ayodele Casel. This LADM was especially amazing because Michael Dameski, winner of So You Think You Can Dance: Australia, was guest teaching with Will Thomas. Will was also on So You Think You Can Dance, so together, they taught a class called, “We Know You Can Dance” which I thought was pretty clever. I met Michael last summer at Dancer Palooza during Mandy Moore’s class and was amazed my his phenomenal dancing. Hence, I was so excited to find out I was going to get to take class from him instead of with him. He additionally performed a solo at the closing show that blew my mind.

The scholarship audition was on Sunday morning. I felt good about my performance, and apparently, the judges did too! I ended up winning a scholarship! Looking forward to attending a lot of LADMs next year.

Here is a video of Michael Dameski – I am a fan, for sure!

Try Try Again

By | Competition, School | One Comment

firstplace hollywood connectionWhen I was in 5th grade, I had a PE teacher who shall not be named. From 1st grade to 6th grade, my school did the Presidential Fitness test, and I always go the highest award. Dance strengthens your whole body which helped me accomplish this level of fitness. Funny story: one time I forgot my running shoes, so I ran the mile in my Uggs, and still managed to set the school record.

Have you ever had a teacher that just doesn’t understand you? I had one of those in 5th grade. If you know me, you understand that I’m a year ahead in school, and that I’m fun sized. Translation: short. I try to make up for my vertical struggles with a strong dose of what my grandma calls tenacity. As you can imagine, my physique is not well suited for volleyball. I tried my hardest, but I did not have enough strength to serve the volleyball over the net. Because of that, I got the only B+ in my entire life. Not to worry, I made up for it and finished the year with an A.

Although, I’ll never forgive that teacher for the way he treated me. I wonder if he treats handicapped people the same way? Clearly I am not handicapped in the traditional way, but certain sports that require certain physical attributes like height handicap me. I guess that I though that the teacher would take that into consideration. Oh well. Try, try again.

This year, I’ve been doing great in PE, but was really stressed out about the volleyball unit based upon my earlier experience. I dedicated myself to working as hard as I possibly could. I still cannot muster the strength to serve the ball over the net, but I made up for it in other ways and kept and A+ in the class.

I am most proud of this part. Our teacher gives an award called PE’s Best every unit. The award recognizes kids that are working really hard in PE. This year, I’m very proud to say that I was given that award during the volleyball unit! Now I get a new t-shirt to wear in PE. Yay! The moral of the story is if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. And, expect that from time to time, you will be judged unfairly. Just accept it , and move on.

This weekend, our DPAC dance team competed at Hollywood Connection. We did really well, but there were a few dances that did not score has high as I would have expected. I love my DPAC team, and I am sure that everyone will be dedicated to working hard to reach our potential. The important part is that we shake off the under-scored dances. There is always room for improvement.

I did muster a 1st Place Platinum in my solo, Diamonds – choreographed by Jill Clark. We had a bunch of first place scores in groups. Mama – our lyrical choreographed by Mrs. Tahirih Ellison. Shout out to Trevor Quesada who scored Titanium in his solo and the boys small group hip-hop that also scored Titanium. We can do this!

It was great to see my Hollywood Connection family again. The faculty is absolutely amazing. They gave me my break as a professional dancer and I will always be grateful for their continued support. I had to leave for a Meghan Trainor audition on Saturday morning and missed a few classes. They were really accommodating, #blessed.

Happy Valentines Day

By | Dance, Vlogs, Work | No Comments

Sparkles Lund and Taylor HatalaA few weeks ago I had the opportunity to do this collaboration video with one of my friends, #lilBEAST team members, and favorite dancers, Ms. Taylor Hatala. Choreography for the video was none other than #immaBEAST team member Antoine Troupe. Of course, the video was produced and directed by my friend and life coach, @directorBrazil. The concept was focused around a Valentines Day release using the hit Meghan Trainor song, Dear Future Husband.

I hope you like it.

Press Release

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 13, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Valentine’s Day is not a romantic Hallmark card for 11-year-old Taylor Hatala and 12-year-old Sparkles Lund. Too young to date and too soon to have found love, these two young professional dancers worked with renowned freestyle and hip-hop choreographer Antoine Troupe to produce a Valentine’s Day video to Meghan Trainor’s song, “Dear Future Husband,” being released February 14 on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ER6O55iAPZk).

“When you are our age, boys are just friends,” says Edmonton-born Taylor Hatala. Hatala is commuting to Los Angeles and working part-time as her burgeoning career develops. As testament to Hatala’s talent, her YouTube videos to Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgfF_c6uPaU) and Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pfloxVMJGw), have been seen more than 30 million times, garnering appearances on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and RyanSeacrest.com, among others. Troupe, Hatala and Sparkles Lund became friends dancing on the immaBEAST hip-hop crew, under director Will ‘WilldaBeast’ Adams.

According to Troupe, the concept for the video was born during the filming of the immaBEAST routine for the Choreographers Carnival Anniversary show this past January.

“Although dance is my life,” says Troupe, “I am driven by the impact that dance has on developing healthy, active, and confident kids.” Troupe selected the piece that he claims was ready made for Sparkles and Taylor.

“Meghan Trainor’s work is perfectly kid-style,” says Sparkles Lund, who recently released a video last week to Trainor’s hit “Lips Are Movin” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-hA5VLVq7dc). “What girl doesn’t want a future husband that brings flowers, open doors, and wants to be her one and only?” Lund asks.

Sparkles Lund began her professional career in dance at age 10. Her recent work includes a three-city tour for Macy’s Glamorama and an appearance on the finale of ABC-TV’s Dancing With The Stars, performing to “Hard Knock Life” from the new Annie movie.

“Working with superstars like Taylor Hatala and Antoine Troupe is a blessing,” confesses Lund. “It’s so exciting to see Taylor’s career skyrocket, and I am so happy that Antoine was able to work with Prince to choreograph his latest video ‘Breakfast Can Wait.'”

YouTube is fast becoming the path to rapid stardom for many of today’s young performers, circumventing the previous paths that were largely limited through New York and Los Angeles.

Lund, who lives in Arroyo Grande, locate on California’s Central Coast near San Luis Obispo, and Hatala, who lives in Edmonton, Canada, are adopting the strategy started by Willdabeast by creating their own YouTube channels to self-publish their work. Willdabeast is teaching young dancers that YouTube is a place where you can make a mark and punch up your career. His YouTube page has more than 735,000 subscribers and more than 100 million views. Hatala’s YouTube channel is at http://bit.ly/taylorhatala and Sparkles Lund YouTube channel is at https://www.youtube.com/user/sparkleslund.

About the Video
Dancers: Sparkles Lund & Taylor Hatala
Choreography – Antoine Troupe
Director – Brazil Siqueira
Music – Meghan Trainor, “Dear Future Husband”

Dancing In Super Bowl Halftime Show

By | Auditions, Dance, Friends, Work | No Comments
lilBEAST and Tricia Miranda

Gabe, Will, Tricia Miranda, Kaycee, and Charlize

Don’t get me wrong – dancing in Super Bowl XLIX with Katy Perry would be absolutely amazing. The halftime show set list was perfect and included a surprise performance by wrapper Missy Elliott with choreography by Tricia Miranda. Katy is among my favorite artists and the ability to work with her on the biggest stage in the world would be beyond my dreams. The good news is that I had a shot at an audition video. Better news is that four kids I dance with on team #lilBEAST with Willdabeast Adams booked the job!

Today’s Super Bowl half time show featured Kaycee Rice, Gabe de Guzman, Will Simmons, and Charlize Glass! I feel so blessed to be able to work and dance with so many talented kids! My friend and fellow #lilBEAST, Soni Bringas was on TV last night staring in the the primer of Lifetime’s new show, Beautiful and Twisted opposite Rob Lowe, Pez Vega (Spanglish), and Candice Bergen (Murphy Brown, Sex in the City). #lilBEAST Nation taking over!

I was not able to go to the audition for Katy Perry. At the time, the audition call did not mention Missy (Surprise Guest!) I had already committed to travel to Pittsburgh to work with Liz Imperio and the Hollywood Vibe team. It was my first time representing Hollywood Vibe and it would not have made a very good first impression if I bailed on them. But turning lemons into lemonade, I was able record and send in a video audition. My agent, Shayna Brouillard of Clear Talent Group told me it would be a long shot, and she was right. I did not book the job or get a call back. But I still had fun shooting the video!

I was so excited to see my friends during the Super Bowl halftime show. They killed it. (Trivia – XLIX is the number 49. Next year, in MMXV or 2015 the letter for the Superbowl will be L).

In other news – my YouTube channel went over 200,000 views this week and my subscribers hit 700. Still a long way to go to hit my goals, but hey – a girl has to celebrate milestones. Right? Here is the audition video I sent in.

 

 

 

 

Wood For Christmas

By | Dance, Stuff I Like | No Comments

Wood for christmasA piece of wood? You wrapped up a piece of wood as a Christmas present and put it under the tree. Really? I don’t get it. Let me back up a bit.

“Ow, my eyes hurt because the sun is way too bright! I can’t see myself in the fireplace glass! I don’t have enough room to jump! The floor is too sticky! Its so hot! Ugh, I can’t play my music because my parents are working.” That was my life as a dancer trying to train at home.

“Merry Christmas!” exclaimed my parents. “You are getting a dance floor!”

These are all reasons I needed to change my “practice at home” environment. So, we started thinking about the ideal practice area. It would have sprung, marley floors, enough space to do my solos, mirrors, a place to store all of my stretching devices (don’t know what else to call them), and of course, a place where I could play music as loud as I wanted. After all this brainstorming, we started investigating different brands, costs, and types of floors. Luckily, thanks to our friend Dean Clark, we found an instant solution. He found a used floor that was perfect for us, and even helped my dad install it! Now, all of the mirrors are in, the marley is down, and the walls are painted a sleek black color.

Now that the dance floor is done, I practice my solos and stretch on a daily basis. Its also great because I can dance like nobody’s watching (because they aren’t lol). My favorite part about the new floor is the fact that whenever I want to try a new move that I haven’t done before, I can experiment with new things, and even try a little bit of choreographing for myself.

The floor has only been in for a week, and I gotta say, I love it. I think I need to thank Mr. D a second time in this post because I can’t thank him enough. Of course, I also need to thank my parents. I can’t thank them enough either. Not only for the floor, but for all of the other things they do. I am really fortunate to have all of these people helping me out. Thank You Thank You Thank you. I promise to work really hard to show you how much I appreciate everything.

Hollywood Vibe Pittsburgh

By | Competition, Convention, Travel | No Comments

Hollywood Vibe PittsburghThis weekend I will be attending Hollywood Vibe Pittsburgh. I am especially excited because it will be my fist city as a company member. I am so grateful for this opportunity, and would like to especially say thanks to Chris and Anne Smith, as well as creative director, Liz Imperio. I am looking forward to working with the entire Hollywood Vibe faculty, such as Caitlin Kinney, Kevin Maher, Allison Holker, Mark Kanemura, Kent Boyd, Kayla Kalbfleisch, Ryan Lohoff, David Moore, and Adrian Lee.

Being a Hollywood Vibe company member (full list of company members here) means taking on more responsibility, both as a dancer and as a person. If you know anything about Liz Imperio, creative director of Hollywood Vibe, you would know that Breaking Barriers is the most important thing in her life. Breaking Barriers is Liz’s new program that helps dancers accomplish greatness in their lives. Liz has helped me develop the confidence to push my self as a dancer. All of us on Hollywood Vibe Company have the responsibility to strive for our own success, but more importantly the success of the dancers attending the convention.

If you’ve known me for a while, you know that I toured with Hollywood Connection as their Dancer of the Year. It gave me a chance to dance all over the country and meet dancers from a bunch of cities. Many of those dancers are some of my best friends today at auditions, and I’m sure will be friends of mine forever. Also, many of the Hollywood Connection faculty that have helped me with my training, are those I met at Hollywood Connection. People like Bonnie Story, Laura King Lindsley Allen, Brooklyn Jai, Chonique Sneed, Gigi Torres and Robert Schultz continue to have an amazing impact and influence on my dance and my life. I look forward to creating these relationships with the Hollywood Vibe faculty, as well as my fellow company members.

I’m not sure which other Hollywood Vibe company members are going to Pittsburgh, other than one of my best friends, Juliana Keller. Juju and I attend school together, as well as train at Dellos Performing Arts Center. She is an inspiration to me as a dancer, a person and an actor. I hope to become just as close with all the rest of the Hollywood Vibe Company. See you there! Leave a comment below if you’re going to Pittsburgh or any other Hollywood Vibe city this year.

Holiday Dance Video

By | Vlogs | No Comments

I just want to start out by saying, Happy Holidays! No matter what religion you are,, this time of year is full of celebration and happiness. That’s why I love it. Similarly, another thing I love is dance, for the same reasons. This is precisely why this year, my family has decided to send out a holiday dance video, instead of a plain old Christmas card.

The song we found expresses wishes for Peace and Happiness which we would like to express to all of our friends and family.  It is a really pretty song and it inspired me. We heard the song on Thanksgiving Day and I’ve been thinking about it ever since!

_SparklesLund____This_Is_My_Wish____Kevin_Ross___Liz_Imperio_Choreography_-_YouTubeMy holiday dance video was filmed by my dad and directed by Helton “Brazil” Siqueira. He has been directing, filming, and editing all of my recent YouTube videos. He is also currently the video director for P!NK, Trey Songz, Tyga, Austin Mahone, and the immaBEAST Hip Hop Dance Company which was how we met. The choreography was created by the one and only Liz Imperio. She has choreographed for Jennifer Lopez, Eva Longoria, and has done countless award shows. I know Liz from the popular dance convention, Hollywood Vibe. This year, I am on the Hollywood Vibe company, so I will get to spend lots of time with her. She choreographed this number while she was at my studio doing a workshop that Liz created earlier this year. This workshop is called Breaking Barriers. It involves a few different things. One, how to become successful as a dancer. Two, how to achieve the right mindset to have as a professional dancer. Three, an hour and a half master class where we get to learn choreography from her. If this sounds interesting, check out the website, breakingbarriers.com. Lastly, I bet you want to see the video right? Well, click the link below to check it out! I wish you, and all your friends and family a Happy Holidays!

 

Discount Dance Supply Saves the Day

By | Convention, Dance, modeling, Stuff I Like | No Comments

One of the great parts about The Pulse On Tour is that they offer dancers the opportunity to set numbers much in the same way that we do when we are working. Even though I book jobs and so some work each year, this training helps keep me sharp. This last weekend at Pulse in New Orleans, I participated in a workshop called From Start To Stage. It goes like this.

When you arrive on Friday, you rehearse for 2 hours. The piece is set by a choreographer but the Pulse Elite Proteges help you learn it. It is a great way for the Elites to learn to work with dancers to clean dances too. Saturday morning, dancers participating in the workshop have a call time of 7:30 a.m. to run the number again for an hour and clean it. Thats it. Two rehearsals over three hours and you put it on stage. This process is the same as doing a commercial or setting a piece for television or movies. If you are doing a professional dance production for stage or Broadway, it is pretty much the same as the way you prepare competition dances in your studio.

Thank you Discount Dance Supply.

My mom was traveling so my dad had to get me prepared for the weekend. He is a great dance dad, but he forgot to read the information about Start to Stage where it clearly stated that dancers needed to wear red and black for the performance. We were hopeful that we would be able to pick up what I needed from the clothing vendors there. The Discount Dance Supply booth had the most amazing Gotta Flurt high top sneakers with sparkles. They were perfect. Unfortunately, they were not selling them at the show, but Erin Edmondson who was at the booth was kind enough to let me wear them for the performance. They were the perfect size (3). Aside from being really cool looking, they were very comfortable and even have cozy furry stuff on the inside. Thanks for Discount Dance Supply for saving the day and keeping my dad and me out of trouble for forgetting the right shoes.

Many thanks to mom for going to Riverwalk to get shirts.

We buy a lot of things at Discount Dance Supply. I like their booty shorts, sports bras, leggings, tees, and stuff like that. It is really good quality and they have a big selection of things that they do not have in stores around Arroyo Grande.

Thanks to The Pulse On Tour Faculty for setting me as a featured dancer for the number. Here is one of my favorite shots. I will load the video of the piece to my YouTube page  and follow me on Instagram @sparkleslund for more photos.

 

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View Sparkles Lund on Dancing With the Stars

By | Work | No Comments

Oh my gosh, I am so thankful for the outpouring of well wishes for my television debut on Dancing With The Stars #dwts. Below is the video of our act, choreographed by Mandy Moore. If you read this blog, you will know that it all started with my best friend Camille’s mom, Maureen Cattaneo getting me to the audition when my parents were out of town. Had it not been for her help, none of this would have happened. I was also thrilled to be able to meet so many new friends during the shoot and am especially grateful for ABC and The New Annie Movie with their star Quvenzhane Wallis. Our excitement to be on national TV must be nothing compared to her excitment to be a star in a movie. Someday? Ya never know?

So…….

Here is the video from last night’s episode of Dancing With The Stars for those who missed it or want to watch it again!

Here is the press release that went out today

11-YEAR OLD DANCER PERFORMS ON “DANCING WITH THE STARS” FINALE

ALEXANDRA “SPARKLES” LUND FEATURED IN YOUNG DANCER ENSEMBLE

November 25, 2014 – Arroyo Grande, CA – Eleven-year-old Alexandra “Sparkles” Lund last night made her network television debut on this season’s performance finale of ABC Network Television’s “Dancing with the Stars.”

Sparkles Lund appeared with a talented young dancers ensemble that promoted the new “Annie” movie, starring Oscar®-winner Jamie Foxx, Cameron Diaz, Rose Byrne, and the youngest performer to ever be nominated for a Best Actress Academy Award®, Quvenzhané Wallis, as Annie. Sparkles Lund joined Wallis last night and performed a dance to “It’s The Hard-Knock Life,” choreographed by Mandy Moore.

Moore is best known for “So You Think You Can Dance,” nominated for Emmy Awards for the show in 2007 and 2011. She also choreographed several seasons of “American Idol,” “America’s Got Talent,” “Dancing with the Stars,” and U.K.’s “Strictly Come Dancing.” Sparkles Lund’s performance celebrated the new, contemporary spin on the classic show “Annie,” due in movie theaters December 19th.

“It was incredibly exciting to be part of the most popular show on television,” said Sparkles Lund about her experience on “Dancing with the Stars.” She spent five consecutive rehearsal days that began at 8 o’clock in the morning and ended at 5:00 p.m. On meeting Wallis, also 11-years-old, Sparkles Lund said, “She’s really fun to work with. She’s very professional, but really full of energy.”

An award winning featured dancer, actor and model, Sparkles Lund is fast becoming one of the entertainment industry’s hottest young commercial dancers. She is a member of the renowned immaBEAST Dance Company and has performed nationally for Macy’s and Hello Kitty brands. Her dance styles include jazz, ballet, tap, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary and pointe.

Next up for Sparkles Lund: Top choreographer Liz Imperio, a major director and choreographer in the entertainment industry, including the staging and choreography for Jennifer Lopez’s “Live From Puerto Rico” concert; director/choreographer of Gloria Estefan’s most recent concert tour; and three numbers for Madonna’s “Re-invention Tour 2004″, chose her to be on the Hollywood Vibe’s Vibe Dance Company, and Sparkles Lund will be part of its national tour.

A resident of California’s Central Coast living in Arroyo Grande outside of San Luis Obispo, Sparkles Lund has won several national dance competitions. She also appears in “Just Dance Kids” video game and is in the CBS Comedy Series, “The Millers.”

About Sparkles Lund

Sparkles Lund is an 11-year-old dancer, actor, blogger and YouTube personality. She started dancing when she was 3 years old and began her professional dancing career at age 8. Sparkles Lund won a national competition as “Dancer of the Year” at the age of 9. She recently toured nationally with Macy’s Glamorama, promoting its Hello Kitty line, chosen from 500 professional dancers who auditioned. Featuring pop artist Jason Derulo, Sparkles was part of a three-city tour this summer that raised funds for Children’s Cancer Research Fund in Minneapolis, Chicago and San Francisco. Sparkles Lund is part of the renowned Hip Hop crew, lilBEASTS, with the highly talented choreographer and director Will Adams “Willdabeast.”

Alexandra Lund was given the stage name “Sparkles” at a dance camp by choreographer Tahirih Ellison, as a tribute to both her taste in outfits and her personality. She is a dancer with Dellos Performing Arts Center in Arroyo Grande, which is recognized as among the top studios in America, where she is under the guidance of Johnna Clark. Sparkles Lund is represented by Clear Talent Agency in Los Angeles.

VIDEO LINKS & ONLINE BACKGROUND:

Dancing With The Stars Red Carpet

Dancing With The Stars Red Carpet

Sparkles Lund Radio Publicity Tour For DWTS

By | Dance, press, Work | No Comments

The public relations firm sent out a media alert for my appearance tonight on Dancing With The Stars. This morning I had two in person publicity events at radio stations and another interview for public radio by phone. These were my first solo radio interviews. Many thanks for 98.1 KJUG Country morning show hosts Andy Morris and Kristen Webster.

My second interview was with Q104.5 and a hilarious radio host who does not seem to have a last name – he calls himself Adam in the Morning and his show is called Up and Adam.  Too clever, right? Guess I should not say much given that my entertainment handle is Sparkles.

All of the hosts were super nice. I am super thankful for everyone at #DWTS – Dancing With The Stars, Clear Talent, The Amazing Mandy Moore and all of the other dancers who were great to dance with. Truly blessed.

Sparkles Lund DWTS Publicity

 

ASH Dance Tour In Santa Clara

By | Convention, Dance | No Comments

I am dancing at Ash Dance Tour in Santa Clara, California this weekend. It is my first dance convention of the new season and I am thrilled to train with some great choreographers. After school I piled in the car with my mom and Austin (instagram: @theaustinbubbles_ ). My dad was in Cleveland and Denver this week, so he flew into San Jose to meet us.

Lisette Bustamante - Choreographer and amazing person

Lisette Bustamante – Choreographer and amazing person

Last night was a great start to the weekend. We learned a fun hip-hop piece with Lisette Bustamante. I fell in love with her choreography at Hollywood Connection  so now I find a way each year to take class from her. About Lisette: from her website http://www.lisettebustamante.com/bio/

She’s danced alongside superstars such as Madonna, Gwen Stefani, Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson and Usher on stages all over the globe, and has choreographed for Pink, Prince, Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez. She’s been featured in commercials for Gap, Pepsi, Pringles, iPod and Sprite, and has choreographed for film and television, with credits including supervising choreographer on America’s Best Dance Crew.

Four years ago, Lisette and her longtime creative partner, Chonique Sneed established Creating Opportunities, a mentoring company that offers classes, seminars and other programs for young dancers, singers and choreographers.

A few of my friends of mine at the studio have participated in the Creating Opps program and they said it was amazing. “I am confident.” If you know Creating Opps, you know what I mean by that.

Braham Logan Crane, Director of ASH

Braham Logan Crane, Director of ASH.

The second class last night was a first for me with Braham Logan Crane. We learned an intense contemporary piece with some amazing floor work that had us literally dancing on our heads! Braham is the director of ASH – which stands for Artists Simply Human. The weekend is not designed as a competition, but as a workshop. Each class is an hour to an hour and 15 minutes long. I love the longer classes. Some conventions are trying to cut the classes to 45 Minutes – BOOOOO! ASH also offers a performance showcase like Pulse. They do not have a competition. Braham taught at Broadway Dance in NYC.  I took a class there about a year ago.  So much fun.

I am running three dances tonight for the teachers. The core theme of ASH is expression in dance. My goal for tonight is to put a lot of emotion into each of my pieces.  You will be able to watch the acts live tonight thanks to Sugar and Bruno who are sponsoring a live feed on ustream – http://www.ustream.tv/channel/ashproductions

Here is a run down of the dances and the times.

I’m really excited for the Monday night finale of Dancing with the Stars too!  #DWTS and @dancingABC. Im going to be on it with a bunch of my friends in the opening number! It’s on ABC at 8:00 EST and Pacific. To read my post about it, click here http://sparkleslund.com/will-dancing-stars/

Here are my dance schedule for tonight

Here are my dance schedule for tonight

I Will Be On Dancing With The Stars

By | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

I booked the most exciting job ever last week, a group dance role on Dancing With The Stars! I auditioned last Thursday, and within a matter of days, I was on set at CBS. The audition combo was very short, but it was full of energy and I loved to do it. The audition was choreographed by the one and only, Mandy Moore! She is one of my favorite choreographers ever! I always love her pieces on SYTYCD and it was amazing when I found out I got the job because I had only danced with her once before. That time was in a class situation so this was the first professional job when I have worked with her. If you want to be super impressed, look at her page here. Mandy Moore is AWSOME. I have never had so much fun on a job.

To think last year at this time, my blog post was about a huge star (the sun) whose solar flares are its dances. Now I will be Dancing with the Stars! For most, being on the show will be a solar flare. But for me, it will be epic!

We rehearsed Wednesday and Thursday, and we will continue to rehearse Saturday and Sunday before the live show in front of the studio audience on Monday the 17th. Our piece airs during the two hour finale of the show on November 24th at 8 Eastern and Pacific, 7 Central.

We learned the dance in multiple sections, but that’s pretty much all I can tell you about the dance itself because I’m not supposed to give away any details. I apologize. But, I can tell you about all the people that are dancing with me. I knew most of the girls, but there were a few that I didn’t. The dancers included Aria Terango, Lucy Vallely, Soni Bringas, Jordyn Jones, Abigail Vargas, Ruby Turner, Simrin Player, Trinity Inay, Rachel Fee, and a few others (sorry that I do not know everyone’s name yet).

Jordyn’s Blog: http://jjjordynjones.com

Simrin Player’s Blog http://www.simrinplayer.com

Trinity Inay’s Blog: http://trinityinay.com

So that concludes this blog post. Everyone make sure to watch me on the season finale of Dancing with the Stars! Also if you haven’t already, subscribe to my blog and my YouTube channel for even more fun!

Many Thanks to Camille Catteano and her mom (my second mom) Maureen Catteano who took me to the audition while my parents were out of town on a job.

Special thanks to Johnna Clark and my team at DPAC who gave me a pass this weekend. I love you all and wish I was not missing choreography weekend. You are all so supportive of me. #faithnotfear

Huge thanks to my agent – Shayna Brouillard and the Dance Department at Clear Talent Agency in Los Angeles for putting together this great gig.

More Photos

Dancing With The Stars Stage

Dancing With The Stars Stage

Dancing With The Stars Camera

Dancing With The Stars Camera

Dancing With The Stars Red Carpet

Dancing With The Stars Red Carpet

 

 

 

 

WilldaBEAST Launches Trey Songz Video

By | Dance, Friends, Uncategorized, Work | No Comments

I am so lucky to be able to work with so many great choreographers like Los Angeles based Willdabeast. I am on his kids hip-hop crew #lilBEASTS. He has an older team that he works with called #immaBEAST. As I mentioned in my post last week – I have a secret…..

WilldaBEAST with his awesome partner Janelle Ginestra filmed an amazing dance to a new song called Touchin, Lovin by Trey Songz featuring the AMAZING Nicki Minaj. Janelle choreographed all of the parts with the girls in it and Will choreographed all of the parts for the boys.  Janelle is the one in the gold shirt with the cute tall bun.  I just love her style – she is SO full out!  I think this song is going to be a hit and that all of us will be learning to dance to it this year.

I was on set when they were filming and had a chance to interview WilldaBEAST about what he calls “a concept video/music video.” He told me “The inspiration for this piece was big, clean – line choreography with the new swaggy style of 2014. ” If you follow WilldaBEAST, you know that his career is taking off in a huge way.   He just won the Next Generation Award at the World Dance Awards 2014 signaling the industry’s view that he is the next exciting up and coming choreographer. All of us who know him already know that he is the BEAST!

I am so happy for Will. The new video is below. Be sure to click on his DVD offer at the end of the video. I was in that! You know that all of us dancers need all of the help we can get!

It is so great to be on Will’s team.  I’m having so much fun!!!

If you want to download the song from iTunes click here.  I gave you the link to the “clean” version by the way – the only one I’m allowed to listen to!

I will be releasing some new stuff that I worked on with WilldaBEAST in the next few weeks. Be sure to subscribe to my blog and/or subscribe to the Sparkles Lund YouTube page if you want to be notified when it drops.

Here is my #lilBEAST story

 

Here is the making of the trey songs video .  The not-so-secret romance between Will and Janelle goes public in the video  #outted by @directorBrazil

 

About WilldaBEAST Adams

Instagram: http://instagram.com/willdabeast__

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/willdabeast

 

About Janelle Ginestra

Instagram: http://instagram.com/janelleginestra

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/MissJanelleG

 

About World Dance Awards

http://www.worlddanceawards.com/

 

 

#immaBEAST crew selected for Dancing with the Stars

#immaBEAST crew selected for Dancing with the Stars

 

A Blog Post About a Blog Post

By | Dance | One Comment

Hey guys! So yesterday, something very exciting happened. I had an audition for Sketchers – but that is not is not the most exciting thing. I have a secret. I bet you really want to know what it is, right? I’m sorry, but you can’t… yet! Although, I can’t tell you all the details, I can give you some hints. It includes one of my favorite choreographers being interviewed by yours truly, talking about a very exciting event that is coming very soon. It also will include some major celebrities that you may have heard of, *wink, wink * unless you live under a rock. In addition, you will see an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look of the next big thing in dance! Make sure to subscribe to my blog to hear all about this exciting event next week!

secret 1I am really excited about this because this is my first real celebrity interview. One of the best things about being in the entertainment industry is that I get to meet a lot of really neat people that are working on awesome projects. A lot of times it is overwhelming to think that I am actually hanging out with them. Pinch me!

Also, I am launching a video series called Sunday’s with Sparkles – it will be on YouTube – so if you like “watching” YouTube like me, be sure to “tune in” or click in to my YouTube page – Http://www.youtube.com/sparkleslund

Here is the channel trailer

Willdabeast Solo Fun

By | Competition, Dance, Friends, Travel | No Comments

Solos are the second part of the new dances that I am learning for this year’s dance season. We already learned our group dances. I am doing fewer group dances than last year because of auditions, #lilBEAST rehearsals, and hopefully……jobs! I could not resist teen lyrical with choreography by Tahirih Ellison; teen large open with choreography by Katie Schofield; junior hip-hop with choreography by Re’Sean Pates (Glee); and teen large jazz, also by Re’Sean Pates. I am super excited about the trio I am doing with dancers Juliana Keller and Taylor Costa with choreography by Keara Blake.

On Wednesday, I learned a brand new solo with one of my favorite choreographers, Will “Willdabeast” Adams. Just so you understand how I manage school, dance and auditions, here is the story of my day.

First, I traveled to Harloe, a local elementary school to dance for a program called Red Ribbon Week. Red Ribbon Week is a drug and alcohol abuse prevention program. Our studio performs at many elementary schools to show how many great things you can do instead of drugs, like dance! Unfortunately, I only got to do the first school because I had to go to LA for an audition. On the way there, I did all of my homework during the three-hour drive.

Once we got to LA, I had an audition for a secret project that I can’t tell you about. I made it through the first round, but then got cut. I only book about one out of every ten auditions, so I don’t really get upset about not being picked. One of my friends Simone got picked, maybe some others too – so I am happy for them. Besides, I was so excited to work with WilldaBeast on a new solo!

Once the audition was over, my mom drove me to Nappytabs, which is a rentable studio as well as a very popular clothing store. When I entered the room, Will got started on my solo right away, with his assistant Deanna Jenkins. Deanna taught me the first section of it, which was really hype and fun, and I absolutely loved it! It took me a while to get the choreography though, because it was very fast. After I learned that section, Will taught me another section that was slower and calm, but still really challenging and fun to learn. We worked together for about an hour and a half and have most of it done. I need to go back next week to finish and clean it.

The sweet ending to my day was that my dad flew into LA from Chicago for a meeting and was staying in Beverly Hills at the amazing Montage hotel. This place is so nice that they bring a special bed for our dog Austin. Even food and water bowls. Not to be left out, they bring me chocolate and other fun kids stuff. My dad was traveling all week, so it was a great surprise to meet up with him. The only tough part was that we had to get up at 4 am to get home in time for me to get to school.

In other exciting news this week, I launched the trailer to my new YouTube channel. Take a look and subscribe http://youtu.be/POVkGPOWvbg! I will be publishing a new video every week or so. Next week (or sooner), I will be launching my new website – it is almost done! The new site will replace this one.

be Happy

Divina Photo Shoot 2015

By | Dance, modeling | No Comments

As most of you know, I am a model for Divina Dancewear. Today, I will be telling you all about this year’s shoot which I participated in last weekend. Last year, I modeled for them for the first time and loved it! This year, I was so happy to be invited back and be re-united with all of the Divina girls.

I flew in after school on Friday. We had to go to Phoenix first, and then on to Utah from there. This is kind of weird because we had to go south before we went north due to our tiny local airport. We got in at around 9:30 mountain time, then had to rent a car, and finally start driving to our hotel. The drive was roughly 30 minutes, so it wasn’t too bad, but we didn’t check in to our hotel until about 10:15 because we got a little confused about where the lobby was. The next morning was the first day of shooting so I was super excited!

The weekend consisted of two days. The first day was video, and the second day was pictures. On the video day we filmed a few things. One was a video called Divina A-Z, which was a walkthrough of all the Divina products in A-Z order. For example, they have one product called the Lola top, so for L, someone would be dancing in the Lola top. See how it works? Something else we filmed on the first day was choreography choreographed by Haylee Rodrick. The piece was performed to the song Hideaway, by Kiesza. It was a contemporary jazz routine and I absolutely loved it! On day two, we took pictures in all of the clothing for the catalog and website.

The girls I danced with were Brooklyn Davis, Rachel Parkinson, Daisy Stoneman, Cailie Horner, Celine Horner, Jazzi Johnson, Maddie, Ashlund Ortiz, Chloe, Tatum C. , and Cheyenne MurilloI’m really sorry for not remembering the last names of some of the girls. They were all super nice and great dancers.

I hope you enjoyed hearing about Year 2 of my Divina Dancewear experience. The catalog and the videos will be out soon so stay tuned!

Divina Girls

Continuity

By | Friends, School | No Comments

Continuity_-_Google_SearchI am a member of the Paulding Sports Association. We help the sports teams when they have games by operating the concessions, selling tickets, and working the scoreboard. Today was my team’s first day and it was really fun. Our girls’ volleyball team played another local school and that gave me a chance to see a girl that I have not seen in over a year.

When I knew her before, it was hard to be her friend. She was a combination of shy and a little annoying. Today, she was awesome. She was super friendly and really excited to see me. I was excited to see her too, and happy that she had changed.

It reminded me that people change. I was thinking of another friend that I have who seems to swing between a person I want to be around and a person that I do not want to be around.

I guess that we know that everyone changes. This is a good thing to remember. Oddly a song called Body Language by Kid Ink is playing right now and it says “don’t judge a book by its cover.” When it comes to people, they change covers – not only physically, but also in the way they act. Someone who is annoying today can be super nice the next time you see them. Someone who is super nice can also be super annoying the next time you see them.

My dad and I talked about this today in the car on the way to dance. He taught me the word continuity. It is related to the word continuous, which means consistent. In life, we need to recognize that people are not always consistent. Things happen to people in their life that impact their behavior. Sometimes the things that happen affect people for a day or two. Sometimes they impact a person for a long time.

I guess the solution for me is to try to have continuity in the way I treat others, but recognize that they will change from time to time. When they are annoying, I will lay low. When they are cool, I will look forward to hanging out with them.

immaBEAST DVD

By | Dance, Friends | One Comment
Sparkles Lund and Will Adams Willdabeast

Willdabeast

 

A few weeks ago, WilldaBeast (Will Adams) invited all of the lilBEASTS (including me) to come film Year 2 of his immaBEAST instructional DVD. For those of you who have no idea what any of this means, I joined a hip hop crew called lilBEASTS recently, click here to learn more about it, but if you’re only confused about the DVD part, I will fill you in now!

Instructional DVD’s can be used for anything from “How to Knit” to “How to Dance” which in my case is the purpose. In this instructional DVD, Willdabeast teaches a ton of his dances that he originally taught in class. I think its really great because if you live far away, but you want to take a class from WilldaBeast, you can!  He offers it to hip hop dancers and aspiring hip hop dancers around the globe to have the chance to take class from him even if you don’t live in Los Angeles where he lives and teaches. His video from last year just hit 30 Million views – so you can understand the quality I am talking about.

The way that lilBEASTS is involved is we assist him for one of the dances, to the song, “Get Me Bodied” by Beyónce. It was really fun, because most of us (including myself) didn’t know the dance yet, so it was like a private class just for us! The choreography was a little bit challenging, but I picked it up quickly. The dance was hip hop, but it was a little bit sassy too. I mean, come on, you can’t not be sassy when you’re dancing to Beyónce! Man, I love that girl. Anyway back to the point, we spent about an hour filming, and then we were finished! That was the end of yet again, another amazing day with all the lilBEASTS and WilldaBeast.

I hope you enjoyed learning about when I filmed an instructional DVD with WilldaBeast!  If you would like to pre-order the video you can click here!  It will help raise money for WilldaBeast and all of his amazing dance efforts!   Tell me what you think of the video after you buy it!

Here is the Trailer

 

 

Chonique Sneed Releases New Single LET IT GO

By | Dance, Friends, Stuff I Like | No Comments

Lisette Bustamante and Chonique SneedIf you are reading my blog, you are probably a dancer, and you probably know Chonique Sneed. She is one of my favorite teachers and choreographers. She was born in Hollywood and started dancing at the age of 8 – which is about the time that I started to take dancing seriously. She is an adult now, and tours the nation with Hollywood Connection on the faculty. She and choreographer, Lisette Bustamonte, also with Hollywood Connection, mentor a group of teen dancers each year to grow in character and confidence. The program is called Creating Opportunities or, Creating Opps for short. From them I have learned that there is a difference between dancing and being a dancer. Dancers are strong, powerful people who are caring and aspire to be the best they can be in everything they can do.

Chonique has choreographed for artists like Missy Elliot, Christina Milian, Britney Spears, Pink, Jennifer Lopez, V Factory, Diddy and more. She is also on the faculty of Monsters of Hip Hop (hopefully #lilBEASTS will go to that).

Join me in celebrating the release of her hit single – Let It Go! ***caution – there are a few words in the song that are not totally rated G **** but it is not that bad – you may want your parents to listen first.

I tried to embed the code from SoundCloud – but it does not seem to be working (someone please help that reads code). For now – just click this link to Chonique’s song on SoundCloud. Please share! Everyone needs friends giving them a little boost!

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/162289636″ params=”auto_play=true&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”300″ iframe=”true” /]

 

Spocha Colab – sparkles and mocha on fashion

By | Stuff I Like, Vlogs | No Comments

Another video from me – @sparkleslund and my pal Mocha. In this episode we do a kinda clothing hall/fashion segment for girls. Yep, believe it or not, 11 year old dancers are really into clothes – especially dance clothes with sparkles on them. We were supposed to talk about “how to do the most amazing hair bun,” in the world – but we totally spaced out on that. Bun too tight? Maybe!……..

The colab channel is new idea – so if you think you like it and want more – be sure to thumb up the video on YouTube, subscribe, share, leave a comment – and that sort of thing. Hearing no feedback…..we will get the message and try something different.

Some of the stores mentioned in this post:

Ivivva – http://www.ivivva.com

Forever 21 Girls Leggings – Forever 21

California Kisses – San Diego Girls Dancewear awesomeness. http://www.californiakisses.com

Thanks in advance for watching!

Dance Craziness Pt. 2

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | One Comment

When I left off on my last post, I talked about how much fun Hollywood Vibe was. In this post, I will talk about how exciting The Pulse Las Vegas and my first performance with #lilBEASTS was!

Sparkles Lund and Will Adams Willdabeast

Willdabeast

Jordyn Jones and Sparkles Lund

Jordyn Jones

We left for Las Vegas on a hot summer’s Thursday and got there at about 3 ish. It was probably 103 degrees outside. I felt like I was going to pass out. Once we got into our room, we went straight to the pool to find some of my dance friends Jordyn Jones, her brother Skylar, and Sean Lew. We probably swam for about 2 hours and then Jordyn and I decided to go shopping. There was a very large mall across from our hotel, called Miracle Mile because it’s a mile long. We went there for roughly 2 or 3 hours and then had to go to rehearsal for #lilBEASTS.

The next day, I went to the pool again with Jordyn and we stayed for about 2 hours. At 2:00 p.m. that day I had my first day of classes at Camp Pulse. Those ended at 5:30 and then I had an acting class with the one and only Lane Napper. It was so much fun! We did a few improv exercises and practiced saying a little bit about ourselves on the spot.

The following day, I had classes starting at 9:00, and they ended at 2:00. At 3:00, I had another #lilBEASTS rehearsal before our first performance. After that rehearsal, we all felt very prepared to perform.

We were the 10th number so we all got to watch the dances before us. They were amazing! So amazing, that the time went by really fast because they were so good. The dancers at Pulse are some of the best of the industry. Many of them are professional dancers and they know how to perform for an audience. I enjoyed the show a lot.

I was really excited when it was our turn to perform because this was the first time we performed live as a team. The audience loved us. We even won an award to bring our crew to the Open Call competitions in 2015. Can’t wait to perform more with my fellow #lilbeasts and work more with Will, our director!

If you missed the first post in this series, go back and look at http://sparkleslund.com/2014/07/23/dance-craziness-pt-1/

 

Dance Craziness Pt. 1

By | Auditions, Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | One Comment
Hollywood Vibe

Hollywood Vibe

I’m so sorry I haven’t written in a while, I’ve just been really busy with all of the events that I have been participating in for the past few weeks. There’s so many of things going on that I’ve decided to break this into two or maybe even three posts! I am just going with the flow depending on how much of this I get done today. The things I’ll be talking about in these two or three posts are Hollywood Vibe Nationals, The Pulse Las Vegas, #lilBEASTS video, and Macy’s Glamorama. That’s a lot right? I guess I’ll start with Hollywood Vibe Nationals, so that I go in time order.

This crazy week all started on Thursday, June 26, with my first scholarship dance rehearsal. We learned this dance over a video sent to us in an email. Unfortunately, my video wouldn’t play, so it was very stressful for me once I got to rehearsal. I had to learn every single piece of the choreography on the spot that day.

The next day was our first day of classes, taught by Hollywood Vibe’s superstar faculty. We learned all styles in these classes for four days. Also, during those three days I had competition. After the first day of classes, I performed my trio entitled Whipped Into Shape and my solo, Bees Knees, which was competing for Dancer of the Year. After the second day of classes, I had all of my small groups with the rest of the juniors. We were lucky enough to win 1st Place in the lyrical category and Best Costume with our gorgeous lyrical dance, Tears of an Angel. After the third day of classes, I had both of my large groups, Feels Good and MJ Tribute. Both got Platinum but didn’t place. After the fourth day of classes, it was finally time to for the Final Night Gala. This was where the National Dancer of the Year for each age group was announced and I got to perform the scholarship dance and the Dancer of the Year finalist piece that we had been working on for the past week choreographed by Liz Imperio. Both of the dances felt great and then it was time to announce Dancer of the Year, and Vibe Company, which means you get to assist the teachers and perform with the faculty. They started with Vibe Company, and I got it! So did my good friends Juju, Trevor, Tyler W., and Jordan. We were all super excited but we were eager to find out who won Dancer of the Year. They started announcing the juniors, it was no one I knew. Then they moved on to intermediate. Unfortunately, I did not win but that’s okay I’ll just keep trying and maybe I’ll get it next year! They moved onto the teens I did not know the female winner, but Trevor won for male! Everyone was so excited that they didn’t even pay attention to anything that happened after that.

I had a bunch of fun at Hollywood Vibe and can’t wait for next year!

In the middle of Hollywood Vibe, I had to drive to Los Angeles for #lilBEASTS rehearsal. Which leads to the next post…….The Pulse Las Vegas and #lilBEASTS Showcase Performance.

Here is Part 2 of the series http://sparkleslund.com/2014/07/28/dance-craziness-pt-2/

Video Interview with Mocha

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends, Vlogs | No Comments

In this video I introduce one of my best friends, Mocha. We have known each other since preschool (like 3 years old) and our families are friends too.

It’s a girls’ world in this video – clothes (Outfits of the Day), nails (how to glitter your French Gels), and of course – a bit about dance. Mocha and I have also danced together forever. We are about to go to Nationals for dance – lots of rehearsals and lots of nervous excitement! Both of us are up for Dancer of the Year! Wish us luck.

Be sure to watch to end to get convention tips that you may not already know.

There is a cameo from Austin – dog extraordinaire. Follow him on Instagram at TheAustinBubbles_ – he only has 28 followers – so help a doggie out!

 

 

If you want to see my first ever vLog, check out this post

http://sparkleslund.com/2014/06/24/vlog-1/

Video Interview with Juju

By | Dance, Friends, Uncategorized | One Comment

If you don’t know what a vlog is, it is a video blog. To switch it up a little bit, I decided to do a vlog instead of a regular blog post. Hope you enjoy!

In this video I introduce one of my best friends, Juju. We have known each other since I started competition dancing at age 9, and our families are friends too. She is also a professional dancer and books a lot of work (#proudfriend, #loveher!). Follow her on instagram at http://instagram.com/jjjjjuju (5 js).

In this vlog, we talk about favorite movies – outfit of the day – and a story about the scariest thing that happened (think HOUSE ON FIRE). Not to spoil the ending, but it is not what you think and it is really funny.

Note to remember – Stay Calm……..sometimes your breath can go a long way to save the day.

#lilbeast AUDITION 2014

By | Auditions, Dance | 3 Comments

Two Sunday’s ago, I auditioned for the popular hip-hop crew owned by Willdabeast, lilBEAST. There is also another crew for ages 14 and over owned by the same person called immaBEAST. For those of you who don’t know what a hip-hop crew is, it is a type of dance team that specializes in hip-hop. These dance teams called crews perform at many events including World of Dance and Carnival, two very big dance shows. Today, I will be telling you all about my experience auditioning for lilBEAST.

At 1:00 on June 1st, I went to LA to audition for lilBEAST. The line was wrapped around the whole building so I was very worried that it was going to be very hard to be noticed, but once we got inside of the room it wasn’t too bad. We started learning the choreography and I understood it right away. I was pretty proud of myself because usually it takes me a while to pick up the choreography. After we learned a lot, we split up into groups and the judges chose who they wanted to move onto the next round. I, luckily, was one of those people! I was so excited!

After that round, I had to wait a while because they had the boys go first, and then I went. I killed the choreography, meaning I didn’t forget any of it and I went super full out. To make things even better, I made it through that round too! After that part, a bunch got to freestyle if they wanted too, and that was very fun because of all the different styles that people did. This was pretty much the end of the audition, except that we did the combination a few more times but it wasn’t judged.

Once it was really over, my mom and I thought we should thank Willdabeast for inviting me to audition and being so kind to me, so we did. We had a nice long chat and then he quietly told me that I made it but it’s still a secret. After that, I thought I was going to pass out I was so excited! At that moment, I knew that I have officially “made it” in the dance industry.

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Science Camp

By | Friends, School, Travel | No Comments

Red Tailed HawkLast Wednesday, I left for Rancho El Chorro, also known as 6th grade camp, or Science Camp. Those of you who live in California, you know that this is a big deal for 6th graders. For those who aren’t, I will explain. In sixth grade, you get a big trip, normally close to the end of the year, and it is called Science Camp. Today, I will be telling you about everything I did during those action-packed three days.

Day 1

On Wednesday, we arrived at roughly 11:00 a.m. We got to eat lunch, and then one of the naturalists (camp counselors) old us to go unpack our bags in the cabins. Our cabin had four bunk beds (8 beds), but we only had five people so we got to choose if we wanted the top or bottom bunk. I chose the bottom because it was easier to get up if I had to go to the bathroom. After we unpacked, we started what the naturalists called the Welcome Walk. It was basically where they took us around the whole campus and showed us where everything was. My favorite part about that was when we go to go inside the Science Lab and look at a bunch of interesting animals. Later that day, we had dinner. In order to enter the lunchroom, we had to answer questions about the things we learned that day. I thought this was really cool. I sort of wish that we did this at regular school to enter the cafeteria. After dinner, we had our night hike. It was very cool because we got to see a lot of wildlife that you can’t usually see during the day. We also did an activity with Wintergreen LifeSavers. We partnered up and then the naturalist gave each of us one LifeSaver. We put it in our mouth while keeping it wide and started chewing it. You could see little sparks! It was so cool! The naturalist said that it was a chemical reaction created by the artificial flavoring in the mints and your saliva. We finished off the night by a nice poem read to us by the naturalist who took us on the night hike. I slept not so well but it was okay.

Day 2

In the morning, we had a delicious breakfast of eggs and potatoes and then got started on our first hike of the day. It was probably the longest hike we did as well as the most tiring because it was a hill hike. I liked it, except when I got to the top of the mountain and ran out of water. It just went downhill from there, literally. After the hill hike we had lunch and then free time for about 30-45 minutes. That was also the time slot we had for showering. The showers weren’t too bad, three people had to go in at one time.

In the evening after dinner, we had a group campfire. Other schools from around California were there too, so we were able to meet other kids. We sang a bunch of fun campfire songs including some that you may know like the “SCAT” song and “Baby Shark”. I slept very nicely that night because I was so tired from the day’s activities.

Day 3

The next day was unfortunately our last, but we did get to do lots of cool things to close out the week. For example, we got to visit the raptor room which is where the naturalists keep all of their large predator birds (“raptors” in science words). We got to see an injured red-tailed hawk up close with a bird handler. It was beautiful, but also very sad because the bird could not fly. After that, we had our closing ceremony.

Throughout the whole week, we had name tags on with our real name as well as our “nature name” that we could make up. My nature name was starfish. Sparkles may have worked as a nature name given the stars in the sky, but I like starfish too. Every time we finished a hike we would get a bead on it and at the closing ceremony we got one last bead that had a leaf on it, it was very cool. Next, we had to pack up our bags and head home. I had so much fun and I hope you enjoyed hearing about it.

Did you go to science camp when you were a kid? Comment below.

Otis Parson School of Design Fashion Show

By | Auditions, Friends, modeling, Work | One Comment

Otis Parsons Fashion ShowRecently, I had an audition at Otis parson school of design. It was for modeling, so the audition process was really fun and that is what I’ll be telling you about today.

When we got there, the audition was supposed to end at 3:00 and we got there at 2:59. Yikes, right! After we walked into the room, the guy said, “I remember you! I picked your headshot; adorable!” I was glad he said that because we weren’t even sure if I was going to be able to audition given our arrival time. After that, a woman walked in and said, “Have her try the one that no one fit into.” When she said that, the guy picked up an outfit and handed it to me. There was a small room guarded by curtains that he signaled me to go inside and change. The outfit fit perfectly! I think that that was a good thing because remember how earlier I told you what the woman said about how it was the outfit that know else fit into. Well, it fit me!

Pre Show Party DanceAfter that part of the audition, I put my own clothes back on, and I had to freestyle to Happy, by Pharell. It seems like every audition I’ve gone to lately has always been to that song. It’s super weird! I felt really good about it and the casting director seemed happy.

A few days later my mom got a call from my agent saying that I got the job! I was sort of expecting it because the casting director seemed really pleased with my audition. I was excited that I did get the job, but if I didn’t I would still be happy because I knew that I did the best I could. This is one of those occasions when I feel really lucky being fun sized.

After about two weeks I had the fitting for the job. It was a little bit weird because they just gave me the outfit and I had to undress in front of everyone in the room! After I put it on, they had me improv to Happy, by Pharell, again. As you can see, I’m getting a little sick of that song. I hear it basically every single day, but anyway back to the point. I improvd and then they made a few modifications to my outfit like put a pin here, tuck this in there, stuff like that. That was actually one of my favorite parts because I felt like a real life runway model! Then, once they made the modifications, I had to improv again. That was pretty much it! The whole fitting really only lasted roughly 10 minutes! But the whole thing was super fun and a great experience.

Two Thursdays later, I had my first rehearsal. I found out that the choreographer was Jackie Sleight, one of my favorite teachers at, as well as the owner of L.A. Dance Magic, a popular convention/competition I went to earlier in the year. The rehearsal was 5 hours long! We started at 1:00 in the afternoon and went until 6:00 p. m. First, we learned a big piece of the choreography and then had a break. Next, once the break was over, we learned another large chunk of it which was the part where we model the clothes for Under Armour, the sponsored brand. After that, we were pretty much done with all of the choreography and we just got to run it and get it in our minds better. The next day, we had another rehearsal but on the actual stage that we would be performing on. We did basically the same thing as the previous day, except it was on stage and the rehearsal was shorter. We also got to have some delicious food provided by the hotel the event was at.

Finally, the next day, we had the show! There were two shows, one in the afternoon and one at night. The night one was for some very important people like famous designers and photographers. In our preparation for the show, we had a few of the students that designed our outfits in the room with us, helping us get dressed and keeping us in order. They were really nice. I was so excited before we went on stage but I was also a little nervous. Once we went on, I felt this big boost of adrenaline and the show was great. The second show was just as great, except better! After both shows, I went swimming with two of my friends that also did the show, Hannah and Hayden. We had a bunch of fun in the pool, and then we had a delicious dinner.

The whole experience was super fun because of all the friends I made, the amazing designers, and of course, my loving parents.

Here is the video from the fashion show. I am at about the 22 second mark.

ivivva or lululemon kids

By | Stuff I Like | No Comments

ivivv a girls stuff

You might think that it’s a little strange for an eleven-year-old to be shopping at lululemon, and most other people think so too. That is exactly how I found out about Ivivva.

I went to New York last Summer for many different things including dance, family time, and just plain old fun! While we were there, my mom and I decided to go do some shopping! We went to a few of my favorite stores including Abercrombie, Pacsun, and Tilly’s, and then we came across lululemon. Many of my friends have told me about the store and so we decided to go in. Their merchandise was cute and so I tried on two pairs of athletic shorts and a sports bra. The sports bra fit fine, but the shorts were a little bit too big. My mom asked one of the women working there if they made any of the shorts in smaller sizes and then she said, “We actually recently created a full kids line called ivivva. It would probably fit your daughter much better than lulu would.” My mom said, “Thank you!” with a big smile on her face and we searched for the closest Ivivva on Google Maps. It turned out it was only about 5 blocks away!

We went into the store with open minds and happy faces and started looking around. Almost instantly we found a bunch of stuff that we were interested in so I entered the fitting room. Everything fit great! The sizes are very true and all the employees are super nice. They are all either dancers, yoga teachers, or ice skaters, so they know about the athletic body. They were also very helpful with finding the products that are for the specific sport you play. The store is divided into parts based on sizes, so it is very easy to find the one you need. I hope you will go there someday to see for yourself!

If you’re reading my blog, you’re probably a dancer. And since this store only has about 10 locations. They probably don’t have a store in your hometown. But fortunately, they have a great website that has all the same merchandise that they sell in their stores. Click the link below to see it!

ivivva

Hollywood Vibe Feels Good

By | Competition, Convention, Dance | No Comments

In The Pocket

In any sport or activity, you hear people talk about being in the zone. When music and rhythm is involved: dancers, singers, or musicians are in the pocket rather than in the zone. Being in the pocket means staying on your rhythm and…. I’m sorry, it just doesn’t make sense if you have not had that feeling for yourself. Last weekend, at Hollywood Vibe Dance Convention I stayed in that pocket for the whole weekend.

During the Fall, you audition for your group dances. In a month’s time, normally, you will get a packet in the mail that says what dances you were placed in and if a solo is recommended or not. About a week after that, you learn your group dances. I think that is the funnest part of the process because the choreography is fresh in our minds and exciting because it’s new. Here is a list of the groups I am in.

In the beginning of Winter, we have our first regional competition. That is the studio’s chance to test our dances and see how they are judged. From these results and judges’ notes, we can make changes to our dances. This year, our first competition was LA Dance Magic (LADM for short). All of our dances got Platinum, the highest award you can get, but there was still room for improvement, because you can always become better. On a personal level, I won the Magic Performer award which means I was the top Junior dancer of that regional competition. All of our dances qualified for their national finals and I qualified to compete for Magic Performer of the Year.

After LADM, we came back to the studio to work on improving our dances. This was in preparation for Hollywood Vibe regionals. After months of hard work, we showed up at Hollywood Vibe with all of our dances in great shape. It was a special weekend for all of us. It was especially fun because we had our mini and junior rookie teams at the competition and they did fabulous! All of our dances were solid, highlighted by my junior lyrical piece, Tears of an Angel, choreographed by Keara Blake. It won 1st place Platinum as well as overall high score and it was awarded the Outstanding Choreography award. Go Ms. Keara! It was exciting to see the entire studio do so well, it felt like we won everything! I was honored with the Regional Dancer of the Year Award and I was very thankful because I worked very hard to achieve it. If you do not know dance, here is a reference – The current Junior Hollywood Vibe Dancer of the Year is Brooke Kosinski – principle dancer at Abby Lee Dance Company and one of the stars of the show Dance Moms.

Much in the same way that a dancer has to stay in the pocket to perform well, the team has to stay in the pocket for the entire year. That means lots of hard work in the studio, but it also means showing up at competition ready to dance. So far, our season has been great. We have a few more months of work to do in the studio to prepare for nationals. If we practice real hard, it will be more likely that we succeed.

I would just like to say thank you to all of my teachers, choreographers, my parents, the rest of my family, and of course, my wittle puppy dog, Austin.

Mr. Marco is Back! Pt 2

By | Auditions, Dance, Friends | 2 Comments

We left off where from my first post – Mr. Marco is Back Pt 1 Mr. Marco picked me to be in the opening number for a Michael Jackson tribute show. Remember that? Well, that same night, Ms. J informed us that our first rehearsals would start on April 1st and April 2nd. I was super pumped and hungry for learning new material.

At our first rehearsal, we mainly focused on learning all of the sections and blocking. For non-performers, that means putting everyone in spots. I really liked all the different part because not one was similar to the one before. We got really close to being finished in that rehearsal, so we didn’t have much to do the next day but run it and clean. By the end of the day, I felt that it was definitely a time well spent working on it and making it as close to flawless as possible. You know what they say, practice makes perfect!

If you enjoyed reading this, please subscribe to my blog if you aren’t already and if you already are thanks for being great fans!

Mr. Marco is Back! Pt 1

By | Auditions, Dance, Friends, Uncategorized | One Comment

Those of you who know who Marco Cruz is (mostly my dance friends) know that he has been gone from DPAC for a while teaching at KAR, a popular convention/competition. I have missed him a lot because he was one of my favorite teachers at DPAC! Fortunately though, he recently visited us twice and that is what I will be telling you about today.

Mr. Marco choreographed my first ever solo, Whatcha Want. I won every competition with that solo so you could see why I love him. I also enjoy his amazing teaching styles and challenging combos.

Last week, Ms J. told us that there was going to be an audition for the opening number that we are performing at a Michael Jackson Tribute show in LA. Afterward, she told us that Mr. Marco was choreographing it. I was upper excited but I also knew that I needed to bring my A Game because he’s very tough. The audition started on Thursday during the two hours when it’s usually Hip Hop 2-3 and Hip Hop 4-5. Marco walked in with his trusty assistant, Taylor and they started the combo right away. I had visited Marco a few weeks before that so I already knew the beginning of the piece but he also added many other things so I don’t think I had much of an advantage at all. After we did the dance he split us up into four groups. We ran the combo a few times in those groups and then he started putting us into different groups based on what he thought would look good together. He did this for a while, taking people out and putting people in. Finally, after he did this for about 20 minutes, he started picking the people that were going to be in the actual piece. He started with choosing the older girls. Then he got to the younger ones like me. He called out about five people and then he paused. I was a little bit upset because I thought he was done and I didn’t get picked, but right after that he turned to me and said, “You’re in.” I was super excited because it was very unexpected!

Click here to see the second post in this sears – Mr. Marco is Back Part 2

 

 

To be continued…

 

 

SOL Dance Convention

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | No Comments

Last weekend, I went to SOL Dance Convention. It was very fun and very easy to get to because it was in Santa Maria which locals know is roughly 25 minutes away from where I live! The studio had a great weekend and I will tell you all about it below!

It all started on Friday, the 21st. Unlike most convention/competitions, all of the competition dances(that means solos, duo/trios, and group dances) were on the same day! And on top of that, the awards weren’t until 6:00 p. m. on Sunday! My first dance was my solo, Krazy n’ a Box. After that, it was my trio, and then all of my group dances which I don’t remember the order of. That night my best friend Camille a.k.a Mocha slept over at my house. We planned out our outfits for the next day as well as what we were going to do with our hair and what accessories we were going to put in it. On Saturday morning, we got up, showered, got dressed, ate breakfast, and then left for our first day of convention classes. Unfortunately, on our way there, the GPS on my dad’s phone wasn’t working so we got there a little bit late. My dad was extremely angry with Siri.

Our first class of the day was Bollywood with Jesus (pronounced hay seuss). For those who don’t know what that is, it is a dance style that originated from the movie Bollywood which was filmed in Mumbai, India. Our second class was Salsa with Jonathan, it was fun to have this because it is not a common convention class. After that was one of my favorite classes, Music Video. It was the kind of dance that you would usually see in a music video, so, it is not that hard but extremely fun! Those were all of our classes for the first day which was really unusual because at most convention/competitions there is an average of 6 classes per day.

On Sunday we started a little bit earlier than Saturday, but I’m not sure why. We had the same classes but instead of Music Video as our last class we had Character with Suzy. For those who know what musical theatre is, it’s like that. It is a dance that tells a story and the song is normally from a Broadway musical. The dance we did with her was from the musical West Side Story. After that class, we learned our audition dance. I liked most of the dance and the song, although the dance could have been a little less weird. There was a lot of strange hand movements and some weird floor work. We rolled around on the ground for most of the dance. Now that I think about it, I really only liked the song. We had roughly 20 minutes to practice the dance and then we started auditioning. I was in the first group, but I wasn’t my choice they just picked random people. We did the dance once, then switched lines and did it again. I didn’t feel very good about it because the judges were only watching one girl and it was not myself.

About an hour after that, it was time for the awards. They started with announcing the awards for the competition on Friday. All of the dances I was in got first place except for my solo. I was really proud of my team members but I was a little bit upset that my solo didn’t place. I got over it quickly though. Then it was time for the scholarships, they started with partial scholarships, then went on to full scholarships and finally they announced the STAR Performer of the Weekend, it was awarded to one of my dear friends, Carina Avila! I was so proud of her, and surprisingly didn’t feel bad at all! I felt great about the whole weekend and was also tired as heck by the end of it. Although, whenever I feel that way I know that I kicked some serious booty.

Auditions!

By | Auditions, Dance, Friends | 6 Comments

Last week I had an audition for the girl group Fifth Harmony, but I’m not allowed to say what project it was for. I didn’t feel the best about it, but yesterday I found out that I made it t0 the callback!I went to that today and that’s the story I am about to tell.

This morning, we left at exactly 11:40 A. M. for Hollywood. It was a very stressful and long drive due to traffic. I hate traffic. We got there right on time for sign in. After that, they told us what group we were in. I was in group 4. It took about 30 minutes for my group which was a long time in my opinion. But after I went I felt great! I didn’t mess up once and the judges were looking at me a lot. I made it through that round, but then they put us in different groups and I got cut. They said that they would have kept me but they wanted taller girls. It was not a very good day to be short.

Even if I didn’t get picked, it was still a fun experience and I got to see a lot of my friends.

2 Celebs in one Week

By | Convention, Dance, Friends | No Comments

If you are one of my many active Instagram followers, then you already know that in the past week I have met Zendaya and Vanessa Hudgens! But I thought I would reiterate for those who aren’t.  Both of these people are inspirations for me because they both are triple threats and that’s what I aspire to be.

Zendaya

I met Zendaya at Camp Pulse (which I won two scholarships at but that’s for another time). The emcee announced that, “Camp Pulse has a special surprise for all of us!” and she walked in with Rosero, a part of the Camp Pulse faculty. I was extremely thrilled to meet her because I am a big fan of the show Shake it Up  that she starred in and she is an amazing dancer!

I met Vanessa Hudgens at a nail salon in North Hollywood called Modern Pamper. I had just finished a long day of auditions with my friend Juju and we wanted to do something relaxing and fun so we went to get our nails done! We spent most of the car ride deciding what design to get because we heard that you could get any nail art you wanted. That being so, we had to choose something exciting. We decided on a blue color with zig-zags.

Vanessa Hudgens

Anyway, back to the point. We were starting to get our nails done and Vanessa Hudgens just walked in and started hanging out in the nail salon! It sounded like she came to meet her sister because she was with another girl that looked almost exactly like her. After we were done, we asked her if we could have a picture with her. She was very friendly and kindly said yes. It was a great experience meeting her because I have always been a huge High School Musical fan for what feels like forever. Thanks for reading:)

 

 

Vanessa Hudgens with Sparkles LundZendaya and Sparkles Lund

Hollywood Connection

Hollywood Connection 2014

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | One Comment

The night before going to Hollywood Connection I was very nervous and I had a hard time getting to sleep. In 2012 I was selected as their Icon Dancer of the Year and I assisted the teachers at a number of conventions last year. Hollywood Connection was my first competition in 2011, the first time I did a solo in 2012, and so many other firsts for me as a dancer. Bill Bohl also gave me my start as a professional dancer by representing me through Movement Talent Agency. Moreover, the teachers at Hollywood Connection have helped me grow as a dancer – Brooklyn Jai, Chonique Sneed, Jason Kalish, Lindsley Allen, Mitchel Federan, Robert Schultz, and Bonnie Story. I love them all and I feel so much support from them. They teach a lot more than dance.

This year I moved up in age groups to Guest Stars – Teens age 11 to 13. It is like starting all over again. In Irvine, CA you compete against many of the best dancers in the Los Angles area from the top studios and there are lots of professional dancers. INTIMIDATING! The 13 year olds are so good.

DPAC decided only to bring solos to this competition and convention. I have three solos this year – Jazz, Hip Hop, and Contemporary. I decided to perform Krazy n’ a Box, my Hip Hop solo choreographed by Brooklyn Jai, and Cosmic Love choreographed by Mitchel Federan. This is the first time they have seen me compete with their solos. I did my best. I am so thrilled to have scored Platinum for both dances and second overall in each category. Out of the 103 acts, there were about 10 platinums (DPAC got 4) and my friend Danielle Esposito got the only Titanium. Her choreographer is Jill Clark who also choreographed my jazz dance, Bees Knees (think Gatsby). At the wrap party, I was awarded Icon runner up for the event and qualified to compete for Icon of the Year – which is their version of National Champion for the 11 to 13 year old age group. I also was invited to participate in a music video directed by Bonnie Story( High School Musical). I was featured in last year’s video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_YDm_TpoW4

I am super happy for all of the DPAC dancers. We all faced super tough competition but we took the top dancer award in Open and Contemporary for my age group. That was pretty exciting. So happy for Allie Gilson who crushed the Open category and Trevor Quezada who won contemporary.

Last night I performed in a show with Jay Pugh of RUN DMC at the Celebrity Centre on the Church of Scientology campus in LA. They asked me to perform Krazy n’ a Box and a group piece called Tears of an Angel. DPAC brought the house down! It was fun.

So sad that my Grandma Stella and Aunt Shelia (yes, its spelled that way) had to go back home today. I miss them already. Looking forward to Pulse next weekend in Santa Clara! I am entering two solos into the preliminary showcase hoping to get selected to the Showcase. Wish me luck!

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JuJu Plays Applejack In New Commercial

By | Friends, Work | 2 Comments

Juliana KellerOne of the great things about Dellos Performing Arts Center (DPAC) is the opportunity to be friends and dance with so many amazingly talented kids. One of my besties is Juliana Keller (aka Juju). She works really hard and is one of the top dancers at our studio. I learn so much from watching her. She is awesome.

Juju and her family have also been working on developing a career in the entertainment industry. Doing commercials, acting, dancing, singing, and that sort of stuff helps us offset the costs of our dance training. Auditions are always better when you get hired! I am so happy for Juju who is the absolute STAR of this video for My Little Pony. She plays the role of Applejack – sporting the hat and rocking out on the guitar.

I have known Juju ever since I started dancing at DPAC. She has always been really nice to me and we have learned so much from each other. I’m really proud of her booking this commercial. She always looks like she’s having so much fun when she’s dancing, and I’m pretty sure that she actually is! I love you Juju!

Please watch this video and share it with your friends.

I’m Bored

By | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

I’m bored. So, I decided to write a blog post! Because I have nothing else to talk about I decided to do a Q&A!! If you don’t know how this works, I will explain it to you now. The way it works is you comment any question you may have, and I mean ANYTHING, as long as its not too embarrassing or stalker-ish or  just plain out weird. Ready, set, go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! In the mean time, to give you guys some ideas, I have my friend with me for example questions.

Q #1 – If you could choose any eye color to be your own, what would it be?

A #1 – royal blue

Q #2 – What is your favorite color?

A #2 – mint green and eggplant

Q #3 – What is the most unfortunate name you can think of?

A #3 – Puber T.

I hope that this gave you some ideas!

LADM Was a Success

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends, Travel | 3 Comments

As some of you may know, last weekend I went to DPAC’s first competition of the year, LADM! Our whole studio had so much fun and everyone did amazing! Speaking of amazing, how about I tell you the awards that the Junior Company and I received this weekend.

Numb(small group) – 1st Place Platinum

Proud Mary(small group) – 2nd Place Platinum

Tears of an Angel(small group) – 1st Place Platinum and 1st Overall High Score

Rags or Riches(small group) –  1st Place Platinum

Whipped Into Shape(trio) – 1st Place Platinum

Feels Good(production) – 2nd Place Platinum

Krazi n’ a Box(solo) – 2nd Place Platinum

Bee’s Knees(solo) – 1st Place Platinum

It was really exciting to get all of these awards, but my favorite part of it was the rush that it gave me. It’s like that for me at every convention/competition. In my opinion, it’s not about the award itself, its about how you earned the award, and how hard you worked to achieve the goal.

Another thing that at LADM is we were competing against another local studio that we have had a rivalry with for years. We tried to keep things friendly, and it stayed like that for the most part but there were still some people who shook things up a little. Ummm, that’s all I’m gonna say about that. Thanks for reading!!! <3images

2014 Dance Numbers

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | One Comment

Alexandra Sparkles Lund PrintThis year in dance I have been working on 4 small groups, 1 large group production, 1 trio and three solos. Our first competition of the year is coming up this weekend in Santa Clara. The title of the competition is LADM (LA Dance Magic). It is not only a competition but also a convention which means that we get to learn from their fabulous faculty and assistants.

Small Group #1: Numb,

choreographed by Katie Scofield, style: contemporary, dancers: Maya Spriggs, Larkin Paddock, Mariah Urbano, Taylor Costa, Camille Cattaneo, Claire Grzincic, Trinity Terassas, and me

Small Group #2: Proud Mary,

choreographed by Tahirih Ellison, style: jazz, dancers: Juliana Keller, Trinity Terassas, Camille Cattaneo, Taylor Costa, Larkin Paddock, and me

Small Group #3: Tears of an Angel,

choreographed by Keara Blake, style: lyrical, dancers: Ashlie Andrade, Anna Devereaux, Trinity Terassas, Camille Cattaneo, Juliana Keller, Taylor Costa, Maya Spriggs, and me

Small Group #4: Rags or Riches,

choreographed by Jillian Clark and Jordan Neil, style: hip-hop, dancers: Mariah Urbano, Sidney Domingues, Trinity Terassas, Levi Spriggs, Camille Cattaneo, and me

Large Group Production: Feels Good,

choreographed by Re’Sean Pates, Dylan Tarrant, Jillian Clark, style: hip-hop, dancers: too many to count

Trio: Whipped Into Shape,

choreographed by Keara Blake, style: musical theatre, dancers: Camille Cattaneo, Juliana Keller, and me

Solo #1: Krazi n’ a Box, choreographed by Brooklyn Jai, style: hip-hop

Solo #2: Bees’ Knees, choreographed by Jillian Clark, style: jazz

Solo #3: Cosmic Love, choreographed by Mitchel Federan, style: contemporary

All of these dances I love for different reasons. For example, Tears of an Angel I like because of the technique in it, and Numb I like because of its unique style. I hope you enjoyed me telling you about all of the dances that I am in this year!!!

If you want to see when and where DPAC will be performing – look on my calendar page here.

 

Sick at Christmas Time

By | Friends | 2 Comments

Unfortunately, over Winter Break I was extremely sick. I had a fever of 104, an awful headache, and I was really congested. But luckily, it was only for the first week. The second week was soooooo fun! I went kayaking, saw three movies in theaters (Anchorman 2, Saving Mr. Banks, and Catching Fire), and of course…. Opened presents!

You know how I said I opened presents? Well, I didn’t actually do that on Christmas day. I felt fine on Christmas Eve when we went to church, I even felt okay when we were eating delicious lobster tails for Christmas Eve dinner! After dinner, we opened one gift (family tradition) and I received Christmas pajamas. I heard that a lot of families get their Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve.

That night, I went to bed thinking about all of the presents I was going to get. Tragically, I got an awful stomach ache in the middle of the night. I got up, and went to sleep with my parents. On Christmas morning, I was so sick I couldn’t walk. My dad gave me a piggy back ride to the living room to see all of my presents, but all the festive colors made me puke. Back to bed I went. I felt so bad I didn’t even care about missing Christmas! My parents were cool about it. We decided that the whole family would delay Christmas until I felt better. The good news is, I was well enough to open my presents the very next day.

I thought it was awful that I had to miss Christmas, but what I took away from it was the true meaning of Christmas. Being with your family and celebrating the holiday is the greatest gift of all, no matter what day it is.

The Reasons I Like Hunter Hayes

By | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

The main reason I like Hunter Hayes is because he is an amazing singer. For those who don’t know who Hunter Hayes is, he is a young country singer who has gorgeous blonde hair.

The other reasons that I like Hunter Hayes are his beautiful facial features like his dimples and his blue eyes. He has many hit songs like I Want Crazy and Wanted. Those two are also my favorite songs of his. I originally did not like country music that much until I heard his style of country. After I started liking Hunter Hayes I started listening to other country artists like Luke Bryan, Kacey Musgraves , and Florida Georgia Line. My favorite Kacey Musgraves song is Merry Go Round.

My dad thinks that its creepy that I like Hunter Hayes because he’s 22 and “that’s weird” said my dad. I replied, “I wouldn’t date him. Duhhhhh!” I will put a picture of Hunter at the end of this post so you guys can see how amazing he looks for yourself.

I used to be into Liam Payne from One Direction (I still am a little bit) but then I discovered Hunter Hayes and entered a whole new world of gorgeousness. I’m not really sure if that’s a real word but I do not care. That is the perfect word to describe Hunter. Pure. Gorgeousness. That is precisely why I am obsessed. Thanks for reading! Keep loving Hunter Hayes!

 

 

Pee Good News

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Friends | 4 Comments

Have you ever heard such good news that you feel like you’re going to pee? Today I’m going to tell you about my encounter with those situations. Usually, this happens to me when I book an audition or win an award. It gives me a rush where I just feel like I could do anything. It also motivates me to keep trying my hardest. Another time when this happens a lot is when I eat lots of sugar. I get super excited and start jumping up and down (then I get the pee feeling). So, I guess for me the things that give me this emotion are things that make go, “Weeeeeeeee!!!” I was going to talk about the opposite of pee moments but I don’t want to ruin your guys’ day. I’ve never tried to hold on to a “weee” moment, but I think that if I were to attempt it, I would try to embrace the good news and take the best out of it.

What I’ve realized as a dancer, is that after a lot of “weee” moments, you start to get used to it. For example, after you keep winning competitions over and over again it doesn’t feel as special as it did when you won that first competition.

I really hope that I can stay as motivated as I am right now to keep dancing and pursuing my goals. As one of my dance teachers always says, “Dream a dream, set your plan, do the work.” I think these are very good words to live by.

I know this was sort of a short blog post but I think its meaningful and explains a lot about me. Thanks for reading!

p.s. Keep on having those “wee” moments. They don’t always last forever.

Solar Flares Are The Suns Dances

By | School | 2 Comments
Great Solar Flare from Elite Daily

Great Solar Flare from Elite Daily

I love solar flares, or at least the photos of solar flares. There is something mystical and powerful about them. As a dancer, I have been encouraged to explode on stage. Every choreographer I have worked with have encouraged this, but Brooklyn Jai has become famous for the term “full out.” There is no doubt that the sun’s solar flares are a full out expression of the suns energy. I chose that for my class project that I am delivering today. I put my presentation into a video to share.

Hope you like it!

 

Camp Pulse Dallas

By | Convention, Dance, Friends, Travel | 7 Comments

This weekend I will be traveling to Dallas, Texas for a dance convention called Camp Pulse. I will be spending the weekend with amazing choreographers like Lane Napper, Rosero McCoy, and many more. One of them that I mentioned: Lane, actually starred on the Nickelodeon hit show Victorious playing the role of the school’s guidance counselor. Rosero does all the choreography for the Disney show, Shake It Up!

I will arrive in Dallas today, but the convention starts Friday, October 25(a.k.a. tomorrow) and I will be performing my Jazz solo, Gatsby. After that, I have an acting class with Lane Napper! Sounds cool, right? Then, I have a master class with the amazing Wildabeast. He is one of the leading Hip Hop choreographers in LA. He also has his junior crew called Lil’ Beasts. I would probably be a part of it if I lived in Hollywood.

The following day, I will start the convention classes. Those start at 9:30 and end at nighttime because we have something called the Pajama Jam. It is where we get to dance and play games in our favorite PJ’s. I am wearing furry pajama pants with colorful smiley faces on them and a teal colored shirt.

On Sunday, I do basically the same thing except there is a wrap party at 3:00 where they hand out scholarships to the dancers that they think worked the hardest and deserve it the most (fingers crossed). The truth is, all the dancers are excellent, there are just some that stand out more than others.

I am really looking forward to seeing my dear friends Charlize Glass and Sean Lew. I first met Sean when he danced at my dance studio’s sister studio, Dellos Walnut. I met Charlize at another Pulse and we became fast friends. Well, that’s a preview of my weekend. The captain just announced that we are descending into the Dallas Ft. Worth airport and need to shut down all electronic equipment for landing. Wish me luck. If you want updates throughout the weekend, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter – my handle is sparkleslund on all of them.

Aladdin Audition

By | Uncategorized | One Comment

On Saturday, I had an audition for a production of Disney’s Aladdin at the Pasadena Playhouse. The audition started at 10:00 a.m. and I was done at 5 p.m. It was very tiring. The strange part is that it was part audition, part reality TV. The producer was Lythgoe Family Productions, so I guess I should not be that surprised that it felt like a So You Think You Can Dance audition. The choreography was done by Mario Mosley. It was the first time I auditioned with a choreographer that I knew. He teaches at Sol Innovations.

First, we learned a short routine to the Lady Gaga song, Applause. It was a really fun dance with a lot of personality(right up my alley). Next, they broke us up into groups based on the Disney character that was on our name tags(I was a Tinker Bell). After that, the judging began. I went into my group and we did the routine. After we finished, they asked us to switch lines and perform it again. I was really nervous because I had no idea what the judges thought about my dancing and my personality. Then, they told us to form a straight line and surprisingly everyone went through in my group, but it kind of upset me because some of the people in it were not very talented. After we were judged, they put an orange sticker on our name tags and told us to come back at 2:00. Soon after, I went to Red Robin with my dear friends Valentina and Alexis. I had a grilled cheese with a chocolate milkshake.

When we went back to where the audition was being held, we saw that a TON more people had come to audition and we found out that those were the people that they booked last year and about 20 others. While they were auditioning, the rest of us got more time to go over the dance and make new friends. Then it was our turn,

 

Halloween Costume Options Need Help

By | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Ok, so Halloween is coming up soon, and I can’t decide what I want to be. I’m either going to be a noodle, an alien diva, or a cute version of the mad hatter. I am writing this blog post for you to help me decide.

I’m leaning towards the noodle idea because my friend, Alyssa and I are trying to make it a partnered costume to make it look like we’re Cup Noodles. She would be the cup and I would be the noodles! Doesn’t that sound hilarious?

 

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 10.18.29 PM

The next option would be the alien diva. The vision I had was I would get one of those alien morph suits but wear it with really outrageous heels and what look like a designer purse. Again, if you like any of these leave a comment of which one you want me to wear.

The third choice is the mad hatter which is really cute but not very creative. This idea is really if the other two don’t work out. Okay! I’ve given you my ideas, but now its voting time people! Get typing!!!

Sam Waterman to get Life Saver Award

By | Friends | No Comments

Saving someone’s life is a pretty big deal, and my friend Sam Waterman did that last year.

Sam Waterman has been in my class at school until this year. He goes to a different school now. We used to carpool to school all the time.

Last year he saved a elderly woman’s life in his neighborhood. He was doing his job as a dog walker when he heard the old woman yelling for help. Sam went into the lady’s house and found her on the floor. She had fallen and could not get up. I heard that she was stuck on the floor for more than a day before Sam came along. If he hadn’t found her it could have been fatal. Can you imagine lying there for a day with no food or water?

Sam’s grandmother, Ariel let us know about Sam getting the award. They are having a ceremony this Thursday, September 26th at 9 a.m. The ceremony is going to be at the Honor Farm Building, 880 Kansas Street, San Luis Obispo. I don’t know if I can go or not because of school, but I sure hope that I can.

Sam Waterman in our School Play Last Year. He is wearing the hat.

Sam Waterman in our School Play Last Year. He is wearing the green coat and brown hat

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SOL Dance Convention Santa Maria

By | Competition, Dance | 2 Comments

The competition team at Dellos Performing Arts Center … DPAC danced at the first SOL Dance Convention last year. Our team travels to Los Angles, Las Vegas, and San Jose to compete, so it is super nice to think that we are going to a competition where we can go home and sleep in our own beds rather than hotel rooms!

Hope you can make it too. The Veterans Hall has a super nice stage. It was kinda sticky which was hard to get used to, but the room was really cool. It was really intimate for solos and small groups. Our Production piece had to be done down on the floor, which actually was amazing. It was fun to have all of the audience and the other dancers cheering so close.  This year is sure to be more of the same!

March is turning out to be a pretty busy month. I will be at Pulse in Santa Clara and SOL. Here is the calendar – http://sparkleslund.com/calendar/#action=calp_agenda&calp_item_id=37

 

Miley Killed My Idol Hannah Montana

By | Uncategorized | 16 Comments

I am still a little girl, but when I was a really little girl, Hannah Montana was my idol. I watched every show, learned every song. I guess that I was like just about every other little girl in 2008.

As a 10 year old professional dancer, the MTV Video Music Awards are what my friend Larsen Thompson called the “Super Bowl of dancing”. I know a few of the choreographers and professional dancers that work their tails off to be apart of the show. During the VMA awards, I looked forward to the performance from Miley Cyrus (a.k.a. Hannah Montana). My girlhood idol Miley Cyrus did a hashtag fail with her performance. It was hashtag bad entertainment, hashtag inappropriate, and hashtag disappointing. Disney’s Hannah Montana is dead now, clearly put in a casket by Miley Cyrus.

I can only imagine how difficult it is to be famous when you are a little girl. Disney may have simply done a great job of masking the real Miley Cyrus from the amazing Hannah Montana.

I work really hard as a dancer, and I try my hardest on every audition to book jobs. However, I am glad that I am surrounded by all of my friends and family that tell me to stay sweet and humble. I can’t imagine how Miley’s parents, manager, agent, choreographer, publicist, director, and others all saw that act and somehow thought that it would be o.k. The entertainment industry is a crazy place where people try radical things, but someone should have said NO!

Here is a video of me at age 4, in 2008 singing “The Best of Both Worlds.”

 

The New Season

By | Competition, Convention, Dance, Travel | No Comments

I am very excited for the new season of dance competition! There are a bunch of new dancers coming in that have made the studio more lively and fun. I am very grateful for the five group dances that I have been chosen for.

Group Dances:

I really wanted to focus on more small group numbers this year to improve that area of my dancing. I think that I have everyone right in each dance, but I am going from memory and we have only rehearsed once, so I could have missed some people or included some people by accident….SORRY! Love ya!

  • Jr. Small Lyrical – Tears of an Angel
    • Choreography by Keara Blake
    • Dancers – JuJu, Ashley, Anna, Maya, Mocha, Taylor, and me.
  • Jr. Small Jazz – Proud Mary
    • Choreography by Tahirih Ellison
    • Dancers – Larkin, JuJu, Trinity, Mocha, me
  • Jr. Small Hip Hop – (no name yet)
    • Choreography by Jillian Clark and Jordan Neil
    • Dancers – Sidney, Mocha, Trinity, Mariah, Levi (Jr), and me
  • Jr. Small Open – Numb
    • Choreography by Katie Scofield
    • Dancers – Mariah, Mocha, Trinity, Anna, Clair, Larkin, Maya and me.
  • Hip Hop Production – (no name yet)
    • Choreography by Dylan Tarrant, Jillian Clark, and Re’Sean Pates
    • Dancers – Everyone.

My first year in competition, I only did group dances. My second year, I did one solo that qualified for national champion; so I had to have another solo for regular competition. Last year, I did the same thing. This year, I have three solos ready to go, and may add a fourth if I can get the three clean enough.

Solos

  • Jazz – The Bees Knees
    • Choreography by Jillian Clark
  • Hip Hop – Krazi ‘n a Box
    • Choreography by Brooklyn Jai
  • Lyrical – Titanium
    • Choreography by Mitchel Federan and Keara Blake (cleaner)
  • Surprise – TBD if I can master the three above

My parents and I tried to lay out the schedule through February to see what competitons we will be attending. Our studio does three required competitions, two optional competitions and one national finals. To be in the dance company, it is also required that you attend  competition rehearsals one weekend every month. As a result, there are only a few more open weekends that I have available for attending other conventions and competitions on my own. I also have the chaos of auditions and jobs to juggle along with school. I am not sure if these dates will all work out, but I have published the schedule that we have planned through February. Click on the Dance Calendar in the top menu bar to see where we will be. I hope to see you somewhere! Until Next time….

Toodaloooooooo!!!!

Sparkles.

12013-2014 DPAC Trio Crew

By | Dance, Friends | No Comments

Mocha, Juju and I were selected by DPAC to work with a company choreographer for a trio this year! Not sure what style the number is going to be, but I am totally psyched to dance with my girls.

We had a break dancing session together with Joey, he is on the Cal Poly B-Boys team. Afterwards we worked on tumbling – front hand springs, back hand springs, aerials, and some other crazy cray stuff we just goofed around and made up. Mocha’s brother Bear was fierce with his summersaults. We were so sore we spent over an hour in the hot tub.

We are having a three family BBQ tonight with a fire and an outdoor movie. Not sure what we are watching yet. Watch www.instagram.com/sparkleslund or follow www.instagram.com/jjjjjuju

 

 

The Big Trip for Sparkles Lund

By | Travel | No Comments

Ok, so my big trip started at a green screen studio in Burbank. I was there getting ready to film Just Dance Kids 3 which is just what it sounds like: a dance video game for kids! But sadly, later I got sick on my way to La Quinta Resort & Club for Easter Vacation. After a night of vomiting for twelve hours, I luckily felt a lot better in the morning. It was even enough that my mom and I decided to go to breakfast, and then go swimming.

A few hours later, our whole family went shopping. I didn’t have a very fun experience because there weren’t many children’s’ stores. The next day was pretty much the same except we went to a different mall. Next on our trip, we headed back to LA because my agency set up audition class with award-winning choreographer, Marguerite Derricks! After the class, we headed home and thought about everything we did. It really was a great trip.

Class Integrity Award Goes to Alexandra Lund

By | School | No Comments

I just love my teacher – she awarded me the Integrity Award. I try to always be sincere and honest. The other kids in my class are like that too. Not sure how or why she singled me out for this award, but I am grateful. It is a nice thing to be recognized for.

Congratulations to Alexandra Lund for receiving the character award for Integrity. Alexandra always pays careful attention to the rules and expectations of the environment around her. Paired with this honorable ability to constantly abide to expectations, is her consistency in doing the right thing in any given situation. If Alexandra isn’t sure of what the rules are, instead of risking wrongdoing, she will clarify with a authority figure before acting without knowing her expectations. Having the knowledge of her good character is why Alexandra does right. Alexandra knows that doing the right thing is an honorable character trait to possess, even when no one is looking. Alexandra does what’s right, not to receive anything in return, except her own rightful character, and the pride that comes with knowing that she has a character with integrity.

– Ms. Lauren Kipps

By the way – my teacher is a model. She is super sweet and beautiful – Here are her head shots. Lauren Ashley Kipps

Third Place Is Still Winning

By | Dance | No Comments

I spent last weekend in Burbank, CA attending the iHollywood Dance competition and convention. Obviously when you go to compete, you always want to do your best. What you learn as an athlete in an individual sport is that you can only do your best, and you will not win every time. Think about the worlds best race car drivers, golfers, gymnasts, and tennis players. Even at the highest level in their sport, it is hard to be the best every time.

We went to LA thinking about Mr. D, who was in an awful car accident. He broke his neck and they were doing emergency surgery to save his life. We had no idea what was going to happen. Just before we started competing, we learned that he was fine and the doctors were successful. Our prayers were answered.

With lifted spirits, I hit the stage for Sparkly Money, then half way through – the music stopped and the lights went out. I did my best to stay in character. After I got off stage, they put me back on, and I had to wait more than a minute before my music started….. very stressful. I did my best once again, and the music and lights went out once again. I received the “Girl on Fire” award and came in first in the category for my age group.

Watcha Need was great. The number placed first in the Jazz category. The score was good enough to place Third Overall for the competition. Here is a video that I put together to share the story of Hollywood Connection in Santa Clara, and iHollywood Dance in Burbank. Hope you enjoy it. Share with friends.

Dream Duet

By | Dance | No Comments

My friend Mocha Cattaneo stayed over last night. We woke up at 8 this morning and began working on some choreo for a dance. Our dads (both) and my mom helped by filming the dance. We ran it 4 or 5 times from different angles.

Then my dad loaded them onto my computer and Mocha and I picked cuts from the 4 takes into one video. It took over 3 hours to put this together – great learning experience. Now Mocha and I can edit our own videos. We plan on putting together a company called Spocha TV. This is our first production. If you like it – please post to your social media pages so we can get traffic and fans!

 

Hollywood Connection 2013

By | Dance | No Comments

Hollywood ConnectionOMG, This weekend I am going to my first dance competition of 2013! DPAC is going to Hollywood Connection in Santa Clara (as always) to start off the season. It’s going to be super fun!

Because I am ICON OF THE YEAR, I get to be in the faculty dance with all of the teachers and one of my good friends, Trevor Quezada!

My group dances this year are entitled:

Breakin’ Dishes – Small Group Jazz

Push the Limits –Large Group Contemporary

Parental Warning – Production Hip Hop

Rockin’ Queen – Production Tap

Go Girl – Small Group Hip Hop

My solo is called Whatcha Need.

In Push the Limits, I do some really cool partner work with another one of my friends named Jordan Clark. That beautiful dance was put together by the one and only choreographer, Tahirih Ellison. Rockin’ Queen is a tribute to the classic rock band, Queen. It was choreographed by some of my favorite teachers, Jill and Johnna Clark. I hope I do the best I can this weekend and the many to come. Wish me luck!

Happy New Year 2013

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

2013

Happy New Year everybody! As the year has been coming to an end I have been thinking about all the great things that happened to me in the previous year. Lets look back and appreciate the amazing events from last year. First of all, Hollywood Connection ICON OF THE YEAR for crying out loud! I guess that pretty much means I’m dancer of the year and that sounds like a pretty big deal, right? Secondly, don’t forget about Johns Hopkins CTY (see “Johns Hopkins Here I Come!”). And last but not least, we can’t forget this one…I’m a fifth grader now! For me, that’s pretty awesome. But to get to the point 2012 was a great year.

Johns Hopkins Here I Come

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Johns HopkinsA week ago I took a quiz in Camarillo and qualified for the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth program!!! I was so nervous because you only received 22 minutes for 55 problems! There were two categories in the test, Math and English. The English part of the quiz was mostly analogies. And the Math was all sorts of problems. Because I qualified for this program, in Summer, 2013 I can go take a summer camp at either Stanford or Johns Hopkins! The camp includes a variety of planned activities and all-campus events. I’m sure I will have lots of fun at camp.

Tribute to Evelyn Champagne King

By | Dance | No Comments

When you are a young dancer who is offered a gig, you say yes! And I am sure glad that I did. Evelyn Champagne King was a great entertainer. I was able to learn about her music with other child entertainers and meet her. It was super fun. Enjoy some Video

 

Backstage at Central Coast Follies

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Central Coast Follies is an Arroyo Grande Tradition. Ladies who love to dance and raise money for charity put on a great show every year. I see them practicing at DPAC (Dellos Performing Arts Center) every Sunday like clockwork. It is great to have them around. Practicing your solo in the studio alone can be pretty creepy.

DPAC is fortunate to be invited to add to their show. It was an honor to dance with them. We had a blast. Here are some of the backstage antics with DPAC studio owner Johnna Clark.

 

Some Of My Sparkley Friends

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DPAC Family

I just wanted you guys to meet some of some of my friends from dance. They are super cool I think you’ll like them…Well here they are.

The first is Camille, we have been best friends since we were three. Whenever I feel sad or lonely she has my back. We are always in the same competition dances so we get to hang out and see each other all the time. When we were little, Camille played this joke on me by telling me that we were “Home Sisters.” She said it meant we were biological sisters that live in different homes and have never met. I don’t know why but I believed her because both of our moms were allergic to cats and we both have blond hair. Anyways I love Camille and I know we will be best friends for life.

Mariah is my bestie too, but I haven’t known her as long. I met her when I joined the competition team, two years ago. There is only one word to explain her A.W.E.S.O.M.E. She is a great hip hopper especially in Marco’s class. She sleeps over at my house all the time so I’ve gotten to know her REALLY well [Did you know she sleep talks?] If you know her at all you know she absolutely loves One Direction, Liam Payne especially. If your reading this I love you Mariah.

Last but not least, this is Estelle. I miss her so much because she just moved to the bay area but she is one of my favorite people on the planet. I admire her a lot. She is an extraordinary dancer, she is so flexible and dances with so much emotion. I luv u.

I have tons of other friends that I care about very much – Peyton, Grace, Tyler, Paige, Nyah, Julianna, Anna D, Kiki, Jenae, Trevor, Jordan, Sidney, Lily, Alyssa, Jayci, Alexa, Alexis, Sara (blondie), Zoe, Miabella, and so many others. I am already embarrassed because I know that I missed someone. It kinda freaks me out that I cannot list everyone I know. Have you ever tried?

Hollywood Connection Icon of the Year

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Icon of the yearA few weeks ago at Hollywood Connection Nationals I won……. ICON OF THE YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hollywood Connection gives out the award based on classes, sportsmanship, passion and your solo. I wasn’t sure but, when Robert Schultz gave me the rainbow afro in the ICON group dance, I thought it was a hint that I was at least getting close to being the winner.

It felt so good when we were at the HC (Hollywood Connection) banquet when they were announcing the winners of ICON and they called my name. Not to mention it really inspired me when I was taking pictures with all the teachers from HC such as; Brandon HenschelChonique SneedBrooklyn JaiBrooke LiptonLisette BustamanteJason KalishKatie MillerLindsley Allen, last but not least the owners Bill Bohl and Kimberly Lyon.

It was a great experience to win ICON OF THE YEAR… I hope I will do as well next year…
Thank you for reading my blog. ~Sparkles.

New York City Vacation

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High Tea At the PlazaI left for New York City in early January. I went with my friend Camille and her mom (my teacher last year in third grade). I also went with my parents. We took a flight from San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles then a different plane from Los Angeles to New York.

We flew into JFK airport. JFK stands for John F. Kennedy – a US president who was shot (pew – pewed). We arrived at 2 a.m. A driver picked up up in a Suburban and took us into the city through Queens.

Our hotel was the Omni Berkshire Palace on 52nd and 5th Ave. We had a really nice room. It had one room with a pull out couch and a TV. The other room had two queen beds and another TV. Camille and I both received kids backpacks from the hotel full of kids toys and licorice. The adults received a cheese plate and fruit. We ate some of the cheese plate and went to bed.

On our first day in New York City, we walked to FAO Schwartz and stared in awe at the interesting inner tube sculpture.

Then we walked around 5th
Avenue and saw all of the high fashion design stores. I passed Trump tower and said “Wow! Look at those guards out front.” Ms Rowlands suggested that we go inside, and we did.

We went up 6 sets of escalators to get to the garden, which was not very interesting, but there was a great view from up so high.

On the way back to our hotel, we stopped at a nice cafe that had a buffet and I had pasta, meatballs, and mango.

When we got back to the hotel, we all changed and put on fancy clothes to go to my parents party at the rLounge in Times Square.

The rLounge had a great view of Times Square. We could see where the ball drops each year on New Year’s eve.

We did not stay at the party long because we had a big day ahead of us. We did stay long enough to have hors d’oeuvres and drinks.

We spent the day at MOMA – also called the Modern Museum of Art. My favorite thing about MOMA was how we had the headsets so we could listen to the tour of the museum. I really liked Starry Night by Vincent Van Gough

Thursday night at 8:30 PM we saw the musical “The Lion King” on Broadway. It was amazing! My favorite character was the guy who played teenage Simba. There was a really cool part where part of the cast had lit up pieces of Simba’s father they did a dance with the pieces, then at the end of the dance they put the pieces together and made his father.

Friday was highlighted by a visit to the top of the Empire State Building. The view was awesome, but the weather was cold and windy. At one point, it snowed, and for a girl from California, that is really cold but I liked it because it was different.

By the way – we had a bagel for brunch that was was very good, and even met a real NYFD fireman.

New Years Day Sickness

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6467155_orig2012 brought the Flu

This year I had to start off the new year with the flu. I threw up about 8 times between 5:30 and 9:30.

I had planned to go to the Clark’s home for new years. We had to call and cancel at the last minute. It made me feel bad because I was really looking forward to it. Jenae and Jordan are really fun to hang out with. We were planning to make Ginger Bread Men and stay up late to watch the ball drop in Times Square.

I have been to Times Square before, but I do not remember when. My parents have taken me a few times. I remember riding on the ferris wheel inside of the big Toys-R-Us store with my dad. The big light up bill boards are cool.

I am going to New York City again on January 10th. I will be going with my parents, my third grade teacher, and her daughter. We plan to go to the museums, and see a Broadway play. We have not decided which one yet. We are thinking about Chicago, Memphis, or Lion King. (leave a comment if you have a vote and tell me why you like it).

I am a little worried about being sick because I have a dance competition coming up next weekend (I am a DPAC Dancer). I hope I have my strength back to dance. This will be my first competition where I perform a solo.

The name of my solo is Watcha Want. I will let you know how it goes.

Bowling at Paso Bowl with Tristan

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Pismo Bowl with TristanToday, I went bowling with my friend Tristan (he’s in my class). It was a perfect thing to do on a rainy Sunday afternoon. We each played on our own, and also had a team because Tristan’s little sister Ruby decided not to play after we bought a round of bowling for her.

Tristan and I tied in our individual matches (we each had 92) and together we had the highest score as a team (96).  My dad taught us that it is easier to throw the ball from our chest rather than try to roll it the normal way.

After our game, we had burgers and sweet potato fries.  The fries were delicious because I dipped them in a mix of ranch dressing and ketchup.   Then we played a whole bunch of arcade games and Tristan bought me a yellow bouncy ball with a smiley face on it. Tristan told me that, before I arrived at the bowling alley, he almost won an iPhone 4 in one of the games.  The game was called “Stacked”.

On the car ride home I saw a rainbow. That made me feel good.

lost a tooth

Lost My Tooth

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I lost a tooth today! I am so excited.

Today is also my dad’s birthday. He is teasing me. Says that I look like bugs bunny, especially when I overlap my teeth over my bottom lip.

I may need to rethink my halloween costume.

Grandma Stella just called. She sang happy birthday to my dad and reminded him that he was coming out of her belly on his first birthday – gross. But I guess the family tradition of singing to each other on birthdays was started by grandma – which is always fun.

I plan to make my famous brownies for tonight’s BBQ. Extra walnuts is my secret ingredient.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy Halloween! I plan to take some photos of my favorite costumes. I may post some here if there are some great ones. If you have a good costume shot – post it to my dad’s facebook page or email it to me.

Red Ribbon Week

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Red Ribbon Week serves as a vehicle for communities and individuals to take a stand for the hopes and dreams of our children through a commitment to drug prevention and education and a personal commitment to live drug free lives with the ultimate goal being the creation of drug free America. 

That is what the website said about Red Ribbon Week. For me it was a day when I skipped going to my own school and went with DPAC Dancers to perform dances at local public schools.

We went to Grover Beach Elementary first. My dad took me there this morning and watched our first performance.

I did three dances.

The first dance was Jr. Large Hip Hop. We danced to the song Fix Up Look Sharp (video below).

The second dance was Mini Jazz. The dance has a medley of songs, the one I remember is called BubblePop Electric.

The third dance was Mini Tap. We danced to Its A Hard Knock Life (ABDC version) from the Broadway production, Annie.

Then we rolled along to three more schools and performed the dances again. The last school (Shell Beach Elementary) was a bummer because the music was messed up and I had to do Mini Tap with one shoe because I misplaced one.