Madonna Takes on Film in Dance
Michaela DePrince is a popular dance icon - she’s currently dancing with the Dutch National Ballet - and her story has touched a multitude of lives. And we have some exciting news - her story is about to become a movie, and Madonna will be directing!
Michaela was adopted by her American parents after dealing with a very traumatic childhood. Both of her parents died within the span of 7 days when they were living in Sierra Leone’s as a result of the country's civil war, and she lost her three brothers as well. Her story is very moving and Madonna stated that DePrince’s story resonated with her, which is why she has chosen to direct the film. MGM Productions said that they’re thrilled to have Madonna directing, and that “there is no director better suited to tell Michaela’s journey with passion and sensitivity.”
It’s interesting though - when you think Madonna, you may not immediately think film. However, this won’t be her first time directing; she directed the film “WE” back in 2011, in addition to acting in a number of productions. The Queen of Pop is undeniably talented! She also has adopted children, which is most likely why Madonna has a heart for this project. So hands up if you’ll be scoping out Madonna’s directing skills and Michaela’s memoir!
photo credit: JustJared
Prepare To Be Shook By This Dancing Robot
It's no secret that technology is a huge part of our lives - so huge, in fact, that it's probably only a matter of time before electronics rise up and take over the world (we're looking at you, Alexa. Please don't hurt us). And as if we needed more proof the uprising is coming, we present to you: ANYmal.
ANYmal is a four-legged...dog...robot...guy...thing (whatever it is, it's pretty cute!). Created by Swiss researchers at the university ETH Zurich, it's a robot that can hear music, immediately process and analyze the speed of the song, and - get this - DANCE along.
That's right - this little guy can dance. And he's pretty good, too! To prove it, the researchers put it to the test, playing everything from instrumental music to Beyonce to Macklemore. And each time, ANYmal proved he's got the moves. It's especially impressive (read: freaky) when he starts stomping his feet to the beat.
Dance off time, anyone?
Apple Advertisement Gets Groovy
The latest ad for the Apple HomePod is on another level of creative, probably due to the fact that Spike Jonze is the man behind the project. The famed director has once again brought an advertisement to life with the help of dancer, singer, and songwriter FKA Twigs.
So first, what is the HomePod? It's probably similar to something you have in your home already, like an Amazon Echo or Google Pod. And the ad does a pretty good job of making this new addition stand out from the crowd by keeping it simple, but creative. The ad starts by showing us how Twigs’ character is tired from a long day of work. She looks like your average run-down white collar gal, but when she walks into her apartment she asks Siri to play a song that she likes. Siri says “okay, now playing…,” and then a psychedelic dance/ alternate reality thing starts to take place. The girl starts altering the state of the furniture all while dancing through the apartment. She even clones herself at one point and steps through a mirror into another reality. So what is Apple trying to say?
Well, it's safe to say that the majority of dance tries to communicate a message.The vibe we’re getting is, an “Apple HomePod can do more than just answer questions and turn your lights on and off. It can help escape the reality and normalcy of your life". It's as if they're saying that the Apple HomePod can help you feel like you're not at home. And sometimes we all need a little escape...right?
Moreover, any ad that supports the arts gets a thumbs up if you ask me.
"Role Model" Barbie Collection Features Ballerinas
March is Women's History Month, and ICYMI, last Thursday was International Women's Day. To celebrate, Mattel (the creators of the infamous Barbie doll) has released a new collection of dolls they're calling the "Role Model" collection.
On their website, Mattel makes the following statement: "Barbie is committed to shining a light on empowering role models past and present in an effort to inspire more girls. 86% of moms surveyed are worried about the kind of role models their daughters are exposed to. That's why Barbie continues to showcase examples of inspirational women. From Sheroes to Inspiring Women, meet our latest Barbie role models–all extraordinary women we've honored with a doll in their likeness."
The collection includes Frida Khalo, filmmaker Patty Jenkins, and - to our delight - two dancers! One is Misty Copeland, whose doll actually came out last year. And the second is Yuan Yuan Tan, from San Francisco Ballet. Tan is the first Chinese dancer in a prominent Western ballet company to be promoted to principal dancer status. Tan trained at the selective Shanghai Ballet School, and is considered to be one of the most accomplished Chinese ballerinas of all time. She was called a "Hero of Asia" and featured on the cover of Time magazine in 2004.
We love the fact that dancers have been included in such an incredible group of women. Want to share your role model? Post on your social media using the hashtag #MoreRoleModels.