Friday, April 1, 2022

Broadway is back baby! Spring into Broadway with Paradise Square Musical!

Paradise Square - New Musical on Broadway!


Not since Les Misérables has Broadway been able to take somber subjects, turn them into a Musical and left me leaving the theater actually feeling *uplifted*.

Broadway is back and if you think New York in 1863 as the Civil War rages on, couldn't be more boring - you couldn't be more wrong!

*SYNOPSIS*

Free Black Americans and Irish Immigrants live and love together in the unlikliest of neighborhoods - the dangerous streets and crumbling tenement houses of Lower Manhattan's notorious Five Points slum. The amalgamation between the communities took its most exuberant form with raucous dance contests on the floors of the neighborhood bars and dance halls. It is here in the Five Points where tap dancing was born. But this racial equilibrium would come to a sharp and brutal end when President Lincoln's need to institute the first Federal Draft to support the Union Army would incite the deadly NY Draft Riots of July 1863.

Within this galvanizing story of racial harmony undone by a country at war with itself, we meet the denizens of a local saloon called Paradise Square. These characters include the indomitable Black woman who owns it; her Irish-Catholic sister-in-law and her Black minister husband; a conflicted newly arrived Irish immigrant; a fearless freedom seeker; an anti-abolitionist political boss; and a penniless songwriter trying to capture it all. They have conflicting notions of what it means to be an American while living through one of the most tumultuous eras in our country's history.

With visceral and nuanced staging and choreography that captures the pulsating energy when Black and Irish cultures meet and set to a contemporary score that reimagines early American song, Paradise Square depicts an overlooked true-life moment when hope and possibility shone bright. 

*Official Trailer*


Below: "Someone to Love" from Paradise Square


 

  

Above: "Welcome Home" sung by Joaquina Kalukango

Review:

The Omicron surge had postponed it's release, it was in previews since March 15th and will open this Sunday, April 3rd. I got to see it last week and I consider it an early birthday present to me! 

Literally every cast member *BRINGS IT* but let me warn you right now that Joaquina Kalukango brings down the house and sent a full house to their feet! Her voice is so good my mom literally said a prayer of protection over it! The Tony Awards just needs to give Paradise Square it's award right now and give Joaquina her award now too!

This is a definite *TICKET* - get your tickets before all performances sell out and you are waiting months to get in. Remember summer is swiftly approaching and tourists will be snatching up those seats when they come to visit NYC.

*RUSH/LOTTERY*

A limited number of general rush tickets are available for each performance, subject to availability. General rush seats are $32 each and will be available when the Box Office opens for that day's performance(s). Digital lottery tickets are $32 each (plus $4 service charge per ticket) and limited to (2) tickets per person, subject to availability. Lotteries close at 3:00 PM the day before the performance. Press on the link that reads Digital Lottery - when you get there, click on a social network, social toaster will verify it and then a form will appear and you complete it to enter the Digital Lottery - remember to fill out your name EXACTLY as it reads on your photo ID - this is important if you win so you can claim your tickets. On the day of the performance have your ID at the ready, your proof of vaccination and a mask (they do have some available if you forget yours, but I always say have your own, just in case).

Just in case I don't post again before my birthday this Sunday, April 4th - I want to post a reminder that it is not too late to support my application for Sephora Squad - I would totally consider it a birthday present if you fill this out: 


Did you want to treat me to a coffee for my birthday? 

Readers Sound Off: What broadway performance are you most looking forward to catching? (is there one that is still postponed that you wanted you to see?)

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FTC Disclosure: I attended Paradise Square during previews, no monetary compensation has been received. All opinions are 100% my own! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

The impact of Beauty in the Digital Age! Something I hope to spend more time this year exploring, I applied for #SephoraSquad 2022!

I did the thing! I applied for the 2022 #SephoraSquad I have always believed that beauty is a balance of mind, body and soul. There is more to beauty than curated images of perfection. There was a brief essay question that I thought would be fun to share with you so I could hear your answers to this question as well.




Essay Question: What Got You Into Makeup?

What got me into 'makeup' was actually *NOT* finding what I wanted off the shelf. Back in the good old days there weren't shelves full of concealer or foundation that matched my skin tone. I couldn't find the perfect shade of red lipstick, so I made that too by mixing shades from different brands I liked. And I also couldn't find a signature fragrance match as a teen (there were few places to create customized scents then) and I would also play alchemist and mix it myself. When I got asked what shade of lipstick I was wearing or what scent I was wearing I knew I did it right and it felt like the ultimate validation of my efforts.

That validation would be repeated in my blogging life when I would hit events or tradeshows and makeup artists would tell me they didn't want to change my lip color - even though that was the point for me to wear that shade the brand was selling and have it appear in my post event recaps.

Sephora has posed an interesting challenge to my readers, they would love a testimonial from you!

You can leave a testimonial in support of my application here: https://www.sephorasquad.com/leave_testimonial/94197

As the world slowly begins to open up again I want to do more than just 'basic self care'. Not to mention Zoom conferences taught us all that a little makeup never hurts! Help support my efforts to bring you my take on hot products and #beauty trends!

Share with me, what got you into makeup?

(and if you left a testimonial thank you in advance!)

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FTC Disclosure: No monetary compensation has been received. This is NOT a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.

Monday, March 14, 2022

Monday Mood: Missing Hour #MondayVibes

 MONDAY MOOD:













If someone actually calls this number, let me know if someone really answers! I wish someone would return that missing hour - I want it back!

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Opening Weekend: @jeffleatham returns to @nybg for The Orchid Show: Jeff Leatham's Kaleidoscope #NYBGOrchidShow

Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, New York Botanical Garden

*Press each photo to make it larger, worth it, I promise*

Jeff Leatham is getting a second chance with a dynamic return to New York Botanical Gardens' Orchid Show: Jeff Leatham's Kaleidoscope. He originally collaborated with New York Botanical Garden in 2020, but because of Pandemic closures, it was closed way too soon! If you are not familiar with Jeff, he is the artistic director of the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris as well as floral designer to the stars, check out his website (his shop is amazing!). If anyone is wondering what to send me for my upcoming birthday in April, check out his arrangement called 'Vanda Envy' - so me!

Jeff Leatham opening remarks Media Day at New York Botanical Gardens Orchid Show 











You may remember I featured the 2020 show here on Ascending Butterfly as well as my social media pages.

I was attending The Orchid Show annually well before my blogging days but I have to admit getting a sneak peek of exhibits on Media Day is something I absolutely treasure as a photographer. An amazing guided tour and I also get to take amazing photos because there is less foot traffic. 

Mirrored Kaleidoscope, The Orchid Show: Jeff Leatham's Kaleidoscope









Right now the action is in the Enid Haupt Conservatory - so if the cold, wet, grey days are getting you down, head on over to the New York Botanical Garden for instant Spring. The conservatory environment is warm and tropical to keep the plants happy - the show is a feast for your eyes, they don't call it Kaleidoscope for nothing! I hope to be able to return again for Orchid Evenings. (I have always thought this exhibit makes for a wonderful date night - and dress up because the flower backdrop is simply spectacular!)

As usual I took way too many pictures, so as I go editing them I will post more here (more than likely on Wordless Wednesday) and on social (particularly Instagram). Some visual elements are similar to the 2020 show so you can check out that post to see other parts of the exhibit I didn't post here. 

Fountain transformed for The Orchid Show 2022, NYBG

One of my favorite things to see is how the fountain area gets transformed from exhibit to exhibit, this one didn't disappoint. Look up, do you see the pretty robin's egg blue color? I can't begin to describe how much more I love the RAW files to these images. (My blog template restricts me to JPG). Honestly I could sit and listen to the Fountain all day. The New York Botanical Garden is my favorite Urban Oasis! I feel like I can spread my wings in nature, and hearing the sound of the water from the fountain is soothing and calming (I have a video I posted of it on my Instagram, it's like the calm commercial without anyone's voice telling you what to do, LOL!) 

A little fountain trivia: The fountain is encircled by the images of the Three Graces, daughters of Zeus, who presided over banquets, dances and all the social enjoyments and elegant arts. They are Euphrosyne, Aglaia and Thalia.

Nerdy stuff - I edited my photos using both Corel and On1 Photo Software! Your favorite photos also make wonderful zoom backgrounds - bring a little spring to your next virtual meeting!

Readers Sound Off: What is your favorite sign of Spring? Are there any signs of Spring where you are?

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FTC Disclosure: I attended a media preview day event, no monetary compensation has been received. All opinions are 100% my own! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.

Monday, February 14, 2022

Will you be my Valentine? Whatever you do today, do it with love + my cupid name!

Happy Valentine's Day Butterflies!

Just thought I would share some random Valentine's Day goodness and humor!

 Since it is Valentine's Day, it is only appropriate to know your Cupid Name! My Cupid Name is: Noisy Kissy Face 😘

 I love this heart of butterflies:



 And lastly, a pretty butterfly reminder that Whatever You Do Today, Do It With Love!

Readers Sound Off: What is your Cupid Name and how are you celebrating Valentine's Day?

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FTC Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

{Your Opinion Counts!} #ontheblog @Tracy_Iglesias of @Ascending1 (Ascending Butterfly Blog) tries @warbyparker #warbyhometryon - help me pick!

My prescription changed in 2021 so it's all - New Year, New Glasses Who Dis?

Since I do not have an iPhone, I was unable to do a virtual try on with Warby Parker, but the next best thing arrived in the mail - a virtual home try on kit!

I selected five frames I liked best (and that is not an easy task as they have a vast selection of colors, styles and fits) and I got a try on kit in the mail with the five frames I selected. I picked three medium fits (which is the size they recommend for most people, especially if you are unsure of your fit), 1 wide and 1 narrow. I tried two that are definitely cat eye inspired (I have never actually worn Cat Eye Glasses before), and was surprised by how much I actually liked them.

The problem is I like all five of them equally for different reasons. I wish I had unlimited budget problems right about now so I could justify keeping all five!

I tried them all on and compiled them into a cute video below:



Please ignore Pajamas, sloppy bed head hair, and bad lighting! (I was so excited to try these on I forgot I was in my PJ's!) I tried to take shots of the glasses with my hair down and then pulled up but that magic lasted for the first two pairs and then the last three was just one look.



Readers Sound Off: Which pair do you think I should select to have my prescription put in and keep? (The video gives you the name of each pair, but you can also tell me the number of the one you liked best as well). Don't forget to also let me know by tagging me on any of my social channels as well.

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FTC Disclosure: A pair of Warby Parker Glasses have been  provided for Editorial Consideration. All opinions are 100% my own! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.