This event included a birthday but it was more than a birthday. It included an anniversary but it was more than an anniversary. It even included a new year celebration! But this event was much more than all of these parties. Special Event Designer Carol Woo put together an impressive evening of arts and entertainment at the Four Seasons Westlake Village that I had the pleasure of being the Master of Ceremonies for; it was more like a cultural arts concert. I learned a lot about Chinese art and culture but I have to admit that it really didn’t hit me how special this event was until I understood the elements that had been brought together and experienced the quality of entertainment for myself.
The cocktail hour started with Hors d’oeuvres by 9021PHO During the cocktail hour and dinner there was live jazz by jazz vocalist Jonathan Tang and his quartet.
Dinner was a 10 course Chinese Banquet by Fu-Shing Chinese Szechuan Restaurant
Finally for dessert, The Four Season’s own Tiramisu Cake! Every detail of this event was carefully considered including the Four Season’s service staff receiving special instruction on how to serve a 10 course Chinese Banquet.
Contact Elegant Music
for a free consultation: 626-797-1795
The Camarillo Kung Fu and Lion Dance Troupe performed the traditional Lion Dance. This organization teaches its students Martial Arts and the Performing Arts. I learned that the Lion Dance has its roots in Chinese Mythology. Legend has it that villagers terrorized by an unknown beast decide to do something about it and banded together to make a paper mache look-alike of the beast and drums waited to the arrival of the beast. The beast arrived on New Year’s day. Upon sight of the beast the villagers approached the beast with its paper mache “lion”. Along with the beating of the drums and clanging of cymbals and gongs the villagers were able to drive the beast away never to be seen again.
In addition to a Lion Dance and Drum performances Sheila and I performed “Colors of the Wind” from Pocahontas but the entertainment didn’t stop there. There was a “Face-Changing” performance which I learned is an important aspect of Sichuanese Opera. This 400 year old ancient Chinese performing art was passionately executed by magician Kyle Lee who has made “face-changing” part of his magic shows.
Contact Elegant Music
for a free consultation and quote: 626-797-1795
The Er-hu is an ancient Chinese two stringed instrument similar to a violin or cello, played with a bow. The performer Karen Han, a long time friend of Carol and Danny Woo, is an internationally renowned Er-hu virtuoso performing with some of the most prestigious orchestras world wide and locally including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the New West Symphony and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. She seems to be the go-to Er-hu artist in Los Angeles for film music. Her work can be heard the soundtracks of movies like Memoirs of a Geisha, the Hurt Locker, Men in Black III, Star Trek Into the Darkness, Pacific Rim, Kung Fu Panda and Pirates of the Caribbean to name a few.
Happy New Year!
I now know the significance of the Chinese Lion Dance, that it symbolizes all things good driving away bad omens and evil spirits. After this amazing night I feel acknowledged as an artist, renewed and ready to start the new year!
Congratulations Carol and Danny Woo!
Carol, on behalf of the artists who performed, Happy Birthday! and Happy Anniversary! and Happy New Year! and thank you for bringing us all together and creating such an inspiring event!
For more of Carol’s work also see: iPromise Photography Studio
Sincerely, Eric and Sheila Zimmermann Elegant Music 626-797-1795