Kamis, 27 September 2018

Five Reasons Children Should Participate in Theatre

There are a variety of benefits for enrolling children in arts programs, but sports and academic endeavours often overshadow these activities. Research shows, however, that children who are involved in arts programs, such as music, theatre, and the visual arts, consistently score higher on college entrance exams than students who do not participate in these activities. Participation in the theatrical arts can give students a variety of skills that will help them throughout life. Here are five of the top reasons all parents should encourage their children to give theatre a try.

1. Heightened Confidence

Students who participate in theatre must learn to convey confidence through vocal projection, facial expression, and body language. However, children can benefit from more than just portraying confidence on stage. The process of learning lines, understanding character development, and practicing stage presentation can help create a powerful sense of accomplishment. In addition, positive feedback from the director, peers, and the audience can help even the shyest children improve their self-esteem. These traits usually stay with a person long after he or she has left the stage.

2. Improved Communication

Communication skills are a valuable asset that can help children in their future relationships, education, and career. Performers in a play must practice vocal projection and clear articulation in order for their lines to be understood. They must also be aware of how their tone of voice and nonverbal cues contribute to what their character is trying to say. Getting children to think about the message that they are projecting helps them to be more intentional in communicating in their everyday lives. Improved self-esteem will also help children be more confident as they communicate their ideas to others.

3. Enhanced Empathy

Empathy and compassion are values that are not taught in a classroom. To successfully play a character, children must learn to portray feelings and reactions that are not their own. In addition, literary works often open a child's eyes to new abstract concepts of the human experience. This ability to relate to a different point of view will prove to be a valuable social skill throughout a person's lifetime.

4. Increased Teamwork

Team-building activities have been proven to be beneficial to children of all ages. The ability to coordinate as a group will be especially helpful later in a person's career. A stage play is dependent on the entire cast and crew to function smoothly. The director, cast, set-builders, and lighting and audio technicians must all work together to create a successful production. Actors especially must learn to work with each other to find chemistry between their characters.

5. Added Responsibility

Children who participate in theatre must have the ability to learn lines on their own time, attend practices and performances, and still maintain academic requirements. Increased responsibility is an important part of any child's growing maturity. Theatre can be a fun way to teach a child to be responsible without making it feel like a chore.

Rabu, 13 Juni 2018

The Green Man, Venus and Their Place in Modern Life

Tannhäuser and Venus - Still Showstoppers

The recently finished Tannhäuser revival at the Deutsche Oper, Berlin, broke all daftness records, but is the production we shall remember. Was it the 40 hospital beds on stage for the exhausted returning pilgrims, or the 20 suits of armour that were raised and lowered randomly, throughout the 3 hours - sometimes replaced with a set of devils? Silly theatre can be so powerful!

During the overture, Tannhäuser, (played by a stunt man) is lowered the 50 feet or so from the top of the stage, waving arms and legs. He takes several minutes to descend into a sea of female flesh, albeit with artificial breasts. I assume, there cannot be a female chorus, so well endowed, with not a wobble in sight. I wondered what the women would do with Tannhäuser's full suit of armour once he was beneath the sea of limbs. I wasn't disappointed. During the crescendo of brass, bits of armour were thrown up from the depths and then appeared the real, exhausted Tannhäuser, ready for his domestic with Venus.

Why is Venus important to us in 2017, or why was she important in 12th century Christian Germany, or 19th century Paris? Why is she a key figure in Wagner's opera, Tannhäuser? I believe it is because she is a good vehicle for the artist to express creativity and challenge popular ideas. That is the role of the artist.

Pagans helped us to Chrstianity

We can understand why Wagner uses Venus as a dramatic vehicle, but why does St. Chad's Church in Harpswell have William Harrington, (rector, died 1350), resting on a superb Green Man? The Cathedral in Würzburg has a Green Man overlooking God. Nicosia churches have multiple Green Men. The 13th century minstrels were fascinated by Venus.

Is there a connection? Is there an explanation?

Waldemar Januszczak has an offering I'd like to test. In his fascinating BBC4 program on the Dark Ages, he pointed out that early portrayals of Christ gave him a feminine, or at least very boyish face. Only later, with the Mary cult well established in Christianity, do Jesus depictions move toward the heroic Jupiter-face. Waldemar explains thus. Early Christianity had an image problem - how to appeal to the 50% of the population, who were women. To get around this, artists often went for an androgynous Jesus. The later, post Mary-Cult version of Jesus with Jupiter's face, was designed to bring the pagans on board, without detaching them from their old religion.

Once one starts looking, Waldemar's argument stands up in many scenarios.

St. George's female side is beautifully portrayed in any number of early 15th century sculptures by Bernd Notke. The Katherine Church in Lübeck has plaster copies. One of them cannot be a mistake. George is more feminine than the princess waiting to be saved from the dragon. Is the female George another example of the boyish Jesus?

It didn't happen in a day.

During early Christianity, there were still pockets of pagan sympathy, and belief in gods such as Venus was a staging post between pagan and full Christian. Venus helped keep new Christians in their old comfort zone. Minstrels and poets used her to express sides of their characters, that were no longer acceptable as medieval Christian dinner talk. Was an androgynous St. George a useful comforter for both genders? Why did Venus reappear so many years after her demise as a Roman goddess?

The theory is, that the middle ages were not as Christian as our history lessons have us believe. For example, the Slav King Jaczo, reigned over the area we now call Berlin Brandenburg. He crossed to Christianity in 1154. That was when, with his horse sinking exhausted into the Havel, he did a few try-out prayers to various deities. Things improved after summoning Christ and his horse was helped to the bank of the river. He decided to become a follower, but did he give up his three-headed pagan god Triglav, immediately? Probably not. We all need islands of safety within our vision, before we can take the leap.

Wagner and Venus

Time to apply Waldemar's theory to Wagner's Tannäuser. Wagner merged two medieval sagas for his opera. That apart, he remained (nearly) faithful to the original yarns.

Venus lived in the Venusberg, somewhere in what is now Thuringia. Tannhäuser told Venus that he wanted to leave her, because he missed the sky and birdsong. The Venusberg was subterranean, in a mountain, rather than on it, and hidden from mortals. Hold that thought. The protruding bone, which supports female pubic hair is called the mons veneris in anatomy - Latin for Mount of Venus. In the saga, men who entered the Venusberg, accepted perdition.

Let's assume Venus and Tannhäuser were in a vast cavern, waited on by as much voluptuous flesh as a man could want to gaze upon and sample. You can have too much of a good thing - apparently. Tannhäuser, after an hour of operatic wailing, shouting and accusations, leaves Venus, and returns to the Wartburg. This medieval castle is on a mountain in Thuringia, and is where the rest of the operatic action takes place. The hall can still be visited. In the Wartburg, he rediscovers his love for Elizabeth, the symbol of Christian female purity. She is waiting to be taken and dominated by an honourable knight. Tannhäuser, a knight and minstrel, had been her dream man, before he went sampling without portfolio in the Venusberg.

Tannhäuser gets embroiled in a singing contest on the theme of true love. Elizabeth's hand is the prize for the winner. Tannhäuser's friend Wolfram, dutifully sings of pure love - no lust. Tannhäuser blows a gasket and tells them that a bit of lusting after flesh hurt no one. Elizabeth is enthusiastic about the idea. Tannhäuser gets carried away and admits to a sojourn in the Venusberg. He is turned out the castle and told to join pilgrims underway to Rome to see if such a sin can ever be forgiven.

Elizabeth's Libido, in his Dreams

Nowadays the same soprano sings Venus and Elizabeth, in the same costume and make-up. We have to ask - was the Venusberg a figment of Tannhäuser's erotic fantasy? Did he fantasise about Elizabeth's female libido? Is Elizabeth ready to show the lustful part of her femininity? Was this a match made in the Venusberg, rather than in heaven? We never find out. Tannhäuser leaves the distraught Elizabeth to wonder what might have been. She agrees that her husband must be presentable and accepts he must go to Rome. She prays for the Pope's forgiveness.

Stunning Redemption

Tannhäuser returns from Rome and relates Pope Urban IV's words. He is as likely to be forgiven such a heinous sin, as Urban's staff is, to sprout leaves. Elizabeth sinks exhausted to the floor. Wolfram covers her with a shroud. Tannhäuser wants to return to the Venusberg, Elizabeth rises from under the shroud. Now she is Venus and tries to seduce him. Wolfram holds Tannhäuser back, and prevents him approaching Venus. Tannhäuser dies, as pilgrims enter to declare the staff has sprouted leaves - Tannhäuser is forgiven and can join Elizabeth in heaven.

Accepting Sex Drive

In 19th century Europe, many men believed, if women possessed sex drive, they were whores. No one asked the question, was Tannhäuser without guilt, when Venus and he engaged in so-called, sins of the flesh. Did the staff sprout, because there was no sin to be forgiven? In the medieval version of the saga, Tannhäuser does return to the Venusberg, and the staff still sprouts. Were those poets and minstrels trying to tell us, lustful sex is not a sin? Is this why we still love those ancient stories?

We know what Wagner thought. He celebrated female sex-drive on stage, most notably in Tristan and Isolde, although he did let the love potion take the blame for Isolde's wanton behaviour. No one is fooled, nowadays. We know Tristan and Isolde have the hots for each other, long before the love potion is administered.

Why did Wagner go for the soft ending in his version of Tannhäuser? These operas divided society. The Paris premier of Tannhäuser, (1861) was a disaster and wrecked by the audience's protests, because the dance was in the wrong place and disturbed dining habits. Perhaps, with such an audience, the medieval ending was unthinkable. The lovers had to go to heaven, not the Venusberg!

Jean Shinoda Bolen, in her Jungian analysis of the role of Goddeses in our lives, defines Venus as the woman with serious sex-drive. I left my copy of Bolen's 'Goddesses in Everywoman,' in a prominent place in my house. No visitor has managed to pass the book without stopping and having a peek. We all need a bit of pagan!

Venus goes other Places

The Tannhäuser story has inspired many works of art, literature and the occasional film (Blade Runner). Aubrey Beardsley added to the genre in the 1890s, with his thin volume, The Story Of Venus And Tannhäuser. It wasn't printed in full until the 1960s, because no one had the courage. Beardsley died before completion. He describes Tannhäuser's entry into the Venusberg and the high jinks thereafter. It is pure smut and great fun. Another reason we need Venus - to remind us that life is to be enjoyed and you never know what you might like until you have tried it.

I couldn't resist Venus and Tannhäuser either. The lovers, in my novel Goddesses, role play Beardsley's ideas. The complete novel should be a published this year, providing my courage doesn't desert me.

Goddesses set us Free

Gods and Goddesses, are there to let us let our hair down. They allow us to act out a bit of our character, which otherwise, wouldn't find an outlet. They appeal to the non-Christian part of us today, as they did for the early Christians 1000 years ago. Waldemar is right. They let us off the hook, but in so doing, keep us on the hook. Let off steam sometimes, is the message. A little bit of what you like, does you good.

Bolen defines women as character types, by using goddesses. If that sounds trite, read her book.

What about the Green Man?

We all love a mystery and the Green Man remains one. We have no idea of his symbolic meaning in pre-Christian society. Why was he so popular with gothic-church builders? Most mysterious, is his enduring popularity as a garden ornament. What position in our character does he personify? We don't know, but we all like to be a bit mysterious. That is a character trait, too.

Clive La Pensee has used Beardsley's take on the Venus/Tannhaeuser story, as a major part of his third novel, called Goddesses. He lets his two main protagonists role-play Beardsley's action, with hilarious and ultimately, disastrous consequences. His heroine Connie, uses a variety of goddesses to achieve sexual liberation, in a way, which would have pleased Venus and Elizabeth.
His second novel - out soon, celebrates women risking disaster, to organise a hostile world to meet their needs. 'Someone Tell Me What Is Going On!'
Clive has just released his first humorous/sad/wistful collection of poems, dealing with love in old age, Brexit, Fake News and the wisdom of youth. You can ask for your money back, if he doesn't get a chuckle or a tear out of you.

Kamis, 08 Maret 2018

Dyes & Pigments: Totally Dissimilar Colorants

The two important colorant sources are the dyes and pigments. However, there lies some difference in the features, manner of use, benefits and the sore points of each of them though quite often the terms, pigment, dye, colorant, dyestuff, paint, colour are incorrectly used interchangeably.

Colorants come from organic and inorganic sources and dyes constitute a large percentage of the organic colorants while the pigments come largely from the inorganic sources. Naturally sourced pigments are obtained from animals, vegetables and minerals sources; however, majorly pigments comprise of inorganic oxides and salts like chromium and iron oxides that get diffused in powder form in the medium of application. The coloring properties of the diffusion are determined by the form and size of the pigment particle. The dyes are divided into natural dyes and synthetic wherein the natural sources of dyes are the same as those of pigments while synthetic dyes are petroleum compound based.

Dyes and pigments both are equally important to humans for providing colour to all type of items but the major difference between the two lies in their basic manner of imparting colour. In case of dyes, colour is diffused at the molecular level as they are soluble in the organic solvent or water whereas in pigments the colour is diffused as particles because they are insoluble in either type of the liquid medium. Additional compounds are required for attaching the pigment particles to the substrate. For example, pigments for paint require addition of polymer in paint for diffusion.

The vibrancy of colour of the dyes is dependent on its chromophore molecule's electronic properties. Colorants from dyes impart greater brilliance and show greater colour strength besides being simpler to process. Among the dyes, basic dyes are more known for their vibrancy and brightness and compatibility with anionic and synthetic materials. All basic dyes manufacturers in India will confirm their suitability for coloring cationic, synthetic items like acrylics. However, dyes as colorants exhibit low durability, solvent and heat stability and high levels of migration and acid red being one of them is no different.

On the other hand, pigment colorants are more durable, solvent and heat stable besides being migration and lightfast. But their cons include low colour strength and brilliance. Due to the starkly different features of dyes and pigments many efforts were made to enhance the properties of each colorant class. This led to the development of a new colorant class called as the Nanocolorants.

This class strives to combine the good processability and superior chromatic features of dyestuffs and better durability of organic pigments. Combining the advantages of both the colorants, Nanocolorants have emerged a better alternative and has demonstrated superior features proving highly useful in several applications such as preparing aqueous ink-jet inks, high-performance colour resistant polymer coloration, electro-photographic toners amongst others.

In any case, notwithstanding the features, dyes and pigments are indispensable elements for helping us to lead a color filled life.

What started as a small venture by Mr. Pravinchandra B. Shah bloomed, blossomed and expanded at a rapid pace and emerged to become Vipul Organics Ltd. a public limited company in 1974 under his able leadership, vision and whole hearted dedication.

Jumat, 09 Februari 2018

American Teen Sensation or American Patriot?

Try to imagine a time when life was much more difficult, and kicking back in the recliner, watching TV, surrounded by all the comforts of home after a long day, was not even a fanciful notion. Rather, vigilance and invasion by a foreign entity of your town or home without notice was what was on the mind of freedom seeking people in this country. Even your own home was not a safe space.

Sixteen year old Sybil, another young American patriot would have been a strong voice for Liberty in organizations like Turning Point or the Tea Party today, but it was not to be her time.

What made her such an asset to the freedom and reform movement anyway? Well Sybil's father was a ranking Colonel who, in a battle situation needed to muster reinforcements to counter an enemy attack while simultaneously planning his defense.

His troops were scattered over a 30-mile loop of country side and he had no mechanized transportation or radio to help facilitate contact. Left with no one to call upon for help, Sybil, the only capable person available to get out a desperate call for help, decided to respond to what she considered to be her call to duty.

Without hesitation, Sybil volunteered, in the middle of the night, and in the pouring rain, to get on her horse, `Star`, and ride, and ride she did! In her selfless act of courage, she rode for what seemed an eternity to notify as many as 400 troops who were ready to do battle to defend a lifestyle only dreamed of by true freedom seeking Americans.

Modern day Americans have no experience or even a vision of what it would be like to have a foreign influence coming to our shores to battle us, challenging our constitutional rights and freedoms. We live free in part because of the bravery of men and women like Sybil. None of us will ever know the kind of person Sybil was, or what passions she possessed inside that would allow her ride 30 miles, alone, and risk life and limb to warn others of an invading enemy.

She indeed did help to thwart Americans being slaughtered. This time on American soil where there was no safe space for anyone to hide. You see, Sybil Ludington`s time was during the time of another Tea Party and revolution, some 240 years ago.

In the night attack, the British did burn Danbury, Connecticut, an important supply depot for the Continental Army, but because of Sybil, many people were ready and escaped death.

Sybil`s gutsy ride, and the message she carried is not widely known, but on April 26, 1777, calling out, in the cold of night, with rain blowing in her face, `Muster at Ludington`s! ` was indeed significant. It was not at all unlike Paul Revere`s ride. Today, Sybil`s heroism is memorialized with only a poem written by American poet Berton Braley, commemorating her historic ride, and a bronze statue, that stands honoring her bravery and passion for freedom, in Carmel, New York.

Kamis, 18 Januari 2018

The Reality of Reality Shows

The concept of reality shows

Reality television is a television programming genre that displays usually unscripted overdramatic or hilarious situations, documents actual events, and usually features ordinary people instead of trained actors, sometimes in a competition or other circumstances where a prize is awarded. Shows in the Reality TV are called as reality shows that are often produced as series. The people are either engaged in competition with each other or in an awkward situation or spied on in their daily lives. Reality TV is a buzzword of the day. Watching reality shows have become our favourite past time and a source of fun and enjoyment. It is a real program cast with real people not with actors.

Though the term reality television is chiefly used to categories shows that have arisen since the year 2000, the history of reality TV shows goes back farther than we can think. Television has been depicting the lives of people through dating shows, contests and pranks for a very long time. It has a great history which most people didn't know considering modern reality television and its boom in popularity in recent years. The reality TV show started in the year 1948, Producer-host Allen Funt's Candid Camera, in which unsuspecting people were drops into funny and unusual situations gets filmed with hidden cameras, was first aired in the year 1948. The show is seen as a prototype of reality television programming.

Different kind of reality shows

There are various types of reality shows that are running on TV. These shows broke the boredom of the traditional scripted shows and started showing the real-life situations. Reality shows cater to different age groups and tastes because of the availability of the wide range of themes. In many reality shows, participants are often placed in exotic locations or in abnormal situations. Some of the reality shows cover a person or a group of people improving their lives. They represent a modified and highly influenced form of reality to attract its viewers. Documentaries and nonfictional shows for example news and sports are not categorized under reality shows.

Some types of reality shows are as written below:

• Documentaries or Documentary Series

Out of all the subgenres of reality TV, the documentary subgenre is possibly the most general one. The core difference between documentaries and a documentary series is that while documentaries are every so often constrained to one episode, documentary series span a series in its entireness, following a series of arc-like scripted television. The subgenre would also cover most social experiment shows, where different kinds of interactions are observed just for the sake of a new experiment.

• Competition or Elimination

Reality programs that are based on a elimination or competition format are just about getting eliminated by the annoying housemate or having the best participant become the winner. They are all about winning something important overcoming your competitors. The competition may be among all the other participants, or against time/money.

• Makeover or Renovation

Same as the name itself says this type of shows either about Makeover of a person's appearance or make a renovation of your old house.

• Dating

This one is the most significant subgenre of reality TV where the boy meets girl and the audience stick to know 'will they or won't they' aspect of the story.

• Hidden Camera

Starting with Candid Camera, this is possibly the longest-running reality subgenre. It is all about capturing the reactions of innocent people placed in unexpected situations. This subgenre also covers shows which rely on amateur submitted content.

• Supernatural

The most common types of the show in this subgenre are programs that investigate paranormal occurrences. The subgenre also encompasses shows which focus on hunting down famous mythical creatures.

• Travel or Aspirational

Since most audiences can't afford to travel to the faraway lands for a vacation, many of us settle on enjoying these destinations through this type of travel shows where a person, couple or group goes to a trip and film all of their experiences for the viewers.

Besides all these shows celebrity talk shows or competitions like talent hunt, adventure, game shows or fear-based shows are also mentionable.

Reality Shows in India

The very first reality show of any kind on Indian TV was a quiz contest Titled- Bournvita Quiz Contest. It was hosted by the famous Derek O'Brien in the year 1972. But first, it featured a live show in various cities initially, then went on air as a radio show. In the year 1992, it became the first reality show to be featured on ZEE TV and Indian Television. Then came "Sansui Antakshari" in the year 1993 which was hosted by Annu Kapoor on ZEE TV and It became the first Indian singing reality show that ran till 2006. Came in different versions of Star One and SAB TV with the same host after 2006. ZEE TV made its name to bring about home-grown reality shows rather adapting international reality shows on Indian TV. Singing reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa came in the year 1995 hosted by the famous singer of Bollywood Sonu Nigam and the dancing reality show that changed the whole scenario of dancing shows Dance India Dance came in the year 2009.

Sony Entertainment Television launched India's first dance reality show titled- Boogie Woogie it was created by Naved Jaffrey in the year 1996 and hosted and judged by Javed Jaffrey. It was as an immediate hit for the channel. In the year 2000, Star Plus aired "Kaun Banega Crorepati" with Amitabh Bachchan (an adaptation of "Who wants to become a millionaire") which went on to become India's favourite and most watched reality show. To give competition ZEE TV launched another game show titled- Sawal Dus Crore Ka and Sony TV launched Jeeto Chappar Phhad Ke but KBC's popularity didn't deter; making it the most successful reality show in Indian television. Sony India came up with Indian Idol in 2004 which was an adaptation to the popular international reality show "American Idol". After its success with grown-ups, they came with kids participants in the show which helped the show to gain love by all.

The production team of Endemol India came up with popular reality show Big Brother's Indian version of Bigg Boss and Fear Factor on Sony TV in 2006. It became India's most popular international adapted show after KBC. It was moved to Colors TV making it India's most watched Hindi Television due to its backing on Bigg Boss, Fear Factor competing with the likes of Star Plus and ZEE TV.

Next revolution reality shows in India came with an adaptation of other famous international shows like The Voice India and So You Think You Can Dance on &TV. These shows changed the concept of singing and dance shows on Indian Television. Other popular reality shows based on foreign shows are like MTV Roadies, India's Got Talent etc.

The actual reality of reality shows

It's generally accepted that reality TV is really kind of terrible. What was once considered innovative in the entertainment world, has devolved into unintentional comedies starring the most horrible and awkward people imaginable. Nowadays real is the last thing that strikes you about reality shows. Whether it is a dance show where lesser-known faces of telly world vie for the best dancer tag or the Bigg Boss's house in which racial slurs and catfights are a part of the process to decide winners, much goes into presenting a reality show as real. There is a vast majority of reality television shows that are not 100 percent real, as there is a high degree of manipulation in order to achieve sustained audience attention.

Results are in reality shows mostly controlled by producers/directors. They want to keep audience believe it is random and unpredictable, to convey this most of the time some candidate is told what to do, how to do. They are even told to behave in certain ways. And in the end nobody will show you all things, things will get edited and aired show may be far from actual reality. Reality Television is a genre more of an exact description of the shows themselves. Producer's fake shots and even re-stage dramatic moments that happened when the cameras weren't rolling- pretty much everything is actually plotted and planned out like the normal scripted show. Most of the reality shows still hold a basic level of truth, however, portraying events that really did happen, even if they're acted again for the cameras. These shows feature people living their lives and doing their jobs, even if a lot has been smoothed out of their day-to-day routine in order to edit out the boring bits.

Most of the talent hunt, singing, dancing even in shows based on general knowledge like "Kaun Banega Crorepati" participants has to go through a long struggle. Most of the time voting is absolutely rigged and the winner gets decided as per his or her capability of keeping TRP's high. Most of the contestants of the reality shows, especially the winners, might get disappointed soon after their win, the attention shifts to the winner of the next season. The limelight being taken away from them doesn't agree with many young people. Some contestants might get frustrated as they harbour false hopes that once they win the contest, their future is set for good.

Impact of reality shows on society

New boys & girls who are becoming reality TV celebrity stars does not succeed on talent but use melodrama to always remain in the news. One of the worst effects of their action is on teens who try to emulate their behaviour. All the stunts that are done on these TV shows under organized conditions are copied by the people in reality and resulting in death. Some of the shows where contestants participate to win prizes show them in poor light as they use meanness and greed to outdo each other. The negative traits can manifest themselves in the audiences and create behavioural problems. Liberal doses of abuses are hurled on the shows because the directors think that more and more people will watch them. It is a huge mistake because bad words are caught by teens and kids affecting their personality as well as behaviour. Although kids' reality shows like Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Lil Champs, Sabse Bada Kalakaar, Junior Masterchef India and many other shows attract the audiences and gains good ratings, it is not advisable to put children under stressful situations in the early years of their lives! Small children have been forced to participate in reality shows, they have wrenched away from all normal activities and thrown into a single-minded devotion to lending their voices to these reality shows. They are compelled to shoot for long hours, sometimes in scorching hot non-air conditioned rooms. Even Parents also pressurise their children to excel on reality shows, small children become victims of a system that fosters and encourages unrealistic ambitions.

Some reality shows show participants taking extreme risks and putting themselves in bizarre or dangerous situations. Since younger children mostly learn through imitation, watching such programmes may put them at risk of physical injury. A study published in the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology indicated that children who viewed high-risk TV programmes increased their self-reported risk-taking behaviour significantly more than children who were exposed to low-risk TV or watched less TV. Reality shows that are focussed on some people and their day-to-day lives are a big nuisance and parents need to draw a line when it comes to children watching such shows. They portray everything in an exaggerated manner which is not at all a reflection of real life. This should be made clear to our children. Reality talent shows, on the other hand, make parents feel that their own children are inadequate.

Prevention from the bad effects of reality shows

First, establish that watching reality shows is not a priority in the family. According to the age and understanding of your child, explain what your family belief systems and values are and that they do not match what is shown on reality TV. Help the child understand the impact such programmes can have and that real life is different from what is projected in a reality show. Have discussions about this in a friendly and non-threatening manner.

Sabtu, 16 Desember 2017

Playing Bass Guitar By Ear

I started playing music from a very young age. it so happened that I grew up where steel-pan music was heard, or if you took a little stroll very would walk into the steel-pan band room.

What I remembered is that I used to take the galvanize garbage pan cover, held it as if it was a steel-pan and played what I heard was some interesting melodies. I don't think that other could have heard what I was hearing. But I was hearing sounds that maybe was sent to me; I don't really know.

At times I would be call into the band room to play a song with the other steel-pan players, they thought that I did have a good ear for music, and catch the music very fast, and I loved it. I also remembered playing with a friend who played the acoustic guitar, and I another acoustic guitar, but with only four strings. I think I was in training then, and didn't know it.

Even in elementary school I had the privilege to play in the school's steel-pan orchestra.

My ear got better at that time. All this time I lived In Trinidad. Then we moved to live in Tobago which is the sister island of Trinidad. There my cousin and uncle lead me to a combo, a band that had just started, and my uncle and cousin told the band captain that I was interested in playing bass, which I never remembered telling them, however, the captain was willing to give me a tryout.

There were other bass players in that band at the time, but with a bass that had all the notes written and stuck to the fret board, as if they knew I was coming, I made it my duty to take advantage of this opportunity. The captain would let me hang on the bass, and while they played the songs would call out the notes which I would play. and even though I didn't have the correct fingering, this must be corrected when starting to practice playing the bass by ear, I was able to see and play the notes.

Well, this interest me a lot. What would happened next was an experience I would never forget. After classes at school, I would rush to the band room to practice by myself on the bass, and after about three weeks or so I took off the notes that was stuck on to the fretboard. I became the main bass player of that band among two other players.

I got better with experience and other bands I played with. Musician came from Trinidad and had heard of my playing and asked for me to play with them, which I did, and I learned quite a lot from them also; all this time I never read a note from a music sheet. I played many styles of music only by listening, and transfer what I heard to the bass. There were also situations where I had to play songs I only heard for about a minute and then had to play through with the band. I loved that experience also, I think it helped to train my ear.

The bottom line is, playing music by ear has its challenges, but it's not impossible to be a good bass player who plays by ear. My only advice is, even though you might like playing by ear, still learn how to read notes from music sheets, it will help with knowing note values etc... Listen and try to play all types of music so that you might be an all round player, not just restricted to one style. I just thought that I should encourage the beginner who would like to play bass by ear.

Jumat, 08 Desember 2017

4 Useful Tips for Cosplay Beginners

Cosplay can seem a little intimidating for those just starting out, especially if planning to attend a convention. Dressing up to match the look of a favorite character from a comic book, anime, television series, movie or video game is now a very enjoyable pastime for more and more people every year. But the process of choosing the right outfit needs to be carefully chosen for the most enjoyable experience.

Let's take a look at a few useful tips for beginners:

Carefully choose the outfit

The best type of outfit to wear at a convention has the ability to naturally complement your build and looks. However, with such a varied range of characters to get inspired by, there is certain to be an outfit that can fit virtually all sizes and shapes. Also, if you are planning to create the outfit, it helps to match your sewing skills to what you intend to make. For instance, there are plenty of outfits that involved catsuits and leotards which are mostly easy to accessorize to achieve the desired look of a favorite character.

Pack your gear wisely

A big and bulky outfit can easily get crushed or damaged while traveling to a convention. Therefore, it is essential to go with an outfit that is easy to travel with if planning a long-distant journey. Any armor or large pieces should give the option to reduce the size or fold to ensure everything fits in a vehicle. For the complete beginner one of the easiest options is likely to be the zentai suits or a similar style of outfit.

Use outfits with light materials

Some of the most impressive outfits are large creations, but they often make use of plenty of thick and bulky materials. This can leave the person wearing the outfit hot, sweaty and tired even after a short period. If you plan to visit a convention in the summer, make sure to pick an outfit with light materials that will go well with the temperature.

Using face or body paint

The use of face or body paint is a common mistake that many new to cosplay make. Most of the paints don't last that long and will soon start to run and look quite streaky, as well as clogging up the pores. Alternatively, one of the zentai suits or nylon stockings can be painted to create the desired look. Also, face powder can be applied to create a lighter look that is less likely to run.