On the Town: College dancers in the spotlight at Patrons luncheon

Koharu Takagi

Glendale Community College dance student Koharu Takagi performs during a rehearsal for the Patrons Club’s fundraising luncheon.

No tricks but a real treat is in store for dance lovers attending the Patrons Club’s major fundraising luncheon on Nov. 4 to benefit scholarships for students at Glendale Community College.

The fashion show is being replaced with a performance by the college Dance Department, thus the theme title “Dancing Toward Success.”

Students and one faculty member have choreographed six pieces that span the styles from hip-hop to contemporary ballet fusion, modern ballet, contemporary and jazz, said department chair Dora Krannig-Moscatello.

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Sera Shahgholian and Kayde Kief

Sera Shahgholian, from left, and Jayde Kief rehearse a piece for the Patrons Club’s fundraising luncheon.

(Courtesy of Patt Paczynski)

One young student, Jayde Kief, is choreographing and dancing in three of the pieces. In “For You,” she dances a solo. She and fellow student Sera Shahgholian collaborate on “Drown,” and Kief creates the movements for “Grownhood.”

“What’s interesting about ‘Grownhood’ is she uses the sounds of nature while she speaks her poem,” Krannig-Moscatello said. “The sounds of birds, water and wind are the music. The story is beautiful. It’s about growing up. Jayde is 18 going on 100. She’s a wonderful performer.”

The opening piece is “Everybody Wants to Be a Cat,” choreographed by Sylvia Touris.


“She is very young, about 20, and her inspiration for the dance is Disney,” Krannig-Moscatello said. “There are five dancers in the piece. They have tails and they dance on chairs.”

To add variety to the performance, she said, student Jason Kim is doing a hip-hop piece called “Wandering Mind.”

“This is fantastically well danced,” she said.

Lisa Jay, a new faculty member who teaches Pilates and dance, has choreographed a piece titled “Synapse” for her first assignment at Glendale Community College.

Love of mysteries shared at Author’s Luncheon

Aileen D. Nowatzki

Aileen D. Nowatzki is one of three authors who will be featured during a luncheon presented by the La Crescenta Woman’s Club. Nowatzki gains inspiration for her mysteries from her trips to island locations.

(Courtesy of Aileen D. Nowatzki)

Some people take vacations to relax. But for author Aileen Nowatzki, visiting far off places, such as an island paradise, stirs her imagination and becomes inspiration for her next murder mystery.

All four of her novels are based on real events, she said. Her book “A Shroud Over Iceland” is about a series of deaths of prominent economic figures in the small country of Iceland. Her main characters, Bev and Brian Moore, take readers on a thrilling ride as they search for the murderer. Nowatzki loosely based her story on the economic crisis that befell Iceland in 2008.


Nowatzki will be one of three authors who will be featured at the La Crescenta Woman’s Club’s annual Author’s Luncheon from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday at the organization’s clubhouse, 4004 La Crescenta Ave., La Crescenta.

The other two authors will be Diane Vallere and Tammy Kaehler. Vallere is a former fashion buyer turned mystery writer. Her books include “The Samantha Kidd” and “Madison Night.”

Kaehler’s career in marketing and technical writing landed her in the world of automobile racing, which inspired her two Kate Reilly racing mysteries, “Dead Man’s Switch” and “Braking Points.”

A luncheon ticket is $40 and includes an auction and prize opportunities as well as book signings (book purchase required) by the authors.

For more information, contact (818) 249-4407 or (818) 636-8854.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Desi Geestman Foundation as well as the club’s other philanthropies. Desi Geestman passed away at age 12 in 1999 after a two-year fight with cancer. Before her death she founded an organization to help children with cancer.

The Desi Geestman Foundation provides financial and emotional support to young victims and their families at the City of Hope National Medical Center and other children’s hospitals.

Athletic club collecting items for Parking Lot Sale


Members of the Women’s Athletic Club of Glendale are busy sorting donations this week in preparation for their annual Parking Lot Sale from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday at the group’s clubhouse, 600 S. Verdugo Road.

So far, the majority of the items are clothing, said chair Martha Moren. The prices are very economical, she added, ranging between $2 and $5 an item.

One member donated a large collection of her late husband’s formal clothing. He was an opera singer and there are jackets made of beautiful fabrics and tuxedos.

Donations of clothing, knick-knacks and household items can be dropped off from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day through Friday at the clubhouse. No furniture will be accepted.

The funds go to scholarships and other projects of the women’s social club that offers two special-interest groups for members. There is a hiking department for women who like to go on moderate walking excursions on local trails, and a quilting department for those who like to sew, knit or quilt.


JOYCE RUDOLPH can be reached at