Monica Ramirez is a professional dancer from Yuma, Arizona. She began dancing at the age of 7 where she studied classical ballet under a full scholarship at Yuma Ballet Academy. At the age of 13, she hung up her ballet sippers and began training in jazz, modern, and hip hop.
At 16, Monica began her teaching career as a dance instructor at Yuma Ballet Theater. Once she graduated high school in 2007, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a dance career and immediately landed a spot in the “Christmas Fantasy Parade” at Disneyland. From 2007-2009, she taught hip hop classes at Retter’s Academy of Dance in Augora Hills, California, and was also training daily to prepare for an agency audition.
After signing with Clear Talent Group dance agency in 2009, her professional career took off. Her first audition became her first gig dancing for Ester Dean and Chris Brown in their music video, “Drop It Low”. Since then, she has worked with some of the industry’s top choreographers (Laurieanne Gibson, Brian Friedman, Fatima Robinson, Tina Landon…), performing on television shows including THE X FACTOR, AMERICAN IDOL, THE AMERICAN MUSIC AWARDS, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, AMERICA’S GOT TALENT, THE GRAMMY’s, to name a few.
During these performances and music videos, Monica has worked with countless major artists such as, Pitbull, Ke$sha, Rihanna, Drake, Chris Brown, Sevyn Streeter, Jennifer Hudson, Jordin Sparks, Ne-yo and more. In 2014, Monica began her acting debut on Hulu’s Original Series “East Los High” (S:2 E1, E12) as “Yvonne”. Within that year, she switched agencies and signed to Bloc LA where today, she continues to dance professionally.
Some of Monica’s other credits include: TWO AND A HALF MEN, DISCOUNT DANCE MAGAZINE, CELEBRITY DANCE COMPETITION JUDGE, DISNEY’S CHRISTMAS DAY SPECIAL, THE VOICE, SHAKE IT UP, NUCLEAR COWBOYS, and SEVYN STREETER’S PROMOTIONAL U.S. TOUR.
Nagoya is Japan’s fourth most populated city. It is the capital of Aichi Prefecture and the principal city of the Nobi plain, one of Honshu’s three large plains and metropolitan and industrial centers.Train map in Nagoya
Hours: 9:00 to 16:30 (entry until 16:00) Closed: December 29 to January 1
Construction works cannot be observed on Tuesdays and Thursdays and during lunch break (12:00 to 13:00)
Admission: 500 yen
The Nozomi, is the fastest Shinkansen (“bullet train”) between Tokyo and Hakata. Mt. Fuji will be on your right side as you go from Tokyo to Ossaka, about 45-55 minutes after you leave Tokyo. Nozomi services use N700 series equipment that can reach speeds of 300 km/h (186 mph). Check out more information and pictures at http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2018.html
Holly Dayz: How much was the bullet train?
Monica: I don’t even know. One of the perks of my career: All of my travel expenses are covered!
An easy way to view Mount Fuji is from the train on a trip between Tokyo and Osaka. If you take the shinkansen from Tokyo in direction of Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka, the best view of the mountain can be enjoyed from around Shin-Fuji Station on the right hand side of the train, about 40-45 minutes into the journey.
Bento (弁当 bentō?) is a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine. A traditional bento holds rice, fish or meat, with pickled or cooked vegetables, usually in a box-shaped container.
Ekiben (駅弁?) (railway boxed meals) are a specific type of bento boxed meals, sold on trains and train stations in Japan. They come with disposable chopsticks (when necessary) or spoons. Ekiben containers can be made from plastic, wood, or ceramic. Many train stations have since become famous for their especially tasty ekiben, made from local food specialties.
Holly Dayz: Did you get to experience the dance scene in Japan? If so how was it?
Ramen (ラーメン) is a noodle soup dish that was originally imported from China and has become one of the mostpopular dishes in Japan in recent decades. Ramen are inexpensive and widely available, two factors that also make them an ideal option for budget travelers. Ramen restaurants, or ramen-ya, can be found in virtually every corner of the country and produce countless regional variations of this common noodle dish.
Popular Ramen types
Ramen are typically categorized according to their soup base, although variations that combine the different bases are not uncommon. The main types of soup are:
Shoyu (醤油, Soy Sauce) Shoyu ramen soup is a clear, brown broth flavored with soy sauce (shoyu). The soup is usually made of chicken broth but often contains other meats such as pork, beef or fish depending on the region. Shoyu ramen is the most common type of ramen and is usually what is served when the menu does not specify a specific type of soup.
Shio (塩, Salt) Shio ramen soup is a light, clear broth seasoned with salt. It is typically made from chicken broth, but may also be flavored with other meats such as pork.
Miso (味噌, Soybean Paste) Miso ramen soup is flavored with soybean paste (miso), resulting in a thick, brown soup with a rich, complex flavor. The style originated in Hokkaido where the long cold winters spurred the need for a heartier type of ramen soup, but it has spread to the point where it can be found pretty much anywhere in Japan.
(Ramen info courtesy of http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2042.html)
Harajuku (原宿) refers to the area around Tokyo‘s Harajuku Station, which is between Shinjuku and Shibuya on the Yamanote Line. It is the center of Japan’s most extreme teenage cultures and fashion styles, but also offers shopping for adults and some historic sites. Harajuku is not only about teenage culture and shopping. Meiji Jingu, one of Tokyo’s major shrines, is located just west of the railway tracks in a large green oasis shared with the spacious Yoyogi Park.