Mark Mennie of Mark Mennie Photography and Waldy Martens team up for the second year running to shoot the National Lacrosse League, Calgary Roughneck’s dance team, Drill Crew’s 2014 Calendar. A collaborative union, which has proven to be of utmost success for both the Drill Crew and the Canadian Football League’s Calgary Stampeders’ dance team the Outriders, with a consistent history of calendar sell outs year after year. The Drill Crew’s 2014 edition is already being touted as Mark and Waldy’s best collaboration yet, utilizing Mark’s creative capture skills and Waldy’s art direction and world class post production talents. The stars truly aligned when this for these two Alberta College of Art alums reunited for this project and pure magic was formed. The success of this shoot cannot be solely credited them though, as the dance team as a whole and their talented leader Dana Murphy played an integral part if not the most important.
Stepping away from the Saddledome this year, the 4 day shoot was set at Harley Davidson of Calgary, which was initially scouted by Dana, and while it did not allow the Drill Crew a “home field advantage” of shooting in their arena, the dealership created the perfect contrast to compliment to each of the team members’ calendar spread. “Something always drew me to a motorcycle themed calendar and shooting in late November I knew the shoot had to be indoors. Taking the shoot to an unfamiliar location can be a gamble, but it was Mark and Waldy’s dream location. They were like two kids in a candy store with the excitement that grew from scouting and all the location and motorcycle options we had available to us. Harley Davidson of Calgary was the most accommodating and welcoming to our whole production crew.”
In addition to amazing hospitality of Tom, Rob, and Patrick as well as the entire staff at Calgary Harley Davidson, the project would have been nowhere without the hairstyling talents by the Drill Crew’s own Petra. The coordinated team of make-up artists, Karen, Helen and Vered magically transformed all the ladies into calendar girls. “It always take a village during a rapid shoot of this magnitude” Mark adds. “The production crew, venue staff, and Drill Crew created the perfect “dream team” for Waldy and myself and our organized chaos. All these unique elements merged together to create this great calendar”
The Drill Crew 2014 Calendar will be officially released on Friday, January 10th at the Roughneck’s home opener versus the Colorado Mammoth. In addition to being available for sale at all games the calendar will also be offered online as well at www.calgaryroughnecks.com. The calendar is $20 for a signed copy, plus shipping.
Mark Mennie and Waldy Martens Photographers shoot the Calgary Roughnecks Drill Crew’s 2013 Calendar
Calgary, CA: Internationally based photographers Mark Mennie and Waldy Martens team up for the second time in 2012, to shoot the National Lacrosse League, Calgary Roughneck’s dance team the Drill Crew’s 2013 Calendar. Their union was first conceived this past June, as they conceptualized and shot the ever-popular Calgary Stampeders cheerleading dance team, the Outriders’ 2013 Calendar. Dana Murphy, the Drill Crew’s coach, manager, choreographer, and a former Outrider herself, challenged the duo to portrait the women in a sexy manner while shooting amongst a hard industrial background. The intense four-day photo shoot, took place at Calgary’s Saddledome with the Drill Crew choosing to wear sexy lingerie and in bright bold colors. Mennie and Martens then insightfully shot the women thoughtfully laced and intertwined through contrasting rugged backgrounds, including in the ice making plant, water room, boiler room and work/repair shop. In post-production, Martens’ added his professional style that truly made the imagery pop, then the meticulous imagery was passed along to the talented designer Rheana Fehr, a former Drill Crew member as well, to produce what will no doubt be another sellout edition.
Mennie and Martens originally met as classmates in 1985 in the Photography Program at the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary, Alberta. Both then went on to pursue separate and diverse careers, with Martens starting up a photography studio in Vancouver BC. While shooting commercially, Martens quickly developed his unique glamour style of portraying women, which in turn did led to a scoring a prestigious American magazine as one of his main clients. Martens also worked with the CFL franchise British Columbia Lions, producing imagery for their Cheer team, the Felions’ yearly calendar. Mennie in turn went on to pursue commercial work in Calgary in the 1990’s, but took an interesting curve in his career by focusing on the documentary portrayal of air medical / med-evac services in Canada and onto the US in 2001. The same year in fact that Mennie was awarded the Outriders’ 2002 Calendar contract and challenged the dance team to pursue a more editorial “Girl Power” theme, vs the typical swimsuit theme of many other cheerleading teams in North America. This second 2013 Calendar is indeed like a dream come true for Mennie, as he has been hoping for years to collaborate with his best friend.
The Drill Crew 2013 Calendar is now available for international purchase on their dedicated website www.drillcrew.ca. The glossy 12 month gem will also be the focal point of the Calgary Roughnecks Home Opener in Calgary on Saturday, January 12th, 2013 www.calgaryroughnecks.com. The calendar is $15 or $20 for a signed copy, tax and shipping may apply. To find out more about Mennie and Martens please visit their sites www.mennie.com or www.waldymartens.com
The Calgary Roughnecks are looking for dedicated, talented, physically fit candidates with solid jazz techniques to join their 2012 Drill Crew Dance team.
Responsibilities include performing in all home games at the Saddledome including playoffs, and participation in various promotional and charity events around Calgary.
Members must attend weekly rehearsals on Monday evenings 7:30-10:30pm beginning September 26th, 2011 ending May 2012. Dancers must provide own transportation to and from practices, games, and appearances.
When: Sunday September 11th, 2011: Registration opens 4:30, Audition is 5-8pm
Location: National Sports Development (7475 Flint Road SE)
Please wear fitted shorts and a half top. Expect to be dancing on turf, so jazz shoes or runners
are preferred. Hair should be down and styled as it would for a game. Make up
should be performance ready.
Dancers will do across the floor combinations and learn a jazz/ hip hop routine which will be
performed in front of a panel of judges. Candidates will be evaluated on dance
technique, performance, physical fitness and appearance.
To register please email a photo and a professional resume to email@example.com
Flames not yet sold on concept
By Vicki Hall Calgary Herald
November 12, 2009
CALGARY – Cheerleaders in hockey are considered an American phenomenon, like tailgating in football or the singing of Take Me Out to the Ball Game in baseball.
Looking for ways to enhance the experience for the ticket-buying public, the Calgary Flames investigated the idea of a cheer team this fall, even holding an audition for young women with dancing experience.
The NHL franchise retained the services of Dana Murphy, the longtime choreographer for the Calgary Roughnecks Drill Crew, of the National Lacrosse League.
“They just want to take baby steps,” Murphy said Wednesday. “I think it’s more like in-stands, sideline stuff with the goal of getting on the ice eventually.”
A tentative game plan called for the dance team to debut later this month at games for the WHL’s Calgary Hitmen. Murphy said it would be a trial run, of sorts, to see how the crowd took to the idea.
But Ken King, president of both the Flames and Hitmen, is not sold on the idea.
“In my view, cheerleaders are not the kind of thing that goes with Canadian hockey,” King said Wednesday. “I think we have a very serious team and a great fan base.”
King said he has not received a proposal from his staff suggesting the creation of a cheer team. His entertainment department is simply exploring all options.
The president would have to sign off for the cheerleaders to perform at Hitmen or Flames games.
“I’ve always said this is a pure hockey market,” King said.
“A pure hockey market by my definition — and I think I coined the phrase, pure hockey market–is respect for the game, understanding of the game and appreciation. It’s about the hockey.
“What I care about is making sure we have the best hockey product on the ice.”
The Flames raised some eyebrows back in 2003 by unveiling the Fire and Ice Girls, who sweep snow with shovels during stoppages in play. The girls–all of them fit and extremely attractive–wear skimpy outfits that display bare midriffs.
The Fire and Ice Girls also help with in-house promotions and contests at the Pengrowth Saddledome.
But the idea of a dance team takes the concept to a new level.
About 25 young women between the ages of 18 and 26 attended the September audition, with the vast majority of them having formal dance training.
Murphy has studied dance–including ballet, jazz and hip-hop– since she was a little girl. Upon graduation from high school, she joined the Calgary Stampeders Outriders cheerleading team.
From there, she helped found the Drill Crew more than eight years ago.
“They’re as important to us as the team itself,” said general manager Brad Banister. “They’re just so involved with charity and the entire Calgary community.”
The Drill Crew professional dance team is comprised of 16 to 18 female dancers that perform at all Roughnecks home games.
“We have our own fan base,” Murphy said. “We’re part of the entertainment.”
Murphy is extremely dedicated to her craft, and she sincerely hopes old-school hockey fans can keep an open mind about what may seem a novel concept.
“Obviously it’s a new thing,” she said, “but promoting healthy, talented girls is not going to be the end of the world.”
Kyla is a member of three Calgary Dance Teams: CFL Outriders, NLL Drill Crew and NHL Ice Crew. (Photo courtesy of Mark Mennie)
Kyla was born and grew up in Sydney, Nova Scotia, studied Art at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, Newbrunswick and moved to Calgary almost 5 years when I was 21,where she now works as an Executive Assistant for a Buying group.
She’s been dancing now for 22 years. She danced competitively in Nova Scotia, and upon moving to Calgary she joined Outriders, the cheer team for the CFL Calgary Stampeders, and has been taking any opportunity to dance ever since.
This is Kyla’s 4th season with the Outriders. She is in her first seasons with the NLL Calgary Roughnecks Drill Crew and the NHL Calgary Flames Big Country Ice Crew. She also got married this past June, and says her husband is very supportive of her commitment to dancing.
Kyla took some time out of her busy schedule to answer a few of our questions.
(Photo courtesy of Mark Mennie)
UC: How cold does it get at the end of the Canadian Football League season?
K: It can get extremely cold at the end of the season. Come Grey Cup we are in the -20C (-4F) range. For a game in early October we had our winter hats and gloves added to the packing list. The forecast was calling for snow. Sometimes we are lucky and can make it to the end of the year with no snow but it looks like we won’t be so lucky this year. We are tough girls though. We still have fun in snow, rain, or whatever else is thrown at us. The key to keeping warm is to keep on dancing.
UC: I saw that your squad traveled to Edmonton for a game? Did you cheer on the sidelines? Is this What’s the fan reaction like when you are on the road?
K: We travel to Edmonton every year for the Labor Day rematch game. The Edmonton team travels to Calgary for the Labour Day game as well. We both perform on the sidelines and do a performance during one of the time-outs. The fan’s reaction is funny. They think we hate each other when that is not the case at all. We decorate The Edmonton team’s locker room in green and the do the same for us (in red of course). The guys on their team even barbecued us hamburgers before the game. We get along great and get to see them again along with the rest of the CFL cheer teams when we all get together for Grey Cup.
UC: What do fans think of Pro Cheerleading in Canada?
K: We have a great fan base here in Canada. People really respect what we do and take the time to tell us so and thank us. I think the main thing people don’t know about us is this is a volunteer position so when you see us on the sidelines or working at promotional events that is all simply for the love of the sport, dance, and the fans. I think our fans realize all our hard work we put in and appreciate it.
UC: Any hobbies?
K: I love to cook. Being in the kitchen is calming for me.
UC: What do you like to do to relax?
K: Relax is not something I do very often. When I find I have a free day I usually sign up for something else or volunteer and that is the end of that. When I do have free time I like to hang out with my girls, laugh with my sister or cuddle up and watch a movie with my husband. Since I am always on the go, when I do have free time I like it to be low key.
The Drill Crew is a professional dance team comprised of 16-18 female dancers that perform at all Roughnecks Lacrosse home games. Each member has a commitment to attend all practices, games and promotions throughout the season.
When: Monday, September 28th Time: Registration opens at 6:00, Audition at 6:30pm Where: National Sports Development (NSD) – 7475 Flint Road S.E
Audition Attire and Appearance:
• Fitted Shorts and half top are required to audition
• Any dance shoes or runners
• Hair and makeup should be done as it would for “Game day,” glamorous and Professional
Along with dance training, dancers will be evaluated on their fitness, attitude, professionalism, and how fast they pick up the choreography.
• Must be 18 years of age by November 1st, 2009
• Have a vehicle to get them to practices, promotions, and games
• Be available Monday evenings for mandatory practices (October till middle of May)
• Be highly personable and represent the club in a professional manner at all times through various promotions throughout the city
To Register for the Audition…..
• Please send a full body shot, professional resume and attached registration form to firstname.lastname@example.org
• A $10 non-refundable deposit is due at sign in
• You will be notified within 2 days that your information has been received
For any more information regarding the audition please contact Dana Murphy, (403-616-6827)