I’m sending out greetings to hoopers around the world as we celebrate World Hoop Day. Whether you’re hooping in the privacy of your home or performing the WHD Dance in front of an audience today, I hope you’ll find happiness in your hoop.
Even if I don’t always feel it myself.
Sometimes I am disappointed that after all these years and all this effort, I’m not an A-list hooper, that I don’t get invited to teach at conferences, or have a popular YouTube channel. Honestly, I know that my temperament is not even enough for that to work for me.
On the joyful side, hooping encouraged me to find my body’s power, make new friends, and experience all sort of different ideas. I’ve taken my enthusiasm for hooping around the world and shared hoops with thousands of people in person and online. Wow, what a blessing.
I can alternate between joy and disappointment in the single rotation of the hoop.
Today, though, I am going to unleash my hoops into the rainy day and spin with abandon. Let me celebrate everything I’ve done and all that’s coming, good and bad. I will dance and play and I hope that you will join me, wherever you are.
Happy World Hoop Day.
Jason and I did a show at Harmony Hongo in Aizu, Fukushima, yesterday. We had a terrific time performing song, dance and circus activities with 40 elderly people who live there. They loved clapping and singing along with Jason and laughing along with me as I hooped and juggled and clowned around.
We’ve been invited back this summer and I am already excited to return. Older audiences are an interesting challenge. Mobility issues mean games need to be chair-based, or chair compatible. Shyness levels are about the same as in any adult audience – there are always a few keen people who jump right in, a lot who’d rather watch, and some who need only gentle persuasion to come out to play.
Yesterday we got everyone playing games and there were colored scarves and laughter everywhere! Thanks to Jason’s generosity, Spin Matsuri now owns 25 beautiful finger flower scarves. They are a terrific addition to our collection of circus toys and workshop props. Thank you, Jason, these are going to be well-loved at our workshops around the world!
Actually, it’s more than a bake sale – it’s a flea market, bake sale, & workshops put on by Intrepid Model Adventures. Donations from the flea market will go to support Spin Matsuri’s social circus projects, including the work coming up in Dharmsala this summer.
Tink will lead a circus workshop, and is selling a ton of lovely things “one coin” style to help pay for the circus supplies she will need in India. With the support of bargain hunters and all the other flea market stalls, Spin Matsuri will be able to create a performance with schoolchildren and adults in Dharmsala.
4th IMA Charity Flea Market, Bake Sale & Workshops
Sunday, April 19 from 10:00 – 18:00
Wkabayashi Heim 2-26-8 Taito, Taito-ku, Tokyo 110-0016
More details are on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1414196388887941/
This month, Tink spent a week in Yangon, Myanmar, for the International Juggling Festival – a social circus event with workshops and performances organised by Serious Fun. It was seriously fun to meet and collaborate with jugglers and performers from all around the world to bring moments of fun to the Burmese kids we entertained.
275 dancers. 11 countries. 27 locations and 31 performance groups. That’s what you’ll see in this year’s WHD Dance compilation video.
If you watch closely, you’ll also see: a giant kite, a hooper on stilts, hair hooping, twerking hoopers, Gail, disco lighting, a windmill, acro-hooping, two different oceans, the Friendship of Peoples fountain, and a trio of professional circus performers.
As a hooper yourself, you’ll probably recognise the culmination of hours of rehearsal, costume planning, and location scouting that went into making each one of these videos happen. You will certainly recognise the personal attributes that make this project work: courage to try, determination to succeed, and the ego surrender of being a good group dancer.
Thank you to all of the hoop dancers who participated this year – including everyone who didn’t get a video of their performance or rehearsals. You’re as much a part of the WHD Dance as the hoopers who appear in the compilation. I know there were many of you – I sent out over 150 tutorial packets this year. Wow.
This is a visual index of hoop tricks. In under 5 minutes, I demonstrate 33 moves that I teach to new students and have used in the WHD Dance over the years.
Is it the definitive list of what you should be working on? No! Your favorite trick isn’t even in here, trust me. These are moves that I think every hooper should know how to do and thirty three tricks is just the beginning. I’ll be creating more videos in the “Every Hooper Should Know” series with themes like legs, lifts, leaps and LEDs.
The video was shot in two beautiful locations in Japan with help from Mirai Wakabayashi, Rob Moreno, and Tod McQuillin. I did the hooping and the editing. The music, Imagine Magenta, is by Dan-O Songs
Today I had the pleasure of doing a school show at a charming 35 student Navy school that is being consolidated as their base closes. Our hour of performance and play time went in the blink of the eye. To all the Byrd Penguins, I hope you all enjoy becoming Ikego Fireflies next semester.
Check out the beautiful “Thank You Spin Matsuri” banner that one of the teachers created for the stage. I have never been so sweetly welcomed.