Author: Tink

Social Circus Day, in pictures

Social Circus Day was a huge success here in Japan. The photos really tell the story. A fun show, followed by a talk and the launch of the Awa Community Circus, then playshops that included creative warm-ups, juggling games and hula hooping. It was inter-generational with kids, parents and grandparents playing together and also represented a cross-section of our community in terms of lifestyles. The photo booth and dress up corner were popular, too.

Big thanks to Elli, Tod, Elli, Megumi, Noriko, Ark, Eri, Chris, and Trouble who helped out on- and off-stage. You are fantastic supporters and the day ran smoothly thanks to all of you. Hooray for #socialcircusday !



Announcing: Awa Community Circus!

Spin Matsuri launches a community circus program right here in Chiba, Japan. It’s a long-held dream to run a circus of our own. This spring we’ll have a series of circus classes and workshops followed by a public performance. August brings a Circus Summer Camp for kids and after the harvest, we’ll start visiting facilities with a circus program of performances and playshops.

Inari Polki from Finland will join us as a guest teacher this summer to share acrobatics and more. Circosis from Australia visits us in May for a special event.

Join our Facebook group for all the latest information on events and classes.



ソーシャルサーカスの日 Social Circus Day



12:45 入場
13:00 ショー  ティンクや友人
13:30トーク  ソーシャルサーカスのトピック&鴨川サーカスのプロジェクト
14:00 体験 -サーカスのゲームと技


Join Spin Matsuri for an afternoon celebrating social circus. There will be a show, a presentation, and time to try circus for yourself.

See what we’ve been up to for the last few years and learn about a new social circus initiative: Kamogawa Circus Project. Find out how you can participate and support us.

April 2, 2016, from 12:45pm at Satoyama Design Factory in Kamogawa, Chiba, Japan.


Drawing Meditations, stillness for people who need to move

On the flip side of circus, dance, yoga and movement arts is a place of stillness. It’s hard to get there sometimes, but necessary to find. We must rest between bursts of energy. The still place is also a time  – moments to recuperate and refresh before stepping back out onto the stage or into the classroom.

I occupy that still place with drawing and writing. And recently I’ve been working with my friend Tracey to create a new and uncommonly good project for relaxation and meditation. It’s not strictly Spin Matsuri, but it’s the other half of me so I want to share it with you.


Drawing Meditations is a two-for-one relaxation combo: coloring-in pages with guided meditations. We offer them in our Etsy shop as a deluxe gift set (pictured above) a less elaborate kit, or individual downloads.

The pairing of drawing and audio is brilliant, especially for people like me who don’t do silent meditation very well. While your left brain focuses on the technical aspects of coloring, your right brain enjoys flowing into the present moment with the meditation.

I’m working on some new coloring pages this month, and Tracey and I are hosting a live Drawing Meditations event – Coloring-In Party featuring Drawing Meditations on March 12th in Tokyo. I’ll be premiering two new meditations and their coloring sheets and also offering a hands-on tutorial on coloring techniques. If you’d like to attend, please RSVP to me or though the Drawing Meditations Facebook page.

Spark Circus Experience


タイにかえりました。Spark Circus は良い経験でした。今から多くの新しい計画を持っています。

Tod & I’ve returned from the Spark Circus 2016 tour in Mae Sot, Thailand.

Our project went smoothly and we entertained and played with more than 3800 students at 15 schools. We guided 120 students put on their own circus shows and I know that at least a few of those students had a key life experiences thanks to our visit. One young man used a computer for the first time and ran sound for the show; a bully turned around when given the chance; shy students became brave on the aerial rig; and the kids generally expressed so much care and attention in their circus work…it was a delight to see direct evidence of the power of social circus.

The Spark team was fantastic. Eight people from all over the world with a mix of skills, personalities and experience just right for the project. We were all excellent teachers and performers with so much professionalism. I’d recommend any of the team for another project, performance or teaching gig. Thank you, Tune, Kira, Guillaume, Rosie, Chris and Charlie for letting me organise and lead this year’s tour.



I’ve come home with lots of enthusiasm. Here’s the thing. I don’t need to go to Thailand to do social circus. I can (and should) be doing it right here in my own backyard. Japan has plenty of need – orphans, elders, displaced people, ill folks, and disabled people of all kinds who are overlooked and underserved. Let’s juggle together or put on a funny show.

And among the more privileged, I know there is a desperate need for play. A way for hardworking students and salarymen to let loose. For non-conformists and all those “nails that stick up” to express themselves and succeed. I am going to try to provide play opportunities as a for-profit business that feeds my social volunteerism in the hospitals, care homes, and other facilities that can’t afford to pay.

So my first step is to commit to staying home this summer. No trips to India or exotic locales. I’m going to work on establishing my connections here. First by building a local reputation with yoga classes, hoop jams and other creative workshops in Kamogawa. Then I will branch out to afterschool creativity classes and a summer camp for circus and arts.

I can’t do it alone. I need your help. I want to collaborate. Maybe you want to teach or perform in the project, or you know a facility that needs a performance or workshop, or run an NGO that does similar work, or you want to come to my classes and help fund social circus. Cheering me on with a “go go go!” is a big help. In any case, if you want to be part of developing a thriving social circus scene to Japan, be in touch. Email or like the Spin Matsuri Facebook page or catch me in person.