Glastonbury Festival 2014

August 1, 2014

Despite the weather and extreme survival conditions, Glastonbury is always amazing.

This year, however, was particularly exciting as I got to perform not only ‘Atma’, but also 2 of my most recent hoop acts.

‘Black Out Days’ was specifically devised for the Circus Big Top and, although it was presented as work in progress, it received very positive feedback.

The greatest surprise of this year’s festival, however, was that I got asked to perform at the BBC Studio as part of their Friday Night Highlights, directly from the channel’s stage at the Park. This was an excellent and fun opportunity to show my ‘Great Gatsby’ inspired piece ‘Jazzy Daisy’, which went down a storm.

After all that excitement, keeping it up rehearsing and performing for almost 24 hours, after dragging your hoops all day around miles of muddy fields, what do you do when at Glasto?

I don’t know about you, but I go and dance my heart out until sunrise, at the jaws of a gigantic, fire spitting and laser shooting spider. That is why I love it so much in the field: it never stops feeding you its magic insanity.

 

 

This time last year, I was around on the Southbank a lot, performing in Circus Maximus, as part of the Udderbelly Festival. Screen Shot Circus Maximus It was such a fun and intense month! My dear and awesome friend Jon Green came down to film me during the first Heat of the competition. So this is my ‘Atma’, 3 years later.

An even bigger, even better Circus Big Top was my home for a week at Glastonbury Festival 2013.

Once again, it was an absolute pleasure to share the stage with so many incredibly talented performers, coming from all over the world.

In fact, thanks also to what was probably the warmest English summer in years, this was definitely the best Glastonbury of my life.. for now! A million thanks to Jade and Shaun Dunbar for making it happen. You guys rock!

“It is the unhappy marriage of physicality and mental instability that enables Box of Frogs to convey a visceral, memorable experience. While not a typically delightful tale, the generous range of performances ensures that the sheer joy of going to the circus is not abandoned.” From a review by Terri-Anne Teo for remotegoat.co.uk

In Autumn 2012, I continued the journey I started with Stumble danceCircus and toured the UK with the ensemble show ‘Box of Frogs’, directed by Mish Weaver.

We started at the Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, London, which was an absolute pleasure and honour to be performing at.

The tour continued and we performed in:

Preston (Preston Guild Festival in Expo Tent)

Bristol (Circomedia)

Devon (The Landmark, Ilfracombe)

Stockton-on Tees (ARC, Stockton Arts Centre)

Manchester (Contact)

Leeds (The Carriageworks)

Scotland (Eastwood Park Theatre, Giffnock)

“Box of Frogs is a circus show with a difference. 5 acrobats and 2 musicians play with the audience’s expectations from their own perspective of mental ill-health and performance, against a back drop of filmic illusions.”

Based on an exploration of Mish Weaver’s personal experience of bipolar disorder, the performance illustrates her take on the feelings, thoughts and behavior that are part of the condition through the medium of circus itself..

Photos taken by Steve Eggleton.

Two lovely short films were made by people at www.thespace.org, as part of the Push Me Collection series, to illustrate how Stumble danceCircus pushed us, the performers, out of our comfort zone, to reach previously unattained goals in ‘Box of Frogs’.

http://thespace.org/items/e0000epc?t=d228

http://thespace.org/items/e00015xe?t=xppn

Balagan (literally ‘chaos’, in German), is a state of mind, a mood, a feeling of joy and pure energy.

Last August 2011, I joined forces with eight true musicians, a charismatic singer and other circus performers from all over the world to create a colourful sea of images and feelings – the Balagan show, directed by Sebastiano Toma.

The cast was made by incredibly talented and friendly people, including:

Alba, a gorgeous and superfunny contortionist.

Thomas Dürrfeld and Marie Seeger, as known as Fernando and Serafina, who did lovely ball and club juggling.

Momo Kohlschmidt, one of the most beautiful women I have ever met, who accompanied us with her sweet voice.

I loved spinning my hoops to the live music, a cheeky mix of classical, klezmer, tango and even punk music. The energy of all the musicians on stage added a real buzz to the joy I feel when performing.

All the artists involved in Balagan made this one of the best experiences I have had so far.

Photos were taken by Sebastiano Toma and Giorgio Radoja, during our tour in Binz ans Sylt, Germany 2011. You can see more on my Flickr.

Glastonbury Festival 2011

August 9, 2011

This summer I got to live one of my dreams, as I got booked to perform in the Circus Big Top at Glastonbury Festival.

Despite the extreme, hardcore conditions, it was one of the best, most fun and exciting experiences in my life. The Circus  Field was possibly one of the best areas on site, and I was lucky enough to camp, work and spend most of my time there.

Behind  the Circus Big Top there was an amazing team of smiley, hard-working and talented people, coming together to keep the show going on day and night, for 4 days. Performing on a massive stage to such a varied audience was truly incredible.

To me, Glastonbury was like a joke, the best joke I’ve ever heard. I am very much looking forward to the next one.

Photos were taken by Jon Green,  Andrew and Joey Allcock.

In December 2010, I was selected to take part in the 2nd International Circus Festival at the Düsseldorf Airport. The talented performers came from all over the world to share a very unusual and exciting day at the German airport.

The whole departure hall in the terminal was used as the performing area, which provided an extraordinary and impressive backdrop as well as free entertainment for the transient audience.

We performed in front of a top-class jury of circus experts, including the Director of GOP Varieté Essen, who awarded prize money, engagements by GOP Varieté Essen and by Et Cetera Varieté Bochum as well as prizes in kind from Jack Wolfskin. Although we were measuring ourselves in a competition, the atmosphere was very friendly and all the artists were very supportive of each other.

Photos were taken by Andreas Wiese and you can find more on my Flickr.