My Experience Hoopdancing at Nightclubs: Part II

I have done 21 nightclub performances since part one of this article and have learned a LOT! (63 five minute sets in all .. wow) I am sharing this to open up a dialog about hoop performance, so I can also learn from you, too! I hope my experiences encourage you to think about hooping at a club near you as a way to activate your own practice or hooping career. I won’t repeat anything from part one of this article which was already published here, but you may want to read it first.
In this installment I’ll speak to: booking gigs and contracts, rates, how to get club gigs, when you don’t feel like performing but have to, dancing, photographers, led hoops, dealing with a crisis on stage, bad music, fans, presentation skills and tools to improve your shows. This is a long article, but worth it. Read on!

First and foremost, I have found it VERY important to have a written contract with your client. There are many free downloadable samples for performers online if you do a google search. It is important to take time crafting your own and add clauses such as, “performer is not responsible for crowd clearing and control”, “artist requires at least 30 minutes break between sets”, “artist will be provided with beverages and water during evening”, “artist is entitled to one guest”, “club is responsible for making sure dance area is dry and free of drinks, bottles and other debris”, “performer cannot dance in a space smaller than ____ or higher than __ feet off the floor” and so on, according to your own policies.
People will treat you as if you are worth what you ask for, so think carefully about your rates. In some cases there may be bargaining and negotiating if you feel it is worth it, other times you may stand firm on your bottom line. If they offer you an amount less than what you want, you can always say yes, but note you will only be doing 2 sets instead of 3. No matter what, never take less than what you feel good about yourself recieving or you may regret it. Once you establish a rate with a client, it is hard to increase it very quickly.
Your written contract should clearly state how many performances you will do, how long they are and at what estimated times they will happen. Your payment method, if any deposit is required and when the balance will be paid and in what form should also be there. Honestly I have never gotten a deposit from a club gig unless it was out of country, but it is good to just have it in your general contract. If it is an out of country gig, it should clearly state your payment amount in US dollars as the total amount *after* any taxes, additional fees or currency exchange (I have been duped out of more than $400 by supposed “taxes” and exchange rate differences). Out of country gigs should always get a deposit before your leave the US, the client should always pay for all transport and lodging and hopefully a per deium.
I now avoid booking a performance after a long taxing experience, like after an 18 hour plane ride. After flying into Germany and driving 4 hours into Austria, I learned this the hard way when I had to perform within a few hours. I also avoid eating 3 hours prior to a gig or I tend to be sluggish. In general, the more I perform, the more I realize actually need to book “down time” which has no teaching, rehersals or performances involved so I can get back to my center. It is very easy to let yourself get booked up back to back for weeks.. and the quality of what I offer drops and the sweet spirit that should be motiviating it is tired and maybe even cranky.
I would encourage you to never, ever ever under any circumstances reveal to another performer hired to perform at your gig how much you are paid to be there. I did this once and it had the potential to create huge drama for me with the manager, who had asked me to keep it confidential. I let it slip carelessly and many other dancers there who work for many more hours than me per evening but get paid less seemed pissed. It could have put my entire relationship with the club at risk and lost me a great ongoing gig! Thank gosh nothing happened, but I learned a good lesson — when it comes to money, mum’s the word.
Club gigs don’t pay as much as other gigs.. but the vast exposure, performance experience and opportunity to get club footage and photos of yourself is worth the compromise in pay. My deal gives the club a break in how much they pay me based on increased bookings per month — so they often end up having me there 2-6 times. So obviously you should have different rates for nightclubs, private parties, corporate and commercial gigs.
How do you get club gigs? Every club gig I have gotten has been from a personal contact from someone who worked there who referred me to them based on seeing me perform in the past somewhere in the community – at a paid private party gig or just at a festival or something. None of the dozens of club solicitations I have done have ever panned out to a gig. Many people ask why I don’t bring my hoop out with me to nightclubs like I used to — in the past I used to hoop in the back of clubs and have a blast! But the cold reality is that a club will never pay you to do something you are willing to give away for free. This is why I am often hired at more swanky places which frown on freestyle jam artists hanging out in back, and was turned away when applying to a location where hoopers perform constantly for free (Club 1015 for those who know SF). Another interesting ancedote: When my boyfriend was hired to dj in Cancun I brought my hoop and a full costume and met with the club owner prior to the evening and explained that I was a professional performer and would give him a sample of my work. He was baffled, but excited. I did a high energy fully decked out 5 minute demo — and stopped. The crowd was screaming for more and everyone kept asking me to p-l-e-a-s-e do more, but I was firm and said it was just a demonstration for the manager. That self restraint created such a hunger in the club that I have been hired back with my hoop partner twice since then. When you decide to go pro, you make choices about when and how much you will hoop at venues which require self restraint. Unbridled fun happens for me in other settings, but everytime I perform in a club, I have to stay on pointe.
Anyways, I was speaking of other dancers before that digression. I always go out and watch the go go dancers performing before I perform. Their slow sultry and super sexy high energy moves ramp up my energy and I often try copying their movements in the corner to get my body limber and in the mood. Their elegant grace, elongated limbs, sucked in tummies, dramatic use of their arms, attitude, and arched backs model for me what I need to remember. And their slow movements, even when the music is pumpin, reminds me to slow down instead of letting my adrenaline run away with me. They are wonderful teachers, and even behind the scenes offer lots of makeup and costumery tips, just from watching them prepare.
I don’t always feel 100% on nights I am booked to perform. That is just the reality of life! If it is a really low energy night where I feel down or depressed or anything like that, I make it a point to choose the the flashiest, blingiest, most fabulous costume out of my closet. This creates a great “smoke and mirrors” to distract people from any potential deficiency in my performance. It also can actually totally shift my energy and make me feel great to be wearing such an awesome costume.
It also helps me to take a moment and think about feeling beautiful, graceful, angelic, sexy or whatever feelings are pleasurable and to think of just exuding these vibes while I dance. I remind myself to smile when I exhale and often engage my imagination to visualize things like swimming though honey, having long strings of diamonds swinging from my hips or something else wonderful and sensual. It kind of puts me in the mood so I have something to really share. In short, I practice a very important performance premise- fake it till you make it. It works.
Have a mentally rehersed series of moves to go through before performing, even if you review it only minutes before you go on — it will lend cohesion. I like to add variety to my sets by doing a single hoop set, a double hoop set then another single. I also have a distinct floorwork component I add to every set ( I look to bellydance, erotic dance and yoga traditions for inspiration). I have discovered too that having character transitions, at least one or two, really helps the crowd connect with you and looks very dynamic. Eye contact is KEY. To help with this I have created a catalog of personas in my hoop journal and I try to practice them when I am in the studio with mirrors.
I try to avoid what I call “octopus syndrome”, just wildly doing many moves strung together of varying planes and angles which are random. Instead, I try to do all my moves on specific planes which show the best angle to the audience(poi training is very useful in this regard — they so emphasize planes). I often use a box shape to guide my right-left, forward-back series of dance steps. Spotting with some object or some mark on the floor really helps with this. No matter what, I focus on performing three dimensionally (all angles, all sides, varying heights) and embedding moves within an already complete dance which shows the best angle to the audience.
It is so important to be aware of cameras and videotapers and to play to them. I didn’t used to have any awareness of them – and then I kept seeing terrible shots of me published. Yech! Then watching Anah perform one day, I realized she practically has a camera sonar in place where she instantly moves to perform in the best angle to any photographer who is there snapping away. I now know who the main magazine and e-zine photographers are now at the club — you can tell from tags around their necks and large fancy looking cameras. I maintain awareness of them while I perform and also have a series of stock hooping poses that I can jump into very quickly which look great — always remembering to suck in my tummy and arch my back. This may seem egoic or odd, but if you go pro, it is important to know how to work with the media in a way which shows your best side.
Although it can be tempting, I avoid mouthing the words to a song while performing. I watched a video of myself doing it. It looked terrible! And on the subject of mouths, I avoid what Anah playfully calls, “porno mouth”, where I keep my mouth somewhat open in a slightly pornographic manner because I am so into whatever I am doing. It can be unconscious when you are doing it, but if you watch yourself on video it looks downright cheap.
If using a PSI hoop I try to remember when batteries were last inserted and replace if there is *any* chance they could be going out. Also, remember to tape over the switch, as I have switched my hoop off mid performance! It is hard to stay in flow when trying to locate the switch again to turn it back on. When using any LED hoop, I always bring a back up hoop which is placed within arms reach of where I am performing in case the other one blinks out (which has happened to me several times). Plus, the reality is that no LED hoop on the market performs like a regularly balanced hoop. I force myself to practice with the same hoop I will perform with so I won’t be caught off guard by weight or balance differences. This is especially true for ones with large battery packs on one side which make tosses and rolls and duck outs and things wobbly.
I have found the best approach in dealing with any crisis while performing (such as a hoop blinking out, music stopping or any such thing) is TOTALLY staying in character and keeping on performing. For example, when I drop the hoop I put a hand to a pouty mouth and turn my head to the side in exagerated girlie-style embarassment, which people seem to love as part of the whole show. Another example- my legwarmers occasionally seem to sag, so now I make pulling them up while hooping part of the show by doing it in a slow sexy way with a long extended leg and a coy head lean. It is good to prepare how you will handle your crisis in a mirror during a rehearsal so you jump into your theatricality quickly and well.
I am never in control of the music at a club, but I must perform to it. So I play a game with myself — even if it is the worst music I have ever heard in my life, completely frenetic, crass, bizzare, boring or utterly uninspiring, I convince myself it is the best music I have ever heard in my life, and that it may be the last. This shifts my energy so the quality of my dance is independent from the music quality. It is pretty liberating, actually.
If there are other hoopers performing, I find it important not to compare myself to them. My comparing mind is very critical and can often say things to me which are mean and insensitive, and not always true. So I try to remember that my performance is my business, and other performers performance is their business — though I can choose to be inspired. My job is just to shine and share my energy and light.
Finally, fans. There will be fans and lots of them. They are so wonderful and such a gift — so affirming that you are on the right path! However, they may also run at you, touch you without permission and completely surround you so you cannot escape. It can be overwhelming and hard to stay in a light, playful, open and receptive place when this happens! At least for me. So if people try to touch me without asking and I don’t feel like experiencing that, I change my stance to have one foot forward and I actually intercept their hands or wrists with mine and hold them away from my skin. Not in an aggressive way, but just in a friendly setting boundaries kind of way. A lot of guys also think it is okay to touch or leave a hand on my waist or butt (what are they thinking?) I step away and turn to face them fully when I see it about to happen. They often understand immediately – I have never had anyone react badly to it. It helps to smile while you do it. When people say, “wow you are amazing, how did you learn that?” over and over, I often say, “it is easy with practice… I teach classes!” and slip them a business card. This shifts the energy from me to them and often results in a lot of fans becoming great hoopers! Plus their attention moves from me to the card and it often allows me to move to the dressing room and dry off faster.
It is important if you are self critical (like me) to always receive praise when given. Sometimes I feel badly about a performance and think of only what could have made it better, so I leave stage a bit sour. When someone wholeheartedly tells me how astounding and earth moving my performance was for them, I avoid saying anything or using body language that contradicts that. For example, I have actually responded to praise with, “well actually it was an off night for me”, “you should see me when I perform with my dance partner – it is so much better”, and “thanks but I felt a bit out of it tonight”. Or by shaking my head a bit, looking disbelieving, having a tight lipped smile or shifty downward eyes. Now it is part of my hoop practice to receive compliments wether I feel worthy of them or not. It feels disrespectful not to.
To close, here are some nitty gritty presentation tips: When wearing wigs, don’t forget to completely bobby pin them to your head so they are completely secure even with mad head tossing! I had a wig fly off at a gig and it was quite embarrassing. I also find that white or blond wigs show up in the dim lights much more than darker colors. I choose the largest sparkles from craft stores to apply on top of body lotion on my skin because they reflect the most light, instead of the super fine glitter. I bring a towel to wipe off sweat afterwards (instead of using tissues on site which can leave clumps of paper on your face) and translucent powder to absorb shine after each set.
Also, the one time I wore pasties, I realized how important it is to make sure all sides are firmly glued down with spirit gum! Halfway through one performance, a hoop lift started to peel one pastie off so I had to exit gracefully and quickly to recover it. Re-apply glue after each set to prevent this… I also use saftey pins to secure everything together that can possible migrate while I am hooping — like dancer tights to underwear to pants to belt — I have had an elastic sparkle belt migrate halfway up to my chest from hooping and it doesn’t look so great.
I wear flesh colored fishnets (with the hip elastic and feet cut off for comfort) with any outfit which shows my legs as it contains and firms. Even if you think you are buff, a camera can do weird things to your thighs. It is a good practice hooping in any new outfit once before going on stage with it because you never know what weirdness may occur, especially if it is skimpy. I now always double knot bikini tops after one behind the neck pass resulted in me untying my top on stage!
Speaking of tops, the go-go dancers taught me a cool trick. They get cheap nude push-up bras and cut the two straps which go over your shoulders, where they attach on your back and tie it behind their necks so your whole back is open, and cut out the fabric between the two straps that go back from the cup and clasp in back. This makes it look just like two thin nude straps going across your back, which people often don’t see from far away. It is finally a way I can get some support with the skimpy tops and not risk flying out as well.
A final note… the two most precious tools I have which help me improve my performance skills are my video camera and journal. I video tape every single gig I have (I randomly ask someone there to hold the machine or place it on a nearby surface). If it is a gig where I go to a dressing room between sets, I actually watch my performance between sets and can discover big things — slouching, something weird about my costume, something to tell the lighting guy, how I can expand my dance more, etc. Then my next set is that much better.
At the end of every evening, even if I get home at 4 am, I watch the entire video and do an entry in my journal. Each entry includes: gig name, costume, general impressions of my performance, moves, what I forgot or could have improved, and what I liked about what I did the most. I cherish my performance journals! They teach me so much.
More than anything I just want to say — have fun and enjoy yourself and shine your light bright! I would love to hear about your performances learnings or thoughts… there are so few hoop performers who actually dialog about these things! I hope my experiences are helpful and inspire you to take your performing to the next level!

9 thoughts on “My Experience Hoopdancing at Nightclubs: Part II

  1. Christabel – I enjoyed both Part I and Part II of your write-up of nightclub performing experiences. Thank you so much for sharing this with the community. There is some really invaluable and inspiring insight there. I especially enjoyed the visualization techniques you speak of. Woohoo!

  2. go christabel! thank you for sharing, and for being such a positive reinforcer. i know the times i’ve hooped with you, you’ve been really helpful and very attention-detailed. and i DEFINITELY concur that watching video of yourself is important if you are going out as a performer – the few videos of myself that i have watched have taught me a lot, especially about posture and facial expressions. and always remember some of the BEST advice christabel gave me: BREATHE!

  3. Wow, Christabel! What a wealth of information! Just so everyone knows, this is probably at least a few YEARS of experience distilled and given for FREE in two articles! Big kudos to Christabel for being so generous and for setting a great example for all the new hoopers in our various groups. Yes, performing in nightclubs can be rewarding and also draining but it is great experience and even better exposure for the performance minded hooper. So get out there and rock it hoop family!!
    hoopiness~ Anah

  4. Thanks for all those tips there great. so many things that i haden’t thought of. I also wanted to point out that some people may need to considder performers insurance depending on there situation. I just got mine from there fairly cheep and can cover people in most countrys.

  5. Very interesting and well-written account. I think this is valuable for all performers, not just hoopers. I really like the journal idea, and that bra thing – why have I never thought of that! Thank you!

  6. Christabel,
    I really enjoyed reading about your experiences performing. You are doing so well for yourself! Congrat’s!!! Hearing about your experiences brought up all sorts of memories that make me giggle and squirm. I spent my childhood “performing” as an athlete in a variety of sports. So after college, when I decided to pursue work, the stage seemed to be a natural step. For the past twelve years I have worked with a variety of artists sharing my circus-related skills. I have used all sorts of props. At this point, jugging in front of audiences, has been the most challenging. Just writing about it makes my blood pressure rise a bit! Thanks to very intentional mental preparation on my part, I am actually beginning to feel more comfortable juggling in front of big audiences. The nerves still exist, but I relate to myself and the routines differently. Christabel touched on dealing with nerves in her prior discussion, a bit. I would like to expand since I sense that there may be others out there, like me,who may feel a bit intimated in front of people, or who have a challenging time controlling their body when nerves strike!
    LIke I mentioned earlier, I grew up competing in athletics: gymastics, dance, cross-country, and horseback riding. I was fortunate to have really great coaches who introduced me to performance enhancing techniques such as visualizations, affirmations and the importance of goal setting. They also instilled in me the importance of preparation: running the course before the race day, or trying out new shoes in practices rather then on race day. Basically the idea is to create no surprises for yourself on race day, whether those surprises can stem from your costume, your hair, your hoop, your diet, or the stage. “Leave no doubt, try it out.” is my slogan. These bits of advice worked like gems when I was a child in an athletic setting, and they still work for me as an adult in my new “artistic” setting. Athletes and artists, have a lot in common.
    In additon to embracing learnings from my days as an athlete, I also find it extremely helpful to intertwine some of the lessons I have learned while getting my masters in spiritual psychology. A day does not seem to go by that I do not bow my head in gratitude for being involved in this program at USM in Santa Monica.
    Since, you now know a little bit about where I am coming from, I would like to share a few of my most treasured learnings. Learnings that have enabled me to transform myself from being a performer afraid to juggle at kid’s birthday parties, into a performer who is involved in a show that is being booked in theaters all over the world, performing for several dozen to several thousand audience members.
    What drew me into performing originally had to do with fluff: I really love to wear fun, and wild clothes. I do not feel comfortable doing this in my daily life, but up on stage when it seems appropriate, I go for it. Another thing that drew me into performing is that I really wanted to have more fun. I had been so intense as an athlete, pushing my body into such extremes, and under so much pain. Performing seemed the opposite of that: like a pure celebration; like a great way to use my body’s gifts, in a fun way. I also wanted to have a job that would enable me to travel the world and meet new people.
    Thank goodness, performing has fulfilled all of these desires 150%! And more.. Yet, what I did not expect is that performing on stage, would also be one of the most anxiety provoking and cutthroat environments I have ever been in. It has challenged every aspect of my being, even more so then athletics, since so much is beyond my control: props falling, lights malfunctioning, music skipping., costumes ripping, luggage not arriving, jewelry getting caught on wigs, wigs flying off in the air etc.,,, One of the ways I have been able to soften these potential blows, is to continually remind myself of an ever evolving philosophy I learned at USM:
    For me life is a school. I am a student here, who has agreed to learn lessons which support the evolution of my consciousness. In other words, these lessons are suppose to be for my highest good. They are here to help me out. These lessons can take place anywhere. And the stage is no exception to this!!!! Is it just me, or is the Universe going out of its way to teach us lessons while performing? Yikes, some of these lessons are potentially so embracing I want to hide! Or so nerve racking, I want to collapse and craddle my third chakra.
    I am beginning to regard that the stage is really like a microcosm of my life, since so much drama can occur, at a blink of an eye, which I can not control, triggering different parts of my personality to rise up and voice their opinion! I really get tested up there! One of my latest tests, occurred a few weeks ago when we had a show, on the same day that I expected my period to begin. I get horrendous cramps the first two days of my period. So, I was dreading this situation. Basically fasting, helps to abate the cramps. So, I fasted most of the day, and went to perform that evening. The audience was filled with people from theaters who purchase shows around the U.S. Hence, the stakes were high and we really wanted to impress them. Well, I did not realize how much my physical condition was affecting me until the last routine in our performance. Feeling a bit lightheaded, I raced on stage too early, got hit, smack in the head with a prop my partner was aggressively manipulating called meteors. ( rope with two balls attached at each end.) I fell to the ground, heard the audience moan, and quickly got up, acting as if nothing happened. (Actually it really did not hurt, although it shocked me.) We were able recover very quickly and finished the routine strongly. Believe it or not, I left the stage feeling good about the experience. I thought we handled the “knockdown” well and I actually really enjoyed performing that night. I had a good time! And I wanted to hold onto this. I did not want to allow any voices of perfectionism to enter the picture. I have learned over and over again, in front of very large audiences, as they have risen to their feet giving us standing ovations, that we do not need to be perfect on stage for the show to be a success! But I do need to do one thing perfectly: to enjoy myself, no matter what!!!! My energy matters. My energy is directly related to the what thoughts and belief systems I am entertaining in my head. I love having a body. Movement brings me joy. I love to share my joy. That is what I am up there to do, to spread my joy and light, even if darkness wants to flirt with me a bit. It feels so good to affirm this. Now to live it………
    After our performance that evening, my partner became immensely irritated with me as I voiced my perspective. I refused to go “there”–to give up and become negative. Instead I bowed my head in humility, and directly called out to the universe: “O.k. Universe I get it: My school is in session and I have something to learn. This learning is so, so extreme, that you must really need me to learn this! So please help. “ At USM, I began to understand that one of the reasons life brings me these lessons is to help teach me how to love. Loving myself is of prime importance, since how I relate to myself really plants the seeds for how I will relate to other people. So, the more loving, kind, and compassionate I can be with myself, the more ease, and grace I will experience, in all aspects of my life.
    Sure, I got hit in the head, and fell to the ground in front of one of the most important audiences ever!!!!! (which actually makes me laugh now just writing about it, since it must have been really brutal to watch and it reflects such bad luck!!!.) But, But and BUTTTTT I thought we handled the situation extremely well, acting as professionals. “The show must go on”, and it did. Fabulously!!! Even more importantly, on a personal level, I did not freak-out, or give-up or judge myself. Rather I stayed objective, in the moment, accepted what happened, and quickly recovered!!! I not only AM A SURVIVOR but, I CAN THRIVE!!!! When I stay out of judgment, and remain completely accepting of what is, basically I create space inside my conscious for good things to happen, within seconds. After I got up off of the floor, I immediately set an intention for fabulous things to happen,. “The show is not over. It can still end on a very high note,” I told myself. And it did. Writing about this experience reminds me of my days as a cross-country runner: the race is often won in the last few yards, so never give up!
    See how the stage and athletics can teach us all to be great yogi’s? By practicing acceptance of what is, with humility and graciousness, without losing our equanimity we will be able to handle tough performing challenges. We all will have them, so I encourage you to apply these concepts to yourself. Eckhart Tolle, has been a wonderful inspiration helping to cement this concept of true acceptance, even further into my persona.
    Before leaving this experience, I do want to stress, that if you are like me, than it is easy to hold yourself to extremely high standards when performing, especially when working with props. I have not included a hoop number into our show yet, it is in the works. But when I do, I encourage you to stand back. It would not surprise me, if I lose it a few times. I can not totally control what this prop does or any prop for that matter. But, I can control whether or not I fall apart as I manipulate it. In effect, I wholeheartedly encourage everyone out there to give yourself a break. Extend some grace and kind words to yourself, especially when you are testing yourself and the universe decides to zero in on you!!!! Remember: “Growth is a process, not an event,” another USM adage, which I affirm to myself over and over again as a performer. Thank goodness, I have opportunities to perform so I can learn and grow. “There are no mistakes, only opportunities for learning.” Consequently, how can I even be tempted to beat-myself up for having things to learn?. We all do. Especially when you step onto a stage, the learnings just seem to intensify. So, go easy on yourself, and be your friend. The audience is there to have a good time. Especially, if you performing in a club setting. They really want to have fun. They feed off of your fun. They are on your side. Are you?
    Thanks for listening.

  7. WOW. I am so thrilled to have read everyone’s input and experiences… what fabulous reminders and perspectives!!! Yippie! Finally, some dialog about performing…Lara, it is amazing that your first gig was part of such a grand production… wow! so impressive. Blueberry, wow thanks for the reminder. I STILL do not have performers insurance… and I should! I will check into it. And Julia, thank you for sharing so much! I feel like I could have been you… I am so hard on myself as well. Thanks for the reminder that performance really is a spiritual practice.

  8. Hi Christabel, thanks for the great articles! I live in Seattle and have yet to see hoop performances there (although I admit I don’t spend much time in night clubs), so I really enjoyed going out to Ruby Skye to see you perform on saturday night while I was visiting down in San Francisco. It was the first time I’d seen a hooper really give a professional show, and it was awesome to watch. I learned a lot just from watching you. Now that I’ve read your articles, I really wish I could see you perform again so I could watch for some of the things you talked about. Anyhow, I just wanted to say thanks for sharing your trade secrets and for some fresh inspiration!

  9. Great post Christabel. Indeed an abundance of information. Thank you. Funnily enough you starred in my dream last night! Hoopn it up in the alley up the hill from my house. You were in character too! Hat tricks and hey big spender kinda routine. Cool cameo. Was rather trippy waking up to read part II.
    The Barbarellas have found that through the use of video to reflect our performances, the world of video art has well and truly opened up our hoop power. It’s an amazing process to watch and edit one’s performance – allows a level of detachment and insight that otherwise may be lost. Also offers a rokstar reflection rather than thinking that you were ok-ish. Confidence is ever so important, as is the music. Stay tuned for our next movie soon to be posted on our website Should also have something to send off to Hoop: A Revolution of Sorts next week.
    We are finding that at the moment while we are hoopn at our favourite club for free we are also getting something in exchange – i.e free performance space/ lighting/ ambience, crankn tunes from fave dj and the experience of being on the floor doing wot we do best. It’s a great way to get out there into the clubsphere even though we may or may not eventually trade venue/ music/ crowd quality for ca$h… maybe this isn’t always the case. Point is, I find it most important, even in practice with the troupe (especially in practice with the troupe) to keep routines in mind. Keeping planes/angles clear is an excellent tip Christabel and the notion of considering the breakdown of your performance rather than whippin out something random. While rockn out in full dance mode to phat tunes is one of my favourite parts of hoopn, the crowd always wants more in terms of tricks and moves. Looks better on video too.
    Julia’s comments about whether or not to ‘fall apart while manipulating’ reminds me of a yogic comment shared last week in class: “The practice doesn’t change, it’s the way you perceive it that does… breeeeeeeeeeathe.”
    Hoop on hoopers!

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