Welcome to Hooping Idol, Hooping.org’s epic new contest. I’m Philo Hagen and I’m your host for this ever spinning journey in our quest to find the planet’s next big hooper star! As you know, our finalists are competing for an unprecedented prize package worth about $2000. For those of you just tuning in, we narrowed down a veritable plethora of interest submissions to 21 finalists who immediately spun it up for our 80’s Week Challenge. Following a planet wide vote, the results were announced and six of our finalists were sent home, as it were, so to speak, leaving 15 moving on to the next challenge. Then, with watch words related to grace, beauty, and elegance, our finalists took on our Flow Week Challenge. The results were announced and five more finalists left the competition, bringing us to our Top Ten this week.
For Persona Week on Hooping Idol, our challenge this week came directly from our panel of judges. Bunny Hoop Star of Hoop Empire in Sydney, Australia, explained, “This week you are to become a fantasy hoop character or hooping hero. I want to see an exploration of your creativity in visage – I think it’s important as a performer.” Sharna Rose of Sharna Rose Hoop Dance from Maidstone, England, UK, added, “Tell us a story using the hoop that is not your own. Bring us something imaginative and creative.” And Christabel Zamor of HoopGirl from San Francisco, California, USA, noted, “You can embody an archetype, or take on the role of a god or goddess or mythical being. We want you to hoop dance whatever theme or story you represent. It’s time to truly step into a character and become it within the hoop!”
So how did they do? Christabel says, “I was astounded this week! Every single contestant raised the bar on their own personal best and has exponentially raised the standard of online hooping videos. This is hoop history in the making!” So without any further ado, we proudly present your Top 10 Hooping Idol Finalists for Persona Week on Hooping Idol!
1. Nick Broyd of Bristol, England, UK.
Sharna Rose: Nick this is exactly the sort of response to the challenge that marks you as a serious contender for Hooping Idol 2011: my faith is well and truly restored. A clear, extremely funny, and well told story that meets all the requirements of the challenge set. You presented us with not one but two different persona’s and you use defining hooping skills to mark them apart. I don’t think the hooping video world will ever be the same again after your explosive and creative entry into it.
Bunny: Nick you are a nut! I love it. I want to see the whole movie. You saved yourself in my books this week. Everything works – it’s hilarious, well paced, super creative, awesome split personality dramarama and just total bad-ass! Keep busting those jumps and bring it ON 🙂 You are roknit!
Christabel: Nick, this was a stunning comic embodiment of Bond! I loved your costume, the castle and bridge settings and the music all tied in with your warrior hoop style. You had fantastic eye interaction, great character and storyline development. Your entertaining props, like the stuffed duck and world domination kit were hugely entertaining and creative. Including yourself as another character and with an added “extra” actor was great. I also enjoyed the handmade paper bond graphic. To top it off, your moves were slick and clean. You really feel like a Hooping Idol in this video!
2. Emilie Durand, aka Annosens, of Versailles, France.
Sharna Rose: Truly beautiful entry Emilie. Impressive characterisation, sweet playful costume, iconic settings as well as a brilliantly crafted story with an extremely creative beginning and ending. I’m sure most hoopers can relate to this story, in a sense most of us have fallen through or in a circular hole to wonderland. You continue to demonstrate that you are a definite Hooping Idol 2011 candidate.
Bunny: As the youngest of 8 children my mother always told me there are no favourites… I knew it was a lie and rejected the notion immediately! There MUST be favourites ~ and you are mine. Everyone is going to have to go way beyond the call of hoop duty to capture me the way you do. Your unique sense of Euro aesthetic, mood, energy and dramatic twist makes it supreme. LOVE!
Christabel: Great job cultivating a whole new persona different from your last videos! I love the inclusion of the cat, book, effect of crawling through the hoop and the stopwatch as creative props. You had better eye contact and close ups this time which let us connect with you and a song with lyrics which tied into your character. That said, after your fun entry, the story doesn’t go anywhere and the setting looks familiar to your last videos. Overall, this was a big progression for you… but I need to see you stretch further.
3. Rebecca Phipps of Florence, South Carolina, USA.
Sharna Rose: This was my favorite entry of the week Rebecca, It is extremely creative and very moving. I love the characterization manifested through the two distinct styles of character hooping. You continue to demonstrate that your hooping style is accomplished and very diverse and I found my self watching some bits over and over again to understand the movements. You are definitely matching the momentum of the competition as it gets hotter and I wish you luck.
Bunny: I loved the idea, the costumes were great, there were some HOT moves, but it didn’t take me where I wanted to be taken. The visual narrative seemed too disrupted by the singular character frames leaving me with a craving for the merge than never happened. I feel this would have worked better as a photographic rather than video shoot.
Christabel: I was captivated by your storyline, the mystical feel, the alter ego exploration, and the golden ring archetype. Your music choice and the bamboo setting really enhanced the far east feeling of this tale. I enjoyed the close ups and how you showcased hot moves in service of your storyline. Most of all, the surprise ending with the mask falling off was fantastic. Very imaginative. Bravo!
4. Andrea Painter of Hartley Wintney, England, UK.
Sharna Rose: Wow, you are just getting saucer and saucer Andrea, I like it. I really connect with the extra terrestrial element of this characterization, the 70’s/80’s feel of it. I loved the smoke machine and the lights, but I did feel that the video lacked variation, especially compared to many of the other entries this week. Maybe some differing shots or angles would have made up for this, or an LED hoop would have been a fantastic prop in this video. You have come a long way Andrea and I wish you lots of luck and look forward to more from you.
Bunny: As much as I love the hot 80s space abstract narratorial vibe I wasn’t teleported into this character’s alternate dimension or story… and i wanted that. This competition is really hotting up and I feel that going beyond the beyond is where it’s currently at. The importance of combining narrative with characterisation is pushing the persona challenge across the line for me this week. It’s worthy to note for us all.
Christabel: I enjoyed the entry with smoke and your Xanadu costume style, as well as the mystical folkloric 70’s music, your body swoops and dance. Nice work on those effective close ups and powerful audience interaction with eye contact. But… I am not sure how your performance tells the story which you introduced in the beginning. I feel lost, what character are you?
5. Stephanie Connell of Shepherdstown, West Virginia, USA.
Sharna Rose: The contrast of the starkness of the trees against the green of the costume makes this video a visual feast. The sweetness of the character LINK is portrayed extremely well and the hooping adds in the warrior quality. Some interesting hooping Stephanie, but I did find that my mind wandered a little whilst I was watching it. The story could have been a little more engaging perhaps. I would have liked the trees to have had messages that you followed. I wish you much luck and look forward to more from you.
Bunny: I had to outsource the reference point on this one as I have never tuned into the video game phenomena. But it was super cute… you make a very cute elf Stephanie. The moves were fun, I loved your costume styling… but again I wanted more narrative or if in the video game realm something that told me what was going on and where it was all going… I felt lost.
Philo: At 2AM PST only two reviews were submitted for you Stephanie, but at 9am PST the third has now arrived. It was simple human error:
Christabel: Great introduction and character development, wonderful tricky moves, music evolution and dynamic facial expressions. Wonderful traveling through the forest while doing challenging, creative moves, nice contrast in the inclusion of silhouettes in a different environment. However, I was left wanting to see more character development of Link and the evolution of the plot.
6. Amanda Syryda of Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada
Sharna Rose: I have always wanted to do a characterization hoop to this song so I am very pleased you used it Amanda. I love the use of the children and the multitude of creative ways in which you knock em down. I was a little bit confused about the story and as to your exact character; perhaps some back story would have been useful. The settings were also great, but could have done with some context. I enjoy your video’s and wish you much luck.
Bunny: Saucy costume Amanda! I think you could have taken the storyline further though. I felt confused by the narrative and why were you picking on the little people? I was waiting for a rooftop battle with a big burly goofball who needed to be taken out… not little children!
Christabel: I really enjoyed this whole different look and energy from you, but I am not sure who your character is and what she is fighting for, including when she knocks out the kid and the class student. On the positive, there was a great song tie in with how you used your hoop. Your interactions were the most capivating… I’d love to see you add more. Showing a single well done move such as the Karate Kid at the elevator is far more interesting than some of the repetitive drills you are doing solo. I’m not sold on the two silhouette settings and how they deepen your story. Finally, your out-take just looks like a repeat of the same scene we saw in the video… Why is it there?
7. Kay Dent, of Bristol, England, UK.
Sharna Rose: I can see from your entry this week that this challenge spoke to you enormously Kay. I love the idea, the costumes and the bright scenery. It is by far your best entry to date and demonstrates clearly the powerful and imaginative hooper that you are. My only real feedback visually was that that the set up of the story was just a little too long. Congratulations for a stellar entry this week Kay. Well done with the editing also, fantastic idea.
Bunny: Pink Hoops rocks my world! This was EVERYTHING that i was looking for in this challenge – awesome images, contextualised narrative, it was spunky and really went beyond the beyond. Pinky you hit it. I could have a new favourite. And that onesie is to die for! WOW HooperGirl. I wanna see more of your hooper hero action across this planet and out into the galaxy! Super well done. LOVE LOVE!
Christabel: This is an exceptionally creative video. I enjoyed your effects and the retro feel and how the music enhanced the 60’s comic book theme with your jumpsuit. You had great eye contact and close ups and a well chosen, colorful backdrop. Your use of fun props (like the zany phone), comic bubbles, the graffiti background and inclusion of other creative characters was wonderful. It was so fun and zany and I really connected with your character. This is your best video yet!
8. Glenda Jordan of Knoxville, Tennessee, USA.
Sharna Rose: Glenda, Amazing: Talk about embracing the challenge and pushing the creative boundaries to manifest a truly unique take on embodying a persona. The hand cords put you in a difficult position, you added limitations and rose to the challenge in full Glendalious Style. On a purely technical note when the camera changed position toward the end I found this distracted me from the suspension of my belief and brought me back to reality. That aside you are still one of my favorites and I wish you much luck.
Bunny: This was really unique Glenda. I liked how you brought a strong narrative forward in a really simple way. It was captivating. The reduction of mega moves and props and effects worked for me. I am hoping your voting audiences “gets’ the less is more factor in this piece as I feel it is quite outstanding in its subtlety and nuance.
Christabel: Interesting persona selection… more explanation would make this more powerful. You had creative hooping with props and a good song selection, but what is the story being told? Who is the man in the suit? What does the ribbon wrap at the end signify? Also, wearing all white on white with backlight doesnt present you in most dramatic way. More than any other performance of yours, this one would have benefitted from a follow up talk by you as your others have had, but there was none.
9. Sue Wilkinson of Northamptonshire, England, UK.
Sharna Rose: Wow, Sue. I loved your entry this week. Your character is cute, smiley and very, very, very adorable. It’s wicked to see you smile and the song and the dancing are perfect matches. The bright colours contrast against the dull British day and this also really makes the character stand out. Well done. Once again you demonstrate that you truly deserve to be in this competition and you continue to push your envelope and grow. Good Luck.
Bunny: This for me is a story of a fearless inner child who knows how to come out in full colour. The colours rocked it for me Sue! As did your ability to embrace your own journey throughout this competition. I could feel you pushing your edge and it felt fierce. I love you!
Christabel: Wow! You had fun close ups and eye contact with the camera and I could really feel your joyful energy. I can tell you were at your edge and appreciate the push, as well as the inclusion of great dance steps. The variety of facial expressions and range from betty boop to playful flirt was engaging. Your exhuerbance was tangible. This was an epic progresion for you, but you have fierce competition to keep up with who are presenting an actual storyline. I want to know who your character is and what actual plot is being developed.
10. Sam Resnicow of Newton, Massachusetts, USA.
Sharna Rose: Another fantastic entry Sam with cheeky characterization and some serious hoop skills. The editing is amazing in this video, it is well shot and correlated together exceptionally well. Each week you offer us tasty windows into the diverse skills you have as a hooper and your star qualities continue to shine through. What a song!!!!! I can’t wait to see what the future brings.
Bunny: I was in the dream. Are you a hoop genie? A hooping idol? OR a hooping God? You are so unpretentious! I love that about you. Amazing moves. Very easy to watch your beguiling hoopery, super cute story and hot costume. Another less is more entry. Good luck with the audience vote! You have mine 🙂
Christabel: Sam, you’ve surpassed all your previous performances this week. You had fun 70’s music with lyrics which tied into your character, great facial expressions and a creative costume. I just couldn’t quite figure out who you were, though. Can you tell us more about this magic Genie? I would love to see the actual storyline deepened. Excellent work in bringing in of another character and very imaginative effects of props appearing!
And there you have it, your Top 10 Hooping Idol Finalists and their performances for Hooping Idol’s Persona Week. The time has come to cast your vote(s) as to who you want to see continue on. Have you figured out your selection(s)? Then it’s
SORRY, VOTING HAS CLOSED.
Voters are allowed to cast one ballot and one ballot only. You can vote for as many as THREE (3) of the finalists this week. Ballots are being accepted until Tuesday, April 5th, at 10:00pm PST. The three finalists with the least amount of votes this week will be going home. Be sure to tune in to Hooping.org for our Hooping Idol Results Show on Wednesday, April 6th, for the results of our Persona Week challenge.
And what’s in store next for the lucky seven finalists who will be moving on? Given that all of our incredible hoopers have been working so incredibly hard: Congratulations! You all have the week off. Self care is an incredibly necessary and important tool in the life of any hooping idol – so relax, get some rest and pamper yourselves. And to help ensure that you really do relax, we are not going to be revealing the details of our next Hooping Idol challenge until Monday, April 11th. You won’t even need to worry about it until then. So relax and get your rest – because you’re probably going to need it. Come Monday, April 11th, we will not only reveal the details of our next challenge, but you can expect the unexpected. Happy hooping everyone!