This week brought the first day of Summer and hooping season has officially arrived. In fact it’s going to be a pretty powerful weekend for the hooping community. In the UK, many hoopers are making their way to Glastonbury, while here in the US those who are on The Hoop Path will be once again following it to Carrboro, North Carolina, for HP5, something that is sure to be a truly awesome event. Here at Hooping.org, however, we will be heading to Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland you ask? Yes, Cleveland. In fact, let me tell you about it.
Last Fall I made a little video called Gotta Hoop. It was my first and only hooping video to date, one that was certainly long overdue. To my surprise it almost immediately started hitting the blogosphere. Soon it was discovered by The New York Times, then the Huffington Post and beyond. Somewhere along the way it made it’s way on the computer screens at The Cleveland Museum of Art. And then the phone rang.
Tom Welsh, Associate Director of Music Programming at the museum, didn’t know exactly what he wanted. “We really have no idea how to work you and what you do into this event,” he explained, “All I know is that we love it and we really want you in Cleveland for Solstice this year.” Surprised, truly humbled, incredibly honored, I told them yes, I’d love to come. Over the next few months our phone conversations slowly evolved into a vision as well. When he wondered aloud if there was a way that a hooper could somehow help take the energy of the crowd during a late night concert party hour to the next level, I informed him, “Tom, that’s what hoop dance performance is all about! Only if you really want to raise the roof, why just have one of us when there could be even more?”
This weekend a dozen hoopers will be taking our spots atop specially designed platforms at the museum before thousands of attendees at the height of the annual Solstice celebration to put hooping on the Ohio arts map. During what is sure to be an incredible performance by Dam-Funk, hoop dancers Amber-Leigh Buckwald, Amy Melnyck, Brittany Rose, Colleen Hartman, Jeana Gogo, Lynn Spencer-Nelson, Melissa Lee Clark, Nick Wheeler, Penni Patches Laine, Renee Kogler and Traci Williams will be joining me in spinning things up in the Forest City. While I, unfortunately, will not be at the Cleveland Flow Collective’s spin jam tonight as previously announced due to a scheduling problem (my most sincere apologies), if you’re in the greater Ohio area and want to come out and support us at Solstice this Saturday night please do. We would love to see you! While the full event tickets are pricey, the late night Solstice program we are apart of is only $15 in advance, $20 at the door. More info and tickets here.
So whether you’re in Cleveland, Ohio, this weekend or hooping it up in Carrboro, whether you’ll be getting your hoop on at Glastonbury or whirling up a storm at home in your own backyard, now that summer has officially arrived we invite you to plan for yourself a very hoopy weekend.