You may recognize Craig Reid, aka the Incredible Hulaboy, from the short film Circularity Thinking which was nominated for a 2012 Hoopie Award, or maybe his Hula Hoop Heroes performance with Jessie Rose and Tiina Tuomisto, or perhaps from Hoop La La’s performance on Britain’s Got Talent. But whether you recognize him or not beneath that fake moustache, he’s a super hooper to know and we hope you are ready to learn more about the man behind the hoops because we certainly are. So join us as we step inside of one and interview Craig Reid, our Hooper of the Week!
Craig: I’ve been an acrobat and a dancer since I was a child. At school I got a place at university to study computer programming, but I had other ideas. I decided to expand on my performing skills and moved from Scotland to London in 2005 to work on a Circus Degree instead. It was there I met a girl who told me she trained with hula-hoops. I was intrigued so I asked her to show me what she did. She had one hoop on her knees and two hoops on each arm, both going different ways, and I was completely amazed and I wanted to try it myself! I was terrible at first, like really bad. But eventually I got the hang of it.
Craig: I actually teach as part of the Circus Space Degree program in London where we have had such graduates as Lisa Lottie, Silvia Pavone and Chloe Hannah Lloyd. I also train there myself about five days a week. But performing is the biggest part of my hooping life. Theaters, cabaret, corporate events, parties and varieté is where you will find me. I perform a choice of different themed hula-hoop acts which are usually character based with comedy and acrobatic elements. I’m based in London, but I spend a lot of time living out of my suitcase, working a lot in Europe, mainly Germany in their varieté circuit.
Hooping.org: Awesome! So I guess hooping changed your life!
Craig: It’s become my job. It’s what I love. Who knows what I would have been doing instead if I wasn’t doing this? Hooping constantly has an effect on my life, taking me to new places, physically as well as artistically.
Hooping.org: What are you currently working on?
Craig: In terms of hoop skills I’m working on my 9 hoop split (5 on the body and 2 on each hand) and taking a new look at hoop rolling variations. I’ve also got one huge big hoop trick I’m learning at the moment (with the amazing help of a celebrity dancer of mine), but I don’t want to give that away yet – early next year I will put a video out to share! I couldn’t be more excited!
Craig:: I’m also just finishing another project, a political cabaret-theatre called “These Trees are Made of Blood” where I am acting, singing and performing a more contemporary hoop piece based on torture as part of telling the story. On top of that I’m really excited to be choreographing a new act for eight hula-hoopers for what looks to be an epic show next month!
Hooping.org: Awesome! Can you share a favorite hooping memory with us?
Craig: I have fond memories of the time I collaborated with the amazing hoopers Anna Drury and Sharna Rose on “Circularity Thinking.” Directed and produced by Lucia Zoro and Roses Urquhart we created a film set in the office with the motto “Why think outside the box when you can think inside the Circle?” Don’t listen to me trying to explain it – have a look for yourself.
Hooping.org: What quality do you most admire in a hooper?
Hooping.org: LOL, don’t we all! Any advice for our hoopers that are just starting out?
Craig: There isn’t a format for what you should or should not be doing – go out there, do it your own way and enjoy it!
Hooping.org: So true. Any upcoming events you’d like to tell our readers about?
Craig: I’m going to be one of the teachers for the Hoop O’Clock one day intensive workshop on Sunday October 21st in London! Dustin Hubel and Angie Mack will be teaching as well. I’m looking forward to it so much – there is going to be so much to learn and I think there are a couple of places left so get in there quick if you can!