Hooping Idol 4: It’s Musicals Week!

Musicals Week Welcome to Musicals Week on Hooping Idol 4! It’s our super exciting fourth week in our quest to find the planet’s next great hooper star and the competition is tighter than ever. So far this season we’ve seen our contenders getting down with their hoops, rocking them out, getting fancy with them, and this week they’re spinning up some good old fashioned hooper theater. After all, we want our Hooping Idol to have star appeal, right? Our eight remaining competitors were allowed to choose a soundtrack from a film or theater musical, were reminded of our Ten Easy Ways to Improve Your Hooping Video tips, and off they went. They each created a Hooping Idol video inspired by the musical of their choice and they were reminded to make it count. At the end of Musicals Week three more would be eliminated.

For those of you who are just tuning in, here’s what has happened so far this season on Hooping Idol. We met our 21 contenders for this year who all spun up something amazing for Hip Hop Week and six were eliminated. Then our remaining 15 rocked out for Classic Rock Week and five more went home, bringing us to our top ten. They spun things up with jet set style for High Society Week and though three more were to be eliminated, as the result of a tie only two were sent home. Which left us with eight remaining hoopers who were still battling it out in the competition.

jennymarie But guess what? Jenny Marie had to drop out. I know, it’s terribly sad news. What happened? Well, it turns out that she was doing this whole Hooping Idol competition with nothing more than an iPhone. Yeah, she was actually filming and editing everything on her phone people. Apple should call her immediately and snatch her up for a commercial. Unfortunately, however, when she was editing her submission for this week her iMovie app crashed and she lost all of her footage in the process. Isn’t that just the most painful thing you’ve heard in a long time? Our hearts totally go out to Jenny Marie and her comic brilliance and hoop dance savvyness will truly be missed. Give her your love.


Maryeve Our five judges this season all have most excellent credentials and they are Sharna Rose of Sharna Rose Hoop Dance in Maidstone, England, UK, Stefan Pildes of GrooveHoops in New York City, Lisa Lottie of LisaLottie.com from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, Ayumi Mitake of Hoop Tokyo in Tokyo, Japan, and Katie Sunshine of Katie Sunshine Hoops from Conway, Arkansas, USA. They’ll be sharing their thoughts this season on what all of our Hooping Idol 4 contenders are up to. And this week we have a special guest judge joining us as well. It’s Maryève Gaudreau of Hula Hoop Quebec, the winner of Hooping Idol 3! We’re so excited to have someone who has been through the pressure cooker experience that is Hooping Idol and emerged victorious here to share her thoughts this week.

Our Ultimate Hooping Idol Prize Package has never been bigger too. It’s worth more than $3000 and it includes a Hoop Revolution teacher training, a pass to the biggest hooping event of the year – Hoopcamp 2014, and a pass to the big event in Europe this year – Hoopurbia in Berlin. Our Idol will be getting their hands on the Atomic Evoke 4 from Astral Hoops, two months of free advertising from Hooping.org, a $200 gift certificate from HoopSupplies.com, the fire hoop of their choice from Synergy Flow Arts, gift certificates from the good folks at OceanChildOrganics and Hoopclothes.com, as well as the brand new DVD of The Hooping Life and a deck of hooper playing cards. The total value is worth more than $3260!

Idol4 Prize 1
Idol4 Prize 2
Idol Prize 5
IdolPrize 4
The Hooping Life

A great big thank you to all of those in our community who have generously donated prizes for this season.

So, are you ready to spin some glee into your life? Good, cause it’s Musicals Week on Hooping Idol and we proudly present our top seven finalists in an order that was randomly drawn out of a hat. Here we go!


1. Flavie Steelandt of Ulm, Germany. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: Great story Flavie and wonderful characterisation. You chose to do some tricky hooping in challenging clothes and pulled it off, which is epic in my book. I wasn’t so keen on the length of the cross dissolves, sometimes it was just a little too long. However, your hoop skills jumped up several levels and you pulled off some interesting illusory moves, which fit with the song. I think you have been amazing managing to get great videos while having small children to look after too. Lovely wedgie to leg hoop move and fantastic ending. Score: 8.

Lisa: Flavie, I have to give you crazy credit for that beautiful double chest roll, that is such a tough move to master and I hardly see anyone do it THAT well! About your foot-hooping: straighten your leg! Lines, lines, lines! Such a small adjustment, such a big difference. It’s like a finishing touch! I enjoyed your video this week, especially the bright colour hoop contrast against the stark grey background. Your double roll was my favourite trick this week too! Score: 8.

Stefan: Way to get into the intimate psychology of this song. Your work has such a wonderful depth. I really feel you bring a level of artistry that the other contenders don’t event think about. Well done! Score: 9.

Ayumi: Flavie, the Phantom of the Opera in your mind looked very mysterious. I interpreted that you were saying to listen to your heart and set yourself free in this video. Is that right? I loved some of your moves. The Phantom’s isolation, silk hat hooping, and especially one leg escalator to thigh hooping were great! It’s incredible. Score: 6.

Katie: I think one of your biggest strengths (besides being a fabulously talented rockin’ hoop mama) is your ability to create a storyline in your videos. The locations were wonderful and they were all beautifully filmed. However, I found myself getting bored somewhere around the three minute mark, so you could have thought about cutting the video a little short than the actual length of the song. But, the thing I don’t get bored with is your hoop dancing. I believe I’ve seen at least one new move from you each and every week and that’s a very strong quality to have. Part of being an idol to other hoopers is showing your audience something fresh and inspiring each time and you’ve done just that. Score: 8.

Maryève: I think this is your best video so far. Your story is one of the most elaborate this week and there is good creativity in it. You chose good locations that matched with your theme song. Great song choice by the way. About hooping, there’s some beautiful sequences like at 1:47, but sometime I feel that you think about the next movement and are struggling when you do it. Try to let it go and to be more relaxed. Score: 8.5.


2. Sheri Alice O’Brian of New Bedford, Massachusetts, USA. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: Sheri, this is ridiculous. It is cute, clever and its well crafted. I love your Roar, I love the colours and I love the lip synch. I was not so sure about the long shots of you running through the wilds though. I think close ups would have been effective. I have said it before, your skills always inspire me to get off my butt and pick up my hoop. This alone puts you in my top choices for Hooping Idol. Score: 9.

Lisa: Aww Sheri Alice, what a great musical you picked. I love The Lion King and I love how you just so happen to have a massive LK rock formation close to your house! We’ve seen so many great things from you. I imagine at this stage in the competition it might just be a bit harder for you to impress me, simply because you have already impressed me so much! What I really loved seeing from you this week was your dive into multiple hooping. That is a lovely 4 split balance! Also, a great attempt at 4 on the body. I’d love to see a 5th one there at some point, but you totally had me at those front to back-rolls. Totally gorgeous. Nice work as always! Score: 8.

Stefan: WOW! Amazing make up and embodiment of a character. Perfect ending on top of the mountain, I LOVED it! Super fun. I was singing right along. Score: 9.5

Ayumi: What cute lion makeup! Great multiple hoop work too. Climbing the rock looked like the road to become the king. I would have liked to have seen movements that related to the lion more though. Score: 5

Katie: Wow, once again, another great video! I must say, you make an absolutely adorable lion cub! Your makeup and costume were perfect and looked great on camera. To be honest with you, Sheri, I think you are the strongest hooper in this competition as far as the difficulty level of the tricks you’ve mastered. You pair that with your great smile, your groove, and your awesome editing skills and you just might be unstoppable! Great job! Score: 8.

Maryève: I love your hooping style, it’s very interesting and creative. I really really really don’t like the red curtain. I do like that you tried to explore the theme in that way though. It was very joyful, very cute. Rwaar! Score: 8.


3. Heather Gregoire of Madison, Wisconsin, USA. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: Hello lovely Heather, this is a wonderful video. I really like the choices of scenes you used and I was pleased to see that you utilised your hooping family to help you in this task. There are a few times when I would have loved to have seen the full shot of you and then cut in close. I really wanted to see your expressive feet rather than the sky. The group scenes were wonderful and a real tribute to Busby Berkeley and the musical style you choose. Great hoop skills once again too. Score: 8.5.

Lisa: HAHAHA Heather, I LOVE your opening scene. That was totally unexpected. You are one of my favorite contestants in this competition because every week you really really step up the game and we can all visibly enjoy watching you get better and better in your performance skills. That on top of your excellent hoop skills and you leave me with a smile from ear to ear. From you I get what I want: a great variety in hoop moves and a top execution in video production. Heather, you are just *awesome* Score: 9.

Stefan: Of all the things I want say about this video, I will say the one thing that sets it on top of ALL the others is the Choreography! Way to work that in and beyond that…its GROUP CHOREOGRAPHY! Hoop communities are so important to every hooper and you put your fine community front and center here. Well done! Score: 10.

Ayumi: Hooping chorus line! You have a genius for choreography. Especially the group routines, this was great. The color of hoops and outfits are chic. I could understand that you chose them very carefully. Sparkling smiles and hoopdance. There is a lot of joy in your hooping. Nice! Score: 7.

Katie: This is my favorite video I’ve seen from you yet, Heather. It’s very obvious to me that you’re taking the advice of the judges to heart each week and coming back with a stronger and more beautiful video each time. Your facial expressions were great, your costume was wonderful and I loved all the up close camera angles. I honestly don’t have much of anything constructive to say this week! I adored the incorporation of the other hoopers. That was very smart to have them in the video, while at the same time keeping you as the star attraction, as you should be, hoop star! Score: 8.

Maryève: Nice hooping as always, and great addition of dance moves. I like the double should duck out at 1.54 and the choreography with the other hoopers. Maybe they should also be dressed with glitter? I would like to see you play more with the theme, more creativity and get out of your comfort zone. Score: 7.5.


4. Lisa Ellipse of London, England, UK. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: I absolutely adore your entry this week Lisa. I really enjoyed watching your jazzy, sassy, winking character painting the town red. The colour changes worked taking me from old school into the new world. The only feedback via the technical side of the video I can give is the full frontal light on the bridge was a bit bright and I lost your features in the color segment. It worked in the two tone though. The hooping was connected to the music beautifully and I really felt like you enjoyed this challenge. Your video presence is wonderful, as is your hoop dance. Score: 8.5.

Lisa: Ah London! My home turf! What I really love about you Lisa is your ability to just WERK the camera, you look confident and beautiful, just what we want when we see someone take to the limelight! I kind of wish you had both of those hoops taped nicely, I think that would have added a lot. The cinematography in this video is lovely, with crystal clear HD footage of a beautiful you in some stunning locations, but I do want you to step it up a bit more with your hooping. You are in your comfort zone there! Still some lovely isolation work and you are just gorgeous. Score: 7.

Stefan: Great location! I love your city, your style, your costumes and props (not just the hoop, but also the fan). All great. Nice touch taking it to the west end too! The dream sequence is a bit overdone at this point, but I’ll look past that. The mugging to the camera at the end was super fun and made me giggle. Once again, amazing work. Score: 9.

Ayumi: I love the opening and your outfits. How cute! The locations were so nice that I think it would be better if you used more camera
angles and dramatic editing. Your twins work was very slick and gorgeous. It seemed to enhance your charm. Score: 6.

Katie: Well, Lisa, first of all I have a mild obsession with fringe, art deco and anything jazz age, so you earned major points from me automatically with your choice of musical number. I thought your costume was great and your bright red lips looked stunning with that bright red hoop. However, I felt a little disconnect with your hooping and the song. At times, it didn’t seem as if you were on beat with the music or really embodying the boozy, sexy, fluid dance movements I picture when I hear this song. Although, at other times when you were hooping with the feather fan, you did seem to get into it and flirt with the camera. Overall, I enjoyed your video. Score: 7.

Maryève: Your video is very good. You paid nice attention to the location, costume, camera angles, accessories. Great choice of music. You really shine in that video and look like you’re having fun. I like when you bring us into the city too. Great eye contact and engagement with your audience. Your hooping is good, you could play more with the music though in terms of rhythm and intensity. Score: 9.5.


5. Lisa “SparkGirl” Disinger of Pahoa, Hawaii, USA. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: This was my favourite entry this week as it had me smiling from beginning to end. It was funny, cool, upbeat and engaging with a step up again in skills. They just keep coming. I loved that you included your hoop family and I loved the story. Brilliant. Score: 9.5.

Lisa: Well, those hoops should certainly go for a lot of money because they are BEAUTIFUL! What gorgeous colours! What I liked the most from you in this weeks video is all the downward camera angles you gave us, it’s such a nice angle to look at hooping and I love your multi-hoop work! You look like you had tons of fun making this, which is what I love to see. It’s a little bit of a shame that when you’re standing in front of the colourful wall, the camera is actually zoomed in a bit too much – i can’t see what you’re doing! All in all, this was a short, sharp and action packed video that I really liked, good work! Score: 8.

Stefan: The reinterpretation of 1950s dance moves into hoop moves was inventive! Then you added the costumes, the community shots, the interesting camera angles, the salesman story, and then you topped it all off with a clarinet! I’m blown away! Score: 10.

Ayumi: Almost perfect. I love all of the elements in this. This song from The Blues Brothers is one of my favorites. Do the swim! Do the monkey! I am so happy that you made choreography inspired by the original movie. Great camera work and editing. The story is clear and nice. The back dancers are so cute. I know it seems like I nag, but I want you to choose a
black tie. Anyway, I’ll say once again, it is almost perfect. Score: 9.

Katie: This video was so much fun to watch! I loved that you included some hip twisting friends this week. Your costumes were great, and trust me, I know how difficult it can be to hoop in a constricting suit jacket, so props for that. I loved the camera angles from above, especially when you had multiple hoops on your body, that looked amazing! As always, you’ve got that beautiful smile on your face and an uninhibited style in your hoop dance that makes you so magnetic. Great job! Score: 9.

Maryève: You look like you’re having fun when you hoop and you always bring something humoristic into your video. In this one I think that a lot of things are framed too close, so we can’t see well your whole body or the awesome movements you do with the hoop. I would like to see longer sequences of hooping too. Be careful of what you are doing with your hand when you are nooping too. Score: 7.


6. Sara “Violet Ponderosa” Harrison of Silver Spring, Maryland, USA. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: Sara, this was a touching and sweet entry with some kick ass hooping. I would have loved to have seen it all staged in another location or over several locations that were a bit more interesting for the viewer. I really loved the fire hooping, that was some epic multi-fire hooping going down, but wanted it to tie in with the story more. Your ability to engage and your hoop dance skill is real though and I really enjoyed watching you seduce and win your man. Score: 8.

Lisa: Hey Sara, you make a great Sandy! I really enjoyed you experimenting with hooping in different body shapes this week and you gave me some new moves too which I really liked! I also love that you put your signature butt move in your video every week!! Good stuff. I’d say that it might be good for you to check your alignment sometimes when you do some of your rolls, some of those will look so much better with your leg in a perfectly straight line, point your toes and feel the extension run throughout your entire body. It will just add that little bit of extra wow. Very little to fault here this week! Score: 7.5.

Stefan: Super impressive hooping at the end, but that is what is going to get you more than a 6 from me. I see what you were going for, your outfit was in the right vein and having a Danny Zucco stand-in made sense, but unfortunately all he did was stand in. If you are going to involve others, get them hooping! I really do like your work so far though. Sorry I can’t give you more than a 7 this week. Score: 7.

Ayumi: Your hooping is ELECTRIFYING. I really love your expression. I was under an illusion momentarily that I was Travolta and you were dancing for me. And wow, I really loved the last scene. Kissing in the fire hoop has become a dream of mine from now on. Score: 8.

Katie: Loved your choice of song and your intro was wonderful! Your costume was perfect and your combo with the yellow super-minis was superb! Miss Ponderosa, you have a wiggle in your hips and a spirit of freeness in your hoop flow that makes you a lot of fun to watch. However, there were moments in this video I didn’t sense your connection to the song as much as in past videos. Perhaps I was expecting a little more jumping and hand-jiving like I’ve seen in Grease, but still your performance was beautiful as always. Score: 7.

Maryève: You have a lot of energy and nice skills, so try to share it more with us. Pay attention to the details so we can believe in the story and characters. Your video would be so much better if it were filmed in a parking lot with olds cars or maybe in a vintage restaurant. And the man should be dressed in the theme too. Score: 7.


7. Esmeralda Garcia of Hermosillo, Sonora, México. If for some reason the video isn’t viewable where you live or on your device you can try watching it on Vimeo.

Sharna: Esmeralda, this is a wonderful entry, a really creative and well crafted video. I really enjoyed that each of the three characters had a distinct hooping style and your lip synch was astounding. I laughed so much at each of the characters and was very excited when a new one came into the video. There were a few sound issues, but everything else was just wonderful, congratulations. Score: 8.5

Lisa: One of my favourite musicals! Who doesn’t love The Rocky Horror Picture Show?? Esmeralda, I love watching you and the creativity you pump into your videos week after week. I can also tell that when you’re not filming you are practising a lot because your hooping is getting better and better. I’m seeing a great increase in your fluidity, I love it! I really like your red doubles this week and then you juggle for me! Brilliant! I can’t fault you this week, you’ve given me everything I want to see in a great and fun video. Amazing. Score: 9.5.

Stefan: I am intimately aware of every line you depict here, as I’ve been in a few versions of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. The costumes made me squeal with delight! Way to get each character’s mannerisms into their hoop routine too. Great location. I would have rather seen it shot at dusk, but I won’t take off points for that. I will subtract for your inconsistency though. I would like to have seen each character sing their lines. However, it was still a tremendous video. Great job. Score: 8.5.

Ayumi: I truly respect you because of your uniqueness and originality. I have never seen a Hooper Magenta (you chose a pair of magenta color hoops!), Columbia, and Riff Raff before. Excellent. I should also mention about your multiple hooping skills, Magenta’s twins and
Columbia’s circus hooping are adorable. Let’s do the Time Warp again. Score: 10.

Katie: Bravo! Excellent video this week! Your makeup is always so well done and I think that adds so much to the production quality of your videos. You costumes were, as always, perfect. I imagine it was pretty difficult to hoop with that big hump, but you pulled it off! I loved the lip-syncing and the up close shots of your face. There were a couple of times I thought I could hear the audio from your hooping clips under the music, so be sure to always mute your video audio. Other than that, great job! Score: 8.

Maryève: You have a good artistic sense. I like how you play with the camera angle and pay attention to details. I like the graduation in the video with the music, the intensity and the hoop skills. Nice costumes and personas, but I would like to see an even bigger difference between how they hoop. Oh, and there’s some problem with the sound. Score: 8.5.


There you have it, your Hooping Idol 4 contestants and their Musicals Week submissions. Our judges have submitted their scores that will comprise 40% of our final vote. The remaining 60% of the vote comes from you – and the time has come to cast your ballot. Vote for the finalist you want to see continue on in the competition, and please keep it to one ballot per person so our server doesn’t crash. Thank you! If by some chance you get a message that says you’ve already voted and you haven’t, clear your browser cache and/or close your web browser entirely, and reopen it in a few minutes and try again. Thanks.

Are you ready? It’s time to make your choice. Let’s vote!




Your Hooping Idol 4 Musicals Week ballots are being accepted only until Wednesday, May 7th at 3:00pm PST. The two finalists with the lowest scores will be eliminated from the competition and the remainder will be moving on to the next round. Stay tuned for those results, along with the details of the next challenge for those who are moving forward. Now go put on your favorite musical soundtrack and have some fun hooping it up!

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