Laura Scarborough, aka the “Isis of Devices” of Hoop Circle, takes a moment away from her microphone, vibraphone and synthesizer duties with The Golden Dawn Arkestra to take center stage with her maghoops and LED hoop and spin up some magic at the Hotel San Jose at SXSW in Austin. Of her hooping she says, “Being in the hoop for over 10 years, I continue to discover ‘spin’ (not ‘hoop tricks’) as a great source of joy. A ticket to bliss and freedom.” She lives in Austin, Texas, USA, and she’s dancing to “Saharan Knights” by The Golden Dawn Arkestra and it’s on iTunes.
Liah Alonso of Liah Alonso Music makes her hooping.org debut during a hula hoop lesson she took in San Miguel, Mexico – with hooping instructors Mini-Punk and Klaudia Oliver. Liah visits with some very photogenic donkeys, learns to hoop and plays a hooping inspired song on her charango that she makes up lyrics for on the spot. This video contains clips from a series called “Around the World in 80 Songs” which is a project Liah is currently working on, having dedicated her time to traveling to 80 different cities where she has given herself 10 days to put a band together and create a song, showing the world “that there’s only one language..and that’s music.” Liah is from New York City, New York, USA.
by Lilea Duran
Tiana Zoumer takes our breath away yet again! This time she spins it up in a stunning new music video by Norway-based Soul/Pop artist Jonas Tesfu, better known as TESFU. The song “Aim for the Stars” is TESFU’s first single. “It’s a tribute to all the every day heroes out there that keep trying to change the world in their own way, whether it’s through music, dancing or working,” says TESFU. “The song is about inspiration and Tiana is very inspiring as a hooper and as a person.”
Tiana explained, “In preparation, I asked Jonas to express to me what his inspiration was for the song ws, and this was his response:
“My personal feelings towards the song was to inspire myself to follow my dreams, do it my way and not care what everybody thinks is right or wrong. It’s too many people in the world following plans that someone else has made for them, instead of having the courage to make their own plan.”
This reflects to me the intention of the hooping community. When I began hooping it wasn’t so I could go to school for it or make a business. The belief in the expressions moving through me awoke an awareness in my being that inspired an authentic path. My purpose lies in connecting to the circle and channeling my energy into the present moment resonating and revealing infinite patterns and pathways. This reminds me that in every point of my life I can create the reality of my dreams through the practices that center and move me.”
Rachael Lust, the hooper that everyone knows and loves, is featured in a brand new music video by rapper and activist SaulPaul. The video couldn’t have featured a more appropriate performer too, since the name of the song is “Do That Hula Hoop.” Set in a graffiti park in Austin, Texas, USA, the video features colorful spray-painted backgrounds that compliment Rachael’s vivid hoops and her signature artfully printed leggings. I had an opportunity to talk to Rachael and SaulPaul and ask them both a few questions about the making of the video, their experience working together, and the very cool project for kids behind it all.
Katie: Rachael, how did you get involved with the making of this music video?
Rachael: SaulPaul reached out to me on Facebook, saying that he was a musician and a hula hoop enthusiast and he liked my hooping style. He said he was going to be filming a music video to a hula hooping song very soon in Austin. I just so happened to be heading to Austin at right about the time he contacted me too, so it worked out perfectly. He sent me a copy of the song and said he would be shooting at the graffiti park downtown. I thought the song was pretty cool and it seemed like a fun project to be a part of. I was also into the idea because SaulPaul seemed to want to do some good in the world.
Katie: Yes, he is quite the activist. In what ways did you see him as doing something good?
Rachael: He said he only rapped family friendly stuff, so that was cool with me. Plus, the video is part of his #hulahoopsforhope project where he is trying to raise money for several good causes.
Katie: Including raising money for SWAN, which is so great. SaulPaul, can you tell us more about that and your Hula Hoops and Hope campaign?
SaulPaul: It’s called #HulaHoopsAndHope because it’s based on 2 things. 1) The song I wrote called “Do That Hula Hoop” and 2) Hope. I’m heading off on tour spreading love and inspiring hope and I will have my hula hoops with me. While on tour, my goal is to raise funds for some people and organizations that are near and dear to my heart, including SWAN. My goal is to raise $1000 to give to them for an upcoming trip they are taking.
Katie: Are you involved with SWAN directly?
SaulPaul: Yes. SWAN’s mission is to break the cycle of crime for children who have one or both parents with a history of incarceration by providing free private music lessons, ensemble training, performance opportunities, and mentoring.
Katie: So this isn’t just a music video, it’s a campaign to raise awareness and do some good at the same time!
SaulPaul: Exactly! SWAN serves children of incarcerated parents. My wife and I teach music performance and choreography to these students and involve them in local shows in Austin. They have been invited to perform at half time at the April 2nd Austin Spurs basketball game. It’s an opportunity of a lifetime for the kids involved. SWAN currently has 19 elementary school children, ages 6-10, enrolled and they are in need of $1000 to ensure that the students can get there and participate and I’m personally donating the proceeds from the download of this song to SWAN.
Rachael: It was fun, I would do it again.
Katie: Was there anything particularly challenging about hooping in this video?
Rachael: The day we were filming it was raining and everything was really muddy and slippery, but it turned out ok.
Katie: I think it turned out great! Thank you both for your time and good luck with this project.
Columnist Katie Wilson, better known in the hooping world as Katie Sunshine, is a teacher, a painter, a performer, and above all a proponent for the powerfully positive change hooping brings to one’s life. She picked up hooping in 2009 at a music festival and she hasn’t put it down since. A Hoopie Award winner with many YouTube viral videos, Katie lives in Conway, Arkansas, USA, with her wonderful husband and her two lovable dogs.
Yesterday we counted down 2014’s Greatest Hits and shared our Hoopie Award Honorable Mentions. Now it’s time to announce the winners of our eighth Annual Hoopie Awards, although we’d really like to be clear that all of our nominees are winners in our book. We love them all! The call for preliminary submissions for the awards went up at the start of the year. They were screened, compiled and presented to 50 randomly selected hoopers who made themselves available to serve on our Hooping Academy Finalists Review Panel. They voted for their top 5 selections in each of the award categories and those votes resulted in our official 2015 Hoopie Award nominees. Voting began on Tuesday, closed on Friday, and now the time has come to reveal our winners.
We’d like to thank everyone who participated in the awards celebration this year from start to finish, giving an extra special thank you again to those who served on the review panel this year. We’d like to congratulate all of the nominees one more time and give a big hug to Hoopin’ Annie of World Hoop Day for taking on the responsibility of validating the computerized vote counts again this year too. And now, with thousands of votes cast in a record breaking awards celebration, we proudly present your 2015 Hoopie Award Winners: