Jewel of Yorkshire this year was amazing!!! I think I've just about recovered now to write about it :)
BTW, this will be the last dance related post on this blog, I think. I've got this other blog Arcadian Rhythm and I'm going to start writing about dance over there. I think it's all getting muddled and lost over here, and it's about time I separated it all. So crafty things will be here, as well as general life stuff if I'm posting any, and that space will be only for dance stuff. I'm going to copy the last few posts that I've made here over to there, but I'm not going to delete any of it from here. It's just that there will be no more dancey stuff here. But of course, you're very welcome to subscribe to that blog, in fact I'm hoping people will :) I'm hoping the separation will make it easier for me to actually get round to writing without worrying about the muddle.
Anyway, back to JoY. We traveled down on Friday afternoon, and got to Yorkshire about 6ish I think. The journey down was lots of fun, 4 women in the car making rude jokes all the way down, nothing better than that! ;) We had dinner at the Tapas Tree restaurant, which is a great place to eat; the staff are wonderful and the food is soooooo good!!! And apparently the restaurant has a website: http://www.tapastreeshipley.co.uk/ It's directly across from the hotel, so it's very convenient.
Saturday, most of us had workshops first thing in the morning, so it was up early, eat breakfast at the hotel, then walk along the canal to the venue. It had been pouring down with rain the day before, so the path was a little(!) muddy, but we got there without getting too wet or dirty. (I wore heeled boots, I'd learned from last time!)
My first workshop was with Razia, an American dancer based in London. (her website is here: http://www.raziadance.com/ ) She is amazing!! She's so friendly and approachable, and a lovely person. And her dancing is beautiful!! She was one of my favourites from the hafla at night (but more on that later). The workshop was on vintage American Cabaret Style. I learned a lot about how bellydance developed in America from Razia, and how the moves, music etc evolved. She's a great teacher, and I would highly recommend going to see her or taking a workshop from her if you have the chance, she's awesome!
My second workshop was straight after that: Tribal/Goth makeup with Beverley Spracklen (www.myspace.com/amethystine_tribal). This was a lot of fun! She showed us how she puts on her make-up for tribal shows, and the influences from eighties punk/goth artists. She gave us a list of brands that she uses too, which was really helpful. I'm not usually very girly, so the whole make-up thing kinda passed me by. I can slap it on, but I'm definitely an amateur! Her information made me feel a whole lot more confident about it though, and she even showed us how to get liquid eyeliner to go straight! (small lines at a time, and plenty of wetted cotton buds) I've had such problems with that in the past :)
The third workshop was Vamp Up Your Wings with Christine Emery. This was so much fun! She showed us some vampire inspired moves to do with Isis Wings. More old-style threatening vampire than teenage sparkler, much more my kind of thing!! I'm planning to do a vampire Isis Wings dance at a hafla sometime now because of this workshop, it was so much fun!!
The rest of Saturday, I shopped. The first thing I looked for was a cabaret costume, as it's about time that I got one. I got a purple/pink one from Farida Dance, which I really like. No photos of me in it yet, but there will be soon! ;) Then I had a look about for more costume pieces, but I couldn't really see anything that I liked enough, and that I would actually wear. There were a lot of tribal fusion type clothes that I liked, but I'm doing more Oriental dancing just now, and I just couldn't justify spending the money when I wouldn't be using it. So I went to the Aladdin's Cave stall and bought lots of DVDs. I got
On Saturday night there was the hafla with performances from the teachers. There so many amazing dances! I didn't take any photos this year, I decided to sit and just watch the dancing for once, and not get distracted by the camera. This was a good idea! My favourite dancers were (not in any particular order) Beverley Spracklen (dancing to Rob Zombie's Dragula, yay!), Razia (just beautiful!), Ozgen (I was just breathless after watching his energetic dance, amazing!), and Candi Bell. This was her last dance at JoY as she's retiring, and boy, was it an exit and a half!! There's a video on YouTube here: it was just amazing! I'm sad she's retiring, she always dances with such joy and happiness, her expressions just radiate that, and it makes me feel happy watching her dance.
On Sunday I just had the one workshop. It was another with Razia: Flawless Floorwork Fundamentals. Let me tell you, I was sore for days after doing this, but in a good way. Not hurt at all, just my muscles complaining that I don't always work them like that! She did a really comprehensive warm-up with us and some strength training exercises for our legs and core muscles, which made it a lot easier to actually do the moves! Again, she's so friendly, and has such an infectious sense of humour that two hours of hard work was lots of fun! I want to go to more of her workshops!!! (pout!)
And after all that, I was knackered. We came straight back up to Scotland after that, another 6 hours in the car. (Thinking about it, that's probably why my legs were stiff!)
I had a great time at JoY! I always come back so energised about dance after this festival. I've got April's list of classes, now I just need to find people to go with... (off to bug all my friends now!)