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There are four Special Workshops available to fest attendees, ranging in duration from 2 to 4 hours and in cost from $30 to $60 (in addition to normal fest registration fees). The Special Workshops are mostly scheduled during different time slots, so attendees can register for any number of them, except that the Solstix and Priam Pierret workshops overlap on Wednesday.
This year’s Special Workshops Instructors are Greg Kennedy, Solstix, Svetlana Zueva and Priam Pierret.
Constructing Creativity, by Greg Kennedy
Tuesday 10am-12pm - $30
Greg Kennedy has been experimenting with new forms of juggling for 20 years. In this workshop, participants will explore the physical properties of traditional props and the ways they react with their environments. Greg will then discuss his system for creating work, from the way ideas are sparked at the beginning, through the development stage and into polished performance. Finally, raw materials will be brought out, for participants to experiment and play to create more complex manipulations and sequences. Get a glimpse into Greg’s creative process, and spend some time with your own.
Greg Kennedy’s Bio:
Originally trained as an engineer, Greg uses the principles of geometry and physics to create groundbreaking work with original apparatus. As a young juggler he quickly made a name for himself in the juggling community not only by his mastery of traditional juggling technique, but also for creating entirely new forms of manipulation. He is now renowned for his many original contributions to juggling as an art form. Jugglers know him for his award-winning creativity; audiences know him for his entertaining performance, making visual spectacles out of everyday object.
Contact Staff and Fei Cha, by Solstix
Wednesday, 1pm-4pm – $45
The workshop aims to give the participants pointers and exercises to clean up their general technique and individual moves.
In general the workshop will be suitable for all levels. But it’s flexible in its base, so if there are more advanced students, the moves that will be discussed will be more advanced.
The workshop aims to teach the basic methods and ideology of Chinese contact staff technique. All partipants will be considered at a beginner level unless previously exposed to the specific Chinese method of staffing.
Solstix consists of the duo Valerie Ann Sealey and Steve Joshua Dyffort. Valerie was born in California (U.S.A) and has been a performer since 2001. Josh is from Berlin (Germany) and has been performing since 2000. The two were independently doing shows until 2003, when they decided to combine their skills to aim for a new innovative masterpiece.
After taking numerous courses and workshops in modern and classical dance, pantomime and partner acrobatics in Berlin, Valerie and Josh went to the “Beijing International Art School” in China in 2006. There they studied the traditional Chinese feicha (contact staff), antipode (foot juggling), shooting star (also known as meteor) and contortion.
Since China they focused on mixing the acquired traditional skills with the modern form of contact manipulation, creating their own unique style. Currently they are based in Berlin and performing internationally.
Acro Juggling, by Svetlana Zueva
Thursday and Friday, 10am-12pm – $60
Svetlana Zueva’s Bio:
In 2009 she graduated from the Kiev circus school where she was trained by Yuriy Pozdnyakov. From 2009 to 2010 she worked at Aida cruises company as a Juggler on a cruise ship.
In 2010 she signed a one year contract with Cirque du Soleil to fill the position of group juggler in the touring production Corteo. She was a silver medalist in the first mixed Russian Juggling Championship in 2011. 2011 till 2012 she worked as a juggler teacher in a State Circus school. Since 2013 she has been working as an outsource juggling consultant for the Russian Federation National Team in Rythmic Gymnastics.