If it's a bit quiet today that may be because everyone is at IADF or Mirabilia.
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Why do you attend your local juggling clubs?
What is their purpose?
OK, so I tried to promote my juggling club (effectively on my own) yesterday. This involved both an attempt to interact with the public and a 'juggling' performance. It went about as well as I could have expected for a person inexperienced at dealing with the general public on his own. At least I wore my glasses this time, even if I still wasn't prepared.
"There is a juggling club!?" in response to my talking about my local juggling club.
I feel if I'd have prepared better I would have had a good justification for why juggling clubs exist. I tried to justify it from my perspective, but I'd never really thought about it, especially not to a person with an attitude that seemed to be treading a narrow minded line. Looking back on it I go for social reasons, because my lounge is a bit cramped, I like to do group juggling and because well we find it fun, OK?. Still not good enough as a retort. Anyway: I should have prepared better.
SO, why do you attend your local juggling club or clubs? (I set this as a compo, so there's a prize for the best answer. By prize, I mean prestige and also kudos.)
Additional bonus 'learning experience':
They also asked "Why can't you do it in a pub?"
"hmmm, because throwing things around glasses full of beer, sounds like a great idea", does not sound like the most friendly of responses. I claimed something about high ceilings at the time. *FACEPALM*
I guess I would say that just as any other hobby or sport it is beneficial to interact and connect with other practitioners. Juggling clubs exsist for pretty much the same reason pubs,youth groups,gyms,and boxing clubs or salons do; to exchange information about a certain subject and for simple merry making.
That's just what I'm thinking.
Tea & cake.
(We don't actually do much tea & cake at TWJC, but this will be the winning post)
*free* tea and cake.
(just to mop up some more votes than Orin...)
Heh! I don't really go juggling any more, but I can only think of 2 clubs I've ever been to (out of 9ish) where they charged for tea, and at least two of the clubs I've been to over the years has had free cake on a semiregular basis.
Saturday mornings in Birmingham used to have a toaster... that was great! Turn up with a hangover on a Saturday morning, drink tea and eat toast until you felt well enough to juggle - then go home because the hall was about to close. I miss that club, I think it's gone now.
Altern8 in Bristol (Monday nights) still does free tea and biscuits (as far as I know) and it's not unheard of for cake or large quantities of chocolate to turn up there and be dished out to anyone who wanted any.
CircusWurx in Crawley had Tea and Biscuits the times I've been there. Up for grabs in Totnes definitely had Tea every time I went, although I don't remember there being Biscuits sadly. Both had the refreshments about half way through the session and I can't imagine they've given up their traditional half-time breaks.
The Sheffield Flying Teapots has free tea and biscuits, and in its heyday also had a space festooned with sofas, on which to imbibe the tea and munch the biscuits.
I think the tea-based social scene helped to keep members who had kind of lost interest (temporarily or otherwise) in juggling, and their presence in turn helped retain new beginner members, by teaching and being helpful and sociable and friendly. Sometimes, deeply committed jugglers don't make good club organisers, because they're too busy facing a wall working on their seven balls to engage with newbies long enough or often enough.
Whenever someone asks for advice about starting up a juggling club I emphasise the social/tea/biscuits/cake/pub side of things. A half time
tea break, or a post meet pub trip is an opportunity to talk to the siteswap-in-the-corner jugglers
I firmly believe its instrumental in retaining new/old members
At York Jugglers we used to have tea and cake at half-time, but that has become tea and biscuits more recently.
The university club in York quite often have cake, but you have to take your own drinks.
I agree with Paul that is is very important to have a sociable time at club meetings and tea & cake is a good reason to pause from juggling for a moment and be more sociable.
We used to all go to the pub after juggling, but that tradition sadly seems to have died out, perhaps because so many members come from further afield or don't drink.
#YorkJugglers , #JuggleSoc
Hullabaloo in Leeds has free tea & biscuits (often chocolate digestives), when the hall was free there was no charge for juggling but a collection box for contributions towards the tea and biscuits fund (unfortunately the days of a free hall are now in the past).
I go to my juggling club because I enjoy it; also I have the key and have to let everyone else in.
Hullabaloo also (usually) go to the pub afterwards, best bit of the evening!
You're right about the 'Tea and Cake'. However have you ever had/tried to justify TWJC's existence to anybody? What did you/would you have said? Did they find that watching a Zumba demonstration was more interesting?
Ok so Tea and C... Eureka! That's what I did wrong yesterday. I didn't give the impression there was any possibility of Free Food and Drink!!! I could have been there with cupcakes iced with juggling props or TWJC lettering. That's a load more accessible than 'throw something and catch something repeatedly'.
In fact being there with some other people would have helped too, then I might have looked more sociable. However only with hindsight did I realise the importance of that at this 'school summer fair' exercise.
I've never *had* to justify TWJC & I don't think I ever will. It's not as if we are hurting anyone (ok aside from each other sometimes).
As an entertainer (or not as an entertainer for that matter), if someone asks a question try not to automatically treat it as a confrontation. You don't 'fail' or 'lose' if you don't have an answer.
In terms of encouraging people along to a juggling club remember just because you enjoy something doesn't mean that anyone else has to enjoy it too.
It was hypothetical, at least I thought it was. A thought exercise if you will. It was not intended to be confrontational, although it probably came off as that, sorry.
I was well aware of the other two points at the time although I did over react and didn't know how to deal with my mood fluctuations on the day.
For a practice space for juggling, to learn new juggling tricks but mostly, to be sociable with a bunch of fairly like-minded, friendly people.
-Formerly of the Leicester juggling club (dearly missed
-Also formerly of Glasgow juggling club.
-Now of the Norwich juggling club.
(The Edge seems to have trimmed my last post a bit. Weird.)
That was a good one.Brightened up my morning.
I find that when I juggle with other people, I almost always try things I normally never would or never have before. Even when juggling with beginners, regardless of me having a higher skill level I still get ideas from them. In short, it keeps me inspired and keeps my juggling fresh and new. Also, juggling games like HORSE or endurance type games add a whole new element that you can't really do by yourself.
I don't think that's a good reason to convince random people to want to start going to clubs and learning juggling, but that's my reason anyway. I think the best way to accomplish what you were trying to do is just be incredibly enthusiastic. If you make is seem that what you're doing is sooooo much fun (which, coincidentally, it is!) that people are crazy for not at least trying it, maybe it would encourage people to show up just to make sure they're not missing the next big thing. :)
Do you not call it JUGGLE? I thought that was the generally accepted name for the game.
Yes, I usually play it as JUGGLE. As far as I know it originated as a trick shot basketball game called HORSE with the same basic idea and rules. I guess I could have typed JUGGLE instead and it would have made more sense. Sometimes we play it with other words too, for a shorter or longer game. It doesn't so much matter what the word is, just how many letters it has.
I've lately been vexed with the issue of what balls or beanbags to puarchase to practice my five ball cascade with. I've gotten really tired of chasing around raquet balls after a collision, and constantly reshaping homemade rice balloon bags. is there a set of good cheap stage or beanbags that anyone could recomend me?
DESPERATE FOR HELP
also which woould you feel is better for numbers juggling like this? beanbags or stageballs?
Ok. I recently switched from beanbags to sil-x balls. They are pricier than some lower quality beanbags but they will not break or fall apart as beanbags can over time.
I recommend solid balls because they are uniform; they are easier to throw accurately. If you're doing more than 5, beanbags may have some merit. For less than 7, I'd recommend solid balls. I personally use the 67mm white sil-x balls. You can get them cheap(er) from homeofpoi.com in New Zealand (shipping's a pain in the butt though).
I learned 3 with tennis balls, golf balls andracquetballs. But for 5 you're really going to want something heavier, durable and fun to use. I've bought 6 sets of 5 over the last 6 months and I've personally found sil-x to be the best fit for 5. (For me.) Best of luck learning 5. It's quite hard to learn. Practice every day, even just for 10 minutes. Try to slow down the pattern as much as you can. It's not as fast as you think.
Try exercises with 3 and 4 to prepare you for 5. And lastly, don't give up. You can do it!
Cheers. (I'm American but sometimes it's nice to pretend!)
understood. thanks a lot,I've been looking at normal 70mm stage balls as i am on a tight budget.
that really helps.
"Danke!" (it really is nice to pretend)
I would be willing to give you a set of sil-x implosion balls that I don't use anymore. Let me know if you're interested! No need to spend $60/£60 when I have a set I'm not using.
Yes sir! Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your address and I'll get them sent to you! I'd be glad to have them put to use.
For years I've been recommending people at your level, who don't know what balls to buy - to buy thuds (sometimes called Squish or Squash balls) - basically vinyl beanbags which aren't the cheapest possible too-light-to-be-of-use-to-anyone beanbags.
They're cheap and cheerful, do the job nicely enough, and will last you long enough for you to work out what you like/dislike in a ball.
SilX, Stage balls, G-Ballz, Flannybags etc don't all suit everyone. So until you've developed your style a bit and know what you want from a ball, thuds.
You don't say where in the world you are, so I'm going to assume America and pick out a couple of vendor examples:
"Absolute Circus regular squish juggling beanbags" or "Mister Babache squish juggling beanbags" from http://www.seriousjuggling.com/juggling-balls-juggling-beanbags.htm
I can't say I've ever dealt with jugglinstore directly, but I know that the other three vendors are all run by very helpful people who will be willing to give you good advice on what products would suit you personally, without upselling you to something unsuitable or expensive - so feel free to phone/email them and discuss your requirements etc.
In my experience vinyl beanbags don't last long. The outer surface of the vinyl will soon crack and stretch. An ultra-leather beanbag, such as the Flanny bag, has a similar weight and fell but will last a lot longer.
at your level you're right. If you're only just learning 5 they'll last plenty long enough.
I disagree strongly that ultra-leather beanbags "have a similar weight and feel" to a vinyl bag though. Weight yes, feel no.
OK so I *know* a lot of people like them, but I know a number of jugglers who don't like them at all.
If you are struggling with collisions & are tired of chasing racquetballs, you will get tired of chasing stage balls too, so you will be better off with some sort of bean bag.
There are many people that claim Russian balls (filled stage balls) make all kinds of juggling a lot easier, do your ironing & can raise the dead but I can't stand them because I find they have a wobbly trajectory through the air that I really struggle to catch.
The other bit of advice that I seem to be alone in touting is always go for a single colour ball. Multicolour panels may look pretty when they are stationary but when they are spinning in the air the colours blur making them harder to spot than a solid colour.
There is little point going for something fancy until you know what you want. There is a phrase that pops up in many different hobbies:
"S/he's got all the gear, but no idea"
You don't want to be one of them!
The other bit of advice that I seem to be alone in touting is always go for a single colour ball.
You're not alone. There are two of us.
Excellent, we must get together & plan the next step of our campaign.
Bloody Front Of Single Colour Recommendation. The Single Colour Recommendation Front has been going strong for years now.
I also agree and regularly suggest to people to use a single colour. Being able to see the spin on the balls doesn't help at all.
"Being able to see the spin on the balls doesn't help at all."
That's not something I'd ever really considered. I wonder does it help at a really basic level when first learning 3b cascade?
I think when you're learning the cascade, you've got so much going on that you need to think about adding another to the list will only complicate matters.
I also prefer single colour. Having two balls the same colour and one a different colour helps me spot the details. By isolating throws and catches I can either work on strengthening or hiding stuff. It also helps me find transitions.
I am a loner love to have either solids and the same or different in all of them unless i am teaching someone then the one color has its advantages
wow,all of this really helps. theres just so many decisions.
I hear the same thing about russian balls but I understand your statement about the trajectory of them; on top of that I can't stand the marraca type sound they make.
I've been looking at stageballs for a while but perhaps a cheap set of five beanbags should be my first go to really see.
I've been juggling hardcore (practicing litterally 24/7) for five months now. I can learn most tricks in a day or two, my dillemna is just that all my "props" are homemade or bought from wal-mart. Seeing how expensive true props are I just need to make sure that I'm making a good long term choice.
Local vendor is really nice i have a set of chain mail balls they feel like beanbags and have a wonderful weight to them i would use a wrapped china two in four
Chain mail balls, and here I thought I had heard it all.
That does sound like the bee's knee's though.
I think I remember a company that tried making chainmail juggling balls. I think they were called Dragon Eggs or something along those lines.
Someone used to make chainmail juggling balls in the UK, there was a set in the raffle at Chocfest 4, I can't remember who made them or know if they are still making them.
Slightly tired, so please forgive this snide comment, but 3360 hours is a long time to have been doing nothing but juggling. Alternatively, that word does not mean what you think it does.
Slightly more in topic, I am also quite pleased with my Sil-X balls. I do not find the russians that I made to have too much of a wobble, but I need to make more.
Reasonable beanbags are the way to go. I used crocheted hackey sacks for quite a while actually. A tad light, but good for body and foot catches.
I'm new to the juggling edge, not so new to juggling. If youre ever in Israel over the summer stop by our weekly juggling meet.
Thanks for the invite, am guessing your weekly juggling meet is Circus Playtime - the Jerusalem juggling meeting #Jerusalemjugglingmeeting
You will find people without facebook accounts cannot see your facebook groups page, at York Jugglers we tried to get round this by having an facebook organisation page as well, as these are viewable to non-facebook users (at the moment) but not sure having to have more facebook pages might be confusing for people. Hopefully the travelling jugglers will see your Juggling Edge listing with e-mail address and phone number.
Slightly envious that you have nice enough weather to have an outdoor regular meeting at 8 in the evening
Hi Uri, welcome aboard!
I've heard great things about the Israeli Juggling Festival, have you ever been? Also (bit of a longshot) do you know Itsik Orr?
FYI - Itsik has changed his name to Kulo. He's still on the juggling scene. His finale in the Israeli show at IJC was absolutely brilliant.
Just curious, is this the act he performed? It's very cool. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJrT1_SldMc
Hey, #juggLINCOLNvention orgs! Perhaps your facebook page answers these questions, but it seems not to be publicly accessible (rookie mistake), so I have to ask here:
Is there a gym? Or a big top? What other facilities? Thanks, Void.
I don't know if Anna is a regular viewer on this forum, but there is not a huge amount on the facebook group or event pages yet.
My impression is that it is slightly more of a camping weekend of a juggling convention than an intense juggling in a gym for 6 hours and watch a show type convention.
To quote Anna
juggLINCOLNvention is no longer an idea its actually happening from the 5th till the 7th of July. That's right folks this is not just a one day convention we have Friday and Saturday camping to. all for the astounding price of just - but if you pre-reg with them at a convention it will save them credit card fees
£10 under 16
But wait! if you book before the 30th June. Tickets can be purchased for as little as
£8 under 16
and for those bringing the kids, under 8 are free so get your early bird tickets from lazy juggler
we have lots of exciting plans in the pipeline. that are coming together
facilities that are available on site are
barn with stocked bar
catering on site
The fact they were looking for performers indicates there will be a show
There are photos of some of the buildings on the site on the facebook group page (which are viewable to non-facebook users) but I can only link to individual photos like http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10200568789535825&set=p.10200568789535825&type=3&theater not the whole album.
I imagine the JuggLINCOLNvention organisers will be at Lestival in a couple of weeks or Bungay and will be able to answer your questions if they don't post on here first.
Thanks Miark and Orin. I can see those facebook pages now. (Either they've been made public or the fb link on the Edge event has changed.). This would appear to be the link to the album Miark mentions:
Looks nice, and sounds nice. I still don't know for sure if I'll be going, but I now have a slightly better idea of what to expect if I do. Ta. (I suggest that anyone with powers to do so adds the "facilities list" to the Edge event.)
Ah, nope, on a diffrent device now, it seems the FB event is still not public.
I have messaged the JuggLINCOLNvention people, by the medium of facebook, and hopefully they will be able to respond on this forum or fix the facebook event page (and maybe add details to their Edge listing).
I am wondering if faecesbook has changed the public settings on their pages again, because the Chocfest facebook event was definitely viewable to non-facebook users and now isn't. I noticed the BJC 2013 facebook event page isn't viewable to non-facebook users either.
Worse is that their Facebook page appears to be incorrect (correct links below). I couldn't find the answer to your questions though.
Yes they changed their original facebook event page to a new event page because facebook wouldn't let the old event page be associated with their group page - so check you have the link to the new page that Orinoco just quoted.
i wonder when people will finally realise that facebook is a pain in the arse for a lot of people.
get a website! many people dont use facebook, many more if they log in from work will find facebook blocked.
I think facebook still has a long way to go before it implodes in the general conciousness...
my biggest concern is though - what monstrosity is going to replace it?
The actual internet is now insufficiently appliance-like for modern sensibilities. We need someone to invent the JUGGLEFACESQUASH app which automatically notifies you when it's time to go to a convention, tells you what not to forget and then starts up the satnav.
as one of those clever people who do magic stuff with lines of code.
did you just volunteer Emily?
lol, I don't need to; it already exists. It's called a "calendar" and you just subscribe to a calendar feed for the events you want...
A good calendar feed might tell you when, what, and where you can you can go to, but mine won't synchronise with my sat-nav telling me when I might want to set off, it won't check the weather for me to tell me what I might want to take (snowshoes or parasol) it won't check who else is going so I can lift-share and share fuel.
There might be scope for someone to create an amusing or useful app, but I don't think it will make them millionaires.
google already have that Miark on newish Android phones. Google now its called.
My calendar app will nag me to set off for things on my calendar; it even takes the traffic into account.
Lift-sharing (as well as weather detection) would be an awesome edge feature. Like "I'm going to this event from X location with Y spaces in my car".
I'm going to Lestival from North West London with 1-3 spaces in my car. Setting off "when I wake up".
Not sure I can do the weather detection though.
What's that you say? Lestival? Pray, tell me more ....
Well I did Google it but the Leicester Jugglers website was advertising 2012 so not sure how helpful that would be. Perhaps you know of a better link...?
They have a facebook page at www.facebook.com/events/245002562295665 for those who have facebook accounts and are not blocked from facebook
Dave did promise he is "on it" regarding updating the www.juggler.net/lestival site
is http://allevents.in/Leicester/Lestival-VI-The-Leicester-Circus-Festival/245002562295665 any use? (found by googling for lestival 2013)
That is just data harvested from the Lestival facebook page, there is just as much information on the Juggling Edge Lestival page www.jugglingedge.com/event.php?EventID=2865 (but with less adverts and pop-ups).
no, I think adverts are like frozen peas in this respect. Nobody is willing to count them to see whether there are fewer.
hi void sorry for late reply but been bussy with doing the day job heres a update
Proper flushing toilets with wash basins
Tree sheltered arena
Heated barn with a bar
On site catering
Very large marquee
Site opens 5pm
Friday night bands – to be confirmed
Renegade - (this is up to you guys to make it ace)
Traders open in the morning
Lazy juggler and Jac products juggling stall and local traders
Workshops 10 -6 (timetable to be confirmed)
Kids area with workshops, and activities 10 – 6 (run by misfits community circus)
Public show 7.30 (acts will be announced shortly)
Available at Lestival and Bungay from The Lazy Juggler stall or from http://www.lazyjuggler.com/JuggLINCOLNvention/
early bird tickets available until the 31st June
Under 16 £8
Day ticket £8
On the Door
Under 16 £10
Day ticket £10
For more information please email email@example.com find us on twitter @JuggLINCOLNvention Or facebook https://www.facebook.com/andy.fox.58555/photos?ref=ts#!/groups/juggLincolnVention/ working on a tumblr accout so will post detailos once complete
The 26th British Juggling Convention, Pickering
I know there is already a specific thread for BJC 2013 related stuff, but I'm the God Emperor. You might want to get a cup of tea before you start this. Right then, here we go...
As last year Kevin, Simon & I volunteered to help with the set up on the Monday before the official start on Tuesday. Paul & Louisa (not Laura) were also going to meet us en route to help. Cat, Karina, Laurence, John, Andy, Simon, Laura & George were all to join us once the festival officially started.
I'm sure Kevin insists on leaving early just to wind me up. I had a nice bacon & egg sandwich before heading off. Fortunately I had no cycle races or other detours to handle this time round. Simon was already there as I pulled up, so we left for Yorkshire at 07:30. We stopped at Cambridge for a second breakfast around 10ish where we met up with Paul & Louisa (not Laura). We thought our vehicle was stuffed with kit but the body panels were bulging outwards on their car.
After a remarkably uneventful drive we found ourselves on site at 14:00. The big tops were up & the reception area was already a hive of activity with lots of busy people. I quickly nipped round the corner to look at the main hall. I immediately regretted not bringing my inline skates.
For the rest of the afternoon we were mostly fencemonkeying but also laying fuck off tape, laying the floor in the beer tent plus other odd jobs. As the sun went down all the volunteers gathered in reception where I was astounded to be treated to free pizza! This was a very welcome treat after a tiring day.
There was a brief meeting held by main organisers Sam & Claire to outline what needed doing on the first day. Shortly after I collapsed into my sleeping bag. The much warned about cold didn't seem to be a problem as I was fine with just a t-shirt, boxers & Jemma's present to keep me warm.
We were up early & ventured down the road to the garden centre cafe for the first of many excellent full English breakfasts in the company of Bertie the very vocal parrot. I got a wolf whistle which was nice. We were very tempted by the fantastic looking pedal cart.
We made it back to site ready for morning register with the teachers, then we had a quick walk round the site to get an explanation of the one way system & to get a rough idea of what goes where. The sun came out prompting a lot of excitement!
After the tour Simon, Kev & I made a trip into nearby Malton for supplies taking a couple of other volunteers with us. I was already struggling with the site one way system but that was nothing compared to the one in Malton.
Back on site Simon & I went wombling & rescued various pallets & traffic cones from the undergrowth for use on site, we relayed some of the fuck off tape based on adjustments to the camping area. By this time people were starting to arrive so we were assigned to traffic duty where I spent a lot of time getting cold.
I was later mercifully relieved of duty by Rainbow Tom then went to the main building where I got to say some hellos to old & new friends. Notable hellos included getting speared in the face by SJC Emily's horned helmet & also this exchange while getting a hug from the lovely Hannah:
Her: "You smell nice"
Me: "That's two days worth of fencing"
I got to spend a bit of time juggling in the hall where I got acquainted with the ubiquitous dust of the festival. The polished concrete floor was a very cold surface for handstanding on. Our Cat & lots of other people were enjoying whizzing around on various wheels. There was a big circle of frisbee players having fun. Ronnie, a young lad from Crawley who we would later see in the BYJOTY competition was drawing a lot of attention with his rock solid 4 diabolo shuffle. I found the chap with the whip made from supermarket carrier bags which was very impressive. I just about got a crack out of it, but under the more expert hands of the owner it was cracking like a regular whip.
I was still shattered from working on the site so it was a relatively early night for me.
I started off getting a pint of milk from the wonderfully convenient on site shop for my cereal. After which I waited for a shower cubicle to become free. There were two blocks of four in the quiet camping area. I saw a door pop open & sprinted down the site to get in before anyone else. They were a bit cramped & suffered from condensation so you had to keep your clothes in plastic bags to stop them from getting too damp. But they were scalding hot & very powerful. I loved taking showers at this festival.
I spent the morning juggling in the main hall. I did more juggling in that first morning than I had all year. I had a few interested people come up to talk to me about some of the three club tricks I was doing which was really nice. One such person was Joy from Barnesly who was there for her first BJC. Nice to know that the C in my HLGCBS would be extremely easy this year.
A little later in the morning I broke my first club of the festival, not bad for 7 years of service including some very brutal gladiator sessions. I spent quite a bit of time practising my handstands which were feeling very strong.
The sun came out in time for me to enjoy sitting outside & preparing a huge meal at the same time as enjoying the hospitality of the TWJC bar expertly constructed & brewed by Paul. I don't usually like ale but Paul's convention ale is very smooth, tastes great & is deceptively strong.
Then it was back to the hall for more juggling. Then I went back to the camp for more food. Then I went back to the hall for more juggling again. This is my dream life!
In the evening we went to see the...
Team Shreddie Crunch (+ guests) Show
I struggle with who exactly is in the team now. It appears to be everyone who is really good.
Hosting the show was Tiff who at most times appeared out of control but managed to be entertaining while being so. The comments about Ben Beever & Peter Bone being the grandparents of the team made me chuckle.
I particularly liked the routine with Jon Peat, Jonny Malcolm & the third chap whose name sadly escapes me at the moment taking turns to pull off bonkers moves while a decreasing counter tallied the drops. The amusing fails at a basic cascade were just as entertaining as the really hard stuff.
Catherine Pancakes had a nicely put together but sadly droppily executed ring routine. Alan & Sadie performed their side by side ball person routine which I have now seen three times I think. I still like it - they both come across as very personable which makes them really easy to watch.
Wes Peden was excellent with long runs of seven balls & clubs in between his signature more creative moves. There was a lot of transferring a batch of rings from one hand to the other in interesting ways, plus holding a club up high (hasn't he grown?!) then letting it drop so that it hits something & spins then hits something else & spins the other way.
Patrik Elmnert performed a wonderful ring act involving a lot of balancing of rings on his forehead (only one point of contact, not two). The spinning ring balance was really nice to watch & he was able to assemble a three ring stack then disassemble it again without losing the balance which impressed me too.
David Leahy & Dan Wood came on to perform a routine of some really big synchronised tricks like 5 up pirouettes & DB97531. I think there was ample skill to satisfy the technical fans. I never thought it could happen but the most entertaining part of the show for me was the 1 to 10 ball flash race to the sound of Flash by Queen (what else?). The idea of the race is to flash from 1 to 10 balls in turn without a drop. If you muck up you tag a hand at the side of the stage before starting again. Dan impressively completed his flash through first time! As this was over all too quickly they were asked to do it again.
The show finished with a juggling orchestra inspired bit of revelry. The house lights went up & all the performers came out into the audience & up the aisles which was a real feel good finish. Showering the audience with shreddies cereal was a welcome snack too!
After this show it was back to the hall for more handstand practise. I also enjoyed a bit of a pass with Andy from Hastings before the club bashing call of the gladiators session lured me to the other side of the hall. In play were most of Team Shreddie Crunch, despite this I managed to win several games which pleased me greatly. Our Simon won loads. I taught him everything he knows (*cough*), I therefore won by proxy. Go TWJC!
Play was enjoyably wild & enthusiastic. During one bout I was charging forward at Tom Derrick, who was similarly charging forward at me. Many things happened when we met in the middle the most memorable of which for me was getting smashed cleanly in the centre of the face by his forearm which knocked me to the floor. I was left lying on my back surrounded by my, his & several bystanders' clubs while the rest of the game continued around me. While on the floor I decided to take a short break.
I returned though hoping for a Hairyesque ferocious comeback & for a time it was looking good. I made it to the final two & faced off against Simon. After a bit of back & forth I was too slow to recover from an attack, Simon seized the initiative & smashed through my pattern leaving me holding nothing but another knob with a sheared screw. Oh well, it probably was time to get some new clubs anyway.
I played for a little while longer but decided to quit while only slightly injured. I had a shower before bed where I discovered a load more bruises through visual inspection & by feel as the shower was powerful enough to make the bruises hurt.
After a good night's sleep eight of us wandered over to the garden centre for breakfast with Bertie where we consumed an amazing amount of food. I discovered that I had a beautiful maroon coloured black eye from the night before. We returned to the hall where I mooched around chatting to friends & showed off my shiner. I watched Wes Peden's alternative kick up/how to wreck your clubs in creative ways workshop & came away with lots of new things to try. I also popped my head into LP's fantastic BOV for a tour of the features he has lovingly built into his home away from home. I then went back to my tent for a quick nap then some more food before heading over to the big top for...
The 2013 competition was once again organised by Ieuan Maiden. Our judges for this year were Tom Derrick, The Void, Guy Heathcote & Dave Law. I didn't enjoy the compére Nik Robson-King at first because he really dragged things out, it was an age before we got to see the first act & he seemed to make everything about him rather than the show. As the competition went on though the links got shorter & snappier which was good.
The first act looked really promising with a smart bright costume & a black screen prop which he threaded his arms through for some three ball juggling. Unfortunately he dropped on almost every trick. The restriction of the screen meant that pick ups were slow & cumbersome as he unthreaded his arms from the holes to retrieve his props then inserted his arms again for another go. He came out from behind the screen for some ring juggling & to finish with three knives on a unicycle which was equally droppy.
I said the costume was promising but it turned out to be lacking an essential feature - a belt. I found the constant trouser adjusting to be really distracting.
The second act was Alex McGillivray who performed much of the same stuff as the first act in that he juggled rings, balls & clubs but this act benefited from much simpler presentation & a much cleaner performance. Although the colour changing rings section was hardly original it was particularly nicely done. Going from my past experience of BYJOTY competitions I had this act down as a potential winner.
We had two Blues Brothers themed acts. The first was a club juggler who looked the part & showed good showmanship but didn't have the technical ability that I have been spoilt to expect. The second act was Ronnie from Crawley who I was a little apprehensive about because I'd seen him in the hall & the only thing he seemed to practise was 4 diabolos so was expecting a one trick act. I was very pleasantly surprised with some very nice technical diaboloing with 1-3 diabolos. There were a few drops & tangles, a cleaner performance would have made this act a clear winner.
Dan Wood & Dave Leahy both performed separate technical ball juggling acts with 3 to Rastelli knows how many balls. Both featured lots of high number siteswap patterns, back crosses & pirouettes. Siteswap patterns are hard to present well, there are some patterns like the 97531 family that can be pulled off as a one time move & it is accessible to all, other patterns need to be run cleanly for long enough to allow the observer to discern a repeating pattern, otherwise it can just look like a random mess of throws which can be perceived as less skillful. Dave seemed the much more comfortable performer on the stage. His patterns were cleaner & better defined, he also got through his routine with an unheard of low number of drops for a BYJOTY technical routine (& all of those drops were with his 3 ball tricks).
The final act of the competition was Charles Brockbank with a superbly put together 3 to 5 club manipulation & juggling routine. This act clearly had the most thought put into it, he started off looking scruffy & disheveled, he incorporated the braces of his costume into the tricks he was performing threading his arms in & out in between throws. As the sequences of tricks progressed he slowly smartened up his appearance. The sequences themselves were of a very good technical standard &/or finished with a punchline that made me chuckle.
This was the most enjoyable act for me by far, I cast my vote & didn't stay for the judging because the result couldn't be in any doubt. Could it?
I nipped off early because a slightly distressed looking Sam wanted me to do some emergency car park marshaling to hopefully undo some truly idiotic parking in the main car park, sadly none of the offenders turned up to move their cars leaving lots of people boxed in, doh!
Afterwards I discovered that Charles only picked up a bronze award, which I was shocked to hear. So shocked that myself & last year's BJC organisers Steve & Amie cornered judge Dave Law for an explanation of the results. Picking up the British Young Juggler of the Year award & the competition's first gold award was Dave Leahy. Fair enough on the audience vote Dave performed well & it was a jugglers' act. But in terms of presentation & entertainment value I didn't feel it compared well with some of the acts from the likes of Norbi, Arron Sparks & Jon Udry we have seen in previous years. Dave argued the case though & after reviewing the criteria of the competition, I found myself agreeing he did tick the boxes necessary as set out by the rules ('rules' for juggling? Yeah I know, but it is a competition & it is what it is). As for Charles' lack of recognition, this may have been down to the act being too clever, it was revealed that the going from scruffy to smart theme was only picked up on by 1 of the 4 judges (who was not revealed!).
I feel bad for Charles because I feel he deserved better, I don't mean to take away from Dave's achievement, he was brilliant, but that sort of act generally doesn't excite me. I also acknowledge the judge's job is & always will be impossible.
After all that it was time for a good old...
The massively multi talented Tiff was on the fiddle in a band who at the end of the evening announced their various levels of inexperience at ceilidh. They needn't have bothered because they were superb!
I enjoyed dancing with many wonderful partners. I had a short dance with my crush Joy, but I discovered she was here with a boyfriend which was mildly devastating! Fak was looking resplendent in a fantastic red & white spotted dress. Not content with merely Stripping the Willow, Fak & I rendered it down to very fine sawdust. My other major partner for the evening was a very beautiful young girl who I later found out was named Torr (short for Torrence?). She was able to match my enthusiasm & showed a completely undeserved level of confidence in my partner swinging ability.
Very well done to the band & all the dancers. It was the best night of the festival.
The band continued & I spent much of the evening chatting in the bar. After the party I went back to the hall to find Andy conducting experiments with an oversized protractor device he had made out of a cardboard box he had found. The experiments were aimed at testing your peripheral vision. The subject sat on a chair holding the protractor with the flat edge against their face & staring at the end of the 90° line. Andy then selected a card with a simple shape such as a square, triangle, cross drawn in a single colour which he would then slowly move around the edge of the protractor from the outside towards the centre. All the while the subject had to maintain focus on the 90° point while describing what they thought the shape was.
This produced some surprising & interesting results. Most people had a remarkably narrow field of perception, some people could make out colours long before shapes & others vice versa. People tended to have a wider field of perception on one side than the other (which I believe is down to eye dominance which Andy was also testing for). What surprised me most was how very different people's results were.
Simon seemed to have an abnormally wide field of perception, which may explain his abnormal ability at gladiators.
I popped into Renegade for a bit. Hosts Rosie & Charles were on fine form, the tie skit was genius.
There was a chair balancing competition where two people battled to see how many chairs they could balance on their face which was quite entertaining, I think the winner got up to 8 at the final count.
Paul Incredible stripped to his underwear, threaded string through his nipple piercings, span a diabolo then proceeded to toss the diabolo from string to string. Fantastic stuff!
Rosie & Wes had a game of kendama football, the object of which was to stab the spike into the hole with the ball on the floor while stopping your opponent from doing the same. Basically it was a good excuse for a bit of a fight.
There was some whipcracking of breadsticks from a dummy's mouth, a girl rolling a ping pong ball around the rim of a wooden flower tub skirt, the table cloth trick done with a guy balancing an acrylic on his head & a very good performance of a classic French fighter pilot joke.
It was a cold & misty morning. I had breakfast then took some time to write down some notes before going to the hall. I spent some time up on the balcony to watch the almost empty hall slowly fill up with happy jugglers coming out to play. If you've never done this you really must at the next big festival you go to because it is a really beautiful spectacle.
I got a good view of Duncan practising his indoor kite flying. I was most impressed when he captured an innocent snakeboarder.
I then went down for a juggle. While passing through reception Dee handed me a couple of postcards from the secret postal service to deliver. The service was a simple postbox where you could post cards to convention goers with vague addresses like, "The hula hooper in the red dress" then volunteers would try to deliver them. The delivery volunteers were fantastic, most of us from TWJC sent cards, Karina in particular sent loads. One postcard addressed to Bertie the parrot & another to the staff at the garden centre were delivered in under 3 hours & both were on proud display when we next went for breakfast! I know that there was some outrageous flirting going on through the system & a lot of cards were being delivered through unofficial channels too. I think this service is a great idea & I hope it continues at future festivals.
After my delivery services were complete Simon & I did a lot of seven club passing mostly. I also did some solo practise & got my left hand side helicopter kick ups to a state comparable with my right which felt really nice.
Cat managed to locate my then unknown Ceilidh partner Torr so I got him to deliver my first secret postcard.
I went back to my tent & prepared lunch to the soundtrack of various people screaming through a megaphone from the Ladybird project which was winding up a lot of people who were still trying to sleep. So much for the quiet camping area. I stuffed myself silly with as much food as I could in preparation for the evening's massive line up of shows. The first of which was...
There was a nice group passing routine with four sporty serious types & a keen hapless novice who wanted to join in. This act highlighted how a little bit of theatre can add a lot to a routine. The nasty head butt had me screaming, "NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!" in the back row!
A trio of ring jugglers each dressed in a different primary colour shuffled like penguin's around the stage & performed lots of three person ring manipulation tricks, I didn't notice it at the time but Simon pointed out they all finished with three rings matching the colour of their outfit which was like the solving of a Rubik's cube.
A sinister black clad ninja was on fine form with a ridiculous comic routine, there was a bit of staff spinning & rope dart manipulation which was very nice but the standout highlight was the almost overwhelming level of innuendo he managed to cram into the act. Top marks to Wes too for being such a sporting volunteer!
Matt Green closed the show with a high energy club juggling & manipulation act.
The standout act of the show for me though was the Dueling Banjos hat juggling duo. It was fantastically performed with the pair of jugglers performing progressively harder tricks in time with the music. After a minute I thought the skill level must surely plateau at some point, but it didn't! It was loud, raucous & lots of fun. This routine is easily destined for centre stage at future festivals.
This show was ably put together by Ian Mrawa & our compére was Milton Keynes 4 supremo, Nigel Roder who probably went on about Milton Keynes 4 a little too much during his links that tended to feature information about Milton Keynes 4 (dang).
Karina & I wandered in a bit late but managed to catch most of the first act which was a very smooth contact juggling routine. The second act was a female club juggler who performed a lot of my sort of club juggling tricks, only better. An adagio balancing duo took the sex appeal up a few notches with a superb routine to one of my favourite Apocalyptica tracks. I miss doing acro. Erika performed a Phantom of the Opera themed hoop routine, the costume & stage is there but it really lacked finesse. For me sexy is an attitude, not a look. At the other end of the hooping spectrum we had a wonderfully retro silver clad hooper. The prop, music, costume & style all fit together well to make a fun & enjoyable routine.
BYJOTY superstar Sam Goodburn had lost his voice but with the help of Nigel still went ahead with his routine. What can I say? How about a one foot wheel walk on a unicycle on a tightrope. I was speechless. & that certainly doesn't happen very often.
One of the best crafted routines of the whole festival was the chap with a fetish for brooms. I liked the fact that he was working his act before the show started as he appeared on stage & swept up & again during the interval. I genuinely thought he was a stage hand. Then it turned decidedly odd as his love for his broom manifested into a comic & skillful staff routine. I was in fits of laughter when he disappeared back stage & returned with his broom dressed in the flowing skirt of a flamenco dancer. His puppetry skills brought the prop to life, I honestly found myself catching my breath as he threw 'her' up in the air. A wonderful routine, brilliantly performed.
Good work Ian, & to all the performers. It was a really high quality show.
After a quick run across site we found a comfy spot & settled in for the second outing of the Old Skool. As last year there is not much I can really say about the panel show other than the atmosphere was friendly & fantastic. I really enjoy the change of pace. The story about Goofy being chased by an alligator was a particularly tearful moment for me.
I managed to grab Steve Ragatz who had kindly agreed to pass on some Nikita clubs for David Cain's Historical Juggling Props Collection. He is such a nice guy!
Master of ceremonies this evening was Paul Incredible who did a fantastic job. He worked his heart out & was in complete control from start to finish. If ever an act started to drag on he was straight in with, "Right, you've got one more attempt at this trick then we've got to move on" which ensured a fast paced & exciting show. In between acts he also added tricks from his massive repertoire of skills.
Early on in the evening we were treated to a very un-renegade like act from Steve Ragatz who managed to pull off a full routine based around the very simple disappearing finger trick. It was immaculately presented with style & was laugh out loud funny. This act made me very excited about seeing more of him in the public show the next day.
In terms of other acts we got to see a devilsticker attempting a propeller pirouette while having his chest hair set on fire. Chunk & Bungle passed clubs around a hula hooping Simian. Jack did a couple of spots one with his friend Jamie where they had their hands tied behind their backs, leaned their foreheads against each other until one person (always Jamie) crashed face first into the stage. Not sure what that was all about. Then Jack performed an acoustic version of Eagle Eye Cherry's Save Tonight which invoked an impromptu stage invasion of lots of dancers which was a wonderful moment.
A chap ate a tub of hummus in the sexiest way imaginable while accompanied by a flamenco guitarist. I could have watched this for hours. Why is the hummus always gone?
Merlin showed off his own version of the persistence of vision poi which made me go all wibbly at TLC 2012. The routine was a very well put together technical showcase of the prop's capabilities perfectly synched to the music as only a programmable prop can be. While admittedly not as advanced as those used by Feeding the Fish the very affordable price tag will put them in the hands of us hobbyists which is pretty exciting.
Finishing off the evening was Nik Robson-King with a beautiful & hypnotic contact manipulation routine with 2 rings shaped in a figure '8' (so not rings at all then). He had such a deft & delicate touch. I was mesmerised throughout.
The sun came out on Saturday morning which accompanied with the wind made for a very good drying day. It was a struggle to get a shower this morning but it was worth the wait. While waiting I got to thank Paul for his great work hosting Renegade the night before.
I showed my face in the main hall for a bit, while chatting to Joy:
Her: "So where've you been all morning?"
Me: "I had a long wait for a shower."
Her: "Oh yeah, you look cleaner."
We then did some passing doing 7 club popcorn on doubles & singles rather than my preferred triples & doubles, 7 club 3 count & 8 on synchronous singles. I love passing with someone new. The chaos caused as you try to adapt to an unfamiliar style is hilarious. Later we were joined by Allan & we tried to piece together a Roundabaout from vague recollections of various patterns before I spotted complicated stealing pattern guru Fak on the other side of the hall who kindly put us straight.
In the afternoon before the show we battened down a few hatches & made some adjustments to the gazebo to try to avoid any wind damage while we would be away in Scarborough for the evening.
We got on one of the first coaches for the journey. ^Tom_ informed me that Little Paul had managed to get the Siteswap phone service up & running (01179 115 202) which I enjoyed playing with immensely! Easily the best phone service I have ever used!
After arriving in Scarborough we mooched along the seafront looking for somewhere to eat. Choice was decidedly lacking & we ended up in a Harry Ramsden's. Erm... yeah, don't think I'll be going there again! The company was amazing, the food was ok but certainly not worth the money or the excessive wait.
We wandered back towards the theatre & like many other jugglers popped in for a browse around the shop selling all the fantasy swords, which was a lot of geeky fun.
Outside the theatre a row of jugglers on the sea wall were having a competition to see who could get a drink of salt water spray first which ended predictably.
It wasn't long before we shuffled into the theatre for the always enjoyable pre show party.
The show was hosted by the wonderful Loz Because who wowed with a host of fabulous outfits between each act. Her flip chart of graphs in the second half was spot on hilarious. This is the standard that future compéres need to aspire to.
Opening the show was Steve Ragatz with his classic suitcase, hat, walking stick & ball routine which I have enjoyed watching online dozens of times so it was a real pleasure to see it live. Even though I knew the final surprise trick was coming I didn't lose any enjoyment of it. The reaction of those who didn't know it was coming was a thing of beauty.
Billy George was very impressive on his cyr wheel. For many it would still have been impressive if he just stood on stage topless for 5 minutes. There was a great quote during the interval, "He has all the right muscles. I counted them twice!"
This was followed by German club juggling duo Attrapées who were smooth, well choreographed & had excellent taste in prop colour. They seemed to be lacking in confidence at some points in the act but were very enjoyable none the less.
Top act of the show for me was Eugenius Nils from Germany. He performed as a charming bespectacled geeky ball juggler with a case full of gadgets. The act was one joyful surprise after another as he used innovative props such as magnetic balls & balls on hidden elastic to go against the audience expectations. His case provided new balls in a host of silly & comical ways. In between all this the technical level of juggling was really high too. One of the best acts I've ever seen, well deserving of the standing ovation it received.
Closing the first half were Loooop with a 50s themed love triangle story acted out with poi. Great costumes, bags of character & lots of lovely 3 person intertwining poi swinging. I still feel surprised when I enjoy a poi act, which is really unfair of me because use of the prop has really come on in great strides.
During the interval I managed to win the sprint to the loos. I then got wedged in the scrum for the main bar, a little while later Kevin came in & announced the existence of a second bar on the other side of the theatre that was almost empty. At first I thought it was a diversionary tactic but it turned out to be true.
Steve Ragatz also opened the second half of the show. I had no idea what to expect for his second spot. The stage was set with a bus stop scene that turned out to be created with cylinders & his signature briefcases. What followed was a very slick rola bola routine. Steve just oozed class. What I loved most about both of Steve's routines is his mastery of understatement. So many performers only work on making things look big, so few nowadays can truly make things look effortless.
I was a little underwhelmed when I first saw trick cyclist Alice Allart perform at Crawley in 2010 but this time round she was flawless. The whole routine was much more polished. I don't remember any stand out new tricks but the confidence & fluidity of the performance was superb. I find a good act that is not quite there to be far more frustrating than a bad act. Seeing this performance made me very happy indeed!
Duo Tortellini played around with clubs. They had some nice tricks especially the chest rolls & the 5 club assisted cascade but overall it seemed a bit slow & unrefined.
Grant Goldie is another favourite of mine, after missing throwing a hat onto a balanced cane a few times at the start he immediately redeemed himself with the audience by dropping the cane to a foot balance then flicking it back up to a chin balance first time. After that we were treated to lots of nice hat juggling with one to five hats with his signature big dance movements. I'd seen him perform before but it was really nice to see this act again.
The headline act for the evening was Russian superstar Pavel Evsukevich. I think the pronounciation masterclass held by Loz for his introduction should be mandatory for all performers with four or more syllables in their surnames. First things first: this act would have been better without the waistcoat. He seemed decidedly un-Russian with the ball juggling & I think he was very disappointed with all the drops. He managed to find his inner Russian when he brought out the rings though & pulled off with ruthless precision tricks such as a 5 up pirouette to pancakes, a back heel kick from & back into a 7 ring cascade, a double back heel with 5, 10 rings & 9 rings with a head bounce. Nicely done.
Well done Anna. Excellent work!
It turned out that the professional staff at the theatre were unable to rig the Chinese pole for Ed Muir to perform in the main show. So naturally the pole was rigged in the big top & anchored to a load of beer kegs & some burly men with relatively little trouble so that we didn't have to miss out. Performing to the sounds of Etta James' classic, "I just wanna make love to you" Ed really camped it up & sent the audience into a frenzy. When it came for him to take his top off, the burly men sitting on the beer kegs couldn't take any more. They all jumped up & stripped their shirts off in solidarity ending the affair in a riotous celebratory crescendo of manliness.
Proceeding into the 'normal' renegade fayre two of the kids from 5 Ring Circus made a mess of the stage by doing lots of tricks with yoghurt such as a handstand with a pot balanced on one foot & juggling 3 while standing on each other's shoulders. Yes, they got covered with the stuff.
Throughout the week James, who was one of the professional security staff working on site, was spotted practising his juggling. It was a real pleasure to see him make his way on stage in the middle of the night after a long shift to show us what he'd learnt. He performed the basic steps of learning to juggle with a level of showmanship that many professional performers could only dream of.
Nothing was ever going to top that so I went to the hall for a juggle. Details of exactly what happened this evening are omitted to protect the guilty.
I can say that I enjoyed some one on one gladiators with Simon before being joined by a few other players, one of whom was The Void, I love his chaotic style, it makes picking out a target exceptionally difficult so it is really hard to get a clean strike at him.
I couldn't believe it was the last day already. Why do BJC's pass so quickly?
The weather was good when I first got up, but the wind picked up really quickly. It felt like we were under attack! Kev & I started trying to dismantle the gazebo as quickly as we could but ultimately failed. I was trying to disconnect the pumps in our bar when a single gust bent the uprights & caused the roof to cave in, this crashed down snapping the poles that held up the shelf with the taps that I had my head underneath & trapped me inside. Thank you to all the people who dashed across the campsite on hearing my cries for help!
A while later I saw a dozen people sprinting after the camp shop which was merrily rolling away down the field after ploughing through several fence panels. Sadly, not one person was screaming "Fenton".
A bit later still I was standing by the fence on the windward side of the campsite cleaning my teeth. The harmonics of the fence changed & when I looked up I saw the fence start to fall in a chain reaction from the far corner towards me. There was also a car in the path, I briefly considered risking myself to stop it getting hit but quickly decided "no" & started running.
Usain Bolt has nothing on me.
As we were staying the whole day to clear up we reinforced our tents as best we could.
I attended the business meeting ran by Lorri & Mïark. It was nice that there was a lot of positive comments & not a lot of criticism. I think this convention was a model of doing the nice stuff very well. Future convention organisers need to think about this event after they've got the fundamentals in place.
There is currently no confirmed proposal for BJC 2014. If you have a site in mind but are worried about support there is a lot of help available from people around the country.
The BJC Wiki holds the minutes of the meeting.
The final show of the festival was Wes & Patrik's Between Someonesons.
The show consisted of several acts starting with the pair each juggling a simple double single pattern with three clubs but with lots of sequential movement under the double. A very effective piece from a simple idea.
I have never seen so many consecutive 6 club solo flashes in my life. The two person water bottle opening skit was brilliant.
My favourite part of the show was the act based on two interlocking three club cascades. It looked like a passing pattern but wasn't. Singles, doubles, slapbacks & more were all performed in this way while turning in circles. It was simply gorgeous.
The show finished with a one ring section where the pair smoothly passed a ring between each other in a forehead balance. The most surprising trick of this routine saw Wes holding a ring up high then Patrik leapt up to meet it with his forehead & then come down with it held in a balance. It is very nice to see a pair of jugglers so in synch with each other.
As a whole I loved the mellow, laid back attitude of the show. There was no loud jarring music. we just got to sit back, relax & enjoy some very beautiful juggling in peace. It was the perfect happy wind down from a week of frenetic partying.
After the show I started work on trying to say goodbye to as many of the lovely people I met as possible & enjoyed lots of cuddles.
For the rest of the afternoon Kev, Simon & I took down the quiet campsite, with help from Rainbow Tom & Rory Joel from York. Things would have been a lot easier if we hadn't had to panel beat quite so many wind damaged panels back into shape with the concrete blocks! As the sun started to go down we had the last of the showers then went for a lovely & badly needed meal at the local pub. Returning to site we helped clear the main hall (I found my club that went missing on Wednesday!) & reception.
On Monday morning we finished clearing the quiet camp site. After my whinge last year it was nice to see that almost everyone took the time to take their rubbish to the rubbish points, everyone except the Ladybird Project. Thank you to everyone who did this, it does make a massive difference.
In the empty & eerily silent main hall where so much fun was had over the week there was a hidden ninja chopping onions.
A special mention must go to Uber Volunteers Simon, Kevin, Rainbow Tom, Fergal & Rory Joel who went above & beyond working tirelessly on a lot of the unglamorous but very important grunt work during set up & take down.
Very well done to Sam & Claire & all of the yellow hoodie crew, you did a great job. My all time favourite BJC was BJC 2003 in Brighton, I never thought it would be topped but it has.
There were some BJC Hoodies and T-shirts available for sale at the end of BJC and they might be doing another order for some more in the sizes that are still wanted that they sold out of.
E-mail the organisers at info @ bjc2013.co.uk
The final re-order of hoodies/t-shirts will be on Wedensday so if you want to get one do it now or it will be too late!
There are lots of t-shirts - particularly the ladies fit ones - left over but they'll re-order those too if you want a size they don't have left over. If you say so by Wednesday!
I just sent an email to the mentioned email address but it bounced with a permanent error "Recipient address rejected: Access denied"
Could I have a large blue hoodie please! Could I pick it up at Bungay?
Have e-mailed Sam, who is collating the t-shirt and Hoody order, with your request.
Curiously, have tried and failed to replicate your error, maybe the e-mail address doesn't like just you.
Last day today for #bjc2013 hoody/t-shirt re-order
Please email info @ bjc2013.co.uk with the size and colour (blue or grey) you want. It's £25/hoody, £15/t-shirt, jugglermail is free, otherwise it's £4/item p&p.
I second your point about the supervolunteers (yourself, LP and Simon , I believe, are certainly in the category). In my HLGCBS, the S is definitely how much work the volunteers are willing to put in.
Ruh? I didn't do any volunteering at this years bjc, the closest I got was making a cup of tea for a security guard!
As it was my first bjc in 7 years, I thought I'd ease myself back into things by just being a punter :)
Maybe it was yet another of the LP/Colin_E/Mike doppelgangers
I'm not all that great with names. Looks like someone is going uncredited.
I think Chris may have meant Paul (turns up to do fencing with a tool belt and comes from twjc, but isn't at all little), and not Paul (siteswap phone and bov and dressing gown (until someone calls him Ford by mistake) aka LP).
Or he could mean Kevin who was working with Simon & I.
Sadly, I never got to see much of Paul this convention for various reasons. I think he was doing technical stuff on the other side of the site on the Monday & I know he spent a lot of time doing traffic duty on the Tuesday.
There are 7362 words in this review.
One or two may be incorrect!
and thanks for all the volunteering you did for BJC.
Are you using the FF specific version I added? moved to Meta
& you're very welcome & same to you re volunteering! I think we all did very well!
I was almost about to point out your mistake between your and you're. Fortunately I reread it and stopped myself before making myself look like a sparrow.
'Ere, whaddya mean, "chaotic"? That's precission-engineered switch and veering, that is. Ahem.
Anyway, thanks for all that, a good read.
Oh, and that's "Ronnie" and "Nik", btw.
Great review - thanks for your concise synopsis of events, and thanks for all the hard work, particularly on the fence and car park, in which you put.
Unfortunately my idea of sending new gate/car park attendees with cups of tea for people who were already out there didn't seem to catch on - hopefully next year can do a better job of keeping helpers warm.
btw - who is Rory from York? As an erstwhile expert on jugglers from York, I can't help but think that you may have a case of mysteaken identity.
There sadly is no Rory in York, he must be from elsewhere and Rainbow Tom is from Halifax, but other than these tiny quibbles a good review.
In Orinoco's defence, he never started that Rainbow Tom was from York - or at very least he has ambiguity on his side.
In York Jugglers's defence; they never said that Orinoco said that Rainbow Tom was from York, and they might just be giving RT's origin as a point of interest.
anybody else need defending by ^Tom_ & Mïark - forum defenders extraordinaire
If anything is wrong it is the name, I definitely remember him telling me he was from York, he was camped with & seemed very familiar with the Yorkies.
He also had a megaphone & was trying to read out questions when I popped into the bar briefly during quiz night (not ^Tom_).
I think you might be new to the game of "Guess the Juggler", it is not very sporting to get the right answer straight away. You must first get some clues like "He might have been juggling with orange clubs at the convention before last" or "He is best friends with that person you don't know" or "He always wears that jacket, except when he doesn't". Then we can all have a few goes at getting the wrong answer.
I have just enjoyed a glass of Port whilst reading your review. I reckon you got it spot on.
I was talking to someone at BJC who recommended that I check out this site. I think his name was either Orin, Simon or Paul.
You may have seen me pottering around BJC in a crew hoodie and a blue sock hat, doing anything but juggling.
Hurrah! Welcome aboard - and thanks for wearing a yellow hoodie!
Yay new people. This does seem to be the most active juggling message board in the English language right now.
JugglingRock on Facebook is probably more active, although the majority of the posts are videos.
I think that's quite a common approach to internet communities these days. It's all "look at this thing I found" or "look what I made, love me love me LOVE ME!!! RATE COMMENT SUBSCRIBE!!!11eleventy"
Call me old fashioned, but I quite like text, banter, and you know... discussion!
While I agree with your sentiment, I find Jugglingrock does agood job (for the most part) or avoiding annoying like/subscription/share requests. I'm always surprised by how much user-generated content there is, too, rather than posts of others' videos.
Oh hi Chris. You're popping up everywhere on the internet this evening :)
I pop up precisely when I mean to.
I guess this means that you figured out my Reddit account then.
You haven't popped up on ##juggling yet (as far as I can tell) - come on in, the water's lovely.
We've also got a new web client for people to play with, so if anyone reading tried http://jugglelounge.com before but decided they didn't like the web client, I'd love to hear how you get on with http://www.jugglelounge.com/webchat/alternative-web-client/ instead.
cascade tutorial - but wait!
You probably already know how to juggle the 3-club cascade.
"Yeah, this is simple," - you'd say.
But i'm sure a friend of yours don't know how to do it.
So, why not showing him this video?
Let's start a campaign! "Teach a friend how to juggle 3 clubs!"
Maybe we'll end up with some cool new jugglers to pass with us!
and the video has cool animations!
+ today is my birthday, would you share the video, as a gift?
That was fun, though 1000705 is a lot of throws, happily give our joinha.
Happy birthday!! and thanks for all the videos
The Cirque du Soleil 3d film, Worlds Away, is showing in town this weekend. Has anybody seen it? Is it any good?
Cirque Du Soleil have teamed up with James Cameron? the Cirque machine just gets bigger and bigger!
I must admit, despite numerous opportunities, I haven't seen a single CDS video. Part of the wonder of a CDS show, or any other large-scale circus show, is getting lost in the spectacle. The sights, sounds and smells - being so close to the performers, so close to such skill and human achievement. The panoramic quality of it all (in real 3D!)
I just can't get the same level of emotional involvement from watching television or cinema. I don't want to see circus on a screen, small or big. I want to see it live.
Your mileage might vary!
It's an hour and a half trailer for their shows. Yeah there is a "story", intertwined with live footage of their shows, which gives nothing in terms of a film and even less in terms of a live performance.
Sure, it's beautiful, no doubt, and a $10 cinema ticket is less expensive than a $150 Cirque seat...but save your money.
As a juggler I was disappointed by the incredibly small amount of juggling in the film. If you enjoy lots of aerial then this is the film for you. The fight on the nearly vertical slab was pretty good and the trampoline stuff was very impressive but otherwise the film doesn't wow.
"If you enjoy lots of aerial then this is the film for you"
I might give it a miss then. Thanks for the review!
Juggling Club Verification e-mail notification
Opted to be notified by e-mail when our club listing on Juggling Edge needed re-verifying, but only noticed today we had dropped off the listing on Juggle.org (which is fed by Juggling Edge). Have now re-verified our club as still meeting and have checked we received no e-mail reminder. Is the e-mail reminder function working?
Curiously the listing was updated in the past month to say we would not be meeting during BJC, but this had no effect on the listing expiration.
Admittedly there was a small bit of red text at the bottom of the new home page alerting us that the club needed updating, but we don't often go to the home page, which is why we opted in to receive e-mail reminder (especially as it needs verifying every 90 days).
I know the mail function is generally working because I'm getting loads of emails. The club verification emails are only sent out once a week, the server may have been having one of its tantrums at the time your club moved from status 0-1.
I've just manually activated the reminder, did you get that message? I've told Marvin to monitor the mail function more carefully to see what is going on.
You are right, adding a shutdown date had no effect on the expiry date. But it does now.
The "If it's a bit quiet" text made me think that it might be nice for a clash checking tool. So here we are:
Just stick in your proposed dates & it will return all events in the Edge events database that overlap with your dates. Events happening in the same country if you specify one are highlighted in bold.
With over 200 events last year and only 52 weekends it is inevitable you will clash with an event somewhere (unless you have your event in December, January or August).
Will there be a link to this clash checking tool on the home page?
But only 3 countries had over 20 events. I don't think international clashes are that important as long as you avoid clashing with the EJC, BJC & IJA fest.
There were still a few same country clashes last year (just looking at juggling festivals that share the same audience - I don't think there is much crossover between the WJF & the Return 2 Roots Hoop Festival (not that they clashed anyway)!). Most were in the US as you would expect as they had by far the most festivals of any country:
Madison - Seattle
Bristol - Chocfest
Austin - Damento
Tucson - Pocono
Illini - Congress of jugglers
Au Bout des Doigts - Festival Rencontre des Jonglages
North West Arkansas - April Fools
Flatland - Junction Jugglefest
The Assembly of Awesome - Kansas City
ZirkuLaer - Munich
I'm probably going to create a festival organisers' toolkit page with links to this sort of thing (so far this & signs)
Chocfest has never clashed with Bristol (BoB) they were a week apart last year.
Also bear in mind USA is a big (underpopulated by European terms) space, and although some US jugglers do travel huge distances to conventions, they can be geographically far apart, eg
Seattle is nearly 2000 miles from Madison,
Austin is 1750 miles from Sacramento
Tucson is 2400 miles from Pocono
Illini is 750 miles from Maryland
Fayetteville is 900 miles from Tallahassee
Maumeee is 700 miles from Kansas City
Laer is 700 km from Munich
My mistake I saw Bristol 9 & thought it was the 9 dayer. It would have clashed if it went on for 9 days.
If you are compiling a list of websites useful to convention organisers on your Organisers Tools page, might I recommend Richard's guide to running BoB; http://www.bristolcircus.co.uk/howtorunaconvention/
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