Sunday morning was taken up with a series of professional workshops at Highfield Humanities College which is the base for Blackpool Circus School. Whilst waiting for the gates to open the groups took advantage of the nights snow fall by juggling and passing snow balls! The workshops were led by Slava, a graduate and performer of the Russian state Circus school. Roger Mireles a former flyer who was part of the “Flying Alizes”and performed with Barnum and Baileys Circus. Jose Hermida, who started life with the “Muchachos” Circus in Spain. Plus Yuri Gridneff and Jamie Lee-Coldham who taught and demonstrated Ladder balancing. Yuri was a product of the “Amazing Gridneffs” and Jamie was a Student and now teacher with Blackpool Circus School.
On Saturday they went on a tour of the Tower Ballroom and Circus with historical notes from Professor Vanessa. Some groups stayed to go up the lift to the Tower top and others made their way to the Pleasure beach. All met after lunch in a large room set aside for them by “Visit Blackpool” in the Olympia of the Winter Gardens. A further workshop on presenting a performance was conducted by Felicity Fernando and there was a general workshop exchange between groups plus visits to the exhibitions in “Showzam central”
All the groups took part in the 2010 “Showzam Parade” The groups participation made this years parade the best to date with Blackpool Circus School, being local, made up the largest group.Organized Kaos from Swansea brought the excitement of fire to the event. See the video.
Thirteen youth Circus groups from all parts of the UK met in Blackpool from the 19th to the 21st February. This follows on the YPPT event that took place in London at The Circus Space at the same time in 2009. NYCE (National Youth Circus event) will take place in 2011 in Sheffield and will be hosted by Swamp Circus trust and Greentop.
This year’s event was hosted by “Blackpool Circus School” and coincided with “Showzam” in which the Circus School played a major part in Daily workshops at the Winter Gardens. Other attractions at Olympia featured Archive side shows presented by Professor Vanessa Toulmin from the Fairground archives in Sheffield.
The youth groups present were from The Circus space, Albert & Friends, Circus project, No fit State, Organised Kaos, Emerge, Engage, Rotherham Youth Circus, Let’s Circus, Euphoric Circus, Sheffield Youth Circus, and Wookie Hole Circus. They met on the Friday at “The New President Hotel” for a games exchange led by Albert Owen and a performance workshop led by Felicity Fernando. Groups also told each other of their Circus projects along with DVD footage.
Following the inaugural National Youth Circus Event held at Circus Space in London in 2009, this year’s event will be hosted by Blackpool Circus School between 19 and 21 February.
NYCE 2010 will bring over fifty young participants from youth circus groups across the UK together to share their skills and experiences and participate in workshops with professional artists. The event will centre around Showzam!, Blackpool’s festival of Circus, Magic and New Variety.
A result of the continuing legacy of the Young People’s Participatory Project, NYCE reflects a growing confidence in youth circus and the circus arts sector as a whole. Through continued support and investment from Arts Council England the project will continue to strengthen ties between the regional hubs of youth circus in the UK as well as encouraging the development of projects and facilities in other areas around the country. The steering committee who coordinate the project already have plans in place for the 2011 gathering in Sheffield.