2 dance camps
37 dance classes
1 camera man
An agency scouting for talent
And the man behind it all…Josh Ricketts?
The answer= Soar UK’s HDI Commercial and Summer Dance Camps.
On behalf of anyone who attended any of these 12 amazing days, it is safe to say that both the HDI Commercial and Summer Dance Camps literally blew everyone away, with memories and moments that will be cherished for an entire life time.
I could sit here for hours writing away about how incredible each of the choreographers classes were and what they brought to the table- whether it be a certain dance style, key knowledge or inspirational movements but I think they would much rather we discussed certain individuals who stamped their names into our HDI memories. So all I will say to the phenomenal line up consisting of:
Brian Friedman, Dean Lee, Jonathan Bishop, Kimberley Taylor, Tony Tzar, Andye Jamieson, Parris Goebel, Frankie J, Maniek Kotarski, Candace Brown, CJ Salvador, Bam Martin and Willdabeast is THANK YOU.
Located at Arts Depo’s, ‘Liam’ Pentland Theatre, 14 classes at HDI Commerical Camp honestly flew by. It’s always a pleasure to see so many professional dancers attend to train alongside old and new HDI faces and of course, Brian Friedman NEVER fails to deliver when he’s back in London town. Where else can you say you kick started your Monday morning with an Andye J heel’s class followed by an agency scouting for talent? There’s also a pretty cool Gregg James/James Corden-esque carpool interview featuring myself, Joely T and Brian Friedman which is coming out very soon.
So let’s now fast forward to HDI Summer Camp held at Reaseheath College and picture this…day 1,the first class and the first selected male solo, chosen by Tony Tzar. Have you got that pictured in your mind? So your looking at this guy and you are like okay yeah I’ve seen him around for the entire 90 minutes that i’ve been dancing for. The music starts and it’s as if he’s possessed your eyes, he begins to move and you are instantly drawn in. After an entire 2 maybe 3 seconds, your mind is already asking you questions and thinking ‘sorry what…is this real?’. It was as if he had cast a spell and our eyes were playing tricks on the room because he just moved like no other and to this day THAT solo still can’t be processed.
Now I don’t know how Levent Nyuembo managed to keep going until the end of the solo. The room was roaring with support and disbelief to whatever it was that had just come out of his body, but he did it and then walked off so casually as if he hadn’t just set a bar for everyone who still had 22 classes remaining. This boy/man/beast is hands down my one to look out for over the next year as its like he sets a little button somewhere on his body to BEAST mode and just goes IN.
HDI Summer Camp gives more than just high intense training but also opportunities for dancers to showcase their skills whether it be during the 2vs2 battles, the HDI showcase or by the HDI ‘Your Shot’ competition. ‘Your Shot’ gave dancer teachers the opportunity to submit videos via YouTube explaining just why they should give back to the camp and host their own HDI class. Now I don’t know who found a certain someone from Singapore or which choreographer on the line up made Zaihar book his flight overseas but, whoever or whatever the reason-they need a pat on the back. Zaihar is by far one of the most humble beings I have ever stumbled across. His knowledge, passion and drive sets off this positive vibe that you just want to exchange with, everyone was just so intrigued to share ideas and movements with him as we were all so grateful he booked his flight to be a part of the journey with us.
Bringing it back to the UK we then had Dylan Mayoral representing the the ‘Your Shot’ young choreographers and boy he did good. It’s not often you hear of young talent creating pieces that cater for the people who attend to a dance camp, as they wanted to create something that’s going to bring out the best in people’s overall whole performance. It was truly incredible to see a 19 year olds personally spin on HDI being expressed through movement in class.
2vs2 BATTLES just went off and that’s all I can physically bring to say about them. Lets just say… there is a reason why Kofi Mensah made #immaEUROPEbeast alongside Stevey Thompson, Jordan Melchor, Ian Harris, Dylan Mayoral and Zaihar as these guys are all ones to look out for in the near future.
I’m saving my my second to last mention for the wonderfully driven Ian Harris who just brought out the best energy in people – has anyone else clocked his reactions on the sidelines to any HDI group selection videos? I’d keep an eye out for those as they are comedy gold!
Before I do go, I just wanted to say that there is a certain HDI team member who sadly never got the chance to put their trainers on and dance for us all one last time. Elliott Campion’s name and memory played on everybodies minds throughout the 37 HDI dance classes and as an outsider to knowing Elliott on a personal level, I found I was so grateful for getting to know him through his ever so strong and beautiful girlfriend Leah Taylor. Tony Tzar provided the most beautiful tribute class on the first night at Summer Camp, which allowed for everyone to support and share the memories of Elliott with one another. This then led us to the car park where we set off lanterns into the sky for one last goodbye. This was a truly beautiful moment that many of us will cherish forever. Elliott summed up HDI beautifully in his ‘Your Shot’ submission so I will leave you with this –
What can people take from HDI?
” Knowledge first of all, you are there for a week and you learn different styles and you learn from other people so you increase your knowledge. The social side of HDI is sick, it’s worth going just for that because you will have a good time and it’s fun umm and finally I’ll finish with inspiration umm you definately come back pumped and ready to put to practise what you have learnt over the week.”
Thank you for reading this….
P.S SPIT A BAR! 😉