British Juggling Convention 2013 – Pickering, Yorkshire
By Alice Brett - Circus Space Circus Development Manager
The BJC (and, of course, the British Balloon Modelling Convention) this year was held in rural Yorkshire, at Pickering Showground from Tuesday 9th – Sunday 14th April.
The venue boasted a huge hall, which was constantly full of people juggling, hula hooping, spinning poi & staff, unicycling, ripsticking etc… at all times of the day. As the hall was so large there were traders down one end selling every prop you could imagine, (and quite a lot more you never knew existed). The other end of the hall had static trapezes rigged for people to try a workshop in.
The chill out space had various games being played when you needed a break from juggling, and the bar tent was a much needed sheltered space to grab a drink or dance (we were entertained some evenings with a Ceilidh and a Blue Grass band).
There were multiple different workshops to attend if you wanted, from the standard juggling ones like ‘multiplex with clubs’ and ‘foot hooping’ to games & other non-juggling related workshops like ‘Beginners Backgammon’, ‘Turning vegetables into a musical instrument’, ‘origami’ or ‘Muni ride’ (mountain unicycling) and much, much more!
All the shows, except the Gala, were held in the Big Top. The shows included;
Team Shreddie Crunch – highlighting some amazing ‘young’ jugglers,
BYJOTY (British Young Juggler of the Year) demonstrating just how talented under 21’s are,
Circus Space & Circomedia show where our 1st year Luke Hallgarten & 3rd year Matt Green representing Circus Space made us proud with outstanding performances.
The Open Stage – which allows any performers who want to try out a new (or old) act to sign up to perform.
The Renegade – Happening every evening at around midnight, anyone can go up on stage and show off an act, a party trick, something they just learnt, or … well anything goes! My highlight of the Renegades was one of the security guards learnt to juggle whilst at the BJC and went up on stage to do a 3 ball cascade, (to which he got a standing ovation).
The Gala Show was held in Scarborough, with an all-star line up including Steven Ragatz, Loooop, Duo Tortellini , Eugenius Nil, Attrapées, Pavel Evsukevich, Grant Goldie and two Circus Space graduates demonstrating non-juggling circus skills - Alice Allart on trick bike & Billy George on Cyr Wheel. The compered by Loz Because who somehow made graphs look interesting…
In traditional Juggling review style here are my HLCGB (Highs, Lows, Crushes, Goals & Bane);
H: The Gala show – every act was superb.
L: It was really cold!
C: Luke & Matt for amazing performances at the Circus Space & Circomedia Show.
G: To actually juggle at the convention, which I succeeded at & learnt some new tricks!
B: The hall was quite dusty which meant your props, you, everything was covered in dust very quickly.