Hoop Dance Dazzles William Derby School (April 21/2011)
On March 29, Teddy Anderson visited William Derby School to dazzle the audience with his Hoop Dance for students in Grades 1-12.  Students, staff and parents from Bulyea and Drake Schools joined us for the performance, as well as other members of the community of Strasbourg.  Teddy was one of the spring concert series performers offered through OSAC.       
Teddy began his performance with a beautiful prayer to thank the Creator and to bless the performance space.  He then performed three different dances with varying numbers of hoops.  He did a skip-rope move with one hoop, created butterflies and birds with four to eight hoops and created a stunning chain link with 30 hoops.  
Teddy did more than perform a hoop dance, but left the audience with a message about the value of appreciating the diversity of all the peoples of the world because we are all connected.  Teddy illustrated this message with his coloured hoops; the yellow hoop represents the Asian peoples, black- the descendants of Africa, red-the indigenous peoples and white the Caucasian peoples.  He took the four separate hoops and linked them all together into a sphere to illustrate the message of interdependence.  While holding the sphere he spoke about respecting the earth that we inhabit because we are so dependent on it for success as well.   
At the end of the performance Teddy invited students and staff up to “workshop”.   Volunteers learned the skip-rope move, how to successfully swing the hoop on arms and legs and how to throw the hoop up and have it land beautifully around your feet.  He followed with a Q&A and revealed fascinating stories about his life.  
Teddy’s cultural background was surprising; his mother is Persian and his father is Norwegian.  When he was a young boy in the Yukon he saw an inspirational hoop dancer perform and became determined to learn this art form.  At 15 he began training with Scott Ward, a native Salteaux trained in the traditional art of hoop dancing.  He began with nine hoops and eventually mastered 30 hoops.  Teddy also lived in Rwanda shortly after the civil war and developed an understanding of the value of peace and respect for all of mankind.  All of these life adventures have influenced both his performance and the message that he gives the audiences he performs for.  He has performed his hoop dance in many of the world’s countries including: China, Jamaica, Thailand, Holland, USA, Senegal, Uganda and Canada.
For more information on Teddy and his Hoop Dance see his official website at:     http://hoopdanceproductions.animikii.com/home
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