STORE set off into 2015 with a bang with a 5 day intensive workshop with Mr Hajime Kinoko at the Virginia Gallery. Twisted came at the end of the week with guest performers Fred Hatt & Miss Bones, Wkyd Dave and Clover and Kinoko with Skinnyredhead. We took the feedback from the last Twisted and set out to collaborate with our new venue, Club X, whilst keeping all the things we liked about The Virginia Gallery who still hosted our week of workshops.
The first act of the night was Fred Hatt & Miss Bones. This dynamic duo have a palpable connection and loving nature contrasting with the harshness of the ties. Fred, originally from Glasgow, may well be the first ever person to perform kinbaku on stage in a kilt and there were lots of other little tartan mementos included in their performance. Who knew a Japanese art could be so Scottish too!
Fred and Bones are also keenly involved in Pop Up Rope Events (PuRE) in London which organises all kinds of rope events from workshops on how to tie, life drawing classes and circus style aerial arts training. At STORE we’re looking forward to collaborating in the future with PuRE. There is also the blog www.bonesandrope.com which shares some interesting insights.
Next up was Wykd Dave and Clover who many of you remember performed for us at the first ever Twisted. They were so good we wanted to bring them back again! We were not disappointed. It’s not often on stage that you get to see a reverse prayer tie so strictly applied and used for an elaborate and challenging suspension. Clover’s grace blends perfectly with Wykd Dave’s loving sadism.
Wykd Dave and Clover travel nationally and internationally to lots of rope events. If you haven’t been able to see their show, or better yet attend a class with them, then we heartily recommend that you give them a try! Check out all the details on http://rope-topia.com/
Last onto the stage were Kinoko-san and SkinnyRedHead. Being the organiser of this event I know that these two had never met before the workshops started and had never performed together. You would not have been able to tell from this performance! Skinny’s proud strength in Kinoko-san’s torturous ties was infused with deep emotions which had the audience in stunned silence and then rapturous applause. Many of us had seen the joking and lighthearted side of Kinoko-san during the workshops and the transformation he undergoes on stage is phenomenal. This was far and away the most powerful piece of performance I have ever witnessed.
Kinoko-san continues on a world tour for the next few weeks. He is also due to perform at Torture Garden’s Valentines event. His website is www.shibari.jp
Skinny is available as a model and creative and can be contacted via her website – www.skinny-art.com
Personal Thanks From Organiser, Jin
Describing the last week of my life using simply words is not possible. It has been a journey of emotion, new connections, friendship and love.
Many thanks to 秀土平松 / Mr Kinoko Hajime for leading the week’s workshop. He is not just a skilled performer but an intuitive and creative teacher also. Absolutely everyone in the class received tailored attention and encouragement. He is also a wonderful house guest and is always full of smiles and joy and unexpected moments of hilarity. I feel as though I have gained a good friend rather than simply accommodated a tutor.
Skinny was an absolutely astounding model for Kinoko-san but not only that spent much of the workshop going round everyone making sure they got to see the details of the tie up close. She also helped each of the people being tied understand what it should feel like. She’s also pretty good at floor cleaning and rounding up coffee cups! To say that her performance with Kinoko-san was mesmerising feels a little cliched but I simply cannot find the words to describe it. The strong connection between these two was wonderful to watch and off stage there was such a lovely warmth also
Thank you to Ian & Drew of Luke & Jack with the ever helpful Cameron for hosting the workshops and helping make all the vital connections that were needed to make both the workshop and Twisted a runaway success
Thank you to Darren and his team at Club X for being so friendly and easy to work with for Twisted. It was a joy to organise all the events with such helpful people. Thanks also go to Darren for helping to avert a near tour stopping crisis and to the lovely honest patrons of Delmonica’s who ensured that a certain person’s mislaid bag and passport were safely stored away.
Thank you to Dave Wykd, Clover, Fred & Anna for travelling all the way to us in Scotland to be part of Twisted and to help make the best show I’ve ever had the pleasure to see. Yes, as the organiser I’m biased…. but I really mean it! Such passion and skill went into all the acts on stage that it is humbling that you all agreed to share with us.
Thanks to Osaka Dan for organising the whole tour. It has been worth all your hard work and the week we have had was just perfect. Thank you for convincing me to go for the 5 day workshop!
She isn’t online, but the lovely Nana needs a mention as the best damned interpreter we could have asked for as well as excellent company both at the workshop and at home. You would hardly believe that it isn’t really her profession and she helped to navigate a few critical cultural and communication hiccups with ease and no stress.
Also in the background has been Telarian who has been husband extraordinaire, master frame designer and builder for STORE. Without him none of it would have happened. My own bunny for the workshop was an absolute trooper and as fun as ever to work with.
Huge thanks to Iongantas for the photography at Twisted and to Alice Gordon for the video footage.
And thank you to everyone who came along. The workshop would have been nothing without the dynamic of this group. There was so much sharing and laughing in this class but without ever becoming silly. I haven’t tagged any of you so that you can choose for yourself how you can be found. Please do tag yourself or message me if we are not already friends. I would love to stay in touch with every last one of you.
So yeah. Wow!