This year’s Philippine Flow Fest brought together fire dancers, hoop artists and flow enthusiasts from different parts of the world for 3 days of sharing, learning, and dancing at Kapitan’s Liwa Surf Resort in Liwliwa, San Felipe, Zambales.
Workshops on capoeira, yoga, tie-dyeing and the different forms of flow arts kept the energy up and flowing.
Gail O’Brien of HoopSpin came all the way from Northern Ireland to share her techniques in hooping basics and balancing.
Fire dancing duo Atom Chanchaisiri and Ron Suksawang from Samui Circus Studio in Thailand lit up the fire circle with their riveting moves. “It’s our first time to visit the Philippines and we came here just to attend this festival,” shared Atom.
Cigar box manipulation and 3-ball juggling workshops were taught by Edwin Ong from Singapore, a street and professional circus arts performer who makes up one-half of busker duo The Annoying Brothers.
Visual artists Dee Jae Pa’este and Piaget Martelino added color to the festival with their artworks while drum community Adinkra Lumads Djembe Community took care of the beats during sunset sessions.
Performances were nothing short of jaw-dropping with Yuta Imamura from Japan headlining the gala show.
Dressed in a white studded ensemble, Yuta wowed the crowd with his clean, Zen-like movements as he performed his “Endangered Species” piece from his 2005 video.
Daniel Darwin aka Astroboy, who won Talentadong Pinoy in 2012, performed a piece to Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah”, a transcendental spectacle inspired by the Whirling Dervishes. “I became really interested in one style of hula hooping called sustained spinning, which is much simpler. There are no moves – you just spin in a circle and you’re able to do more optical illusions with the hula hoop,” shared Daniel.
Other gala performances included a dramatic number from Ehrlich Ocampo (Philippines), a hypnotizing buugeng routine by Jay Firecat (France), and an electrifying fire poi performance from Ruby Phonngo (Thailand).
More than entertainment
What’s compelling about flow arts is not what the audience is seeing but what the performer or spinner is experiencing. The physical aspect of it requires grace, hand-eye coordination, and technical mastery – products of hyperfocus and mental awareness.
It is this spiritual quality that encapsulates the experience of flow that is, in a sense, a metaphorical one – the more you practice, the more you bring mindfulness to your day-to-day life. And the more mindful you are, the more you are able to share positive energy – and we surely need more of that in this world.
More about the 5th Philippine Flow Fest in our May issue.